Posts Categorized: Auditions

The End of the Great Big American Voice – A Response

My plans for an opera-free Sunday were dashed by the front page of this morning’s New York Times Arts section. Anne Midgette’s feature on the shortcomings of America’s opera “farm teams” has my head spinning. For what it’s worth, here’s a response – argumentative, sympathetic, and defensive all at once. Stephanie Blythe in 2005.(Richard Termine

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New York Day 5

Report from the Road You know you’re getting tired when forgetfulness sets in. Left my purse in Starbucks this morning. Checked out of the hotel; was carrying a suitcase, a bag of computer and audio gear, a bunch of books and CDs; had a meeting scheduled before auditions, and afterwards walked down Columbus Avenue schlepping

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New York Day 3

Report from the Road Getting into the rhythm. Every 10-minute interval is filled with about 7 -8 minutes of singing, a minute of chatting/welcoming, and a minute of documentation. The database is an amazingly helpful thing, for it allows us to hear singers’ performances in context. What’s on the database? This is a simplification, of

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New York Day 1

Report from the Road Today’s entry is long. Treat it like a Chinese menu. Sad amateur photo at the right was taken as I and a few thousand of my closest friends were leaving the Met after tonight’s performance of Lucia di Lammermoor. (I really do need to get a better camera or learn how

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By the Numbers

Statistics for this year. Skip entirely if this kind of thing irritates, confuses or demoralizes you. Read and use if you are curious or you find it useful. What’s to be learned?Fach: Sopranos represent about half of all aspiring singers. (Don’t despair, soprani; just acknowledge that the competition is stiff. It just means that you

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Chicago… Baby, What a Big Surprise…

Well, very little blogging to be done today. Review of applications for the Chicago site has taken a nasty turn. Historically, we get 40-50 applications for that site, and we accept 30. (A 60-75% acceptance rate.) Right now I’m staring down 104 applications for Chicago. And I get to pick 30. (A 29% acceptance rate.)

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The Barns

The Short List Part 1Time to start compiling the list of operas we might be able to do this year. We don’t program anything until we hear the singers, but there’s a process of winnowing that takes place concurrently with the auditions. We start by determining which pieces we are unlikely to produce – namely,

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Philadelphia

Curtis Audition tour kick-off at Curtis Institute. In a black box theatre/rehearsal room that provides an extremely flattering acoustic. The wonderful thing about it is that everyone sounds good. The bad thing is that everyone sounds good. So, right out of the box, we’re trying to separate voice from acoustic.I said this last year, but

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Gershwin

Dress rehearsal of Porgy and Bess at Washington National Opera. A beautiful, touching, funny night in the theatre. I know that it took a long haul to get here (as they say), and that’s no surprise for a piece as complicated and sprawling as this one. But what a wonderful thing to finally welcome Porgy

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