Moving swiftly on...
OK, time to 'fess up. This is the time of year when singers hold their breath, wondering whether their contract will be renewed. And mine wasn't. Can't complain, have had two years here on a one-year contract, but all the same, getting chucked back into the audition pool is... interesting?
I am seriously lucky, though, in that I have talked to the people in whose hands the decision lay, and am thoroughly reassured that there was no fault on my part, in fact they loved what I'd done here, but the future direction of the theatre required a different voice, and... hey, that's the business. It wasn't particularly easy to ask for an explanatory interview, but I felt I owed it to myself as an artist to ask for the truth (because really, what we feel we are coming across as is as nothing compared to how others actually see us). I'm so glad I did, however, as it means I can go out and audition secure in the knowledge that I haven't FAILED! (Other artistes will immediately recognise the incipient paranoia - those of you who don't, this is the point at which you thank your lucky stars!!).
The contract not being renewed doesn't however mean that you're chucked out on the street as of yesterday (whatever my mother may fear!). Naturally I have all the season's operas to come, and my contract here runs until the end of next June.
After that, however, it's all up in the air once more. The thing is, though, this is simply one aspect of the profession. I have a few friends who have been appalled by the randomness of it. I'm not sure I convinced them with my acceptance, but it's true. Had I really needed job security, I would have applied for a chorus job. I'll take the thrills with the spills, as it were...
Naturally, should anyone hear of a great vacancy for a dramatic mezzo, please contact me ASAP. Doesn't matter where; in fact, the workings of Sod's Law say I should probably apply for things in countries whose language I don't yet speak, since the prospect of mastering yet another language from scratch absolutely appals me!
Normally I wouldn't go so public with such news. But heck, if I'm writing about the life of an opera singer, it would be dishonest to fail to mention these things. And besides, I am thoroughly convinced that there's a silver lining to every cloud, it's just that sometimes it's cunningly hidden. I definitely, for example, wouldn't have believed that my cut throat over the summer would lead to a better and more reliable voice; and so, armed with six-pack vocal muscles, thorough knowledge of my audition repertoire (told you I'd been practising!!) and a decent amount of self-knowledge, I am ready to take the next step.
Whatever that may be.