As rehearsals start to sketch out the trajectory of this piece, a sense of... well, really, I can't say getting deeper into character; it feels more like finding more and more points of reference in common with my self. I suspect that lots of this is due to having a bloody good director. (As a performer it isn't always obvious why the director is needed, if you're the opinionated type. However they are crucial in bringing together the individual interpretations into an organised and coherent whole, not to mention being able to see the entire picture from the outside, which we as performers of course can't.) It's an enthralling process. I am constantly reminded that, however angst-ridden or awkward or painful the individual moments, the thrilling fact remains that I have a chance to interpret one of the great roles professionally. Lady Macbeth is a dream for an actress (at least an actress of a certain age and inclined towards charisma rather than sweetness) and however off the wall the production or music, she is MINE to inhabit for the moment.
The brain is at full throttle. Apart from the obvious difficulties of trying to remember the virtually impossible music, without a prompter for whatever reason, I am attempting to hear and respond to the other singers' lines, whilst using my entire body energies trying to sit on a hideously raked stage without slithering inelegantly to the floor (OK inelegant but darned good fun: tried it a few times when not required to sit in one place, and it was great!!). On top of all that, it seems that, even more in such modern music than usual, the inherent possibilities of the vocal line show themselves up only when one starts to inhabit them physically. I am subject to constant mental tweakings (oh yes, so HERE I might well be crying; would suit the break over the lower passaggio, and the meaning, let's see whether the conductor thinks it works) and the huge, HUGE revisions and forward-forecastings-in-case-of-trouble that are part and parcel of our work. These are often tried out en route home, startling the poor innocents I pass on my bike...
However it has to be said I am proud of myself in respect of my approach to changes here. I was DETERMINED to keep my mind open, and try everything without automatically condemning it. (Sounds bad, but with all the Regietheater over here in Germany, you get a LOT of singers who have cynicism built into their very bones.) And at a couple of points where it would have been (for me as an actress) disastrous to carry on, I was able, through diplomacy and appealing seriously to the fabulous stage instincts of the director, to effect enough of a revision to be able to stick closely enough to the original text to satisfy myself.
In other words, a decent start. Must remind myself of this when I am panicking blindly about not having the music down pat (I pride myself on being professional enough to turn up to first stage rehearsals off copy. ALWAYS. ) It WILL WORK!!!