Friday, 12 April 2013

Well, yep.  Sometimes a day doesn't turn out quite how you expected.  I was singing the modern (Henze) role again this evening, my first outing as the Kurfürstin for... argh, nearly three months!! At times the system here feels absolutely crazy - six weeks of intensive rehearsals, then the premiere, a second performance a few days later - then a seemingly totally random series of dates, often separated by ridiculous blocks of time.  In this case it was made worse in that I started off being a rehearsal cover, then jumped in for the second performance, and then today's was a scheduled performance in my own right.  Still, as I said.  Nearly three months separated the last time I sang this from today.

So, reasonably enough, I was a little nervous about how this evening would go.  I had time to prepare and had sung through the role a few times, and had even got as far as watching the DVD twice (at least the dress rehearsal is recorded here, just for internal use, so that, should any roles need to be sung by someone jumping in at the last minute, they can see what they're meant to do when.  This probably works better when you are totally focused on your character because, for example, you have to sing it in a few hours and haven't a clue what the production is like;  I found my attention wandering horribly because I kept seeing bits I hadn't really seen from the front before and forgetting to watch my character closely.)

Which meant that I bowled up to the evening not 100% certain of being in charge of myself.  I was lucky enough to have had a refresher rehearsal earlier in the day, with others in  the cast, but still... for me, a lot of the memory problems in this piece are to do with counting rather than words or notes - I don't see WHY I should hold this particular note for four bars or six or whatever, so I have to remember to count them off rather than FEEL them,  Which, for me, is something that doesn't necessarily come naturally (yes, I know.  Those who know me personally will be laughing their heads off about that.  In other walks of life I have been known to be an OCD mathematical perfectionist.  Just not in singing mode!!).  And my brain "helped" by for insane little reasons of its own going through Act III of Tosca note by note, chord by chord.  Thank you, brain.  NOT.

So as the curtain went up I was having to breathe in a mindful manner in order not to panic.  

And then all the learning I'd so conscientiously gone through kicked in, and I SAW the pages in front of me, and I loved the prompter for saying what I knew came next but just reassured me I was in the right place...

Yep.  One of those evenings where everything comes together, and everyone grins at each other afterwards.  One of those.  I'm SO privileged to find myself in the middle of even one of those in my life.  


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