One week until my surgery

Many of you may or may not have known, but I will be having surgery on May 10th. I’ve had a hiatal hernia, which most have, but it’s gotten bad enough to cause a lot of symptoms in the past 6 months. After much poking and prodding, the doctors determined that it’s twisted up and threatening to strangulate, so they’re going to fix it.

I’m not actually worried about the surgery itself, it’s pretty routine, and I generally do very well with surgeries.

No, I’m worried about the Cabin Fever after! Three days in the hospital, then two weeks at home in bed. OOF!

Fortunately, I have the Dracula Radio Play to keep me busy (which can be done from bed, since most of what I’m directing is over the internet anyway), but still! CABIN FEVER!

So if you have a chance in late May to drop me a line, please do!

The other thing I’m sad about is that I won’t be able to sing again until the Fall. It’s going to be insane and murder on my psyche not being able to sing (not even in the car), but I’m sure I’ll be able to rebound from this as I always have.

I’m really, really looking forward to the end result, when I am no longer in pain, and can eat and sing again!

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Dracula!

So, the last few weeks I’ve been working fervently on a new project, and a new kind of project. Along with the other Cryptic Canticles, I’ve been working on a Dracula Radio Play Experience.

What’s that, you ask, and don’t want to go to the link I just dropped in there? Well, I’m glad you asked!

We’re recreating the text of Bram Stoker’s Dracula in its entirety as a Radio Play, and we’re releasing the episodes of the entries on each of the days that they were penned. The first entry in the book is Jonathan Harker’s Journal, dated May 3rd, as he travels to Transylvania. We have cast a wonderful Harker, and he will portray in spoken words the text as he travels along. As other characters come in and have dialogue in the text, they too will be cast and added in the episode. Also, we have Foley effects and music!

I’m the director (along with Bonnie and Liz) and character coach. Much of our principle cast is remote, so I spend a lot of time listening to them on the internet. Living in the modern age is great, right?

Anyway, I’m seriously excited for this! And I hope that you want to listen as the story unfolds! It starts tomorrow….. eeeee!!!

Robert Page Tribute concert

Hey all, I know it’s been a while since I checked in, but I’ll be singing this weekend in the Robert Page Tribute concert. I worked with Robert Page for 10 years as a child singer, and much of what I still use for singing he taught me.

Tickets for the show are free, but do need to be ordered in advance.

Learning how to stop

Anyone who knows me knows I keep a very busy schedule. Usually every day of my life has something going on. Some of this is a natural result of working full time in addition to a very intense hobby of opera singing. But much of it is also a natural internal drive I have to always be doing something.

Really, one has to do with the other. I sing because I love to sing, but I would not put the time and effort into the relentless number of rehearsals and practice time needed if I didn’t have this internal drive always driving me forward. And there are a relentless number of rehearsals as I close on a show! Generally the last two weeks before a show means rehearsals every night.

But on those days I don’t have rehearsals? I often pack in seeing friends, playing Ingress, playing board games, travel to other places, or going out to other shows. Even on the rare nights I spend at home, I end up planning something I need to do around the house to be done.

And yes, this internal drive means I get a lot done, and I do a lot of things! But it also means I’m too often exhausted and discombobulated. I do have a few routines that I do to ensure that I rest from time to time, but they often are far and few between. And some friends of mine might be really familiar with how I end up going to other locations so that I am out of my frenzied life and can actually spend some time resting! (Really, I think this is why I love going camping — I force myself to rest for a weekend.)

So this year I’ve decided that I need to work on STOP. As in, I need to take more time where I just stop and rest. There have been days where I’ve just said, “OK, this is a day off, and I need to not schedule anything.” I feel awful when I tell someone that I can’t see them because I want to do nothing, it feels like I’m telling them nothing is better than them, but that’s not really what I mean! Fortunately, my friends so far have understood when I say that though.

I am looking for other ways to really embrace this though, and so I do encourage y’all to leave me messages in the various forums on how I might implement more STOP time.

Two shows, TWO SHOWS!

So the first week of rehearsals for both the shows I’m in is underway, and so far it’s very challenging, but fun. Challenging because there are a lot of new things here!

The challenge of Eugene Onegin is that I have to learn an entirely new set of pronunciations for the Russian, and then use them while learning the notes. But once I learn them, the music is just beautiful. And the people I’m singing with in this are some of the best, so I am feeling daunted by the company. I hope I can live up to singing beside them!

The challenge of Patience is the words. The particularly and especially grandiloquent words. The overbearingly flowery words of magniloquent nature. The archaic words that were not oft-seen even for the times. Basically: the words of many, many syllables that I have never seen before, and now need to memorize. But it’s good to be back among the people who are like family to me. And both casts are great and will make you laugh.

Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin will be at Bellefield Hall in Oakland, one night only: Friday February 17th. This is not staged, but with orchestra and in the original Russian. I am cast as Larina, mother of Tatiana. Tickets in advance: $20

Gilbert and Sullivan’s Patience will be at the Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall of Carnegie, PA the first two weekends of March. I am cast as Lady Jane, singing on alternate nights as that role, the other nights as ensemble. Tickets in advance: $15