Monday, December 14, 2009

I want to go to there

I want to see THIS! Pretty psyched!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Audition weekend

Hello pups,

So this past weekend, December 4-7 I went to NYC to audition for some YAPs and got to spend some wonderful quality time with an old friend, Ms. Nora Graham-Smith. Nora and I are like peas in a pod; the type of friends who after not seeing each other for years, can pick things right back up from where they stopped and it's as if I had just said goodbye yesterday.
She's quite lovely and it was the highlight of my weekend. Not to sound cliche, but I really believe that we need our friends like we need air to breathe. I have seen too many people become absolutely miserable because they are alone with no one to share life with.

I arrived in NYC on Thursday night and slept over at Nora's apartment. The next morning, I was due at NOLA studio in NYC at around 10:20am. Luckily, due to my work schedule I'm used to getting up around 6am, so as much as I tried, I really couldn't sleep past 7am before I had to be up and moving around. I arrived at NOLA and to my surprise, I saw an old friend, who I took to a high school dance, Ted Federle. Now married, Ted is doing well and is still the same passionate, talented guy I remember from back in the day at May Festival Youth Chorus in Cincinnati. While chatting with Ted, another singer friend from CCM, Liz Bouk arrived and I haven't seen her since 2005 at least! She looked exactly the same, her lovely blonde hair reflecting the color of her blue dress, but she's PREGNANT! WOW! And due in FEB!
It was so bittersweet! I just love seeing how happy and accomplished my friends are becoming and I realize that there is hope for all of us! The world is indeed big enough for all of us to make of it what we can! I felt so inspired!

My audition itself felt a little tired, and my feet were shaking (Whatever THAT's about?!) and after singing, Liz and I grabbed some coffee and caught up on our lives.
I met up with Nora and that evening ended up back at NOLA where I crashed my first audition and it was the best I have ever sang in my life!! I think it has to do with the fact that I was wearing Yoga pants and flats. Note to self: wear more comfortable clothes to sing in. It made a WORLD of difference in the sound quality, breath support, confidence, ..the list goes on.

After doing some shopping on Saturday, Nora and I got tickets courtesy of a friend of mine to see "White Christmas" at the Marriott Marquee in Times Square. It was DIVINE! So fun!

Overall, it was a FANTASTIC trip and I hope to visit Nora in NYC again very soon.
Until later, puppies.... :)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Beaker + Carmen = Hilarious!

This will never get old. Thank you, Jim Henson for being fabulous! :)


Living in a recycled culture

I just read something quite interesting...

"You have two kinds of shows on Broadway -- revivals and the same kind of musicals over and over again, all spectacles," says Sondheim. "You get your tickets for 'The Lion King' a year in advance, and essentially a family comes as if to a picnic, and they pass on to their children the idea that that's what the theater is -- a spectacular musical you see once a year, a stage version of a movie. It has nothing to do with theater at all. It has to do with seeing what is familiar. We live in a recycled culture." - Stephen Sondheim from Frank Rich's New York Times article.

I can't help but competely agree and I feel like this is exactly the reason why I don't go to Broadway shows. It's pretty sad when I hear these wonderful stories about a time long lost, where Rodgers and Hammerstein's works were considered brand new. Can you imagine what it would have been like to be in the premier of Guys and Dolls? Or West Side Story?

At the same time, I feel that there are new musicals being produced, like In the Heights that are worth seeing, however, with the cost of the trip and the ticket combined, I fear I might be dissapointed, so I end up talking myself out of it.
Now speaking of movies, I hear that there will be Spiderman: The Musical. Even if it's directed by Julie Taymor, and is sure to have some brilliant headliners, it's kind of sad that there are no original ideas for theatre anymore. I'm sure it all comes down to money, but can't SOMEBODY just come up with a good story and instead of making a movie first, make it into a musical??
I'm just sayin...

I'll just submit my idea... box office, the musical. It'll be a hit! :) Now I just need Stephen to write the music and I'm gold! ;)

Monday, November 9, 2009

New Hampshire Opera Idol Competition

Hi everyone!
I had a very productive and exciting weekend.
On Friday, I was able to leave work early and take a bus to Concord, NH to audition for Lakes Region Opera's New Hampshire Opera Idol Competition. It was a long bus ride and I almost fell asleep twice, but it was worth it. When i arrived, my audition was at 4:25pm and the judges chose what I was to sing (usually, the singer chooses first, then if the judges wish to hear anything else, they choose an additional piece). They wanted to hear "Come Scoglio" from Mozart's Cosi fan tutte. I sang it well and then quickly left to make it back for the 5pm bus. I arrived back in Norwood at 8:30pm. It was a long day. I got a call pretty much as soon as I got home that I had qualified for the Semi-Final round on Saturday morning at 11am. Same location.

Luckily, my boyfriend, Rich said he would be more than happy to drive me to the audition. :) He was so great. Kept me talking and chatty so I didn't feel too tired and didn't have to warm up much.
I sang at 11am and was interviewed for a documentary they were filming of the competition, then headed to his brother's house in Manchester, NH. I had met his brother, Norm a while back when Rich was moving into his apartment, so it was great to see him again. I got to meet his wife, Carol and their daughter, Nikki, who just turned 15 and for her present, they decided to let her get her lip pierced. She's a very mature and sweet 15 year old, so don't judge! They're very loving and awesome parents.
While chatting with Carol, I got a call that I was accepted into the Finals of the competition the next day. I was expected to arrive at 2pm and the competition would begin at 3pm at Concord's "Audi" Concert Hall. When I asked for the specific address, I was told to google it. HAH..... mmmkay.
When I got the address, Rich kept asking, "ARE YOU SURE?!" and I was like, "well, but according to Google, it's right!" Thanks, Google. :) You were on the money, this time!
We arrived at the hall around 1:30pm on Sunday and I was led to my dressing room while Rich sat in the hall. I came out to find him and he was gone. Apparently, the hall wasn't open until 2:30pm so they asked him to leave! :( He ended up taking a walk and listened to the Pats game in the car until the hall was open.
Poor guy. He puts up with so much of my crap sometimes. That's why I love him. (well, that and because he makes me laugh at myself when I would usually kick.)
Anyways, I got to watch the entire competition since I was second to last to sing of about 15 other singers. Everyone is just so damn talented. Some beautiful singing! My personal favorite was a beautiful soprano, named Lesley Friend, who sang one of the most beautiful versions of "Ebben? Ne andro lontana" I have EVER heard. She's really going somewhere! Just watch!
It was really great to get out there and sing again. The judges picked my selection, "Come Scoglio" ...again.. and I think since it's been a while since I have performed in public, it was a big step for me to get into the 'game' again. I think I did Mozart real proud.
I didn't win anything official, no contract, no money, but my reward was greater than anything I could imagine. I was sharing my gift again for the first time in 2 years. (Not to mention something to show on my resume!)
They said that the performance was being recorded live, but apparently, it wasn't, but eventually, they said it will appear on their website.
I'lll keep you posted once it's up, but in the meantime, check out my tweets from the trip!
The next competition will be in Janurary for the Metroplitan Opera National Council Auditions in Boston. I've sung for this competition while in grad school and it was a good experience, so I'm looking forward to it!

Thanks to everyone for their support and their encouragment. That's what we're here for! Share the love, people! :)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Super Foam Chair!

Making of SuperFoam Chair from Rich Gilbert on Vimeo.

Lindsay thought this was awesome, so I decided to share! Who wants to help me make one?!

I think I know what sooooooomebody wants for X-mas!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Poor Kitty

Poor kitty.
Someone ripped up his thesis. :(

Stephen Sondheim and Frank Rich

I found this wonderful interview of Frank Rich, who is scheduled to interview Stephen Sondheim on 11/14/09 at Sanders Theatre. (Buy Tickets) It's sure to be an awesome night!
An email went out asking if anyone had any questions for this Q & A, so of course, my box office colleague and myself came up with a few and sent them on to Jack.

1. In regards to “Legit” American Musical Theatre. Who are some other composers of today’s genre that you appreciate and/or admire?
2. With the popularity of Disney on Broadway and the more pop/rock style of music, what direction do you think American Musical Theatre is moving toward and why?
3. How do you feel about shows not being “tried out” in Boston before going to Broadway anymore? Why are we being left out?!
4. Did you see the movie, “Sweeney Todd”? What are your thoughts about traditional American Musical Theatre being remade/translated into Hollywood films? Have you considered ever composing for more movies aside from the ones you have done already (Reds, The Birdcage, Dick Tracey, etc..)?
5. Out of all your wonderful compositions, which one would you consider your favorite and why?

What do you think about my questions? Do you have anything to add? I will be blogging about the night after the event, so stay tuned.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What would you ask Stephen Sondheim?

.... What would you ask Stephen Sondheim?

I think I would ask him what his favorite curse word is?
Or what he thought of the film version of "Sweeney Todd"?

oh, and if he's in need of a good healthy soprano to just hang out with.

Kind of awesome, the job I have, isn't it?

Friday, July 3, 2009

Choices, Choices...

So nowadays everyone seems to be going through some sort of financial hardship. Most people have either lost a job themselves, or know at least one person who has been recently laid off. (For me, I know a few). In these hard times, we try to remain optimistic, but we are slapped with a mortgage or rent payment that doesn't give up and often try to find new alternatives to our current budget.
Remember Tony from "Who's the Boss?" He had it so easy. He didn't pay rent, I don't think he had a full time job, and he got to stay at home and simply hang out with the kids while watching the game in his sweats.
Call me lazy, but that sounds like heaven right about now.
I saw an ad on a popular job site exchanging free rent for occasional assisting of a mentally handicapped individual who lives in a mansion! The pictures of this place were spotless, granite counter tops, white linoleum floors, and potted plants.
I entertained the idea, sure, but my previous experiences with mentally disabled individuals reminded me of the old adage, 'if it's too good to be true, it probably is'.
I am curious dear readers, if the situation presented itself, would you take this offer. Consider that you haven't met the handicapped person and you don't know what to expect.

So here I am. I am dining on hot dogs and balogne sandwiches this week, stretching my dollar like Stretch Armstrong, as I sit in my comfortable Brookline apartment with the freedom to come and go as I please. I think I made the right choice.