Sunday, January 19, 2014


Friday, January 17, 2014

100 years later ...

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

REVIEW | Parsifal

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Parsifal | Weak One

Sure enough, if I wait long enough something "good" happens to write about. But it's going to take a couple installments to get to.

Several days ago arrived Bologna for the remounting of the Roméo Castellucci-directed Parsifal. To say I was looking forward to it would be an understatement. If you haven't been following along, feel free to peruse my experience here at La Monnaie. How the piece escaped being named Opernwelt's Opera of the Year, I'll never know. The consolation was, it was used as that editions cover.

I was heavily invested in the piece, emotionally and musically. Having seen that I could no longer sustain the demands of a Bieito-like production, I was relieved to find Roméos's take more ideal to Wagner's music. The pacing of it is just simply better suited to a singer's need to breathe well.

But I was more then a little nervous going into the first day. My contract said "first day of rehearsal, December 3, 2013."

So there I was.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Paris (un)Bound

I was sent the trailer to the release of the Castellucci Parsifal yesterday. It's hard at the stage of my life to be left speechless.

I was. I'd never once looked upstage.

@inter_mezzo has called it "The Parsifal you have to see." Seeing this, I'm pretty sure he meant the production, not the role. Castellucci's vision dwarfs the singer's performance. And I'm quite ok by that. I had miles to go…

After the initial meeting with Eric Lacascade in Stuttgart those miles took me to NYC, then Santa Fe, then a storage unit on Staten Island, and finally Paris to a Vestal virgin not-so-patiently waiting. After all the turmoil of the previous year, I proudly walked up to the bill board at the theater to find…my name not listed.

Not exactly a confident place to start.

Seemingly undaunted I began the first 2 days of musical work with Maestro Rhorer. I quickly saw why Eva Kleinitz had raved about him some months before in Stuttgart.

It was time to Begin Again, only this time with a secret weapon.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Moving Toward Confidence

In an insightful article on Creative Confidence, the brothers Kelley write:
After Steve was forced out of Apple and was planning the startup that would become NeXT Computer, he stopped by David’s office one day to talk about his vision for the new machine. Always seeking Zen simplicity, Steve asked David, “What’s the simplest three-dimensional shape in the world?” David was sure that it was a sphere. But that didn’t matter, because the answer Steve was looking for was a cube. And so began our project of helping Steve with the engineering design of his cube-shaped NeXT computer …
Steve [Jobs] had a deep sense of creative confidence. He believed—he knew—that you can achieve audacious goals if you have the courage and perseverance to pursue them. He was famous for his exhortation to “make a dent in the universe,” which he expressed this way in a 1994 interview: 
The minute that you understand that you can poke life and actually something will...pop out the other side, that you can change it, you can mold it, that’s maybe the most important thing...Once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again. 
Reprinted from the book Creative Confidence: Unleashing the Creative Potential Within Us All by Tom Kelley and David Kelley. 

Simplicity is not an easy goal for me. As a jazz trombonist and singer, I had enjoyed experimentation and freedom. As a classical singer, I've always thought a plethora of choice was preferential. I liked to noodle. I'd never known a scab not worthy of picking.