Tuesday, April 27, 2010

NATS Singing Festival--San Francisco Chapter

Congratulations to my student, Allison Rosengard, who placed 4th in her age division for art song. This was her first time participating in the festival and I am so proud of her.

It is a joy to see your students sing well. It is a joy to see them progress from week to week, month to month, year to year. I can be feeling a bit low and will feel so much better during and after I am done teaching.

Love it!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Recitals, recitals, recitals!!

Today, my students at Head Royce have their end-of-year vocal recital. I am running through the odd bit of music, the difficult passage, the runs, the ornaments, the rests with them prior to the recital. I worry for my students. I hope for them. I am excited for them!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Getting Students Ready for Recital

The end of the school year is a busy time for me as a voice teacher. I teach voice part time at a school in the Bay Area. I also teach for a number of other professional groups as well as maintaining a busy private studio. Recitals for all of these venues are coming up. My task is to help my students prepare as well as possible so that they will have good experiences while performing.

Today, some of my students worked for the first time with their accompanist for an upcoming recital. I worked on notes and rhythms with some students. With some I worked on anticipating the musical line more to help move the line along. Others were ready to work on emotive affect, looking at the music the composer has provided them and how that music fits together with the text. This is one of my favorite parts of the performing process.

I love that singers can move an audience emotionally. I love the feel of it when I do it and I want for my students to learn how to do it as well. A favorite conductor once said, "The audience doesn't pay to hearing beautiful singing. They pay to be emotionally moved." I don't know if that is always true, but I suspect there is some truth in it.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Graduate Project

I am midway through my graduate project on--you guessed it--performance anxiety. I am finishing a master's degree in Vocal Pedagogy at Holy Names University and the graduate project is the last thing I need to finish before I well, finish. During this process, I took my state licensing exams and passed them. I am now a licensed marriage and family therapist. I would like to help performers, not only with performance anxiety, but also with the issues that tend to plague performers: anxiety in general. Performers have lives that are in some measure "on parade." They are in front of the public in many ways. That can be difficult to manage over time.

Too, there is some difference I think between making music and "performing" it. This is something that I am examining for myself and I think it has ramifications for others as well. The difference may be as simple as the difference between feeling authentic in the "performance" or feeling you must put on something that feels inauthentic to "perform" the music.