In December 2015, I wrote a blog about the struggles of having a baby whilst completing a demanding degree. You can read it here.
Well, I did it! Not only did I gradate, but I got a FIRST CLASS DEGREE and my two boys were by my side… and my Mum too! Continue reading So, about that dream…
As with many of the occasions I self-promote, this one is also an assignment set by Trinity Laban. The module, Engaging Audiences, encourages us to do just that. Pick an audience and engage it. There’s a whole catalogue of audiences; traditional culture vultures (highly engaged in the arts), family and community focused (some engagement in the arts) and a quiet pint and the match (not currently engaged in the arts) amongst many more.
How you approach each kind of audience member differs, for example, culture vultures will likely respond to advertisements at the place of their previous concert or by word of mouth at such a venue whereas family and community focused need to be engaged at an event around their families’ needs, so if you were to put on a child-friendly concert, you’d put flyers up at the local children’s centre or family friendly cafes to engage them. A quiet pint and the match character takes a little more flair, because they are happy with their environment, they have their friendship groups set up and don’t plan on changing anything so you have to enter their world, make the arts something they are interested in already. Continue reading So,you’ll never walk alone…
The Colab scheme started at Trinity Laban in 2011, it was the year I was doing a 6 month flexible program of study. There was an overall consensus from students that this was ridiculous and no one wanted to take part, I was thankful my 6 months was up just before colab began… But fast forward 5 years and Colab has become a highlight of our year. A chance to spend a week learning new things, meeting new people and generally getting a new lease of life for the final push of the academic year. Continue reading So, your last year of colab began?
Well, today I write my most exciting blog ever; Mark and I are delighted to announce that we are expecting a little bundle of Baldwin joy on 5th June 2015!
The decision around when to become a Mother when training to be a classical singer is not an easy one and comes down to one little question…
Do you want to be a Mum? Continue reading So, two become three…
Being set the challenge of writing a blog for our Engaging Audiences module this year seemed like a bit of a hassle when it was set in September, but now I’ve got into it a bit, I’m faced with the question of whether or not to carry on despite the assignment being due tomorrow. I think I will! It’s really helped me to look at my journey while I’m training to become a classical singer and I’ve become a lot more accountable for my experiences so I don’t intend to stop there.
However, as my last “assessed” post, I thought I would wish you all, including you my amazingly talented and wonderful Engaging Audiences assessor (can’t hurt right?), a very wonderful Christmas and the happiest of New Years!
Here’s a little Christmas song to help the occasion along, I sang Slumber Song to the Madonna by Michael Head at a recent Charity concert in Mile End. It is Mary singing to baby Jesus as she tries to settle him to sleep, as I said to the audience, “even the Virgin Mary needs her sleep!”
Every so often, while training to be a classical singer, the hard work pays off and this week was one of those lovely occurrences…
I auditioned for the soprano solo in Carmina Burana way back in September along with many of my colleagues at music college and remember getting the email confirming I’d got the part as I was walking along the Thames, near Temple. I’d never expected I’d get it against so many competent undergrad and postgrad singers and literally jumped up and down with excitement. Thankfully, my husband was walking alongside me so I didn’t look too crazy. Best of all, Dominic Peckham, conductor of many amazing choirs including the Royal Opera House’s RM19 Youth singing group, would be conducting us. Continue reading So, can every week be like that one?
On Wednesday, Trinity Laban students were treated to another free recital from the Jette Parker Young Artists and this time, the wonderful tenor, Samuel Sakker and beautiful Soprano, Anush Hovhannisyan performed. As we had a rehearsal for the upcoming Carmina Burana, we were only able to make the second half, but what a second half it was.
My highlights were “Deh, se piacer mi vuoi” from La Clemenza di Tito by Mozart. Anush’s warm tones had deep resonance which made it all the more delightful when she manoeuvred around the coloratura phrases (which means the bits that are very busy, with lots of notes) with seeming ease. She looked every inch the diva and I loved that about her aura!
Continue reading So, you’re saying I shouldn’t exercise?
I think it’s important to take a step back from the informative side and just explain why we take on this journey to become a classical singer.
I remember when I first realised I could sing classically; I’d started singing lessons with a new teacher who was based at my first high school and she had me sing scales. I just kept going higher and higher until she stopped and left the room, she returned 5 minutes later with the Head of Music and his colleague and said, “Listen to this!” It was such a buzz being paraded around in this way, but even better that all this fuss was coming from me doing something that felt very natural. It didn’t stop there either, like pretty much every student at a music conservatoire, I was very much a big fish in a small pond. I won prizes in local music festivals, sang solos for local choral societies and made a name for myself at school for my musical ability. In short, my singing ensured I was praised by many and in turn it made me feel great.
So this is why we sing; it feels so good! Continue reading So, that’s why I do this!
The great thing about third year on our BMus course at Trinity Laban, is the introduction of language song classes. This is a class with a specialised tutor in a particular language, be it French song, German Lieder, Italian or in particular, Bel Canto.
I sang an Italian aria at the beginning of term and this week took part in a leider class, with the talented Richard Jackson. http://www.rcm.ac.uk/vocal/professors/profile/?id=5394
I chose Richard Strauss’ Freundliche Vision, or Froy-nd-lee-ckhe Viz-ee-on, or A Welcome Vision. Continue reading So, how is my German?
We Trinity Laban students were treated to a vocal master class this afternoon by the great Mr Roderick Williams.
He was such a charismatic, warm person keen to avoid talking about technique in too much detail with the lucky singers who took part, yet he had so many other interesting things to talk about. In particular, about how to get into character when singing an aria as a stand alone piece. It’s difficult to sing about how you’ll come back and haunt your brother once you’re dead, because he’s put you in prison because he thinks you were plotting against him with your lover (Piangero la sorte mia – Jiulio Cesare) in a concert environment, without all the context performing the aria as part of the opera would provide. Continue reading So, where’s your banana and boots?