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Showing posts from April, 2017

SHOWSTOPPER: Ruth Asawa School of the Arts Musical Theater Dept Senior Showcase

As senior year comes to an end, a lot of mixed feelings rise up in our little hearts as we attend each other's senior recitals here at SOTA. With the Musical Theater Department's Class of 2017 Finale concert SHOWSTOPPER, I will begin my month long chain of articles on my fellow seniors' last shows at SOTA.

Directed by Ron S. McCan, the Musical Theatre department separated just this year from the Classical Voice department of SOTA and became an independent department at SOTA (with their very own color teal!).

The seniors featured in this performance and who pulled it all together in a rather professional manner are Ben Stacy, Ryan Doyle, Mara Schumann, Tasneem Norris, Mackenzie Rohan, Lucy Murphy, and Joe-Joe Kelly.

With a variety of solos, duets, trios, and ensembles, every senior was displayed to their full potential, providing an entertaining evening for families and friends. Ben Stacy manifested his ability to make the audience both laugh and cry with his stunning actin…

Handling Nerves, According to Joyce DiDonato!

In her June 16, 2011 vlog on youtube, mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato talks about handling nerves after a fan Madeleine asks her the following question:

One thing I'd like to know is: how do you handle nervousness? Of course one big factor is being well-prepared, but I guess that's self-evident -- it's more like: "am I good enough to do this"...

1) Dictate Your Breath

Good breathing is one of the key elements to successful singing, and regulating your breathing right before going up on stage is important in battling the frantic breathing that distraught nerves often lead to. Joyce DiDonato says that you need a "long inhale, and make sure that the exhale lasts about as long [as the inhale]". The steadier and deeper your breaths are, the better.

2) Smile!

Smiling and possibly even laughing are extremely helpful in tricking your brain into believing that everything is A-OKAY. Because you tend to smile and laugh when you're happy, if you do it a few minutes…

HOT TOPIC: Is Renée Fleming Retiring???!

On April 5th, a New York Times published anarticle (by Charles McGrath), lamenting opera diva Renée Fleming's departure from the world of staged opera. Although Fleming has announced that she will indeed be departing from staged opera productions, she says that she will still "continue to sing full-time" and that "the rumor [of her retirement] has taken on a life of its own". In the article, although it was stated that Fleming will be moving away only from staged opera productions and not from the stage in general, it was not made clear and a lot of people misinterpreted the article.
According to NPR, rumors of Fleming's 'retirement' have been going around for some time now. Because of this, many of Fleming's opera fans were misled by the article of the New York Times. Fleming says that "[t]here's been press about this now for last couple of years floating around." She also added that these rumors most probably started with a Lo…