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Stephen Sondheim

In honor of Stephen Sondheim’s 90th Birthday, 3/22/2020 I love Stephen Sondheim’s musicals. I love his music. I love his lyrics. Two of his musicals, Into The Woods and Company make my top 10 favorite musicals list. But I have to confess, this wasn’t always the case. <Gasp> Besides, West Side Story and Gypsy, for …

auditioning
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Rejection: Audition Edition

Let’s talk Rejection: Audition edition. It sucks. You put your heart and soul into auditioning. You put your time and energy and money and psyche into auditioning. You put yourself out there to be judged, critiqued, scrutinized, and ultimately either rejected, or, preferably, chosen. It’s exhausting. It’s an emotional rollercoaster, and not the cute, kiddie …

Bernadette Peters
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Bernadette

February 28 is Bernadette Peters’ birthday. It’s generally considered bad form to tell a lady’s age, but in her case, since she is ageless, timeless really, I think it’s alright to say she’s 72. Let’s celebrate age instead of hide from it. Let’s sing her praises. It’s hard to know where to start in praise …

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My Job as a Voice Teacher

“Seeing ‘what is’ takes very little talent. Seeing ‘what could be’- and helping to make it a reality- takes vision, imagination, skill, and commitment.” –John C. Maxwell This quote perfectly describes what my job is when I listen to a new student for the first time. I must envision ‘what could be’ from ‘what is.’ …

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You have to be carefully taught

I had to take a vocal pedagogy class in graduate school. It was supposed to teach us how to teach a voice lesson. I confess I learned the exact opposite: I discovered what I never, ever wanted to do if I were ever to be a voice teacher, which ironically at the time (1996) I …

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Singing is serious fun

Let’s face facts: I am a serious teacher for serious students. I was trained by serious teachers to be a serious singer, and I was a serious student. I sometimes shy away from owning this, wanting to appear fun and lighthearted, easy-going and cool. And I am  fun, lighthearted, and easy-going (cool, unfortunately impossible), but …

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An American in Paris

Once upon a time, I gave a solo recital in Paris. France. This is that story. It all started in 2000, when my dear friend, Bettina Matthias, professor of German extraordinaire (specializing in music and theatre), asked me to come to Middlebury College to give a German Lieder recital with her at the piano, in …

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It’s A Family Affair

I used to joke with my parents that there was no way I could have been adopted (besides the fact that I am a dead ringer for my mother) because I had inherited all their faults and flaws: bad eyesight, allergies, slow metabolism, terrible temper… But of course my parents gave me much more than …