Sunday, April 27, 2014

Home after a quick but lovely weekend away

The Chief & I spent a quick weekend in Baltimore in honor of our anniversary.  We didn't get to dinner in Little Italy Friday night as originally planned - we got no more than a few blocks from our hotel before the rain & wind suddenly kicked up, so we turned tail and had dinner back at the hotel.  A bit pricey, but the lamb was good and the chocolate dessert was worth every calorie!  Yesterday we spent several hours at the aquarium, then strolled around the Inner Harbor a bit.  Went to mass at the Basilica of the Assumption (the organ there sounds fabulous!), then walked into Little Italy and had a lovely dinner, where I was reminded how much I enjoy pasta w/ clam sauce.  We walked back to the hotel because a) the temps were still mild and b) we wanted to walk off at least a little of that dinner. ;)

We learned Baltimore has a free Charm City Circulator bus, but finding a map or schedule proved surprisingly difficult; we finally got one at the hostel across the street from the basilica.

As we were driving back today, we decided we need to go back for a longer stay - too many things we didn't get a chance to do.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Can Pilates make me a better singer?

I started taking Pilates classes at my gym a few months ago.  I'm still a long way from being able to do several of the moves, but my abs are definitely starting to feel stronger, or at least less weak.  I was noticing in my voice lesson today that the technique of breathing really low in the abdomen is getting a little easier; whether it's because my abs are starting to build up or because I'm just more aware of them I couldn't say.  I do know the Pilates is helping my posture; I don't hold myself well automatically yet, but I do catch my bad posture and correct it a lot more often now.  This is good in general but also for singing, because good posture brings the breathing apparatus into optimal alignment, and the better your breathing, the better you'll sing.

Forgive the self-indulgent blather, but the Pilates work and the techniques my voice teacher has me playing with are all experiments in physical self-discovery.  A lot to process, but it's keeping me learning.

Spring? Winter? Yes

We finally got gorgeous weather this weekend, so Saturday the Chief & I went to the nursery and spent way too much money on bedding plants, most of which he got planted on Sunday.  (By then, the pollen count was too high for me to go out and play in the dirt.)  Sunday the high was in the 80s! Wahoo!

Today we got a front moving in that brought rain, wind and MUCH lower temps - we have a freeze warning tonight, so the Chief & I went out and tucked all those new plants under "blankets" to protect our investment.

Shorts on Sunday and 2 days later I need my winter coat, scarf & gloves again.  This weather is whackadoodle!

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Still excited

Tonight's production meeting involved a lot of down time while I waited for them to work around the table to me, but then Laurel took several of us to "tour" the costumes she's identified so far.  Gorgeous!  She's going for a primarily warm palette (peaches, burgundies, topaz) with a few bits of green, blue, a dash of black.  She's making turbans and similar headgear for the men, has a few gorgeous headdresses for the women already - I'm going to have to do some serious research to bring my game up to her level, and I'm looking forward to the challenge!

The set will include carpets all over the floor, pillows around the perimeter, a couple of tapestries hanging on the back walls, and a few set pieces that will multi-task.  I'm really looking forward to working on this show and contributing my little bit to the whole.

Saturday, April 05, 2014

Looking forward to my first production meeting

Tomorrow night is the first production meeting for "The Arabian Nights."  I've been itching to get started on this, have already collected the cast's headshots off the company's web site.  What really has me psyched about this production, though, is the costumer.  She's a longtime dancer, ethnographer, and ethnochoreologist.  We've already been exchanging emails; she's going for a "medieval Baghdad" look, including turbans and beards for all the men.  She's also asked about braids for at least a couple of the women.  I don't think any of the women have hair long enough, so I'll have to look into finding wigs.

One make-up feature that will nail the look will be "cupid's bow" eyebrows.  I'm hoping the director will let me put them on at least 2 or 3 each of the men and women.  We've got an attractive, ethnically diverse cast; they'll be gorgeous once Laurel and I finish with them.  :)