Sunday, April 26, 2015

My last week!

Hard to believe that tomorrow starts my LAST week of work!  And it won't be a terribly productive one.  A coworker is also retiring at the end of the week, so the office has planned a luncheon for him on Tuesday, one for me on Wednesday, and an open house for both of us on Thursday.  Friday I'll have an exit interview, take one last pass thru the office to say my farewells, stop by the "corporate massage" vendor to have a few knots untied, then leave my ID at the door on the way out.

It's been a good ride.  Not without its bumps, of course, but on the whole, a good trip.  Will I miss it?  Sure - I had fun.  But boy, am I looking forward to going back to school and turning myself loose in the candy store they call the Performing Arts Center! :D

Sometimes the waiting is easy; sometimes it isn't

I've been busy enough at work (this will be my LAST week!) that I haven't had time to think about waiting to hear about my school admission.  Tonight, though, the Chief & I had dinner at a favorite place on the edge of campus.  Naturally, that reminded me.  I won't hear about my admission until July and the School of Music won't take applications for Fall '16 until August, so I've got a few months of waiting ahead of me.  I'm really hoping I get cast in the show I'm auditioning for next week, if only because learning music & lines (if I get Queen Aggravain) will keep me plenty busy well into the summer.

Voice is better, but definitely still feeling the pollen

Church this morning wasn't quite as bad as last week.  I had another chance at the responsorial I was supposed to lead last week.  Then, I could tell by the 2nd note that my voice was too far gone; today I got all the way to the verse before I realized I'd have to have someone else take it.  Still no power, and my lower register is unpredictable.  The passaggio notes are mostly still shot, and there's a band of notes on either side that are "cats", not "dogs" - in other words, they come and go as they please, instead of doing what I tell them to do.  And it doesn't take much talking for me to feel my voice going hoarse and my throat getting achey.

My voice teacher told me to let her know tomorrow evening how I'm doing; that would determine whether I have to cancel this week's lesson.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Just signed up for my first daytime thing!

One of the obvious perks of retirement is being able to do fun stuff during a weekday, not just evenings and weekends.  I just signed up for an afternoon pie class.  I'll get to spend a couple of hours playing in the cookware store's teaching kitchen and be home in plenty of time for dinner.  Gotta love it!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

We have candidates.

At last week's lesson we finally selected three pieces for my School of Music auditions.  Two are 17th century pieces, one each in English (Purcell) and Italian (Cesti).  The other is a 19th-century French chanson by Faure.  Current plan, which is very much subject to change, is to do the Purcell and Faure for the recorded audition, then swap the Cesti for the Purcell for the live audition.  Now the work begins in earnest - memorization, learning to pronounce the Italian, mastering the timing in the Purcell, making sure I understand the French & Italian texts, and working all of it into the voice.  That's a lot to do, so it's a good thing the audition recording isn't due until Nov. 1st.

And there goes the voice...

My annual pollen-induced laryngitis started today.  I was fine until I walked out the front door this morning and made the mistake of breathing.  Warming up in the shower was no worse than it ever is first thing in the morning, but on the way to church I could tell I was in trouble.  We went over a couple of things that are usually fun but today were a lot of work, and my passagio was a mess.  I was supposed to lead the responsorial, but just one measure into it I could tell that wasn't gonna happen, so someone else had to take it.  Good thing we're blessed with so many good singers, across all voice parts; we all have at least one person who can cover for us in a pinch, even if not in the same octave.

My poor vocal cords are so swollen I broke down and took some ibuprofen for them.  Which helped, but I still sound like I have a lower respiratory infection.  (Which I suppose I do, in a way.) I've already canceled this week's voice lesson, since tree pollen season lasts rather longer than a day.  I just hope it ends SOON - I hate having to cancel a voice lesson with a theater audition coming up in a couple of weeks and School of Music audition pieces to learn and work up.  I'm also supposed to be the national anthem soloist at a retirement ceremony at work in about 10 days - I really need to be able to sing by then!

Thursday, April 02, 2015

April fool!

Mother Nature had her little April fool's joke on us yesterday.  We all had to scrape ice off our windshields before going to work.