and you don’t know what you don’t know.

Today in “Should I Submit For This Or Not”:

  • Someone looking for an ATTRACTIVE FEMALE (allcaps theirs). “If you do NOT match the criteria, you need not apply.” Errr, seeing as how that’s the only criteria they list…I’m gonna go with “no.”
  • A paid political commercial!…that I’m pretty sure is for a candidate I wouldn’t support! (but it’s paid!) (but my PRINCIPLES)
  • Why do I keep getting calls for 18-year-old characters? I am so much older than that.

In other news, I finally got my hair fixed, so I’ll be booking my headshot appointment soon. YAY FINALLY YOU’LL PROBABLY NOT HAVE TO HEAR ABOUT THIS UNTIL THE NEXT TIME I CHANGE MY HAIR

In other other news, I have an audition on Wednesday and I’ve been nursing a cold for far too long. I’m done being sick, world! At least I don’t have to sing for the audition.

In other other other news, I’m working on an aria in my singing lessons now for the first time in…uhhh years? And frankly, I couldn’t be happier with that. <3 I still think I should probably get back on recording videos to talk more about that but I haven’t figured out a good place to do that in my new abode – the light isn’t great. I should figure that out soon.

I hope you’re all having a lovely week and enjoying your October so far! <3

every cadenza delights, every cadence floats.

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So you know, other than the fact that I’m a ridiculous and sometimes embarrassing human being, that audition went well.

I have a feeling I won’t know how that went unless I get it, which is fine!  I think it went okay – the character had changed since I last auditioned, I got to find out what the actual project is, etc etc.

I got through my recorded audition and my Skype audition as well (my laptop does not have a webcam, but I do apparently have a Skype account if you were wondering!). It was my first Skype audition and only my second recorded audition, which – blehhhh, I really hate recorded auditions but that could be because

  • I hate watching my face
  • I hate monologues/not having anyone to read off of
  • I really don’t think I come across well on camera facewise (I FEEL LIKE THIS MAY BE A PROBLEM?)
  • Since I can watch it back over I start analyzing and overanalyzing and wondering “well wait a minute maybe I can’t actually act at all?”
  • related to that, if I’m not pleased with a recording I do it over and over until maybe it actually IS terrible but I can’t actually tell anymore?
  • also, my face.

Anyway.  (It’s amazing how quickly I can go from “wow look at me go! I’m doing things I’m afraid of even though I’m afraid!” to “wow I am a troll, why does anyone let me out of the house?”)

So this week, I have a singing lesson today and then an audition on Thursday.  It’ll be my first audition with any kind of singing in…quite some time, actually, so Maestro has been kind enough to help me run my two cuts of sixteen bars into the ground.  (The neighbors are confused, I’m sure.) Someday soon I should make a post (or gasp! a video!) about my new singing teacher and how much I am learning in and enjoying lessons nowadays!

Life’s pretty good here at Chez Acting Ingenue (well, Chez Muse and Maestro, unless this blog is my house?) and I can’t really ask for anything more.

Sending out love and encouragement and happiness to you all, since I seem to have an excess of it at the moment! ^^;;;

se tu m’ami, se tu sospiri.

I feel like it’s been a million years since my last voice lesson and frankly, I am thrilled beyond belief that I finally got back to them on Wednesday night! :D

I could definitely tell that I’d not been keeping on top of my vocal exercising and proper vocal technique because everything has felt strange, vocally, for the past week or so, and getting in to actually sing a proper Italian arietta and do proper vocal warm-ups really felt weird and like I had to force my voice out! However, because GG is awesome, she seems to always be able to find the thing that will “trick” my voice into doing things the right way – this time it was changing the consonant from an “F” to a “V” in my warm-ups. Somehow that made a HUGE difference as soon as I implemented it!

There was actually a lot of good that came out of that lesson but I can’t remember all of it – usually I take notes, but I relied on my new little voice recorder deal this time and it malfunctioned somehow so I didn’t get ANY of what I thought I recorded, which is funny because as soon as I turned the thing on I started to freeze up and freak out and I stopped being able to sing properly.

GG told me a story about how important it actually is to record and listen to our voices played back at us so that we can be objective about whether or not we’re performing our vocal technique properly. I mean, obviously you can often tell just by the way the sound feels in your head, but by listening to what your voice sounds like played back at you it’s sometimes easier to identify that something is off and then take the steps to correct it. It’s interesting, I’d never thought of it that way – mostly I saw listening to my own voice played back at me as the height of vanity, I’m not going to lie!

I’ve been recorded before (both just my voice and also videotaped) and only manage to watch or listen to those recordings about once through, stopping periodically to get up and run away (literally) because listening to myself gives me the heebie-jeebies. And then never again. I just can’t do it after forcing myself through it once. I remember PC telling me that one of the songs he and I recorded together was the #1 most-played track on his iPod/iTunes and I just sort of…shuddered. But I suppose I have to get over my revulsion if I’m ever going to improve?

In other news, rehearsals have still been going well. I have an audition on Sunday that I’m a little hesitant to talk about, and a couple other projects that I’m looking at beginning in the next couple of weeks, hopefully! :D /deliberately vague

a melody that’s calling your name.

(“Those Magic Changes” is my favorite song in the whole show, can you tell?)

So I’m into my first week of rehearsal at Grease, and…frankly there isn’t a lot to write about yet! It seems like a good group of people and a good cast, and really that’s all you can ask for at the beginning of a rehearsal process.

I do really love our director, though; I know I’ve said it before but she was my main reason for even wanting to do the show. I love that she cares to work with us on our character background, and not really in a touchy-feely way, she trusts us to make our choices. She works with us on movement and vocal modulation and interacting with our fellow cast members and it’s all stuff that I love in a director, because she doesn’t do it in a “first year theatre teacher” sort of way where we have to talk about our feelings and our motivations and how we use our own pain to motivate us. I’m intensely private in an emotional sense, so I do have reasons for making choices but I don’t always want to share why I do certain things the way I do them.

One of my weaknesses as an actor is using my body and gesture effectively and I like that she’s helping me get better at that, too. Sometimes I feel like everything I do physically onstage is “messy,” if that terminology makes any sense. I feel like I have little control over what my body does and everything is very fluid and not always done on purpose. Sometimes that is a conscious thing that I do but other times it’s just sloppiness on my part.

In other news, I haven’t had a voice lesson in a couple of weeks because GG was sick the last time I had a scheduled lesson and I already miss it SO much. It helps having rehearsals to attend (at least I have an outlet to sing!) but I can already feel myself getting vocally lazy and I need to practice more!

Along those same lines, I keep forgetting to buy my keyboard. PC helped me pick one out on Ebay but it’s probably gone by now so I’ll need to go looking again. Boo.

sfogati, ammazzami!

Second singing lesson with GG last night!

Weirdly, I’m not really sure how to start writing, but not because it was a bad lesson. Usually if I feel strange about starting a new post it’s because the lesson (or audition, etc) was bad and I don’t want to deal with it.

Last night was a terribly hot evening (and today a terribly hot and humid day), so GG procured us a space in an air condiditoned building, thank goodness. I was warm enough singing in the air-conditioned space, I can’t imagine what it would have been like otherwise.

It was another really GOOD lesson. I really love leaving a voice lesson feeling as though I learned something about my own voice and about singing properly and about music in general, all of which I felt I had the opportunity to learn last night.

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and maybe, if I pray every night, you’ll come back to me.

I had my very first lesson with my new voice teacher last night!!

I’ve already decided what to call her: Genki Girl. She is remarkably enthusiastic and giggly while at the same time she’s very precise and explains things in a clear and relatable fashion. Actually, she makes me think of what I imagine my BFF’s teaching style must be like!

I forgot to mention last time, but Jordan Hall is where the NEC teachers conduct their lessons. Jordan Hall is (maybe obviously?) a concert hall, and it feels very official and fancy to be practising right across the hallway from a gorgeous concert hall!

Needless to say, my first lesson went very well.
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it’s a dangerous kind of sport, and yet it’s fun.

Yesterday I worked on
Both of my recital pieces!

Yesterday was focused on performing. And also remembering my lyrics.

(e le care tue manine
lieta poi saprò baciar)

All in all, the lesson went fairly well, especially considering how badly the last couple have gone. I don’t know why I have this mental block when it comes to Acting While I Sing but I definitely do, especially when it comes to singing operatically.

“You didn’t have a problem with the Jewel Song.”

“…well, no, once I had an audience in front of me I was fine.” Apparently she doesn’t remember the agonizing lessons before the recital where she would try to get me to emote while I sang (“it’s ‘comment n’être pas coquette?’ not ‘I’m just going to stand here and stare at you while I sing'”), shrinking further and further inside myself. It’s so awkward to act when a person is watching you, just one person, just a few people judging you. It’s different than acting for an audience, somehow.

It ties into the whole “I need this to be perfect” idea: techincal perfection is what I strive for (and don’t ever even get near). My mind is so occupied, so obsessed with Doing It Right that I have no room for anything else.

And then again: I completely surprised myself during my performance of the Jewel Song at that recital by being able to emote – I felt light and effervescent and it was as though I was watching from somewhere outside myself, thinking “where did that come from?”

(e le care tue manine
lieta poi saprò baciar)

I’m glad that I had at least one good lesson leading up to the recital. I feel slightly better about my life and my choices now.



In other news, PC and I are embarking upon a new project where I get to lie across a piano in a pretty dress and get paid for it. Actually, that was how I proposed the idea to him. L and I are also revisiting the idea of our as-yet imaginary band and actually writing a couple of original songs (scary!). My life is alive with the sound of music!


text-message theatre
j: Maybe if you work in a piano bar I can lie across your piano in a slinky dress and get paid for that.
pc: We could totally do that! You could do it as a side/weekend gig! I’m totally serious, too, I would be proud to be your accompaniment!
j: wait what, I just want to lie across the piano. I have to sing too?! :P
pc: I don’t think singers lay across pianos anymore…they realized all those sequins scuff up the finish. …and yes, you would have to sing.

as our days pass in the emptiness away.

Today I worked on
The Willow Song
Batti, Batti
Thank Goodness, from Wicked

Today was another three-steps-backwards day. I don’t know what my issue is lately; I always have a problem getting myself out of my head while I sing but last week and this week have been exceptionally bad. I don’t know if it’s that I just feel like I’ll never really get any better so why bother, but when I’m in my lesson I’m trying so hard and nothing sounds right!

It’s all the same things: “stop forcing vibrato, stop trying to sing from your throat, sing up and outwards, sing like a laser beam” (haha), “pull it to the front of your head, you have to place EVERY NOTE the way you place high notes.” These are all things I can conceptualize in my brain, all things that make perfect sense to me and should be able to be translated to my physicality. But nooooo. I know the way I place notes is a habit, but I don’t know how to break it and MP just says “do it,” like it’s that easy.

I don’t know what to do! I don’t know what to do! I don’t know how to fix it and my recital is on the twenty-second and who knows if I’ll be able to sing anything then! Argh!