Articles Archive

Butterflies are free…

I write this blog posting as I wait to perform Das Rheingold, the first installment of Richard Wagner's epic Ring of the Nibelungen, on this, the first of our 'Cycle' presentations.  We will perform all four operas this week, and repeat this task to complete 3 full cycles by the…

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"A Sizzlin' Sitz"

When all the "i's" are dotted, all the "t's" are crossed, and the final page is turned; one may look back at the Siegfried sitzprobe of May 17 & 18, 2011 and correctly identify it as the tipping point where one could now actualize--not just envision--the success of the upcoming…

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"Props…that's my job."

As the month of May continues to whiz by, so do our rehearsals for San Francisco Opera's current challenge--namely, the staging of the entire Ring of the Nibelungen.  With the first installment (a stand alone performance of Siegfried) due to grace the stage over Memorial Day weekend, time is getting…

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"Ring" of Fire…

The late, great Johnny Cash utilized a unique trumpet fanfare as the musical introduction to his 1963 single, "Ring of Fire".  The use of mariachi brass throughout, set this song apart--at least as far as country music was concerned--and resulted in a blaze of glory (pardon the pun) as the…

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The Chorus (a.k.a. Operatic Footsoldiers)

One of the more delightful aspects of coming to Dallas the past few years has been carving out the time to visit some old friends from college (undergraduate school) who have settled in the area for their livelihood.  My best friend in college, and among the first persons I had…

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"Death of a Symphony"??……Not so fast!!

One of the negative effects of participating so actively in the operatic forum is that of occasionally becoming musically ‘land-locked’.  After day-in and day-out of rehearsal, where the centerpiece is musical, sometimes the last thing we want to do in our free time is take in more music.  Oft times,…

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The 48 Hour Wednesday!!! (literally)

So how does one experience a literal 48 hour Wednesday, and completely lose a Tuesday from their life? It's easy; just head "down-under" and come back really fast!! You see, I spent a magnificent, long weekend in Montgomery, Alabama (read previous post) working with some wonderfully talented and dedicated young…

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Vann Vocal Institute: The Ramp Up

As some of you know, in addition to my operatic performance career, I have spent the last four years establishing (by invitation) a small but growing vocal institute in Montgomery, Alabama; a city with which I have had a decades-long association.  As the Artistic Director of the Vann Vocal Institute…

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Kuwaiti Holiday

As the city of Chicago sustains the crippling "Blizzard of 2011" (replete with thunder and lightning) on this February 1st, and I watch with delight from my large bank of living room windows in this truly Windy City tonight; my mind is wandering back to the sunny mid 70 degree…

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