Friday, June 6, 2008

Gratitude - Day 127

Gratitude - Day 127
Once again, a reminder pops up to discreetly remind me how many people it takes to put on a show. The audience for this show sees 5 "Principal Artists", or cast members, a chorus of about 40, and 20 or so "extras" that do the fight scene at the end of Act 1 so wonderfully, among other things - trained by the brilliant Bernard Chabin, plus the Conductor and orchestra members. But I remind you (again, sorry!) that there are SO many more people behind the scenes, many more than appear on the front of the stage - from makeup artists to technicians to stagehands to lighting guys to costume makers to the lady who serves the coffee at the canteen! Some of them do their job just because it's their job, and that's perfectly fine. Some, however, go above and beyond, and some (I'm assuming - but could be wrong) "lady" not only tagged my shirt in my costume (keeping it from getting mixed up with, let's say Tebaldo's), but did it with the most perfect stitches giving this sad, black, ordinary cotton t-shirt a real boost of character, this under shirt that no one ever sees. Trust me - you don't often see THAT kind of detail and attention - that's a sign of someone who loves their work. (Or, was extremely bored, but I favor the former possibility.) I'm grateful for the hands that took the time to do this.

Here's a quick pic of me with my "All-knowing Sword Guru", Bernard - he has been a big help on this show, helping me feel at home wielding that (not very light!) sword around at various singers.


Dolcevita said...

Wonderful show this Thursday night - which was also my last viewing of C&M this year.

Both Joyce and Anna were brilliant and ever more at ease in their respective roles. I simply love the way their voices complement one another. That being said, Imust add that last night I was most impressed by Matthew. He was smashing -- never got drowned by the orchestra and was not dominated by Joyce in the duet during the 2nd act. GRANDE!

This production of C&M --and esp this distribution-- is truly unforgettable and more and more people here are unhappy that no one thought to DVD it *GRRRR!*

There apparently will be a DVD w/o Joyce and w/o Matthew. I thought Elina sang Romeo brilliantly in Vienna, but Joyce is even better. OTOH Matthew is IMHO far better a tenor than Calleja... Now you see why we're unhappy that THIS distribution isn't DVDed ;(

On the positive note : tomorrow JDiD recital at l'Opera Comique - YAY :)

Mandolin Vision said...

This is really neat! I agree that it shows the lady's devotion to what she does as well as to the opera - a wonderful inspring adventure - that she is also part of.

Susan said...

When I started supering with NJ Opera I was amazed at the number of people behind the scenes! The costume people were the most impressive to me. They took our measurements and then made costumes, that alone is so impressive a skill to me! They were ready to fix a hem or sew anything that needed sewing in between scenes, they checked everyone just prior to going onstage, they helped us get dressed sometimes and there was one costume person assigned to each principal during the performances. They were amazing! They didn't sew our names into our costumes though... I think they wrote on masking tape with a pen. ;)

AL said...

Oh, my God !!!!!
I will never forget this Sunday !!!! You were so amazing on scene and moreover I had the chance to see you backstage (you are so wonderful and so nice !!!!). I still have chills behind my spine.
It was a really wonderful, great, mesmerizing performance. Anna and you made me cry : wonderful singing and acting but in fact, these words are not enough. Before you took the potion, I was to scream "NO !!! DON'T DO IT !!! SHE'S STILL ALIVE", because I was so moved. Well I guess that's what opera is all about and you achieve it so well !!!
Bellini was a genius (and maybe a sadistic pervert for writing such a sad and beautiful music, lol : I'm still crying), but without great singers... it wouldn't work so well.

You name your posts "Gratitude"... well I'm grateful to you for giving us such emotions !!!!
Thank you ! I'm still on my cloud, with the head in the stars. And I think that I won't go down for a moment.

Dolcevita said...

Hey there, Yankeediva!

I LOVED your Yankee recital at l'Opera Comique last Saturday. I thought you would eventually cancel it because of your Romeo the next day at l'Opera Bastille but no -- our Joyce was singing it with care and intensity as if it was your only commitment while in Paris. So, a big kudos to you (errr...and to your steroid provider :-)

Particularly loved the Copland part, and actually didn't hear the Folk Songs before. Great stuff!

I didn't know you spoke french so well!

Rachel said...

I am a regular super at the Lyric Opera of Chicago (and would have been in Barber last year were it not for my obligation to be a college student and actually, um, go to class...)and I am continually amazed by the people who work there- the wardrobe staff, the wig and makeup folks, everybody on the technical end of things. I don't know that I've met a collective group of kinder, harder working people anywhere.

Even for me, at the very bottom of the theatrical food chain, they took great care in making sure that everything was just so. My name was sewn into every single piece of my multilayered Boheme costume (I was Prostitute #2. Glamorous, I know) and my dresser was beyond incredible. I have such immense respect for these people- they're work is so necessary and so brilliant, and yet a lot of it is unacknowledged and underappreciated.

All that rambling to say that I agree with you- it truly is remarkable how much is involved in putting an opera up.

Mei said...

FYI, there's a great video from the dress rehersal... O_O

Dolcevita said...

Whassup?! You see how you spoiled us by frequently posting that now not posting for a whole week makes it like it's been forever.

Either you're too tired or you're having fun... or... or it's a combination of both :)

Read the critiques of your recital at l'Opera Comique and they are all full of praise for "actually the best mezzo in the world" :)

Take care and cheers!