Monday, August 23, 2010


First of all, a few stats about my last 5 months:

2 torn ligaments
1 ankle surgery
1 pair of crutches and 2 walking casts
5 countries
2 new roles (oh, I love you ladies!)
2 new productions
1 revival, whose premiere coincided with the year of my birth
26 shows
2 magical recitals
1 thrilling recording
6 CD signings (thank you for coming out!)
Countless interviews (in French, Italian and English)
1 book dedication (shout out to Donna Leon for the coolest thing EVER!)
1 amazing Carbonara w/ Tartufo (Courtesy of my husband!)

*Saying good-bye to the trusted, sturdy boot*

I don't know when I've ever experienced a period as intensive, complete, rewarding, challenging, uplifting, tiring, or thrilling as this, before. I will admit to being a bit overwhelmed. I feel quite happy to have ended the summer still STANDING (yes!) and feeling strong and energized. In fact, I feel that I finished the summer with more energy than I started it with - hence this mini-boom in technology on my part!

Artistically I feel that I've done some of the best work I've ever done this past summer, and I don't say that to brag; simply that I recognize that I took some significant leaps forward artistically, and I believe that is to do with the challenging new roles which I relished learning, with the wonderful conductors I have collaborated with, and the great artists with whom I have shared the stage. I felt it was a summer of constant learning and growing from these "teachers" and I made it a point to soak up each moment - and now that it has come to an end, I can can feel the fruits of being present in each and every one of these events.

*A summer of beautiful collaborations*

Last night as I walked out onto the stage of the Usher Hall at the Edinburgh Festival, I took my normal 20-25 minutes on stage by myself. It is very nearly my favorite moment of the night.

An expectancy bubbles over in the air, and I get to sit at the piano and just feel the space for a bit, before the energy of the crowd descends on the hall. Last night I knew it would be a great recital, and indeed, there was an extraordinary feeling in the hall. Both David and I felt a freedom in the music-making that can only come from repeated performances, and a long collaboration with a trusted music-mate. It was bliss, and the absolutely perfect conclusion to a summer that fed me deeply in many, many ways.

I am now officially on vacation, so you won't hear from me for awhile. But I'll be recouping and resting and rejuvenating and reveling in time at home with my husband and family and friends. It's been a long time coming and I plan in drinking every moment in to the fullest!

I want to thank you all for the wonderful, enthusiastic support you have showered me with during this past season, and I hope that it will only get better and better from here on out!



Sibyl said...

Have a big ol' blast!

Erin said...

So glad you enjoyed your summer! I'll miss reading your posts and watching your vlog, but rest up; you deserve it!

Wolfgang said...

Dea Joyce, this is just to thank you for the outstanding recital at Usher Hall, it was really amazing - the standing ovations at the end were more than well deserved! I hope you could feel how enthusiastic the whole audience was. And thank you also for being there for your fans afterwards, that was most kind and gracious.

Have great vacation !!!!

Mei said...

Have a good time...!!

Looking forward to the next season...

Ann said...

Happy Vacation! Well-earned and well-deserved! Enjoy!!

AlisonDee said...

Enjoy your vacation :-). Looking forward to you posting again xx

chris said...

Yes, you should take time out and relax a bit in my (unsolicited) opinion. I always worry that you work too hard. Florez takes two days minimum between performances, to rest his voice, but I note that you do not. I gather you don't feel any need to do so. Must be that sturdy Kansas stamina at work.

CB said...

Please enjoy that vacation time! I missed you in March at the AVA Gala but I hope to see you in person soon! I'm in the middle of graduate school and as a mezzo, I am so thrilled to have a great artist sing the roles I love and let us in on her music-making. Thank you so much!

coolfreeze said...

Have fun on the vacation!

PS: I'm listening to Little Women as I type this, happy I came across it at my library, as I was unaware of it before!

Andy said...

What about the cookbook launch? (A cookbook which, by the way, I cannot wait to get my hands on!) That's pretty cool too. Thank you for your great posts, always fun to read:) Enjoy your holiday!

Opera Cake said...

Way to go Joyce!

I just noticed that your next thing is a recital in Paris - Gooooood :)

mtgblog said...

That was indeed a great recital. I am sure you have been told that a standing ovation from our normally reticent Edinburgh audiences is quite something - worth at least 100% more than from anywhere else!!
And thanks for taking time to speak to your followers after and give us autograph reminders of a very special evening.
Enjoy your break and come back soon...

gaulimauli said...

Couple of things before "Reflections" gets sent to the Archive dungeon, where it's dark and dusty. Even the bare-bone statistics are impressive, but much more so to those who followed your exploits vicariously those past few months. Gutsy and graceful. I guess you are taking your cue from the Kansas motto "Per aspera ad astra".
Much love and all best wishes for the future.

Pablo Ordás said...

Joyce, I've just seen the documentary of BBC about the italian opera and I loved your rendition with maestro Pappano.
And yes, I think Rossina had a problem with her hormones as well, which is really set in scene with your singing. Love it!

Rebecca said...

I'm from Edinburgh Joyce but unfortunately was working down in London for your big weekend - I was so disappointed when I noticed the clash a couple of months back! My sister and one of my best friends were both at your recital, both singers, and told me what a truly fantastic it was. It's so great to see you in the Usher Hall here, a concert hall I know so well! Thanks for your wonderful blog, I enjoy reading it so much, the insight you give us is priceless.

Gi said...

Have a great vacation, and a great comeback :-)