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October 15, 2009

Well, that was anti-climactic. It always happens. You think it’s this big deal, this big step forward, and then you do it and you get through it, maybe you even shine and stand out. But then it’s done and you’re still you. You’re still looking for that next project, that next step. You’ve acclimated to your new role. Your new achievement can be summed up in a few words on one line of your resume, one item in a list of accomplishments. It’s no longer impressive because now you’ve done it, and you couldn’t have done the impossible, so by default what you did was well within the realm of possibility. How prosaic.

OK, I will stop to acknowledge that I have accomplished something here. This was my first professional choral gig in New York. I got paid for singing. I sang in Avery Fisher Hall. This is either exciting or commonplace, depending on who you’re talking to. It was a good concert. I met some new people. I learned some new music. Lincoln Center is now properly affixed in my mental map of the city. I relished the income, and even spent some of it on myself.

Now I look forward, wondering when is the next gig? When can I start taking voice lessons again? Should I start auditioning? If so, where? What arias are audition-ready? Do I need new repertoire? Should I consider young artist programs? Should I cut my hair? When will I practice? Should I work on my languages? Which one first? And on and on. And then I am overwhelmed and so I just revel in the fact that I have a church job that provides me a performance opportunity every week without a lot of stress. Other opportunities can be layered onto that, or not. Either way is OK. I’m still singing, and I’m still enjoying it.

The next job will happen when I’m ready. I’ll schedule an audition when I find the right opportunity, the right company, the right production that looks really interesting and worth the time and energy and stress and commuting. Or when I meet the right composer, music director, producer, etc. I guess I’m realizing that things may not be moving fast, but they are moving, and they are going at a pace I can keep up with and that makes me comfortable. Not too much coasting, not too challenging, not too much change at once. I remind myself that it should be fun and exciting and if it’s not that, it’s the wrong project. So, I’ve checked off professional chorister, and pondering my next move.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. October 17, 2009 9:58 am

    Congratulations, Betsy. I’m thinking that the strange thing about the performing arts (theater falls into this category too) is that they occur but then the only trace of them (unless they are recorded, at which point they become something else) is the trace they leave upon the soul of the performer and the audience. Which is no negligible thing. In fact, it is absolutely vital. But you can’t see it or quantify it.

    If you’re asking for votes on your hair, I love it the way it is now.

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