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another lesson

Pollard initially wanted to see me at 4 this afternoon. No can do, I told him; I have to be at Tania's opera scenes performance. The only other time he could do was 10:15 this morning. (Why the rush to do another lesson just two days after the last? He's going out of town tomorrow for a fortnight.)

After I had vocalized for a bit, Pollard commented, "I daresay, morning suits you!" Ugh! Don't say that too loudly; word might get around.

We worked on the Figaro aria today. I had one pronunciation issue to work out. I was pronouncing "fare il" as [fah-REYL] whereas it should be [FAH-reyl]. The other mistakes were the publisher's. When I pronounced one word as [skee-moo-NEE-toh], he told me it's [shee-moo-NEE-toh]. I looked at me questioningly and asked, "Are you telling me s-c-h is pronounced [sh]?" "Is that what's in your score?" "Yes." "That's a typo." The word is supposed to be "scimunito," not "schimunito." Later I sang an A-flat after a sequence of figures that ended in B-flats. He looked at me funny and played a B-flat. I told him I had an A-flat. He got up to look at my score and couldn't believe there was another glaring mistake.

I continue to sing well. This is a taxing aria, though. All those repeated E-flats after a tongue-twister passage with nary a place to catch a breath! I could feel my support creeping up on me, so there were times when my sound shallowed out. But that will improve with practice, as I am aware of what the problem is. I was exhausted when we were done.

But I still had a few minutes left in the lesson, and Pollard wanted to hear "Die Wetterfahne." I thought I would have trouble coming down from the high that is the Mozart, especially since I felt so tired. But I was able to sing it surprisingly well. I sang the soft passages softly and delicately, but with warmth and depth, and the loud passages with ease. When the cat nudged the door open to leave the room, I noticed the young lady waiting in the hall sneaking a peak to see who this wonderful baritone is. <grin> I must be doing something right!

Pollard asked if I had enough music to work on. I do, but I expressed that I wouldn't mind being given another piece to learn while he's away. So, he's assigned "Honour and Arms" from Handel's Samson. (Not parsing Pollard's accent, I had written down "Ona Ams." I wouldn't have had much luck finding that aria!) That should give me plenty to work on in the next two weeks. I see him again on the 25th at noon.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 7th, 2006 05:08 pm (UTC)
Yeah, that passage pretty much dictates the tempo -- you have to be able to get from "sin rose spinose" to the first "non senton pietà" in one breath (and with enough breath for the E flat!) and still be able to get the words out. And then somehow manage to take a relaxed breath before all the repeated E flats.

I have surprisingly pleasant memories of working on that aria ("surprisingly" because it was what I sang for my repeat reaudition three years ago.
Jul. 8th, 2006 12:50 am (UTC)
I'm really surprised your accompanist didn't know this aria either. The aria is difficult enough without having to fight your accompaniment.

I can understand the pleasant memories, though. When I get through the aria, I just can't help but smile. It's such a rush getting through some of those passages!
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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