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Friday, May 30, 2008

Italian Coffee

There's something about the smooth melody in Italian coffee that simply gives "ping" to a day. I have to be careful not to "stand up" like a guitar string, what with laughingly modest portions?! But, when the pressure's "on," this Italian potion simply gathers you at your center. Aint life grand!


Monday, May 26, 2008

Exemplary Aloneness

I am reminded of one's necessity to endure aloneness, as I focus on the character facets of Leonora in Verdi's opera, La Forza del Destino. In Leonora's case, her aloneness is a self-imposed prison of exile, and, if you will, a self abuse-due to the guilt she feels with familial circumstances in which she was involved, and the accidental death of her father. Never-the-less, Leonora's personal endurance, and her continual focus upon her own story, without deviation, is surely the self-imposed abuse she seeks, and it shows us all her unwavering trust in her unbeknownst strength at enduring isolation. In this way, it is an example to us all. The ability to be alone, self-imposed or not, is a major step in building a staircase to character strength. We all can learn from Leonora's story.
Additionally, the infinite vocal and spiritual heights and depths to which Verdi takes Leonora, carry her beyond earthly awareness, and at times describe her anguished soul, while also empowering it and the souls of her listeners. This work crosses boundaries. It is a sanctioned gift of lyrical genius!


Thursday, May 22, 2008

Verdi's Monastery

It is not a secret that my career statement is strongly associated with Russia, and I do love the Russians and their far-reaching and innovatively creative musical and generally artistic facets. I also have a particular affinity for the Italians, particularly Verdi and Verdi's operas, including his unmatched "Requiem." Verdi's writing and understanding of the voice is medicine for the voice-even the notorious vocal demands of "Nabucco" or "Attila." It is, however, the spiritual element in his opera "La Forza del Destino" that is so present in this piece, and so addictive. The story of this opera seems far-fetched, and yet Verdi's melodic fantasy and musical savvy supercedes all ability to fathom. Verdi created a vessel striking in majesty and glorious grace. Performing this work, soon in Italy, I'm sure to be again swept up in the spiritual commitment of the experience. Quite literally like entering a monastery.


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Charm of the Vernacular

My own recital performances of vocal works based on songs from Mahler's Des Knaben Wunderhorn (Youth's Magic Horn) have inspired me to construct my upcoming recital and master class theme, in Como and Brescia, on various composers who wrote to words specifically in the vernacular:
Mahler, Respighi, Tosti, Brahms, to name just a few, were inspired by text exhibiting their individual country's charm in the vernacular-creating a particular m├ętier for these works. Sometimes it's part of the necessary tools of the trade to kneel into the cultivation of slang in performance.


Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Emotions & Belief

It would seem that emotions propel thoughts into reality by the intensity of belief coupled with action. When critical mass of thought and wise endeavor has been sought and reached, reality unfolds.


Monday, May 19, 2008

Giving

Honoring your time and worth in offering to other's prosperity is very different from pouring time and energy into other's need. The former has value and self-worth. The latter gives yourself away in place of others.
Healthy prosperity is a balanced exchange-scenario of give and take. One-sided benevolence has a different chime.


Sunday, May 11, 2008

Release What You Give

I feel that giving good advice, pieces of clothing, science tips...whatever...it is the total giving, without post-contemplation, that creates plenty for the parties involved. Be happy and comfortable with the success of the enlightened individual, the newly clothed party, and/or the universal wisdom imparted, and release the gift to them. This is the success, and any post-contemplation or reconsideration is hampering and hindering to energy flow. Do the contemplating before the giving, not after it...





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