And I'm actually really excited about it now. We had our second and final rehearsal yesterday, and it went very well. And the duets are going to be fine, after all.
I sent an email to my tenor duet partner, saying that I would appreciate some direction on how we are staging the love duets (I know he directs a lot of Gilbert and Sullivan, and one of our duets is from Iolanthe), because I've only ever sung in recitals and concerts, and thus have no stagecraft and feel super awkward. He didn't reply to my email or make any comment at the rehearsal, but when we got to our duet, he had quietly come up with staging that I'm a lot more comfortable with (no fake kissing) and can actually do (bonus points for this, because I am *not* a coordinated individual). Since he is always a pleasure to sing with, vocally speaking, I think the duet is actually going to be really fun. And I suspect that whatever weird underlying communication issues we have are resolved - we actually managed to have a conversation that was fun rather than vaguely awkward and prickly, which was nice. Though if he makes ridiculously lovelorn faces at me throughout my part of the duet the way he was doing yesterday, my ability to not laugh will be severely tested...
As for the duet with Countertenor... oh my. We didn't get to rehearse last week, because he was sick, so yesterday was our first full run-through. And the thing with Countertenor is that he really does have one of the most beautiful voices I've heard, so singing with him always feels too good to be true – like suddenly singing a duet with Ian Bostridge or Bejun Mehta or something. I have a serious musical crush on this man (he was singing Rameau's Sejour de l'eternelle paix right before our duet and it was just swoonworthy – countertenor voices are either angelic and almost eerie, or screechy and horrible, there is no in between, and his definitely falls into the first category). And our voices blend so well in this piece that we kept on accidentally grinning at each other because it was just so much fun and it sounded so good. But also, somehow we wound up singing this duet staring into each other's eyes for most of the time, and I was having a lot of trouble not blushing because a) terrible musical crush aforementioned and b) he has lovely eyes and ridiculously long eyelashes, something I had not previously noticed but now appreciate a bit too much.
So yeah, that's going to be pretty good, for me if for nobody else!
The weird Hitler opera is still weird Hitler opera, and I am still very, very glad not to have a solo in it, though the others are all consummate musicians and doing extremely well with nightmarish material. I'm finding that I can decipher the Austrian dialect quite well, for basic comprehension purposes, which is surprising, because my German isn't that good, and the people who actually speak fluent German in the group are having trouble with it. So at least I'm contributing something to it! And everyone's solos are sounding great. I do prefer the front end of the program (mostly baroque) to the back end (mostly Hitler opera and Gilbert and Sullivan), but if nothing else, it's a really interesting and varied program, and the voices are excellent.
And I have a very cute dress, which I had a lot of fun buying, because it turned out that the shop assistant was a fellow mezzo and had also sung the St John Passion with a different group during Lent. We bonded over the nightmares associated with 'Wohin', and serenaded Myers with 'Lasset uns der nicht zerteilen' and 'Herr! Unser Herrscher!'. And then my dress scanned for less than half what it was supposed to at checkout, and she applied the discount, and when I said, um, I kind of hate to mention this, but I'm pretty sure I should be paying about $100 more than you are charging me, she looked at the price tag and said, hmm, yes, that is what the price tag says, and it's probably right, but I can only charge you what the scanner is saying, so you're in luck.
I have also decided to wear my wedding crown/tiara/wreath thingie (you can see it a little bit in my icon - it's like a wreath made of peridots strung on wire with little semi-precious stones (rose quartz, amethyst, citrine, carnelian) like flowers or berries) in lieu of a wig to somewhat disguise my very short hair. It does make the hair look more feminine, and if one is a soprano, one does what one must. Also, it does look like a wreath of leaves and blossoms, and since every single duet or aria I am singing involves me being a fairy or a Queen, I feel that this is entirely appropriate!
(My only concern at this point is that I woke up today with an earache and a sore throat... noooooo...)
In writing news, the first of my RITA reviews is up on Smart Bitches Trashy Books
. To my amusement, a side comment I made about the idiocy of the heroine jumping into the sea in her wedding dress and how water safety is taught in Australian schools spawned a lengthy comment thread on the subject of water safety, garnering far more comments than the book itself.
I also managed to finally write Pantin
's first story for my Stories Under Paris site, which means that I have sketched out the three remaining stories in his arc. I have not managed to write anything else this week, which is frustrating, but I've just been feeling too tired and under the weather and all my energy has gone to singing.
God, I hope this cold can hold off for another day, though. I've put way too much work into this to lose my voice halfway through...