Fighting the post-show blues

As much as I complained about the effort involved in getting to rehearsals for the recent Come Home concert at WNO, closing the performance this past weekend has made me feel kind of … empty. Basically, I’ve got the post-show blues, or post-show depression.

I don’t feel like I’m really depressed, but I definitely feel a sense of:

  • malaise
  • ennui
  • being in the doldrums
  • and my personal favorite, agita [yes, I was scoping out the thesauraus)

In her blogpost, Post-Show Depression: What It Is and How To Deal With It, Irish writer Rebecca Spelman identifies three reasons why it happens:

  1. You’re not used to having free time
  2. Your creative outlet is gone
  3. You miss your friendsc

I feel as though this pretty much describes the feeling I had at the very beginning of the pandemic, when all my performing dried up and I could no longer see people in person, including my students. Before we all had to quarantine, I was rushing from one thing into another, and maybe that wasn’t a good thing…


Perhaps doing this show, as much as I complained about it, reminded me of what it was like to be active and vibrant and engaged. And artistic.

And respected. I’m not feeling particularly respected in some other parts of my life right now, and doing a show of this caliber with a first-rate opera company was a reminder that I have done some fantastic things in my professional life, and I’m still being hired to do so.

All I'm asking for is a little respect (just a little bit)
Lyric by Otis Redding (not Aretha Franklin)

Ms. Spelman suggests five ways to deal with the post-show blues:

  1. Rest
    Well, I’m still in my jammies, so I guess that counts. And honestly, closing a show is often when I do get sick because I haven’t had enough time to take care of myself.
  2. Keep in touch
    There’s always social media! As awful as it can be, it helped me keep in touch with my opera friends even when I was far away and not singing anywhere.
  3. Catch up on other parts of your life
    I’ve made my to-do list, and there are many things to be done, especially as the year comes to an end! (Which actually may be even more overwhelming)
  4. Have a creative outlet
    I’m about to redecorate my whole house, starting with my studio! I’m currently deciding between two colors for three of the walls, and fourth for an accent wall. (I wonder if you can guess which colors I’m leaning toward – see picture below)
  5. Plan your next project
    I guess this could also be a creative outlet, because now I can put some time into my next performance, a reprise of Ding-a-ling, I feel so Christmas-y for the Three Arts Club of Homeland on December 13. This promises to be a little different than the one I did at Germano’s – they’ve asked for some sacred music plus I suspect that some of the selections I did in a cabaret club might not fly in this venue (i.e., not doing “A lonely Jew” from South Park this time). And I’ll also be doing it with Will Zellhofer, instead of Michael Tan, so that’ll be new. But I’ve picked really great music and thrown in a couple of pieces that I think will be terrific!

    And maybe I will audition for WNO in January. Not sure yet. I’m keeping my options open.
Is this a strong enough hint?

I’m feeling somewhat better already. Now off to look at this new music and plan my patter!

Have you ever had the post-show blues/ennui/malaise/agita? How did you get over it? Any pointers that you’d like to share in the comments? I’d love to hear how others deal with this situation.


Also – depression is serious. I’m not making light of it by saying, “go do laundry or decorate your room.” If you feel that you need help, talk to someone about it or contact SAMHSA at 1-800-662-HELP (4357) There are resources available to you. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

Published by Mezzoid Voice Studio

Christine Thomas-O'Meally, a mezzo soprano and voice teacher currently based in the Baltimore-DC area, has performed everything from the motets of J.S. Bach to the melodies of Irving Berlin to the minimalism of Philip Glass. As an opera singer and actress, she has appeared with companies such as Charm City Players, Spotlighters Theatre, Chicago Opera Theater, Opera Theater of Northern Virginia, Opera North, the Washington Savoyards, In Tandem Theatre, Windfall Theater, The Young Victorian Theater of Baltimore, and Skylight Opera Theatre. She created the role of The Woman in Red in Dominick Argento’s Dream of Valentino in its world premiere with the Washington Opera and Mary Pickersgill in O'er the Ramparts at its world premiere during the Bicentennial of Battle of Baltimore at the Community College of Baltimore County. Other roles include Mrs. Paroo in Music Man, Mother Abbess in Sound of Music, Dorabella in Cosi Fan Tutte, Marcellina in Le Nozze di Figaro, both Hansel and the Witch in Hansel & Gretel, and many roles in Gilbert & Sullivan operettas. Her performance as the Housekeeper in Man of La Mancha was honored with a WATCH award nomination. Ms. Thomas-O'Meally received an M.M. in vocal performance from the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore. She regularly attends master classes and workshops in both performance and vocal pedagogy, and is certified in all three Levels of Somatic Voicework™ The LoVetri Method. Her students have performed on national and international tours of Broadway productions, at prestigious conservatories, and in regional theater throughout the country.

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