Grounded Joy

On this Thanksgiving afternoon in 2020, it’s hard to find a lot to be thankful for. A year ago at this time, Thanksgiving was a respite from a busy fall of performing and teaching, to be spent with family. This year, it seems like just another day. We’re still preparing wonderful food (including a newContinue reading “Grounded Joy”

Breaking Down the “I Am” Song

A few weeks ago, I talked about the role of the “I Want” song in a musical. From that blogpost, I created a series of questions that the actor needs to ask themselves when preparing that song and gave it to my students for our studio class on the topic. Tonight, we will be exploringContinue reading “Breaking Down the “I Am” Song”

Taking Things Personally

This is my biggest personal flaw. Which is not a good one to have when you are in a field where rejection is a major factor more often than not. And as a singer, it is easy to take rejection as a personal affront, because after all, your instrument is a part of your body.Continue reading “Taking Things Personally”

Practicing for Progress – Your Own Way

Today I wrote to a potential student’s mom about what to expect from voice lessons. And when I wrote about what I expect from my students, I wrote: Students are expected to practice at home to the extent they need to make progress. I don’t require proof of practice in writing or any journal –Continue reading “Practicing for Progress – Your Own Way”

Make a Fool of Yourself!

Today I attended a masterclass hosted by Susan Hanlon, a voice teacher in Dallas, and Izzie Baumann, a voice teacher and performance coach in Mainz, Germany. The clinician was Christian Borle, Broadway star and Tony award winner (Peter and the Starcatcher, Something Rotten). He worked with six singers from the US to Germany. He wasContinue reading “Make a Fool of Yourself!”

When you hear no…

The great Kelli O’Hara went to the same school as Kristin Chenoweth, and studied with same voice teacher, force of nature Florence Birdwell. Obviously, Ms. Birdwell knew her stuff (she was still alive last I heard, so I should say, “knows” her stuff), since both of them are Tony-award winning artists. Kristin Chenoweth is knownContinue reading “When you hear no…”

Breaking Down The I Want Song

The late Bob Fosse said that there were three kinds of songs that mattered to the director of a musical: The “I am” song – defining who the singer is The “I want” song – defining what the singer wants The “New” song – doesn’t fit the other two categories; could take things into aContinue reading “Breaking Down The I Want Song”

The Performer’s Identity

For those of us who have identified as performers for most of our lives, 2020 has made us question our very identities. For those of us who have dreamt of a life on the stage and have done everything in service of that goal, 2020 has made us question our goals. For those of usContinue reading “The Performer’s Identity”

Creativity + Intelligence

I like creative people. I like smart people. So I like creative, smart people. I’ve been fortunate enough to work with many in my life, both as a performer and as a teacher, and to be friends with quite a few as well. I saw this quote by Albert Einstein, and I couldn’t agree more:Continue reading “Creativity + Intelligence”