The recital did not work out exactly as planned, to say the least, but my goodness it was a tremendous evening.
Craig developed a cold and was unable to sing, so at the eleventh hour two youngsters with up and coming all important auditions cheerfully stepped in to support L and give their own performances a useful 'outing' !
It was something of a shock, and could, with a less strong personality have thrown L. Predictably it did not, and she and R and M sang absolutely beautifully throughout the evening.
The programme covered all genres of vocal music, from Caccini to the 21st century musical theatre. Highlights were abounding,but for me they were Porgi Amor from Figaro sung by L with such glowing and warm tone it could have been sung by a singer with 10 times her classical experience in both vocal beauty and tragic undertones. She can communicate with such a penetrating reality, and she has that rare ability to allow each member of the audience that she is singing straight to them, and them alone. I wish I could bottle that gift. I also wish i could 'can' another ability that she has in confident profusion - the precious skill of blagging Italian lyrics with all the aplomb and conviction of a magician !
For me, young R gave a wonderfully poised and heartfelt performance of V'Adoro Pupille from Handel's Julius Caeser. She sang with a tone quality and confidence beyond her years creating an atmosphere in the hall, and singing with mature interpretation truly understanding the meaning of the aria. As I said in an earlier blog, she is an utterly perfect example of a young starter who has, by osmosis, absorbed so much technique and musicianship that all the really hard performing graft is now done.
M, who is imminently approaching Conservetoire auditions travelled over to Paradise from the east side of Scotland at the last moment, for which we were so grateful. She sang very well indeed showing her lately acquired warm mezzo tone, and her highlight for me, was a beautiful and supremely controlled performance of Schumann's Mondnacht. Smaller than all her other songs, it is the one which not only shows her ability to control a large and growing voice with maturity and confidence, but it also shows an affectionate and sweet tone, and another side of her personality and ability to interpret. She has much to offer, and this allows me to see beyond the technique and into the heart of the singing.
L ended the recital with two ballads which show just how accomplished she is in her own world of musical theatre. One of which was 'Can't help Lovin that Man' from Showboat which gave me such goosebumps, I have rarely played for any young singer who can make songs so perfectly their own, and who makes me play absolutely as well as I can, following every dynamic and rhythmical fluctuation, but this young woman does all of that and more.
It was a tremendous evening, to be repeated and repeated until they are totally pleased with themselves, and so I can enjoy it, and wallow in their huge achievements.
Very proud, I was ! (In Yoda speech!)
Photos to follow, when I have any !