Saturday, 23 March 2013

The Doll's Song from Hoffman

My final day at Swindon Festival has been a plethora of adult solo classes. The show songs for all age groups are done now, they are the evening entertainment for the public ! Given just how wonderful these classes were I am not surprised that each evening had a more or less full house in the audience. It was three evenings of concert worthy material, fine enough to grace any stage anywhere!

So today was the more stolid singing, Opera, Oratorio, Recital and voice categories. I was thrilled to see that a good proportion of the best show songs singers came back and sang the more classical style of singing, and said so in my adjudication. The discipline of singing is built on good technique, and a good technique allows you to then pursue any genre of the vocal art !

I heard a brilliant Doll's Song from The Tales of Hoffman by Offenbach, and if you don't know it, go on YouTube and find a really good recording of it! The young woman who sang it today had all the resources to sing this most demanding of arias, with many moments of sheer vocal gymnastics ! The role is of the mechanical doll of myth and fairytale who seems to come alive and sing. Her music is wonderful, she has to negotiate so much coloratura, so high and so relentless, it makes Poor Wandering One sound like a nursery rhyme! The clever thing is that in the middle of each verse her clockwork mechanism starts to run down, so her singing slides. And slides until she is once more wound up and sets off on another journey of top notes which seem somewhere up in the ozone layer!

It is the Vocal Championship tonight, followed by the Supreme Championship, which includes all musical departments of the festival, piano, strings, wind and voice. So it should be a glittering evening! Update to follow!

Sadly I forgot to bring my sequinned outfit, so guess who won't be sparkling later !

I took a photograph of the statue outside the Arts Centre, which I thought was splendid. It is called 'Applause', and I though you might like to see it!

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