Thursday, 9 October 2014

Julius Caesar meets Don Ottavio - Handel meets Mozart !

It is, yet again the end of another week - time just flies by, and here in Paradise it is already Half Term for all the schoolchildren for the next two weeks. I am teaching through these holiday weeks, mostly because my term will end by the beginning of December, and also because my adult pupils (who don't have the joy of 'half terms' any more) would be appalled that they went lesson less for two whole weeks !

I had such a good week, the pianists back is almost gone, meaning that work is easier and more comfortable, and I have had some excellent lessons this week. Sometimes singing teaching, indeed all music teaching seems to plateau - especially when one's youthful students are 'waiting' for something to happen or change in their young voices, and one's adult pupils are between events, so to speak ! Things can then be a bit flat and one has to work harder to keep momentum going.

This term I have felt positively over run with momentum ! My youngsters are on a fast roll, voices such as high soprano A, and lower mezzo S have burgeoned dramatically, and slightly older teen N's voice is so rapidly becoming a woman's quality it is quite tricky to keep up with the happenings ! Even one or two of the very young singers are making great leaps forward technically, and I find myself rooting out the next level or repertoire on a weekly basis !

I am also back in a position where for at least two and a half hours in the week I am teaching at Conservetoire level with F and E, and that is just brilliant. I am working on repertoire which has not surfaced in my life since I was teaching at the RAM. Today I worked in depth on the wonderous Handel aria from Julius Caeser, 'Va tacito n'ascosto', full of the most fabulous coloratura, and Handel at his most amusing. Teaching the technique which allows the mezzo voice to imitate the Baroque French Horn was a deep pleasure, especially as I sang these aria's back in the late Middle Ages. What complete joy.

Then to balance the mezzo travesti music I have newly 'born' tenor, E, to whom I gave the smaller of the two Don Ottavio arias from Don Giovanni by Mozart. That is the miraculous 'Dalla sua Pace'. It takes me back to my days of singing Donna Elvira, and hearing from the wings, a beautiful legato tenor singing it. It's clean and mellifluous melodic line also flings me back to teaching, and hearing my shining tenor of many years,and now coffee baron C, singing it as if his voice had wings and wafted up to the clouds.

My adults are fired up by the pleasure of concerts past, and the promise of those to come, then getting themselves sorted for Song School next April - and since I looked at my schedule for the Easter term, and it looks frighteningly as if they might have a maximum of 6 or 7 lessons before I jet off to Hong Kong for the festival!

Thing is - I absobloominlutely know they will work like Trojans !



Gosta Winbergh nails it ! Listen to that ppp................


Dame Janet and the ENO old production of JC

Ps I Woz There !


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