Saturday, January 13, 2007
Friday, January 12, 2007
I Feel Like an Evil Bog Dweller
|For two years I’ve been stretching the chops on nice high baritone & tenor-ish repertoire like Sweeney Todd, the tenor solo in the Hoppe Requiem, musical reviews with Broadway favorites like Music of the Night and Bring Him Home. Now I have the distinct honor of re-joining the ranks of my Basso (Canadenis) Profundo friend, Campbell Vertesi, and have been assigned to sing low bass for the Portland Opera Norma chorus.|
BAD: when the full ensemble of Sops & Tenors scream fortissimo (the actual technical music term is balls-to-the-wall. Really! Look it up in Groves!) on High A’s, Mezzi belting somewhere in the top of the treble, and basses…you got it! We’re trying to force a mighty D root in the middle of Bass Clef. Do you think anyone is going to hear a handful of basses huff on a note placed in the middle of bass cleff with 35 other trained singers screaming 2 & 3 octave higher, AND a full 60 piece orchestra blaring from the pit? No way, Jose!
GOOD: But, ohhh, it feels good to rumble on a low G for a page and a half of pianissimo chorus. That’s when having the low notes pays dividends. Ahhhh…it’s nice to be back home for a while. Tenors, eat your heart out.
THE BEST: Who wouldn’t want to add ‘Bog Dweller’ to one’s opera resume already littered with, but limited to, Guard, Lowly Slave, Noble, Evil Assassin (I like that one), Soldier, Priest and Gypsy? Besides, the pajama and robe costumes are the most comfortable I’ve worn by far.