Abby is reading a book about opera called "What's All the Screaming About" by Roger Englander, and though it is a little dated it's a lot of fun. It's a good one to recommend to someone thinking about getting into opera but isn't sure where to start.
She read a quote to me that I thought really captured what it means to study to be an opera singer:
"Great opera singers are worthy of public acclaim. Consider their training and their responsibilities. They must study all facets of music: not only its literature, but also its theory and history. They must learn vocal production and breath control. They must learn many languages, master good diction, know stage deportment, and acquire acting techniques. They must learn how to create character makeup. They must be able to memorize lengthy musical scores and texts. They must maintain hearty constitutions to sustain themselves through daily work that is physically and mentally strenuous. The amount of energy expended in the performance of many operatic roles is equal to that expended by an athlete in the Olympics."
I always get a kick out of people who give me that funny look when I tell them I'm a singer--that look that says, "really? all you do is sing?". Well, guess what, I have a heartier constitution than those people! And I've worked hard to get it!
Here's the book:
Have a good one!