Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I have been searching the web for as comprehensive a Fach (voice category based on vocal timbre, weight, etc.) list I could find (based on the Kloiber buch Handbuch der Oper), and I think I finally found a decent one (CLICK HERE).

Now that I've found the list I have a decision to make. I was told some time ago that in order to have a nice long career it is a good idea to find your Fach and sing one lighter. I believe that I have done that, identifying my "future" self as a Spinto (Jugendliche Heldentenor) Tenor, which means I should sing Lyric Tenor repertoire first (CLICK HERE for the tenor Fach list).

However, I have sung through several arias and even a couple of roles in the Spinto fach, and they feel really good, with a little temptation on some of them to sing heavy. In Germany (where I intend to go and work next fall) they are really picky about choosing things from only one Fach. I am sure that it is harder to find a Spinto Tenor than it is to find a Lyric Tenor, so from a purely marketing standpoint it seems wise to lean that way - plus since I'm 30 my voice is already pretty mature (though there is more to go).

So here is what I think I should do - choose the roles that appear on both lists and prepare those first. Here is what roles that would include:

Berlioz - La Damnation de Faust - Faust
Gounod - Faust - Faust
Puccini - La Boheme - Rodolfo
Puccini - Madame Butterfly - Pinkerton
Smetana - The Bartered Bride - Jenik
Strauss, R. - Capriccio - An Italian Singer
Strauss, R. - Die Frau ohne Schatten - Kaiser (The Emperor)
Stavinsky - The Rake's Progress - Tom Rakewell
Verdi - Rigoletto - Duca

Those become obvious choices, with a few sticking out because they are performed so often, including Faust, La Boheme, Madame Butterfly, and Rigoletto.

In Germany it is essential that you come with some Mozart, which means I do have to make a Fach choice here since my preparation has been in both. In this case I would choose Lyric tenor stuff such as:

Cosi fan tutte - Ferrando
Don Giovanni - Don Ottavio
Die Zauberflote - Tamino

(Interestingly enough, Clemenza di Tito is listed under Spinto.)

So, hopefully choosing those roles to start with, including a couple other lyric roles like Alfredo from La Traviata, Nemorino from L'Elisir d'Amore, Walther from Tannhauser, etc. I put myself in the Lyric fach with definite direction towards Spinto.

Any other opinions out there (rhetorical :) )? Thanks for letting me think "out loud".

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Muppets - Habanera

Another fabulous Muppet video:

And another:

Monday, November 3, 2008

My Clemenza di Tito Review

After the successful completion of another show, and due to the fact that the reviewer probably attended the performance of the other cast, I thought I would write my own review of the show. This is the true review:

Jessica Marie Dold's (Vitellia) bold sound and glorious high notes kept the audience riveted. She also showed her grasp of color and dynamic range, taking us all on a journey through each of her arias.

Ryan Speedo Green (Publio) looked and sounded about as tough as anyone can on stage, and yet sang with power and beauty. I'm not sure how anyone would dare to mess with Tito with a body guard like that.

Emily Vacek (Servilia) sang with finesse and beauty, and looked just like a Disney princess. Her moments on stage were true gems.

Christina Bakhoum (Annio) showed off the depth in her sound, and played her character in way that put the audience on her side.

Rebecca Grace Fadell (Sesto) charmed the audience with the richness of her voice, and played every side of Sesto. She showed a real ability to bring out the different colors in her voice, all within the context of Mozart style.

The chorus was amazing, blending their voices beautifully, and handling all of those confusing set changes masterfully.

Douglas Fisher showed a deep understanding of Mozart style, and stayed right with the singers at all time. He is trully a singer's conductor.

Matthew Lata's direction gave real theatrical and dramatic depth to a piece that is difficult to perform effectively. Each character had a specific journey, and the overall concept and design was superb.

Great job everyone! It was a real pleasure to work with you all.