Monthly Archives: May 2014

I love singing Italian, French, German, and Latin, but English is my native tongue.

While researching for one of my vocal students, I found this: The 12 Greatest Operas in English

It’s an interesting list because I hadn’t heard of many of them.  I was also surprised that Bernstein wasn’t on the list until I remembered that many of his are probably categorized more as “musicals” than “operas.”  Modern classical vocal music in English fascinates me, especially because I’d like to write one.  Do you know of any other operas in English that you like?

Turning It Into Momentum

Don’t worry, “Part 2” is coming.  I just have several things to do, and time is flying.

As you know, or have noticed, keeping a blog is challenging for me.  Now I may have figured out why: I only like writing about what I’m feeling.

Well, just about everything that I’ve been feeling for the past…however long it’s been, has not been worthy of mentioning on my professional website.  The effect: I haven’t been blogging at all.  Once again, I say sorry for that to any and all of my loyal audience (even if you aren’t loyal anymore because of it).  But I finally figured out what all those emotions are doing in my professional life.  As I deal with them, they are helping me to grow, learn new things, and achieve more.  Obviously, these things can happen for anyone anytime there is a rough patch, but here’s how it’s affected my professional life in music.

Most of the time, I deal with turbulent emotions and/or circumstances through music.  This has happened in so many different ways in the past few months that I hadn’t realized what was really going on until now.  Sometimes it was lyrics in a steady meter in a journal; sometimes it was working out different and “biting” voicings in my jazz piano homework (yeah, I still take lessons too).  Other times it was escaping to an orchestral concert and playing my own “Fantasia” in my head or loosely analyzing the orchestration in the pieces (or sometimes both at once); other times I made the most dissonant and beautiful strains of sounds that I’ve ever heard myself compose (not finished pieces yet, just snippets).  I was amazing myself because I was just so overwhelmed with emotions, circumstances, etc. that I didn’t even “think,” I just had to “do” something, and it usually turned into music.

Dealing with all the emotion through music quickly turned into passion because I was excited about what I had produced (especially when I had never done it before).  Passion gave me more emotion (more positive this time) and energy that I actively focused on specific things such as my students, my family, myself, the piano, composing projects, etc.  Right now, I am finishing a song for a small band (a “pop” song, but I don’t like calling it that).  I am also entering a contest for a string quartet, even though I have a little less than three weeks left to write for it.

My life’s rough spots are not over yet, but I have some great momentum going right now, at least professionally; and that encourages me quite a bit.  Hopefully, this can encourage others as well.  Even though I still go through the same ups and downs, and I seem to blog about the same ups and downs too (hopefully not too boring), I keep learning new things every time.  And I want it to keep being an encouragement to myself and others during life.  And all I can think of to end with is this: “We lose our way; we get back up again.  It’s never too late to get back up again,” sings my still favorite artist, Tobymac.