While I’m waiting to hear if I can go out to have drinks for my birthday or if I need to stay home and rest for the George London Finals tomorrow, I thought I’d distract myself by finally writing about the summer. Through a most unorthodox – but not really that unusual – turn of events, I will be a Filene Young Artist at Wolf Trap!
As I made pretty clear a few weeks ago, I didn’t audition for Wolf Trap this year. But I sang a good audition for them in 2005 (Kim Witman is the voice behind the table in the first anecdote in my “Average Audition” post), and KPW and I have kept in touch over the past couple of years. When she learned that my summer plans had fallen through, she let me know of their own unusual situation.
After they’d made invitations for the summer, WTOC had several returning singers, including a soprano, withdraw from their contracts, each for their own good reasons. The handful of other sopranos that they had on their shortlist after the auditions in December had all been informed that they weren’t in the final group, released from their “holds,” and they went on to accept other summer gigs. So Kim and her crew went back to the drawing board, so to speak, informing some initially rejected singers that they might be considered again – and inviting me to come down to Vienna and audition. I took a day trip to DC, sang four arias (the most I’ve sung in any audition), and was later offered the spot!
A friend of mine said, when the first gig fell through, “There must be something better out there for you this summer.” I agreed, of course, because you always agree when someone says that when trying to cheer you up, but inside I was thinking, “What can there be, this late in the game?” And here it is, quite possibly the perfect summer scenario for me at this stage of my career. I still don’t quite understand how it came to me, or why, but I’m going to take the opportunity and run with it. It’s unexpected, and unusual, but here it is.
I have heard so many wonderful things about Wolf Trap – the attitude of support and collegiality that is fostered there, the level of artistry of the singers and staff, the beauty of the surrounding area – and it is seen as the height of “young artist programs.” People look at WTOC and say “Who’s singing there this year?” It’s like a barometer of the up-and-coming singers. Does that make sense? As Kim says in her post today, “an entire generation of singers began their careers” at Wolf Trap. She lists Nathan Gunn, Dawn Upshaw, Mary Dunleavy, and Eric Owens, and the rest of the list of alumni is thrilling. And now, since a professional gig I’d pinned my hopes on didn’t pan out, I get the chance to join them. What a ride.
While I’ve been typing this, I’ve learned that calls went out for the finals, and I didn’t make the cut. Oh, well. Win some, lose some, as this post now fully relates!
Now I have no reason not to stay up until 2am watching Season Two of Grey’s Anatomy…