Thursday, March 29, 2007

Unlikely metaphors

I had a coaching today with DN, who might become a regular set of initials here on the blog. He had so many good things to say, not the least of which helped me kick in my breath support.

We were going over Giannetta for tomorrow’s Elisir rehearsal (I’m double-booked all weekend AND called on Sunday! Woohoo, overtime!), and there are a few pages that are very wordy and fairly fast. Italian not being the language that trips most easily off my tongue, I kept getting stuck, tripping over the words, until DN came up with an analogy that just worked.

“The breath needs to kind of just flow out like vomit, and the consonants are like chunks in the vomit.”

Unbelievably disgusting, but surprisingly apt! And, unfortunately, this week I had some experience with the concept first hand. (Bad plantains? A bug from Sylvia? Who can say, but I was miserable on Tuesday.) So, I knew whereof he spoke, and I was quickly able to turn that analogy into some beautifully connected phrases with Italian words coming through clear as day.

Now, let’s think about this for a minute. Mimic a vomiting sound, complete with the hand-to-your-stomach motion. (I know, this has descended into seriously grody territory, but if you’re interested in the mechanics of singing, it’ll be insightful!) Did you feel the way your abdomen moved in and up, with a little flip? That’s exactly the way the diaphragm should move at the initiation of a phrase. And the consonants just kind of ride the wave. Not in the jaw, not in the tongue, but flowing out on the breath like so much vomit.

The analogy is so perfect! So gross! And so perfect!

Gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “vomit-breath…”

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

On my feet!

I finally had a few hours of rehearsal for Suor Angelica this week, and boy, did it feel good to finally get up on my feet and stage some scenes! I don’t know this opera very well, being one of maybe three sopranos in the world who has never been in it. (Since it has an all female cast, it’s very popular in schools and other training programs.) But let me tell you, there were at least two moments, even in this rough first rehearsal, where I was brought to tears. The story, the singers, the staging… it’s going to be an incredible evening.

At the end of rehearsal, I went up to Mr. O’Brien to let him know that I will also be the “Young Lover, Soprano”, aka YLS, (not to be confused with YSL, with whom, yes, I would love to work!) in Tabarro. He said, “Oh, wonderful! I hope you’re not afraid of heights!”


Just as I suspected, my YLT and I will be walking across the bridge that can be seen in mockups of the Tabarro set. And, apparently, it’s very high! I told Mr. O’Brien that, yes, I am actually afraid of heights, but being in this business, I’ve learned to get over it. I have to! It seems we’re always on ledges or wires or staircases that push the limits of our comfort zone. God help me if I ever have to sing a Rhine Maiden! They often fly on rigs in order to create the illusion of swimming, all while singing and trying to look like they do it every day. Thankfully, I’m not exactly a Wagnerian… I actually volunteered for the lighting crew in college to help with the fear, but after I got a concussion up in the catwalks, I was relegated to costume crew. As long as no one threatens to push me over, I’ll be fine…in time.

Since our staging for Tabarro is entirely on the bridge, it looks like we’re not going to be called until the rehearsals are on the mainstage! Makes sense, of course, as there is no bridge in the C-level rehearsal room (although there is the boat…). But how crazy is that?! With three operas to stage in the time usually allotted for one, they have to use the rehearsal time most efficiently, and this seems to be an easy 30 seconds to cut out of early rehearsals.

One good thing about it: the sound up there, high up on the bridge and fairly far upstage, will be very different that it would be in a rehearsal room. If I only rehearse it on the stage, my ears won’t get used to having the sound source (piano or orchestra) closer than it would be in performance. The bigger the stage, the harder it is to account for the fraction of a second it takes for the sound from the orchestra to reach your ears. It is very easy to get behind the beat! So, with this rehearsal setup, I’ll be relying on my eyes from the very beginning. Good practice.

I have a Helena cover brush-up rehearsal tomorrow, and then rehearsals for the Gala start on Friday. I’m actually double booked on Friday, so I’ll be going back and forth between Angelica and Elisir. (Can I say that I’m terribly excited to be in the same room with Rolando Villazon? I’ve avoided much star-gushing here, but … eee!! I just know I’m going to blush.) I’ve had a fitting for my Gala costume, should I go on as Giannetta, but still no fitting for YLS’s sexy red dress! Next week, certainly.

Thoughts on last week’s MATA concerts and the big question of “image,” coming up.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

"One of those big round ones"

Happy Birthday, Dad!!!!!
Yes, today is "one of those big round" birthdays for my Dad, seen above with me back when I was still a natural strawberry-blonde. What a handsome man! And stylish, too. (Seriously, I'm loving that jacket...)

I wish we could all have been together for this Saturday morning. The three Bird kids are spread around a bit now, with Sally and her husband in Idaho and Mark and his family here in New York City with me. Getting us all together in one visit is proving harder and harder these days. But, someday - hopefully soon and maybe in NYC? - we'll all be together. Maybe we'll have a big party for all the birthday's we've missed. You should hear this group sing Happy Birthday! It's a beautiful thing.

Love you, Dad!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Life goes on

In today’s round of “be careful how quickly you round the corners at the Met,” I came face to face (very close!) with Angela Gheorghiu. It was definitely one of those, “Hey, do I know you?” moments, where I felt like I should say hello since, obviously, I knew her. But I quickly realized that I only know her as a Famous Person, and if I had said, “Oh, hi!” like I almost did, I would have felt very silly!

I think she saw the progression of those thoughts across my face (I bet she sees it a lot), and smiled a very sweet smile as we passed. She is stunning, absolutely gorgeous. When do we see her in hi-def at the movies?

I finally start rehearsing on Monday! Tabarro rehearsals started this week, but they seem to be cycling through each of the three operas in Trittico, rehearsing a different one each day. Since my scene in Tabarro is near the end, my number never came up in rotation this week. I certainly stayed occupied, what with getting Bhakti off the ground (we’ve already gotten a couple of nibbles about recitals for 08-09!) and doing the preliminary round of the Oratorio Society of New York competition. (I’ll hear about the semi-finals in early April.) But I’m ready to start getting up on my feet and rehearsing! Being a cover for the past three months (three months!!) has been a great way to get familiar with the Met and the way the system works there, but I’m ready to work. Sitting and watching is not what I came here to do!

Tomorrow morning I’m meeting with a group of high school choir kids visiting from Boulder (one of whom attends my parents’ church); we’ll do a little tour of Lincoln Center and talk about life as a singer in the big city. In the afternoon I’m going to record some arias, then covering Helena (from home, since it’s not a broadcast) before heading to see a campy scary movie with a bunch of Santa Fe folks. Saturday, an audition and then the final MATA concert, not to mention my father’s 60th Birthday!! Sunday promises to hold brunch (of course) and some babysitting of the Brooklyn Birds (which will include watching Sylvia’s favorite movie) as a gift for my brother’s birthday, which is Monday. A good weekend.

Hope you have one, too!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

New photos

Oh, and one more thing I did this weekend: added some new Production photos to the Photos page on my website. Four new shots from Black Box Opera Theater's double bill of Degenerate Cabaret and The Emperor of Atlantis. I've got some new sound clips to get up there, too, but I haven't quite figured out how to do that. Stay tuned...


This weekend, my commission/recital/recording project took two major steps forward.

First, it found a name: The Bhakti Project. The title came to me in a practice session as I was singing through one of the Harbison Mirabai Songs, “Don’t Go, Don’t Go.” Mira asks Krishna (called “The Dark One” throughout her poetry) to show her “where to find the bhakti path.” I looked up the definition of the Sanskrit word months ago when I first started working on the song, but on this day its meaning really struck me: devotion.

It was, quite literally, an “aha!” moment. I didn’t shout “Eureka,” but I did stop singing and smile at my notes written in the margin of the page. Devotion. Several definitions of this word fit the recital and commission: “profound dedication; consecration;” “feelings of ardent love;” “religious zeal; the willingness to serve God.” Each of the voices on my recital program is devoted to knowing God.

And then, this one: “Commitment to some purpose.” Somewhere along my career path as a singer, I became devoted to new music. From my first collaborations with composition students at the University of Georgia, I fell in love with the process of working with a composer and other musicians to make something new, of giving life to a work that didn’t exist before but, if we all do our jobs right, might be around for years and years after we are gone. Anyone who loves “classical music” should be devoted to seeing that it remains a living art. And so, The Bhakti Project was born.

The second step came when I submitted an application for Fiscal Sponsorship through Fractured Atlas. A NYC-based arts-support organization, FA is an incredible resource for individual artists and arts groups around the nation. Just look at the headings on their website navigation bar: Healthcare (!), Fiscal Sponsorship, Liability Insurance, Marketing & Promotion, Professional Development, The Emerging Artists Fund. And those are just the tools for artists. They have a whole other section for Donors and Public that includes their own fundraising, events calendars, and newsletters.

What is Fiscal Sponsorship? Well, most folks are hesitant to donate more than the change in their pockets unless they can get a tax deduction for it. As someone who itemizes pages of deductions every year, I totally get that! But, in order for me to get 501(c)(3) status, I’d have to go through all sorts of legal and financial riggamaroll that would, likely, get in the way of the project or, even more likely, get me so frustrated that I throw in the towel. But Judd’s already writing, so it’s too late for that!

FA has set things up with IRS to sponsor artists and projects, essentially bringing them in under their umbrella of 501(c)(3) tax status. For their assistance, Fractured Atlas takes a very reasonable 6% cut from all donations. Read all about the incredible program here. My application for sponsorship will be reviewed in early April, and I’ll be set up with a page on their website where donors can easily and safely make contributions to the Bhakti Project. How cool is that??!!

Taking a page from the Bang on a Can People’s Commissioning Fund, the idea behind The Bhakti Project is to collect smaller contributions from multiple donors and support one big project. The chronicling of the project through this blog already makes it a public process; I guess I’m just taking it one step further by asking for your help!

If you are devoted to new music, if this project inspires you in any way, please consider helping me with a contribution. I’ll be set up for tax-deductible donations in April, but I certainly won’t turn anyone away until then. Fractured Atlas is also set up to accept in-kind donations, so if any graphic designers out there are interested in donating a couple of hours for some publicity and many thanks, the Bhakti Project needs a logo! We’ll need a photo shoot for publicity materials and, eventually, the CD liner notes. If you live in or near New York City and would be interested in hosting a fundraising house concert, Jocelyn and I would love to get dressed up and come sing for you! There are so many ways to get involved.

I am so excited about this. Over the past month, talking about it with my colleagues and contemporaries (thanks for the plug, Alex!), it has been amazing to watch the momentum pick up. And I am so grateful to have this venue in which to document the process and to have you, my readers, to bounce all these ideas off of. Thanks, everybody!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

“From where ever it is right now.”

Yesterday, I had another meeting with Judd Greenstein, my friend, colleague, and collaborator on this very exciting recital project. We’ve met several times over the past two years, and we talked yesterday about how the timing has worked out, how it seems like all of a sudden, this project is flying – now! I think we work similarly, whether in learning music (me), writing music (Judd), or getting projects off the ground: lots of thinking, some talking, some sketching, and then BAM! There is goes.

And so this project is front and center in my mind: programming, rehearsing, publicizing, recording, scheduling, and, not at all least, financing. I’ve been talking about fundraising almost non-stop these days, with anyone who will listen. Lots of brainstorming going on, and I’m lucky to be in touch with several colleagues who have great track records of fundraising and organizing. I’m picking some excellent brains, and I have a few ideas which I’ll present here over the next couple of weeks. Stay tuned…

As it has evolved, our project (which is still nameless, although there are front-runners…) has presented natural “phases,” each with its own to-do list, collaborators, and financial needs. Here are the phases of this project, as it stands now:

Premiere: May 17th at Vim: TriBeCa. This event will be the world premiere of Judd’s piece and the premiere performance of this concert program. It will also be the kick-off fundraiser for our as-yet-nameless project fund! Maybe a reception afterwards…

Record: Ideally, early Fall 2007. The cd will be a reduced version of the concert program, and will be made available on online retailers and at our performances (JG, JD, and myself). Judd’s burgeoning record label, New Amsterdam Records, will release the cd.

Tour: Over the next year (essentially, Season 07-08), I would like to present this program four or five times in venues around the country, maybe in conjunction with masterclasses for singers and/or composers at University music schools. The more performances, the more exposure, both for us, the performers, and for the new work.

Of course, all of this takes money. Judd and I applied for a grant last year. We didn’t get it, in part, likely, because of the way we’ve brought this project to life - slowly, with lots of diffuse elements and ideas scattered around which have only recently been brought into focus. We had a great idea, but it was still too vague an idea for the grant committee to see the potential and give us money.

That concept – scattered elements brought into focus – can be applied to every facet of this project. I was talking to a friend about fundraising last week (like I said, it’s all I talk about these days!), and he shared a story with me. He attends a meditation center near Boston, and years ago when the idea for the center was still just that, an idea, the Maharishi needed to raise a million dollars to bring the center into being. The people around him asked, “But where are you going to get that kind of money?” The Maharishi simply answered, “From where ever it is right now.”

The money for this project is out there, and we believe that it wants to come to us. Judd, Jocelyn, and I believe strongly in this project and in the future of our collaboration on other projects. I told Judd the story of the Maharishi over lunch, and then later when we were talking in more detail about the music, he used the line “from where ever it is right now” to describe composing. Amazing idea, isn’t it? That the music exists out there, scattered about, and bit by bit – or all at once! – it comes. Lisa Bielawa described it in a different way on her BMOP MySpace blog: “terry's synopsis for trumpet has introduced itself.” I love this idea! “Hello there, I’m your next composition!” It is our job as artists to be open to receiving these ideas and inspirations as they come.

I’ll write more soon about my fundraising ideas. Lots of things to explore, lots of people to talk with and meet with. Lots of “putting it out there” and making it happen.

Oh, man, I just realized that I wrote this whole post and didn’t talk about the music part of my meeting with Judd! Rather than get into it here, I’ll post again later. Needless to say, when we parted ways on the corner of 8th and Broadway, we were both inspired. We’ve been talking about this project for two years, but yesterday, our partnership was born.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Links for March 16th

NYTimes article on acting in opera - Yes, Virginia, there are opera singers who can act! “…a new generation of opera singers, fine vocal artists who care deeply about acting and do it very well.” Excellent article, excellent performers.

Ljova livin’ the life - add to this a performance of some kind at night, and you get an accurate picture of what life as a multi-track musician is like. I’m sure he’s had many of those days… And then, imagine doing it all on the road, in an unfamiliar city!

TSR on wine and knowledge - “Snobbishness is not the opposite of ignorance; in fact, I would argue that they share space on the same side of the coin.”

Belief and the Law of Attraction - Michelle over at A Singer’s Life gives her take on what I call manifesting.

Not the Messiah: He’s a very naughty boy - As the Gospels are to Handel’s Messiah, so this comedic oratorio is to The Life of Brian. Oh, the tears of laughter are streaming already! And talk about embracing the silly! (Via OperaChic)

And speaking of silly, what I wouldn’t give to be in Seattle next month and see MP talking to herself! If you’re in the area, you are strongly encouraged to check out the Northwest Puppet Center’s production of another hidden gem of Baroque puppet opera.


What a night at the opera house! I’m sure other bloggers will be piping in soon with reports from front of the house, but I can give a small insight into what was happening backstage and, to some extent, onstage.

It was an exciting night for me to begin with, as my colleague KW made her debut as First Elf. I got her the cutest pair of slippers from the Opera gift shop: white slip-ons with “Diva” embroidered in gold on each one! Adorable. And since singers are often barefoot on stage, we get slippers as part of our costume to wear from the dressing area to stage and back. Usually the ones from the costume shop are used (although maybe the “big stars” get new ones?), so this way she can have her own pair with her every show! It made sense as a gift for this show, as the elves are, indeed, barefoot-ish. (They all wear tunics with a kind of body-suit-with-feet underneath. And blue faces. And beards!)

I stopped in to see her and was told of the plan to meet after intermission (we Elvenkind) and toast her with wine and cheese during Act II. Natürlich! I went down to the cafeteria to spend Act I studying my Barber and Messiaen songs. (I actually got a lot more accomplished since KW wasn’t there to chat with me!)

Our tenor had to miss the final dress rehearsal due to illness, but he was dressed and warmed up and ready to go at the start of the show tonight. But, he wasn’t as healthy as he thought and hoped, and he struggled through Act I. It is so hard to hear (over the loudspeakers in the caf) and see (from the stage, based on my colleagues’ reports) your friend and colleague struggling. Fighting to make things work! “I know I can do this! I just did it four days ago!” We’d watched him through the entire rehearsal process, and believe me, he’s an outstanding singer! He just wasn’t healthy tonight. All of our hearts went out to him, because, as with all suffering: “There but for the grace of God go I.”

So, at intermission, the decision was made to put the cover on. (I don’t know how this decision gets made, who asks or decides. I’m sure it’s different every time, and always a unique case.) And all of a sudden, the energy shifted! I stayed away from the backstage area during intermission, because I knew it would be crazy and intense. But during Act II, we listened through the dressing room intercoms and toasted our colleague stepping out and making a fabulous debut! He really nailed it, and we could sense the rest of the production rising up on his energy.

There was lots of holding our breath for upcoming high notes or killer phrases, and then cheering as he cleared hurdle after hurdle. I wasn’t invited to the opening night party – covers generally aren’t, but I guarantee they made an exception for MH tonight! – so I won’t get to see him until next week’s shows, but I can’t imagine how high he must be flying tonight. His wife and children are home in Mississippi, and I know he will miss them tonight as he falls, exhausted, into bed.

Congratulations to my colleagues! Two successful debuts, one planned for and prepared, and one unplanned for – and prepared! That’s the way to cover.

(In news of a certain other debut coming up in a few weeks: I found a fabulous dress for the opening night party! My dress is in a wine-colored stretch satin and shorter than the ones pictured, and I absolutely love it. I'll have to resist the urge to wrap and re-wrap it all night! "Look what this dress can do!!")

Sunday, March 11, 2007

For every dress, a story

I had a costume fitting for Suor Angelica last week, my first fitting at the Met for a costume that I’ll actually get to wear! It is a very sweet novice habit, a beautiful Wedgwood blue, and not at all harsh, as suited to one who has yet to take her vows. When the costumers learned that I will also be singing “Young Lover Soprano” in Il tabarro - and wearing a sexy red dress - we went to town making up a back-story to tie these two characters together! How does a girl go from being a YLS in a red dress to being a Novice in sensible shoes?

Since Tabarro is first on the bill, we decided that after too many nights spent walking through the streets of Paris with my Young Lover Tenor, (and stopping on - or under - various bridges to sing about the perfumed evening…) my parents stuck me in a convent. Take away the red dress, give a girl some sensible shoes, and hope she mends her wicked ways!

Of course, once a YLS, always a YLS, so we determined that my Novice never takes her vows! She is rescued by a rich archduke or merchant who fell in love with her after seeing her at Mass. Maybe it was something about the saucy way she wore her wimple… How does it end? Does she ever see her YLT again? Who knows, but I’m sure we’ll continue to flesh out the story over the next few weeks. Rehearsals start on the 19th!

This is all in fun, of course; the three stories of Il trittico aren’t connected by story or place or time. Just three stand-alone shorts, so to speak. Connected only by the limits of our imagination!

Friday, March 09, 2007


If you want to know how I’m spending my free time these days, read Tom’s fabulous post on learning atonal music! Granted, most of the music on my plate is traditional, but some of the Harbison and Messiaen songs are requiring me to pull out all my tricks. Colored pencils, pitch charts, fun markings, metronomes, and lots and lots of counting.

I’m just about to start work on the actual pitches of the trickiest sections. My keyboard is kind of on the fritz, though, and so I’m a bit nervous about working with my pedal tones. We’ll see how it goes. Sometimes, for no apparent reason, it sounds like a cat jumps on the keys and then the darn thing freezes up! Or, it’ll keep working but sound like a horribly out of tune piano. Bizarre. That’s what I get for buying a $20 keyboard from Radio Shack!

Tonight, though, a voice lesson, then drinks with a high school classmate I haven’t seen in 13 years! He was my boyfriend’s best friend, and my primary memory is of him sitting on an amp in my driveway, playing guitar while my boyfriend serenaded me. With “Wild Thing.” Uh-huh. In front of my big, cool, college-attending brother! I was mortified. It wasn’t as John Hughes as it sounds, and certainly not John Cusack! Ah, young love.

Hopefully there will be no serenading tonight, unless we end up singing show tunes at The After Party!

Have a great weekend, every body! Helena final dress on Monday!

Monday, March 05, 2007

Also on the piano: A Recital

How long now have I been alluding to this recital project? Far too long, and as my work on the program builds up, I’m finally getting around to writing about it.

The seed for this project was actually planted in May of 2005, so it will be just about two years when it all comes to fruition (somebody knock on wood) on May 17th. Judd Greenstein and I met when we were both Fellows at Tanglewood, and I think we got back in touch when we were both listed on the blogroll at The Rest is Noise. I was in the early planning stages for a CD project (which never happened) and asked Judd if he would be interested in writing me a new song or group of songs to be included. I think the original program theme back then was American song, but I quickly realized that that is a very popular CD theme!

As Judd and I tossed text ideas back and forth, a theme emerged built around Judd’s piece, which I knew I wanted to be the centerpiece of the recital. We moved through Millay’s poetry to the writings of Sufi mystics, only to settle on passages from the Zohar, a central text of Kabbalah, Jewish mysticism. I also knew that I wanted to program some or all of John Harbison’s Mirabai Songs, settings of the ecstatic poetry of a 16th century Krishna devotee, so from these two ideas came the theme: intimacy with Spirit.

By January of this year, the theme and program had pretty much solidified. Here’s what I wrote up for the venue website:

What happens when you take away the trappings of religion and leave behind faith and doubt? How have poets and composers captured the intimacy of a relationship with the Spirit? What is a relationship with the Spirit? Soprano Anne-Carolyn Bird and pianist Jocelyn Dueck present songs pulled from diverse spiritual traditions with an eye toward answering these questions and more. The recital will feature works by Rachmaninoff, Barber, Dallapiccola, Messiaen, and Harbison, as well as folks songs and other native musics. A world-premiere work by Judd Greenstein, - based on texts from the Zohar, the central book of Kabbalah - rounds out this intimate and challenging program.

Oh, and the venue? Also a cool development over the past year. Judd has joined with another Tanglewood alumnus, Kimball Gallagher, to create VIM:TriBeCa, a concert series held in a TriBeCa art gallery. They started with five or six programs scheduled when the inaugural season started in September, and as of now they will present fifteen distinct programs in the 06-07 season. Focusing on new music and young performers, VIM presents concerts at Gallarie Icosahedron, often in conjunction with openings and exhibitions. It’s great to see a new venture like this take off and be so successful right away.

As for the program, entitled “I Have Some Light: Songs of Spirit,” I wanted to try and include as many different voices and spiritual backgrounds as I could. Jocelyn and I could have kept digging and searching and finding new music for years, but I made myself stop and commit! I didn’t find everything I was looking for (I wish I’d found something Islamic or some folk songs in another language), but I’m pretty pleased with the diversity. We’ll have Hindu (Harbison, Mirabai), European Catholic (Barber, Hermit Songs), existential (Messiaen, Poemes pour mi), Russian Orthodox (Rachmaninoff), Spanish mysticism (Dallapiccola), American Protestant (hymns, folk songs), and I consider Bolcom’s “Waitin’” (poem by Arnold Weinstein) to be a beautiful description of the Buddhist search for enlightenment:

Waitin, waitin,
I’ve been waitin, waitin, waitin all my life.
That light keeps on hiding from me,
But it someday just might bless my sight.
Waitin, waitin, waitin

I have a lot of work to do in the next two months to get this program in shape, but I love this project! What a journey it’s been on, and there’s so much more to come. Sounds like life, doesn’t it?

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Two Blogroll Omissions

What would a quarterly Blogroll Update be without an addendum? Seems I can never get all my new blogs out in one post. Here are two more, one musical and one political-ish.

Conservatory Bound - Alex is a violinist turned singer in the middle of auditions for (graduate?) school. As a singer who has always related to string analogies, I’m enjoying stuff like this: “I've been told to death that I need to pay attention to my breathing, but actually thinking of it as bowing immediately helped hew together my singing technique in a fundamental way.”

John Swift – political and social satire of the highest caliber.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Santa Fe Opera 2005, Represent!

Congrats to three of my colleagues from the Santa Fe Opera YAP Class of 2005 - CB, JB, and MF - on their wins at the George London Finals yesterday! CB won the Wagner prize, JB another $10k prize, and MF an Encouragement award. I met up with CB and JB for drinks afterward, and while it would, of course, have been nice to be celebrating my own win, I was so happy to be with colleagues who are good friends and whose successes I am so proud of. And, hey, they were buying!

There will also be three SFO '05'ers at Wolf Trap, all of us sopranos! I can't wait to be around RC's infectious laugh and BF's sweet spirit (and killer high notes!) again.

Way to go, team!!
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