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Getting back into the swing of things

It’s HARD to finish a soothing, relaxing, rejuvenating vacation! I want one more day to swim in the pool as the mountain waterfall plays in the background. I wouldn’t mind one more back massage. And certainly I will miss the abundant breakfast buffet (although another day of that might put me over the edge!) It’s been perfectly perfect and just what the doctor ordered.

Tomorrow I head off to my “first day at school”, as we opera singers often refer to the first day of rehearsals. It’s a good analogy, because a real sense of anticipation fills your head the night before making sleep a bit hard to come by, and you put a little more thought into what you will wear to that first rehearsal, as you hope that you’re prepared enough, and that your voice decides to show up! (Even now I still silently think to myself, “Boy, I hope they don’t fire me!”)

But in preparing mentally to get back to work, calling upon the great singers of the past somehow can provide that extra “push” needed to snap out of the hot-oil-massage-induced-bliss, and my friends, there truly is none greater than the First Lady of Song.

I had not seen this tape before, and I can’t stop playing it and marveling at the sheer genius that pours out of her. Nearly 3 minutes of acappella singing and she lands SMACK IN THE MIDDLE of the final chord, PERFECTLY in tune. PERFECTLY. Every note perfectly in place. A billion different colors and textures and rhythms and emotions. She astonishes me and in seeing this I think how FORTUNATE we are to live in an age where this kind of unbelievably rare performance is caught on tape to be enjoyed and admired by those of us who couldn’t hear her live!

Enjoy, and see you in Salzburg! (I’m EXCITED!!!)

P.S. This video was located during a youtube marathon that was instigated by the great Larry Brownlee who had shared a favorite video of his by the inspired Mel Torme, (which led us on a late-night tour of Nat King Cole and Danny Kaye and Frank…aaah!) But I had forgotten how brilliant the “Velvet Fog” was, and how SMOOTH his voice was – not to mention how much control over shading and dynamics he employed. Here is the video he posted – perhaps he’s a bit past his “vocal prime” – lord knows we’ll all get there one day! – but that only means more richness of interpretation and smoothness. It’s heavenly!

This makes me curious – who are your favorite singers outside of the “operatic” field?

5 hours ago

Live! Today! #Clemenza! @metopera #Broadcast! @vanhorncvh This one’s for you. #PublioRocks #WigWars #FreeSestohttps://t.co/nxRE3Vfanc

7 hours ago

AAAAW! Kind of makes me think that if anything ever happened to the Prince, wouldn't it be nice to see Sesto and Ci… https://t.co/A2CEMLFGDQ

8 hours ago

We are ready to light up the airwaves today! Please join us for our final #Clemenza broadcast LIVE from the… https://t.co/x06ciQfYoq

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Live! Today! #Clemenza! @metopera #Broadcast! @vanhorncvh This one’s for you. #PublioRocks #WigWars #FreeSesto #fashion #werq #notreadytosaygoodbye

An extraordinary #openingnight on #Broadway last night as Orfeus’s song was sung anew in an astonishing show: #Hadestown. Immense respect for the incredible cast, crew, creative team, and for the eternal song that continues to need to be sung!!! A GREAT night of theater!! (And a huge shout out for NO routine key changes and assaulting amplification!) #fresh #whydowebuildthewall #pleasedontturnaround #doubt #destructivedoubt #raisingmycuprightback PS: @douglasladnier - thanks for the decades of friendship, my friend! You’re a treasure!

Our penultimate performance tonight of #LaClemenzaDiTito at the @metopera. This one will be difficult to say goodbye to! @polenzanitenor @elzasoprano @vanhorncvh @yingletsings #EmilyDAngelo @metoperachorus @metorchestra @metoperasupers #SestoForever

A most heartfelt thank you to these wonderful, brave artists. What a rich journey you all took us on during these 3 days. I couldn’t be prouder of each if you, and I thank you for giving so much of yourselves. I hope you felt how rich the reward was as you dared to walk through the fear!!! Bravi @key.sings, @alexandra_sings, @mayaamir91, and @aaroncmusic. Once again, @carnegiehall and @medici.tv are superstars for making these classes available across the globe. I hope you got a lot out of them! Many thanks for tuning in and see you next year!! #bravesingers #artislife #lifeisart #whereyouwalk #trustthepianissimo #openyourheart #nyanyanya #artheals #thatwasintense #keepyourpilotlightlit

I am thrilled to return to @CarnegieHall for three master classes this week! Tune in at 4 PM (EDT) today, tomorrow and on Sunday to watch the live stream on @medici.tv. 👉 link in bio. #masterclass #livestream

👉 Head over to @metopera! I am taking over the Met’s instagram account for our fourth performance of La Clemenza di Tito tonight. Stay tuned! #joyceforthemet #instagramtakeover Photo: Richard Termine / Met Opera

#NYstateofmind #noeffects #naturaltaxifilter #letthelightin #capturethemomentnow #naturenaturallyblowsmymind #prismsrock

Once upon a time there was a magical presence in the world who made us all believe in fairy tales again!! It was a tremendous honor to present Laurent Pelly with his well deserved @opera.news Award last night at the @theplazahotel in NYC. OF course so much of the Opera Family Royalty was on hand, including the [email protected]_domingo and fellow honoree, the radiant @ailynperezsoprano. Friends joining from KC made it even more special! Congratulations to all the honorees!!! #celebratingopera Photos from the fab @darioshoots and Lisa Pacino. @kevindeenart @palluccab

What a joy to join my @carnegiehall family, under the visionary leadership of the Chairman, Robert Smith, and the Executive Director, Clive Gillinson. I’m certain this legendary institution will lead many other arts organizations into a vibrant, transformative, inspired future where Art is for all. Of course, to commemorate such a shining occasion, how could we not celebrate the beauty of @cartier?? A million thanks for the exquisite jewels. And finally, there simply aren’t enough words to sing the praises of pianist @bryanwagorn highly enough. I suppose that’s why we felt the need for a mock prom pic. #howdoigettocarnegiehall #nolie #practicepracticepractice #andonceyougetthere #shineshineahine #thefutureisSObright #ifweallriseup. Thank you @julieskarratt for the lovely souvenir photos!

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There will always be more freedom to acquire and more truth to uncover.

~ Joyce DiDonato