It is a true privilege and honor to work side by side with the creator of a new piece—to try and understand and realize to the best of my ability what he or she is hoping to say through the music, and then to find my own true expression through that. It's also a joy, when I become very familiar with a composer's particular and unique musical "voice", to live in his or her musical world. In essence, it feels good and right to me that I keep my music-making vital and fresh in this way. It's what turns me on, and it's why I love singing.
I don't have such a "list".... I don't think like that. I am constantly responding to what is around me—to what I hear, to what is shared with me by my close colleagues, to wherever my interests lie at any given moment. I am quite content and gratified. I don't have a "wish-list".
Again, I don't think like this, so I have no way to answer this question.
Too many moments to list just one.... my favorite moments may last a second, they may last an hour, but they are always connected to very special experiences with particular colleagues that move and inspire me very deeply. Colleagues such as Peter Sellars, Gilbert Kalish, Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, Gerald Finley, ....the list is long!
Actually, Peter doesn't ever have to "convince me" of anything! We know each other so well and respect each other to such a degree that "convincing" does not ever need to enter the process. Peter is one of the most generous directors I've ever worked with, and is most definitely the most musical director I've ever worked with. And he knows me so well—there's total trust between the two of us.
Hmm... that's a little tricky since I don't know you! :) I guess I could tell you what I'm reading at the moment?: I am looking at the books of Atul Gawande, having first been so astonished and intrigued by his articles in The New Yorker; I am reading poetry by Lucia May; and I am just starting a new novel by Aimee Bender (The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake), whose short stories I have so enjoyed in the past.
Well, I don't know. Again, hard to answer that...and in fact, lately I tend to approach a composer if I'm wondering about a collaboration possibility. The most recent being the Irish composer Donnacha Dennehy (Nonesuch just recently released a CD of his music, which includes of a piece he wrote last Fall for me and his ensemble CRASH). He's writing 2 more pieces for me! I think he's really extraordinary, and I am wild about his music. Very exciting!
Will you be surprised if I say again (sorry!) that I don't think like this? That I have a bit of difficulty relating to the question? I actually don't identify at all with an idea of "being a soprano". I do identify with the idea of being a "musician". And in that case, I do love to find expression—personal expression, often times—through music. It is also, in a very big way, healing and comforting. And when I am moved by my colleagues, when I celebrate life, or even when it is outrage or pain that is expressed through music, ...well.... I often feel blessed.
Trying to simplify my life.
???? who knows! :)
Labels: 10 Questions
Theater of Voices
Royal Opera House
Massenet Don Quichotte
Mariinsky Opera Orch
Berlin RIAS Chamber Chorus