Thursday, June 23, 2011

How do you keep the faith?

A friend of mine posted this video blog from mezzo-soprano, Joyce DiDonato, in which she answers the question: How do you keep the faith, i.e. how do you keep going when things get tough in this career?

She has some valuable insights and I'm posting this mainly so I can go back and watch it in the future to remind myself of this sage advice. There are never any guarantees and every day in this career is a risk, but it is also a great privilege to spend time with music and that will never change, no matter where you end up in your career.

I'm struck by how often I hear the really great artists say this, that what we do is a privilege. Callas said in her Juilliard masterclasses, "...the work is hard, in the beginning, during and afterwards. But is is a privilege. I consider myself privileged because I have been able to bring truth from the soul and mind, give it to the public and have it accepted. Not everyone can do that. It is one of the greatest powers one can put at the service of one of the greatest arts--music."

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Lucky Chicago!

Chicago's new mayor, Rahm Emanuel, wants to make Chicago the most bike-friendly city in the U.S. Check out the video below to see how he plans to achieve this. Bravo, Rahm!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Welcome to the Church of Bike!

This child was born to be a Baptist preacher.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

From bicycles to beautiful singing

My attention is constantly flitting from one interest to another so I've decided to embrace it and in doing so, expand the scope of this blog. With that, here is the lovely Carol Vaness singing "Dove sono i bei momenti" from Act III of Mozart's opera Le Nozze di Figaro. Vaness sings this absolutely beautifully yet still viscerally, which is the only way Mozart should be sung, in my opinion. This video clip is from a fantastic 1985 Met production with Thomas Allen as the Count, Ruggero Raimondi as Figaro, the infamous ill-tempered diva Kathleen Battle as Susanna, Flicka von Stade as Cherubino, a young Dawn Upshaw as Barbarina and Jimmy Levine in the pit. (Incidentally, I learned recently that Levine stuttered as a child. Who knew? See and listen here for a very interesting interview with Fresh Air's Terry Gross on NPR.)