Just got back from a great experience as an apprentice at the Astoria Music Festival in Astoria, Oregon. What a great 2.5 weeks! I’ve got less than a week to finish packing for my move to NYC, but I hope to post in more detail in the next few days.
For now, some highlights!
Astoria, land of beautiful sunsets:
Sun shining through shifting clouds as seen from a pier along the Columbia
Sunset as we drive across Youngs Bay
Setting sun reflected in windows along the Columbia River
Low tide sunset along Astoria Riverwalk
An incredible range of Festival events:
Masterclass with Ruth Ann Swenson
My view singing in the Otello chorus at the Verdi concert, featuring Ruth Ann Swenson, Allan Glassman, and Richard Zeller.
Baroque opera with a Baroque ensemble led by Gwendolyn Toth
Copland’s Appalachian Spring in the original chamber orchestration performed to a film of Martha Graham dancing her original choreography
Setting up for the Wagner concert at the historic Liberty Theater
I loved being part of a Festival, working on my own repertoire and role while attending language classes, coachings, rehearsals, workshops, masterclasses, and performances. I made wonderful new friends and got to work with amazingly knowledgeable and generous professionals. I was in the same room as Ruth Ann Swenson and Richard Zeller — which I never in my wildest dreams ever thought would happen — and talked to them and hugged them. I experienced music that made me laugh (Gianni Schicchi) and cry (Dido and Aeneas and Appalachian Spring), singing that made me hold my breath (Ruth Ann’s Desdemona) and made my jaw drop (Allan’s Otello and Richard’s Iago). I knew I would learn a lot from the program, but I came away with so much more than I’d expected. At a time of big changes in my life and in my voice, Astoria Music Festival helped me to appreciate where I am now and gave me hope for the things to come.