In my last post about the opera, it was only about the audition and the part I got. Last week we performed ‘The Gypsy Baron’ at the Royal Theater. It was a super fun time to perform it and I hope that those of you who got to see it enjoyed the performance.
We started rehearsing mid April but those rehearsals were for about 30 minutes with only a few people at a time, so not long and tiring. At that point I was practicing my duet with a person in my class. At about mid May we started rehearsing all together, but only for short periods of time. 2 weeks before the production was when we started having either half day rehearsals or full day rehearsals every single day. This is what our schedule would be:
- Act 1 rehearsal
- Act 1 (again) rehearsal
- Act 2 and 3 rehearsal
- Home room
It would be very long and tiring because some times we would have to do certain scenes over and over again. At one point in the opera we have to be mad at each other, but I am a very giggly and smiley person so I kept cracking up and couldn’t stay mad but it all worked out in the end!
As you may know, we got to play with an orchestra. We had one rehearsal at 6:30 pm with the orchestra at our school. It’s hard singing with 17 instruments because you can’t even hear yourself.
There were several days where we got pulled out of rehearsals to get makeup and/or hair (wigs). In the production I was a gypsy, so I had very dark skin, purple/red eye shadow, bright red lips, and crazy eyelashes. I had a long black wig with a golden head piece. At the performance, right before I was supposed to be on my golden head piece broke so I had everyone in my dressing room trying to fix it! I managed to get on stage on time thankfully. It was so funny to look in the mirror and see someone you don’t even recognize.
Other times we got pulled out for costumes. My costume included a long black skirt, a blue ruffly shirt, a silver scarf/stash, a gold belt over top the stash. It was very hot underneath all of the layers!
At the actual performance, I had so much adrenaline rushing through me when I was getting into my costume, it was crazy. Everyone was saying there lines and singing songs, it was mayhem in the dressing rooms. We had different stations for hair and makeup, 2 staircases one leading to stage left, the other to stage right, a TV to see what was happening on stage, everything we needed was there.
At one point in Act 1, I have to give a wedding cake to someone on stage right then sprint through the dressing rooms to get to stage left for my friends solo. That was so much fun, seeing that I love to sprint.
My duet is right after the intermission after Act 1 (opening song for Act 2). First I went to go get my mic taped on (it is very hard to sing with tape on your face!) but after that, I was practicing my song and lines, talking to my friends, biting my nails, I was so nervous! When we had the 20 second count down until the curtain rose I wanted to scream of excitement!when the curtain rose, I was taking deep breaths. Then I realized my mic was on so I stopped. I heard the intro and found myself singing the song I had rehearsed and sung over and over again. Right then I realized that all this effort we put into this performance had paid off. I realized why our choir teacher had asked for perfection. Before I knew it, my song was done and everyone was clapping. I was supposed to look sad, but inside I wanted to jump up and down and cheer! At the very end of the opera we had to waltz in to bow and that got a lot of laughs! When my duet partner and I bowed, everyone got to their feet and applauded. It was a feeling I wanted to keep on going forever.
I hope now you realize how this experience has affected me. Next time I audition for something, I will walk into that audition standing tall and proud, feeling happy, not nervous.