Sunday, January 27, 2013

A Master Class in Life!

How do I begin to describe the most insightful and amazing Master Class I ever witnessed?
I couldn’t find any pictures of the Master Class so this will have to do
First of all I’d like to say it was a brilliant idea to stream this Master Class on the internet. I’m sure aspiring opera singers all over the world were very grateful for that and now as I go through the many notes I made during the Master Class I can’t help but feel like she’s put me on the right track.

Studying music is a tricky and funny thing, it’s not like any other kind of profession I’ve ever come across, but after this Master Class I can see that we are not so far from the everyday person.
As I’ve mentioned here before I take part in an AMAZING theatre group here in my home town. The people from this group are also my best friends, and I wanted to introduce them to opera since I was absolutely sure they’d love it. So I started experimenting with my friend Flavio, first we watched Le Nozze di Figaro (ROH 2006 production), which he liked a lot, then we watched Il Barbieri di Siviglia (Met 2008 production), which he liked even more. Then I took my best friend to watch Maria Stuarda last week and he feel in love. So all things good, let’s go to phase two, “Who wants to watch Joyce’s Master Class with me on Friday?”, the two friends I just mentioned automatically said yes and I was able to get other two friends to watch it as well.
The master class begins and immediately Joyce’s amazing personality gets my friends completely hooked. All my friends have every day jobs, at the occasion I had an engineer, an actress and an English teacher with me. But since we’re all actors on the side what Joyce was explaining wasn’t very hard to follow, she taught a lot on interpretation and ways to get into character to BE the character that was absolutely helpful, not only to me but to everyone there.
But what really moved my friends was the last part of the Master Class when Joyce talked about the “That Persistent Inner Voice”. Since I’d seen the video I knew what was coming, but she went deeper in that one, I felt like she was looking me in the eye when she said “If you wouldn’t talk to anyone else like this, why would you ever talk to yourself like this, in this destructive matter?” (This is not the exact thing she said but it was something like this) “How is this helping you be a better professional, how is tearing yourself down to shreds with criticism helping you at all?” That one hit home, because I’m my worst nightmare, but then I noticed how this can be applied to just any person at all!
And then discussing this Master Class latter with my friends I realized that it also hit home for them! They were all very excited about learning more not only about opera but about Joyce, their new life guru! And some of them are even going the extra mile to try and show Joyce’s videos at work! And then going back to my notes I noticed something quite interesting I’d written down:
“Process is everything! You might be blessed with talent and that’s great, but if you don’t work your butt off your talent will get you NOWHERE. The work gets you there, it’s all about the process. If you have a well founded process, work hard and dedicate yourself you will definitely have more confidence and freedom at what you are doing. No rush! ENJOY the process. Slow and steady wins the race!”
Again, those aren’t the exact words Joyce said, it’s one of the many notes I frantically made during the Master Class. But when I read through that I realized that this message can be applied to anyone! And that’s when I realized that the 3 hours of pure bliss weren’t just filled with knowledge of acting and music but of LIFE, this was a Master Class in life! And for that I’m so very grateful to Joyce, I already knew that she was an exceptional person but this was most definitely the best class I’ve ever had, in all categories!

Me and my friends after the Master Class sort of taking a picture with Joyce hahaha
I’ve sent an email to Joyce thanking her and telling her about my friend’s positive reaction, here is to hoping that she responds! I’d have a heart attack for sure, but it’d be worth it!

So today I’m off to the USA, I’ll arrive there tomorrow but my journey starts today. I’m so happy I’m gonna be able to meet in person some of the AMAZING people that I’ve been talking to so frantically about opera for these last few months. I’m taking my laptop but I have no idea when I’m gonna post again, most definitely after I watch Rigoletto at the Met, but I’m hoping I can post something else before. Cheers everyone and thank you so much for reading and for the comments, they are much appreciated!
AND HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO WOLFIE MOZART! Your music is my life, so thank you!


People! My friend Sydney is making the ultimate #operarox uniform! The “Don’t Smoke Sing Baroque” shirts! They are gonna be $14 each without shipping. If you want one be sure to go to for the info on how to get it, be sure to email her by TOMORROW and the money ASAP. Here’s what the shirts are gonna look like:

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