I received some exciting news the other day when I opened my e-mail. I have been granted my first audition for a Young Artist Program (YAP) as a tenor. This is wonderful news for me, especially since the first two responses I got from other programs were declines. I read an interview of Rockwell Blake a few years back in which he stated:
"There’s no cushion. You start out with nothing, you have nothing, and there’s no such thing as an investment in property or something like a dentist would have to go through. You move to New York, take an apartment and go to everything you can go to, and shell out a lot of money to pianists and coaches, which is necessary. One needs to study, regardless, and you have to shell out money for the auditions, and if you are serious about making a career, you go to every audition there is. That means maybe three or four times a week you’re shelling out twenty-five bucks for a pianist just to play three arias for you. So it gets expensive, especially when you have no income."
I have made this into my personal mantra as I begin my real walk into this career. For instance, at this point in the year, I am applying to about 20 different programs. Ultimately more will come up as well as I continue through the season. If you think about it, it is a numbers game like many things in life are. When I first auditioned as a baritone nearly four years ago I only applied to about five programs and, while I managed to be granted auditions at all of those programs, I got accepted into none of them. As an example of some of the odds a young singer faces starting out think about this:
A well-known program may receive 1500 applications from aspiring singers. Out of those 1500, the company will hear approximately 700 auditions. Then, from those 700, the company will pick about 25 singers for their program.
These odds seem nearly insurmountable, until you realize that there are hundreds of programs in this country, some of which are smaller programs and therefore receive fewer applications and hear fewer people for the same number of spots. So, you see, eventually you will find the program that can accommodate you. I am confident that I will find a placement for the summer during this season and begin my career.
My language quest has been somewhat trying as of late. I have lacked time and motivation due to everything going on in my life, as I described above. I am still working however and making progress. I found a new app for my iPhone which is called "Audiobooks." This is literally the entire database of LibriVox made available for iPhone. Any language learners who do not know of LibriVox should check it out immediately, as well as Project Gutenberg. These are invaluable resources for language learners as they provide you, between the two of them, with tons of materials for Listening-Reading.
I hope to get to another meetup or two before the year is out to see where I am at with my German. This will be difficult though due to my potentially busy audition schedule.
On a side note, I noticed an interesting tidbit today when looking at my viewership. I had a considerable spike in my readers on my birthday. I can't imagine this is coincidence, but I find it rather amusing. It's like a birthday gift from my readers. I have also noticed a nice steady climb in readership over the years which is encouraging. Ultimately my blog is gaining in popularity and I hope that it is helpful or informational to some of those who read it. If there are ever any questions that any of you want me to try and answer, just leave a comment and I will answer it in my upcoming post.