My master class at Opera Studio Nederlandwas a complete pleasure – at least for me! The repertoire constituted the kind of central arias you would expect: “Warm as the autumn light,” “O vin, dissipe la tristesse,” “Mein Sehnen, mein Wähnen” “Tornami a vagheggiar” and “Se vuol ballare.” The singers were open to what I had to say, and that was welcoming. The four hours went by very quickly, with a 15-min. cappuccino break in the middle! The singers are all planning on doing auditions for agents and opera companies after the completion of this month’s program. It was a pleasure to hear that two Canadians – soprano Johane Ansell, and mezzo-soprano Rachel Wood will be part of the 2012-2013 Opera Studio Nederland.
It is a strong “gateway” program for gaining access to European houses and employment. The singers with whom I worked today were not only from Holland, but also from the USA, the Ukraine, and Turkey.I very much look forward to returning to Amsterdam – with my wife next time(!), so we can take in the Rijksmuseum,Van Gogh Museum, theNetherlands Opera and the Concertgebouw. As you can see from my snapshot to the left, Amsterdam is a city of dreams!On the walk to the Opera Café for dinner, I was introduced to a chocolate shop called Puccini.
Please put it on your “must” list for when you visit here, perhaps when you audition for the Opera Studio. You’ll either thank me, or curse me! I’ll be rising early in the morning to get my final glimpses of this enthralling city, and then off to the airport, en route to the Kiwanis Music Festival in Calgary. I’ll have Amsterdam’s glories in my mind as I take in the hopefully equally picturesque imaginations of Calgary’s singers and their songs.