Dispatches from the HS Voice Studio

[Editor: Introducing Katie, another on-the-go reporter for HGOco this year. Katie is senior at Alvin High School and a member of our High School Voice Studio. We thought you might be interested in hearing about opera and our programs from her perspective. Enjoy periodic updates about her explorations of the opera world!]

The HGO High School Voice Studio program has been the most wonderful opportunity for me. Before this program, I didn't have any voice lessons outside of my school's vocal specialist. Working with Dr. Satterfield has been a pleasure and an amazingly insightful experience.

Before I was selected for this program I had never seen an opera. I also had an unjustified dislike for them. What little bits of opera I had heard had made the distinction in my mind that opera was just a lot of ridiculous vibrato. The first dress rehearsal that we attended was The Elixir of Love. I was blown away. I absolutely, positively loved it.

The lead soprano in all her glory brought me to tears with her beautiful soaring solos. The set was a wonder in itself. It was so realistic, and the characters looked right at home.

The next dress rehearsal to see was Lohengrin. This is a famously long opera and a very different kind of opera than Elixir. Lohengrin is a German opera. German is not considered to be a very pleasant language to listen to, compared to the beauty of the Italian language. As the orchestra (which was just amazing) began the introductory song, my eyes were glued to the stage. The music had already moved me deeply before the curtain went up. When the opera began, the magic of Lohengrin unfolded. 

The story was simultaneously heartbreaking and soap-opera like. The singing was rich, glorious and powerful. I was riveted throughout the entire opera. Even the language which I worried might sound unpleasant, was beautiful to me. Members of the HSVS had the pleasure of working with one of the principal singers, Christine Goerke, who revealed wonderful insights to the opera, taught inspiring techniques and brought good humor to the class. Watching her perform was a great pleasure. At the end of the opera I was wowed. I had never seen something as awe inspiring as Lohengrin.

Stay tuned for more of my experiences as a member of HGOco's High School Voice Studio and check back for a posting by one of the other members of HSVS in the next few weeks.


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