One of the wonderful (and yet, often troublesome) aspects of being in this biz called “show” is that it is a very very small world. Example: I recently went to a birthday party for my friend, Julia, who studies at the University of Houston and naturally I ran into three people I knew, one with whom I had gone to Michigan, and those whom I didn’t know at least had many mutual acquaintances. That’s always my favorite awkward moment… when you realize you know someone in common but don’t know if you share the same opinion of said person. It’s always a bit of a verbal ballet (which is about the only kind of dancing opera singers tend to know) we all do to figure out what level of dirt telling we can get away with. Which, by the way, the scale of “dirt telling” for singers basically has a base line of about 6 on a scale of 1 – 10.
Yet I digress. All this to say… with as much traveling around that we all do for auditions, performances, lessons, etc. it’s not uncommon to see old friends pop up outta the blue every now and then—which brings me to the point of this blathering.
A small opera company here in Houston, Opera in the Heights, is doing a production of Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte and my friend and studio mate from Baylor, Sarah Beckham, is performing (the hell outta, btw) the role Fioridiligi in one of the casts. I haven’t seen Sarah in about seven years, the last time being when I went to audition at Boston University… an experience I mentioned previously back in February when I took a small vacation to the northeast.
In addition to Sarah as Fioridiligi, my friend, Zach (who was mentioned in one of my favorite posts ever but has thus far eluded being photographed) is performing the role of Ferrando in Sarah’s cast and Jennifer is the Despina in the other cast. I unfortunately have conflicts with Sarah and Zach’s performance dates so I was able to go to the final dress rehearsal with Jennifer and the above picture is from the casts’ post-performance drink session.
Thought it’s a bit of short notice, if you want to listen to some live performances from Cosi by Zach and Sarah you can tune-in to Houston’s Classical 91.7 (streaming online here) for today’s edition of The Front Row at NOON.
And, as a bit of a parting shot—and because there’s not really anything she can do about it—my absolute favorite picture of Sarah evar!
Artist: Bob Seger / Album: Like a Rock
P.S.: A little back story behind today’s post title. As Sarah is not from Houston, the company has put her up with a host family and the “father” was at the final dress as well. He came up to her at intermission because he had to leave after the first half and the conversation went something like this:
Man: Sarah! You sound so fantastic… just spectacular!
Sarah: Oh thank you!!
Man: I especially loved the, hold on one second… I really like that one song, wait a minute I wrote down the name of it… that part where you sang by yourself, where IS that paper—oh here it is. My favorite song of yours was that “Like a Rock” one, that was just great!
The adorableness of this is that “like a rock” is the translation “Come scoglio,” which also happens to be one of the most famous arias from the opera and like, ever… but as some of you southerners may know, is also the name of that song from the Chevy truck commercials. So for your listening pleasure (and because I think everyone should listen to the aria at least once), here is lady Renee Fleming rockin’ out some Mozart.