When last we left off, I had auditioned for a show for the first time, got the lead, then auditioned for the net show...and didn’t. Yep - because that’s life. We could discuss how art is subjective and what goes into casting a show and yada yada yada, but the point is that although i may have lucked out on my first try, i was going to have to put a little effort into my craft if i wanted to keep going. I tried out for a community theatre production of Sound of Music- didn’t even get a callback.
I kept practicing my piano and flute and found that knowing how to plunk parts on the keyboard helped me learn new music fast. I was given an assignment at my church to play worship every Sunday while my mom led the congregation. Thus began a period of intense focus on my piano playing. I will always be grateful for that opportunity, scary as it was, because it forced me to have discipline in my practicing.
It also forced me to get up in front of a large group of people every single week and play in front of them.
My mom was pretty cool about the whole thing; she didn’t hound me or make a big deal about the assignment, she just acted like it was no big deal; doesn't everybody’s preteen play for church each Sunday? I started to get used to performing in public and being ok with being “not perfect” from time to time. I also quickly realized that my improvement was entirely up to me and if i wanted to not make a fool of myself, i needed to PRACTICE.
In High School, I decided to trade in my band geek status for choir disciple. I scheduled my own audition, taught myself a short Italian Aria on the piano, and accompanied myself for our high school choir director. Apparently, all that practice paid off, because not only did i get into the choir, she asked me to audition for Madrigals, the “elite” choir at CVHS. I had to teach myself the alto part of our audition piece, which i made my family rehearse with me for hour on end, my mom singing soprano and dad singing tenor. I didn’t get in that year, but I stuck it out and got in the next year. Along the way I DID get into California State Honor Choir and had the opportunity to sing Mozart’s Requiem with hundreds of amazing vocalists from around the state at Chapman University.
Let’s cut ahead to senior year, shall we? By this point, I was in Madrigals, A Capella, doing the high school musicals, and living what I thought was my best life. I had added voice lessons to my repertoire, as i was singing constantly and wanted to improve my range and technique. I was 16 and the world awaited my greatness! Who needed piano and flute, I was going to be a STAR!
Until one day I woke up and couldn’t sing.