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June, 2004 - Nr. 6

 

The Editor
Vorsicht Satire!
Vienna Connection
Rachel Seilern
Zurich Connection
Dear Mom
KW & Beyond
Concert Season's End
Old Customs in New World
Heidelberg Village
Royalty in Burlington
Dick reports...
President's Pep Talk
Nachfolger von Rau
German Cuisine
Sybille reports
Ham Se det jehŲrt?
Health Newsletter
Drugging of Children
Continental Divide
Via Salzburg
Sleepless
Event at The Fringe
Pearls in Color
No to Film Scene
German Beauty in Troy
A Truly Canadian Experience
Children's Writer
Returned to Bremen
Bach Festival 100th
Slow Meltdown
New Immigration Law
US Author in Berlin
German Olympians
Training for Olympics
Bremen Captures Trophy

Vienna Connection

 

Caroline Kuehn

Iím back! Itís been a little while. I had to take a month hiatus because things were getting to be so hectic here, that I really didnít have much of a chance to send an update for May! Well, things are still hectic, but I figured that I should find some time to send some greetings down the Echo way. Iíve been pretty busy the past little while with rehearsals and performances. Itís also almost the end of the year, so things are starting to wind down. Thereís only one month left of school and everyone is starting their talk of whatís going to happen for the summer and what everyoneís plans are. Thereís kind of a bubbling energy. It could either be because of the fact that everyone is excited about the upcoming holidays (I am definitely one of those people!) or else it could just be the stress of all of the projects youíve been denying actually exist the entire year, are all accumulating now and you have to have something to show for them!!!!

Well, in the past little while, Iíve had 2 projects, which had been stressing me out a little bit. One of them was that I had to teach a singing Master class, or a Gestalterisches Arbeit am Lied. This was kind of worrying me because, although Iíd already taught back home, and I actually enjoy doing that, Iíd never done it in German, and in front of a panel of people and other colleagues! And of course you get to have feedback from them! But this is definitely a good thing. I was definitely nervous at the beginning, but as was my student. We had discussed her learning the Schubert song Die Forelle and I would work at that with her. As of the night before, I had no clue what I was going to do with her. All I knew is that I had to work with her on this piece and provide some sort of musical direction. Of course, I didnít really know her, besides her name and the fact that sheís Hungarian and in a couple of my classes, but I didnít really know what she could do with singing. All I did know is that I wouldnít be working on technical things, because thereís no point in my mind to just work on those, besides, thatís no fun! Also, as much as I know the piece (because everyone knows the piece!) Iíd never actually sung it. At first I was thinking oh god, why in the world did I pick a piece Iíve never done before? It would have been so much easier to find something I knew inside and out and just have her do some of the stuff I already know is "done" and "right". Well, I guess I really do like work or am just a glutton for punishment (although I always thought that I was much more of a glutton for chocolate! Beside: I just tried this one Scotch Whisky dark chocolate truffle kind that my friend Lisi bought at a Feinkost store today. mmmm! Thereís nothing like specialty chocolate! My brother will approve, because thereís this really great homemade chocolate store in the Old Quarter of Columbus Ohio, where he lives!). Anyhow, the Master class actually ended up going really well. I was surprised at how fast the time went by and how much more I could have done. I definitely did see that I am a demanding person though, and at first my student was a little bit scared, but apparently I was able to demand what I wanted and achieve that in her in an energetic and friendly way. It ended up being a really great experience, and I ended up only tripping over the language a few times. Was really happy about that. It was actually after I taught the class when the teacher was giving me some feedback that I wasnít able to think properly in German anymore and started to really have to think about how to say things! Funny how your mind works sometimes!

Anyhow, on another note, Vienna is filled with tourists right now, has better cakes than ever (lots of Strawberries...in season now, and for all you asparagus fans out there, itís Spargel Zeit!). The weather has been a little all over the place, but itís starting to settle down, or so we all hope! And of course the operas are amazing...theyíre starting to close the season, so the really big stars are starting to come to the Staatsoper stage. Saw the incomparable Agnes Baltsa in Carmen last week. Wow, the fire that woman has onstage is just unbelievable. I could feel the flames between her and superstar American tenor Neil Shicoff at the back of the hall! And the Finnish Soprano Soile Isokoski really finished (no pun intended...heh heh, hmmm!) me off. The woman sings like a dream. Absolute perfection. She gave me wobbly knees, which isnít really a good thing if youíre in the standing room area! Anyhow, was an absolute delight! Well, I should really get going. Time to face more fears...have to sing some Russian tomorrow. Itís 20 pages long...oh well, Iíll use it as motivation. Somehow, Iíll manage!

Bye, Caroline :)

 

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