Nelle's Road to Grad School
Organized by: Nelle Anderson
EVENT DATE Aug 02, 2015
Why opera—isn't it dead?
I love this music, and I’ve discovered that the world of classical voice is bigger and more alive/diverse/energized than you’d ever imagine. My experience so far drives me to be better at creating it for everyone else who open themselves up to it. Over the past few years, I’ve learned to appreciate this art, to observe, and to apply myself in ways I never could have anticipated, and I partially credit opera’s near “demise” for this growth. To make a bunch of old notes on paper matter, you have to unearth what made it matter in the first place, comprehend it in terms of your own experience, and then project that fusion in a way that ignites something in an audience. I love that this can feel insurmountable, fulfilling, intellectual, spiritual, precise, or wild at any given moment.
In a couple of weeks I’m moving to New York City where I’ll spend the next few months working and preparing for grad school applications/auditions. This entails:
• Continuing training with my current voice teacher.
• Taking trial lessons with teachers at different graduate schools: This is a critical factor in choosing a school, and having a positive relationship with a teacher greatly increases your chances of getting into their school. One lesson with a great teacher usually costs between $100 and $200.
• Entering competitions: Necessary for resume building, and most offer monetary prizes as a way to support rising performers. Application fees usually cost around $50.
• Hiring accompanists: It's important to rehearse with a pianist regularly to practice collaboration and to prepare for auditions.
• Renting practice rooms: Approximately $10 an hour.
• Application fees for graduate schools: This fee is between $100 and $200 for each school.
• Audition fees for graduate schools: This fee, which is usually in addition to the application fee, is also between $100 and $200 for each school.
• Possibly traveling to California, Indiana, and Texas for trial lessons with teachers who have been recommended to me.
Long story short, studying opera is expensive. At the place I'm at now, to study this craft means paying fees and traveling to meet the right people. I'm extremely lucky to have supportive parents and to have been awarded scholarships, but this year will require me to pay more than I am able to earn and than my parents are able to help me with (hello, college loans.) If you would like to contribute to making this path possible for me, I would be extremely grateful.
If you have any questions about my work or my year ahead, feel free to email me at email@example.com.