Monday, January 22, 2007

The Flitter Mouse

I certainly felt like a flittering little mouse. Desperately flipping the pages of the score, peering through my bifocals with my head tilted backwards, frantically trying to keep my eyes, my tongue, my tones in place as the pros around me sang precisely and with vivid expression and confident volume, and I sang a beat late, a half-step high or low, and mangled the words. Strauss is spinning in his tomb as I post. I have agreed to a small part in Die Fledermaus. I will be Dr. Blind, the stuttering, incompetent lawyer. I stuttered but my stutters were not in the right places. I am certifiably incompetent, however, and not only in the law. I have surely lost my mind.

Not me.

I will be sixty years old in a couple of months and yesterday I attended my first opera - actually two short operas by Puccini. Shock! I really enjoyed them. I thought that before I performed in an operetta, I should, at least have seen and heard an opera in person. I admit to secretly listening to a few arias from the operatic literature in recent years, and I even asked my voice teacher to help me learn to sing my favorite, Puccini's Nessun Dorma. But I never expected to be asked to perform in an opera - actually an operetta, but it's close enough for me.

So, y'all come. March 8 & 9, 7:30 p.m., Rome City Auditorium. I'm gonna work really hard to avoid making a complete fool of myself.

Please leave your tomatoes at home.

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