Former Dame Malvina Major Emerging Artist tenor Oliver Sewell sends home another update from the Manhattan School of Music.
My final dash at the Manhattan School of Music has arrived.
Since sending my last update I have finished a successful run of The Dangerous Liaisons, memorised two operas, one recital and – the most exciting of all – I was offered the tenor solo in Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana at the Lincoln Centre in the Alice Tully Hall, with NYC Master Chorale.
2015 finished with the Manhattan School of Music Opera Studio’s performance of The Dangerous Liaisons. I am happy to report that the opening night received favorable reviews and a bonus for me was that I received my first review (and photo) in the New York Times. However, at first I was not sure I had received a positive review as I did not know the meaning of the word plangent! I was relieved however when I discovered it was not a disparaging term. It was brilliant having Christian Thurston (the only other New Zealander at School) share the stage with me in The Dangerous Liaisons, even if it was only for a few minutes!
At the moment we are well into staging Le Roi l’a Dit. The unknown French opera by Delibes is an absolute gem. I am loving playing Benoit, a simple peasant who all of a sudden becomes the son of a Marquis. Much to my pleasure I get to exercise a rather thick Fred Dagg-esqe New Zealand accent in some of the more rural dialogue scenes.
As well as staging Le Roi l’a Dit this month I am coaching my recital with Warren Jones, workshopping and performing in a new opera with American Opera Projects and rehearsing and performing in Carmina Burana. As I come into the final stretch it seems a little hectic at times but I am happy knowing that I am making the most of all the opportunities available to me, during what has been a great run, at the Manhattan School of Music.
Until next time.