By Cherity Koepke
Today’s blog is going to be a little shorter than the rest—and not because there wasn’t anything to write about. It’s because we were so busy, and I was headed in one direction while the Young Artists headed in the other. We employed the divide-and-conquer strategy today in an effort to use our time to the fullest. Our four-event day has become a five-event day; I now have one more coaching after tonight’s performance. So, let’s get started, shall we?
It’s Day Four of tour, readers, and I find myself asking a question I posed earlier in the blog: “Why is morning so early?!” I’m up before 6:00 AM this morning and running on about four hours of sleep courtesy of a kitty who decided to sleep on my bed, on my stomach, and eventually on my face. She kept me warm, though.
A bit later the guys arrive also looking tired; Jordan is up and looking a bit weary, too. While Heath and Andrew sleep on the couch, the ladies arrive. They look a little more chipper. We have a very busy, very long day ahead of us. After a quick group meeting, we head to breakfast. Conversation is subdued until Vanessa quotes Napoleon Dynamite and then all bets are off. Nicole avoids getting food in her hair, Nick questions if his green chili is really vegetarian, Andrew questions his choice of home fries instead of hash browns, and I marvel at the fruit plate I am given. It looked like something from a cruise ship buffet.
After breakfast we have the only down time of the day so we walk around town. The Young Artists find a thrift shop and make some purchases. Nick finds a very dapper coat. I’m not sure if there are any other purchases because this is where our divided schedules begin. I head off to conduct a master class with college students from Western State Colorado University while the Young Artists get lunch and then head to the elementary school to set up for the performance of Cinderella. Both go well. (Apparently, there was quite a reaction from the kids when the Prince and Cinderella kiss…) Once the master class is done, I check us into our hotel while the Young Artists load out. I meet up with them just in time to give them their keys and then Nathan, Jordan, and I head over to the high school for our coaching with the choir teacher.
This goes well, too. We hop in the car and go to the hotel where we meet up with everyone else. They are changed and ready for dinner, so Jordan and Nathan get ready and join them. I elect to stay behind, intending to catch a few quiet moments, but find that I need to spend that time answering emails. The hotel is under renovation and my room is right next to the work zone, so it wasn’t conducive to resting, anyway. Emails answered, I finalize the repertoire for tonight’s Arias & Ensembles program, change, and meet everyone else in the lobby.
We head over to the recital hall, do a sound check, and go over a few pieces. Then the house opens and the performance begins. Another good event and the audience is very appreciative. At the end, we do a Q&A and get quite a few questions, which doesn’t always happen with adults. After the performance, I spend a few minutes talking with the audience and then I begin my final coaching session. Nathan is with me again and Katie and Vanessa decide to stay, as well. Everyone else heads back to the hotel. The final coaching goes well. I hope that I’ve offered useful advice and given the students things that they can work on. And with that, it is now 9:15 PM.
We gather our things; I take Vanessa, Katie, and Nathan back to the hotel; and then I grab myself some dinner. Back at the hotel, I have myself a carpet picnic while I blog. And more than 15 hours after it started, the day finally winds down. This is tour, readers. Busy days, crazy schedules, and burning the candle at both ends. Why do we do it? Because we want our time to count. We want to make an impact, serve our community, and introduce as many people as we can to this art form that we love. We’re tired, yes, but it’s been a week well spent.
Tomorrow we head back to Denver. Saturday we’ll be performing at the Cherry Creek Shopping Center. Sunday is a day off. And then? We continue performing around the Denver Metro area, Family Day is next weekend, and we jump into Falstaff.
So that’s it for the tour blogs, readers—at least until our Greater Colorado Tour in May. There’s a lot to do in the meantime. I hope you’ll continue to follow the Young Artists’ journey. I hope you’ll come see them in Falstaff; it’s going to be a fabulous production. To learn more about what we’re doing, keep an eye on www.operacolorado.org or visit us on Facebook.
Thanks for joining us, readers!