Every aspect of the business - from opera to music theatre to straight theatre to film & TV - has its own land mines, its own process, its own game.
It's up to you, should you find yourself in one or more of those games, to figure it out.
However, ultimately, what do you need to know?
It all comes back to YOU.
Or what a dear friend and famous choreographer has been known to say, "What are you doing?!"
Yes, you have to figure out the game, learn the rules, learn how to bend those rules, learn how to navigate the landscape but more importantly, you have to learn about YOU.
There is you the artist and the discovery.
There is you the craftsman and the development of said craft.
There is you the business person and the marketing of said business.
SO, here are the 2 questions for you:
1. What do you need to know?
2. What are you doing with that knowledge?
Do you know what you are working with as far as ability, craft, practical application is concerned?
Does your study and your athletic development allow you access PAST the 16 bar cut? Could you actually do that role 8 shows a week? Could you actually sustain that role on an operatic stage with a full orchestra?
Are you training vocally, musically, dramatically to access that possibility? Do you really understand what that takes on all levels?
What about the business aspect of you? Do you know what you are selling? Do you really see what you have to offer and can you reveal that fully in a head shot? In a video clip? In a slate?
Do you have a really clear sense of what you want to reveal, and is that honest and true or is it just what you are wishing for?
These are hard. For all of us. A reality check is necessary on a regular basis. It's not always easy or comfortable, but real growth isn't; thus growing "pains".
We don't always want to hear what we absolutely HAVE TO HEAR.
This is why the team of professionals around you is so crucial. You need to have people who will be honest, challenge, question, and give you reasons to find the next. You do not need people around you who just tell you what you want to hear. That doesn't encourage growth, originality, reality or passion for the next step.
So, what do you need to know?
About what you reveal;
Where you are;
What you want;
What is realistic;
What is wishful thinking:
What is downright wrong;
What is downright delusional;
What is absolutely worth exploring;
What is absolutely worth taking a risk for;
What is coming across;
What is not being claimed;
What is ready;
What is not;
The more you know, the more you need to know! The more you know, the more simplistic things can become, because the clutter around you can be cleared, and the reality of what you have, what you are claiming, what you are honing, what you are developing starts to emerge with force and reason.
And the most important thing: it's up to you. It demands you. It holds you accountable.
It's not the pianist's fault if you sing out of tune or come in at the wrong time;
It's not the photographer's fault that your head shot isn't working;
It's not the voice teacher's fault that you aren't booking;
It's not the gym's fault you aren't losing weight;
It's not the coach's fault you didn't figure out how to sing that cut or that aria in the right style;
YOU have to find what YOU need. YOU need to figure out what you are, what you have in order to figure out how to develop it, and what you need to know to develop it further.
You need to know what is going to make you noticed: for the right reasons.
It's all up to you baby. ALL of it is up to you.
Susan Eichhorn Young covers all things voice—strong and sophisticated singing and speaking.
If you liked this post, please share it or comment with your thoughts below!