I am officially finished with grad school auditions! I feel so content, almost relaxed, now that they are all done. Although there are many big things to be working on now – not the least of which is my pre-recital hearing next week – none of it seems to compare to the preparation and nervousness of the last few weeks.
I had two auditions this weekend: one at UNC Greensboro and the other at UNC School of the Arts. Luckily, my friend Emma lives in Charlotte, so I imposed on her family’s hospitality and gratefully accepted the offer to stay at their house for the weekend. From there, it was a manageable hour to an hour and a half traveling to Greensboro and Winston-Salem for my auditions. Being around people I knew and not having to deal with the extra burden of finding a hotel to stay in was a relief. After everything else that I was dealing with in those two days, it helped me relax quite a bit knowing where I was going to sleep, and having familiar faces around.
So, the big question now, I suppose is: “How did it go?”
Well, I had a good experience at both locations: I liked both campuses (and found them easily, thanks to my friend Rachel’s GPS that I borrowed!), the judges and other facilitators were friendly, and I sang well. It’s a satisfying feeling to walk away from an audition and know that I couldn’t have done much better. The aria that I was most worried about (Mozart’s “Parto, parto” from La Clemenza di Tito) turned out to be a personal best performance! I never sang those long, complicated runs as well as I did on Sunday, and I am so proud of that. I also did my sight-reading perfectly and easily on Saturday, which boosted my confidence.
I think the only small mishap involved my preoccupation in driving to UNCSA on Sunday – I was so absorbed in my thoughts, running lyrics, and warming up that I didn’t notice my gas tank quickly emptying. Finally, my gas light went on about a minute before I reached the campus, startling me and causing me to make a detour through Winston-Salem to find a gas station. After driving for a few minutes through the city and not finding one, it finally occurred to me that I had a GPS, which has the capabilities to find something like, say, the nearest few gas stations. After trying the first three that came up on the GPS (all of which were closed or non-existent), I happened upon one and breathed a sigh of relief as I pulled in to fill up. This small crisis certainly didn’t help my nerves, but it is easy enough to laugh at it now.
After everything, I am left with one definite rejection, one probable acceptance, and one totally ambiguous. UNCSA had call-backs last night, which I wasn’t asked to stay for, but I’m okay with this. For one thing, it is nice to know for sure, even though the result is negative. Plus, it was a great experience to get a little bit of a feel for a conservatory, and to be in the presence of so many talented, aspiring opera singers who share my passion. So now I’m waiting for word from Converse and UNCG; the former seemed quite positive when I auditioned, and I have no idea what the latter thought. Regardless, now I just have to sit back and wait, and do more of that simple thing called “schoolwork”. . . piece of cake, after three grad school auditions in two consecutive weekends.