What the fach?!Read Now
Well it's happened.
After YEARS of vocal turmoil, frustration, let down and down right confusion I am officially transitioning to dramatic soprano. To most people this might not seem like a big deal, but to a professional classical singer this transition is huge.
So what the Fach? And what is Fach?
"The German Fach system is a method of classifying singers, primarily opera singers, according to the range, weight, and color of their voices. It is used worldwide, but primarily in Europe, especially in German-speaking countries and by repertory opera houses. The Fach system is a convenience for singers and opera houses. It prevents singers from being asked to sing roles which they are incapable of performing. Opera companies keep lists of available singers by Fach so that when they are casting roles for an upcoming production, they do not inadvertently contact performers who would be inappropriate for the part."
As someone who's entire singing identity has been focused around singing mezzo soprano repertoire but always was uncomfortable this is a huge but necessary shift. It's going from playing the ugly step-sister and teenage boys to the dramatic love interest, something I've always had a hard time identifying with...
Now let's talk about impostor syndrome.
As long as I can remember I've always had impostor syndrome going into any audition, competition or performance situation (especially in front of my peers). I could never shake the feeling that somehow I didn't belong, that I wasn't good enough...
Turns out I was singing the wrong repertoire! Most dramatic sopranos don't blossom into full form until their 30's so I guess I'm right on track, but for most opera companies women in their 30's are considered "aged out" and to that I say..."SCREW YOU" ! It takes a long time for the dramatic, larger voice to mature and be given the chance to come to life. I'll never forget my voice teacher in undergrad saying that "I couldn't sing high notes because I was depressed..." when in reality she just didn't want to teach a bigger voice because it's hard. I can't thank my teachers Margaret Izard and Alenaxdra LoBianco for believing in my instrument and helping me find my place in this crazy world.
After going through all of this to FINALLY come into myself and my voice, I make sure that none of my students ever feel like they are stuck in one direction. The voice grows with you and it's imperative to give yourself a chance to explore your own sound making and finding a teacher that will help you get to where your potential is is crucial.
It's my job as a teacher to help my students get out of their own way with the "wont's, dont's cant's and will not's" that this career sometimes tells us. YOU ARE ENOUGH. YOUR BODY IS ENOUGH, and it's beautiful.
So cheers to new dramatic beginnings!
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