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Blog: Open Intervals

5 Tips for Taking a Gig (or Not!)

Simplicity is key! One of the guiding principles suggested in Ratgeber Freie* for whether or not a gig is worth your while is

"Does it make me happy? Does it make me rich? Does it make me proud?"

and if the gig in front of you meets at least 2 of those 3 guidelines, it's a good idea to take it. If the gig only meets 1, then you ought to be pretty clear on why you're taking the gig--or why you're kindly turning it down.

It's a great way to decide whether to take a gig or not and that's...

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Making Magic in South America: Mozart, Moses Hogan, and Plenty of Steak - Part II

There are certain ways that music touches us and one of these is when music becomes something more than sound and silence over time. Basilica_de_Guadalupe_in_MercedesIt happens when everyone lets go of their distractions, latches on to the group's motivation, and lets the music flow. This is what happened on tour in South America last month.

Three of our four concerts were sold out, the first one having been about 95% sold out. It's always something special and is a momentous goal achieved when a musician hears the words...

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9.11.11 United We Stand - Live on MPTV!

9-11 logo

LIVE

ON

MILWAUKEE PUBLIC TELEVISION

o

On September 11, 2011 I'll be joining the Bel Canto Chorus and the Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra for a FREE commemorative concert of Mozart's Requiem in downtown Milwaukee.

This event will be broadcast LIVE on MPTV 10.1 at 3:00 pm and rebroadcast the same day at 6:30 pm on MPTV 36.1.

This event is also an acknowledgement of first responders and veterans. From the press release:

United We Stand will feature appearances by local and state government,...

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South America Tour: Mozart, Moses Hogan, and Plenty of Steak - Part I

That pretty much sums up the Bel Canto Chorus 2011 Tour to South America. OK, well, there is a lot more to it than that, so here's are a few of the highlights--of which there are so, so many!

Day 1: Arrival in Buenos Aires, Argentina and transfer to Colonia, Uruguay. Our first dinner was a lovely buffet of quiches, salads, and interesting small dishes. We ate, we drank, we laughed and got acquainted, and then we found out there were two more courses. Uff-da!

Then it was on to Montevideo,...

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What's the Difference Between an Alto and a Mezzo-Soprano?

In choral singing, voice parts are normally listed as soprano, alto, tenor, and bass. A four-part, mixed voice choir is frequently referred to as an 'SATB choir,' where SATB is short for soprano-alto-tenor-bass. So if SATB is for a chorus of women and men, what do you think an all-women's chorus would be? Take a guess--and read on! It's an 'SA choir,' or an 'SSAA choir.' However, since all of these women's voices are notated on the treble cleff, a women's chorus is most often referred to as a...

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To Sing is To Heal

There are times in life when I am absolutely certain, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that music, singing, movement and dancing, are how we heal ourselves. Most times it's so enjoyable to sing in a concert or to take in a performance that it's not conscious, it's not a conscious choice that you or I would go to a concert or trot off to a gig with the idea in mind, "Today I will heal people. I sing so that I may heal others." Sometimes, sure, when I know that a person who is having a hard time is...

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Do Singers Get Paid For Singing?

YES! Just like the organist at your wedding, your child's piano teacher and your high school choir teacher, singers get paid for singing.

Singers add a special emotional, spiritual element to many occasions and they may already be working in music positions you're not aware of. Did you know that many church choirs have section leaders in the different voice parts? And that many private parties hire singers and other musicians for cocktail hours and general entertainment?

Here's a sampler list...

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What's the Difference Between a Mezzo-soprano and a Soprano?

This is the #1 question I get asked by concert audience members and people I meet on the street.

Let's start with choir voice types. In a choir, people sit in sections: sopranos, altos, tenors, and basses. You’ll probably recognize the names soprano and alto from choir in school. This is different from an actual voice classification, as there are more of those than there are choir voice types.

There are three voice classifications for women:

  • a soprano (the highest)
  • a mezzo-soprano (in the...

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What Your Teacher Never Told You

So you're 18, fantastic at music, everybody loves what you perform, and they all want to know if you're going to study music. 'Yes!,' you say, and you head off for 4 years (or more) of higher education, maybe take another 2 years for graduate school, and you hit the real world as a freelancer. But your teacher (or teachers) never told you this: that you're an entrepreneur. And you need valuable skills that no one taught you in college or grad school--one of the most important ones being: ...

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