Summer is over for the Metropolitan Opera Chorus, if you can believe it! After 9 weeks of rest, relaxation, and recharging involving beach vacations and many cherished hours spent with family, the chorus started preseason rehearsals on Monday, July 23rd.
What is "preseason" exactly? It can be summed up in three words: practice, practice, practice.
For the past four weeks, we’ve been nestled in our seats in List Hall with a mountain of scores, singing through at least 14 different operas. On many days, after our musical rehearsals, we’ve descended a few flights of stairs to the Met’s rehearsal studios to stage Samson et Dalila with Darko Tresnjak, the show's brilliant director. In the next five weeks, we'll also be staging the other shows that will greet us in the first few weeks (and months) of the season, such as La Fanciulla del West, Aida, La bohème, and Nico Muhly’s scintillating new opera Marnie, which premieres at the Met in October.
Of course, in the few weeks preceding opening night, we’ll be heading to stage to run through each opera in costume with lighting, sets, soloists, and the incomparable Metropolitan Opera Orchestra.
We're also thrilled to welcome three new full-time members of the Met Chorus: tenor Brian Anderson, soprano Abigail Mitchell, and baritone Jonathan Scott. All three have cut their teeth in the Met's Extra Chorus (who join us for operas that require larger groups of singers, such as Samson et Dalila, Turandot, Otello, and the Verdi Requiem, to name a few), and now they're primed and ready to take on the herculean effort of memorizing dozens of shows in a relatively short period of time!
For now, all of us are happy to be back in the groove, concentrating on vocal technique, musicality, dynamics, repetition, and memorization of the 23 shows the chorus will participate in this season. We’ve got our work cut out for us, but we love our job, and there’s no place we’d rather be!