Cardiff

Using text to create character

September - December 2019
1-2 Vocal Students

  • September – December 2019 (c. 3 months)
  • Term dates: Monday 16th September to Friday 6th December

Developing the use of spoken word in an operatic context to explore and inhabit character, examining the relationship between text and music and how this synthesises to facilitate authentic delivery on stage.

The module is in two parts:

  • Creating an advanced awareness of and emphasis on acting, movement and improvisation skills, through intensive and detailed study and delivery of set texts (drawn from poetry, plays and literature as well as operatic libretti) to create and inhabit character.Core methodology of this work will be based on Stanislawski.
  • Focusing on attaining a deep understanding of the challenges of delivering recitative in opera, across a range of composers, styles and languages.This will be delivered through working sessions, coaching, staging work and a summative performance.

Instruction will be English; recitative may be studied in any of the principal singing languages. Students also take supporting classes shown below.

This module responds to the current needs of the industry (UK and Europe) to produce operatic graduates that are able to convey text clearly and convincingly, particularly in English, linking with Welsh National Opera through the RWCMD’s Seligman Opera School.

Name(s) of the professor(s) of this module

  • Martin Constantine, International Chair in Directing
  • Angela Livingstone, Head of Opera & Vocal Performance
  • Donald Maxwell, vocal tutor
  • Alma Sheehan, performance coach
  • Music Staff of Welsh National Opera

Possible extras:

  • Lecture series examining the development of opera & production history
  • Movement & drama classes
  • Language classes
  • 1:1 singing lessons (these may be focused on English repertoire - operatic, oratorio and song)
  • Vocal coaching
  • Involvement in the College’s end of term opera gala (opera scenes accompanied by orchestra) may be available, depending on the requirement of voice type and repertoire (tbc in September)

Minimum and maximum number of EOA students:

1 – 2 Vocal students

Entrance examination:

  • Submission of unedited video, performing 3 contrasting arias, 1 in English, 1 in Italian and 1 own choice language
  • Deadline: 1st April 2019

Description of the final examination:

  • Continual assessment across project (50%)
  • Performance in recitative project (50%)

Module is available within an Erasmus exchange, for students at Masters level in vocal/operatic training.

Activity: Performance
Academy of music: RWCMD Cardiff
Language training: English

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