Wednesday, February 7, 2007

sick singers

I'm sure it's no news to singers, teachers, or anyone else that we are deep in to cold and flu season. In rehearsals for my upcoming previews of Seattle Opera's Giulio Cesare last weekend, over half of the singers were out sick. My lesson was cancelled this week because J has a lingering chest infection. Poppea opens on Friday, and most of the cast has come down with a terrible cold. In fact, one of the continuo players even has pneumonia! Most are on the mend, but one, with a very large role, went home yesterday. There are no covers for this production, so this made for a very exciting rehearsal process over the last several days. One singer who was previously singing several small roles has learned the music and blocking for the lead role virtually overnight (and will be fantastic!), and two singers with smaller roles have taken on extra roles to pick up the slack. It's amazing what people are capable of when the need is there. Anyone in town this weekend or next should definitely come see this production -- it's going to be great!

Somehow (knock on wood), I've avoided the plague so far, though my husband called from school a few minutes ago to say he thinks he has bronchitis, and a third of his class is out today with either bronchitis or pneumonia. I'm focusing on getting lots of sleep, drinking tons of water, and taking my vitamins for the next few days -- no time to be sick!

Every singer, I think, has a ritual for avoiding colds and flu. So far, I've been successful at fighting off sickness all winter. Mostly, I attribute this to the fact that I've been swimming most mornings, so my lungs and muscles are in better shape than they have been in years. I've been doing Emergen-C or Airborne when I'm in crowded places like planes or classrooms or when I'm around sick people, and Umcka and Zicam at the first hint of stuffy nose or tickle in my throat, and lots of water and tea. It's worked so far -- keep your fingers crossed!

1 comment:

Gregory said...


If you are at the Seattle Opera in rehearsals for Cesare (as it sounds that you are...)my teacher, Mark Crayton, is singing Tolomeo. Please go give him a hug for me and tell him that I miss him so much!