In which I express thanks

In the spirit of Christmasness, I looked up my former voice teacher and sent her a note on Facebook: the utility that makes stalking simple.

She was a wonderful teacher, very patient and humorous, and I studied with her for a couple of years. Then, I went away to college, whereafter everything went to Hell and I stopped singing, in horror at how dismal the arts could be.

With no real expectation that she would remember me, I wrote an overly long note to say hello and that I am still thankful for her lessons. Here's a piece of what I sent:

I lived for a short time in Tucson, Arizona. I hadn't been singing at all, for years, but one day on a whim, I walked into the neighborhood Episcopal church and joined the choir. It was a great refresher in singing choral music, and they performed very challenging material. A month or so later, the director asked me to sing the psalm, which sent me into a secret fit of fear. I went home with the sheet music and practiced for hours on my piano until I felt that I could make it through without freezing in terror. I called back some of the lessons you'd taught me, and some of the images you'd used--still helpful to this day.

When I got up to sing, the practice (and the great acoustics) worked together and I was pleased with myself, in a "whew, glad that's over" kind of way. A few weeks later, the minister of the parish stopped me and said, "I've been meaning to tell you: that day that you sang the psalm, it was so exquisite, I sat and listened with tears running down my face. It was so beautiful."

So, I thank you for your patience with me as a high school student, so that I could grow up and make a priest cry.

And thanks for being a great teacher. I sing with a band now, which I love so much, and which suits me more than the musical theatre my parents probably wish I'd stayed in. I really do think about you and your lessons every time I step on stage. (Not in a creepy way.)

Well, not too creepy, anyway. Just a little creepy. I am what I am.

Star of the day. . .Patti LuPone
posted @ 11:36 p.m. on December 03, 2008 before | after


She lay awake all night,