I have to take some time here and brag about my kiddo, and how excited I am about her singing and where it is going.
Keely has always been a singer, and her first song she rocked out on was “Oops! I Did it Again” by Britney Spears. You know the gal, but that was before she went over the deep-end. Anyhoo, I enrolled her in what was then a new chorus called the UNM Children’s Chorus. They started with 13 singers, and are now up to 85. This is her third year I believe with them. I knew when I met Regina Carlow, the conductor, that she was in the right place. Regina is an extremely patient person with a great reputation and oodles of love for the kids. Keely has performed numerous times in Keller Hall, Popejoy, and several churches. She has been in one opera, and she will now be in another this December.
BUT, this opera is Oh So Special, because it is being written for the UNM Children’s Chorus, and it is called “Shoes for the Santo Nino”. The book it is based on was written by the grandmother of Julia Church Hoffman, co-conductor of the chorus.
Not only is it being written for them and performed by them, but when I attended the performance of Keely’s opera camp today, I realized the big names involved. I am not up on the music world. Ask me about dancers from when I was dancing, and I can tell you. Composers, not so much. The opera is being composed by Stephen Paulus, a renowned composer (he has his own wikipedia page, for goodness’ sake!).
He was there today, and he played the newly written aria for the female lead part (which Keely will audition for). It was sung by a lady from UNM, and it certainly got Keely excited about the possibility of doing the part. Whether or not she gets the part, knowing that she is having music set on her and her peers is really amazing. I have had choreography set on me, and it is a special experience to have. Working with greatness is terrifying, inspiring, enlightening, and fulfilling. Well, in my experience at least.
The opera opens in Santa Fe December 10, 2010, and will open again in Albuquerque at the National Hispanic Cultural Center December 17, 2010. Those dates are already blocked off, and probably much of the month prior. I am so happy to see her focusing, wanting more, expecting more of herself, and really growing as a person and as an artist.