On Air Now
Classic FM Drive with Nicholas Owen 4pm - 7pm
9 August 2018, 14:12
Being a soprano is tough. The glamour, the glitz, the high notes... it all comes at a price. And no, you're not allowed a latte on concert day.
Thanks for all your help, As, Ts and Bs, but could you maybe quieten down a bit so people can hear the tune? Let's just remember who's more important here.
No matter how much you want to tip a latte into your face in an attempt to steel yourself before tonight's impending vocal acrobatics, you can't.
Because all every soprano wants to do is sing four Fs above high C in quick succession. Still, when it works, it does make you look amazing.
"I much prefer mezzos."
Vocalzone? Gargling salt water? Aloe vera throat spray? Whatever you end up using to make your throat feel a little less like a hedgehog nesting site, it's always disgusting.
There's a reason it's supposed to be sung by an 8-year-old boy. They are not old enough to know fear.
You can't even contemplate being seen in the same concert dress twice, and with a full concert diary that's a lot of frocks. It must be such a grind for the tenors and basses, dusting down their machine-washable suits night after night and luxuriating in all that extra wardrobe room…
In fact, all other singers hate you too. But when it comes to choral work, Soprano 2s are simultaneously jealous of your tune-bearing status and jealous of how much tune you get.
There's been a huge amount of talk in the press about the aesthetic suitability of certain singers for certain roles in certain operas. Which, given that we're expected to accept any shape, size or age of tenor as a rip-torsoed, dashing romantic lead is obviously not undermining or insulting in the slightest. Not at all.