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Showing posts from July, 2010

Still Leben Ruhr 2010

Last Sunday, July 18th, I was not expecting anything extraordinary to happen. I woke up, ate breakfast and got dressed. My boyfriend wanted to visit some 'world's longest picnic on the Autobahn' or whatever it was he was talking about excitedly a few weeks ago, so that was on the agenda, as well as getting some more practical work finished for my upcoming auditions and voice program in August. Naturally, my curiousity was peaked when he had mentioned something like this a while ago, but normally highways and picnic tables don't provide my imagination with a feeding frenzy of zany imagines, so, I simply thought, okay, let's see.
Honestly, the idea of this whole project didn't sound all that exciting: the Ruhr area decides to close a major highway on a Sunday in July to open it for pedestrians and picnic tables on the one side and bicyclists and skaters on the other side. Doesn't really bring to mind the next Woodstock or Lallapalooza, does it? Especiall…

Lotte Lehmann Akademie in Perleberg coming up!

Hope you all are doing wonderfully and just wanted to update you that I will be unavailable to be on the internet and updating the blog from August 1st through August 8th but that I will be back online once I get back to the USA on August 10th. Don't worry- just because I won't be in Germany at that point, you can still check on the blog here for all of your Julia's-singing-life-and-life-in-general updates. I will be posting whatever strikes my fancy in terms of musical interest or otherwise. ;)

But, be aware- this isn't the last post until that time- I just wanted to be kind and alert you all ahead of time! So, the posts will keep coming until August 1st, 2010 and then after August 10th!

Just in case you are wondering what this program actually is, and why I will be taking part in it from August 1-8th, have no fear, the explanation is here! (What can I say? I like rhyming!)

The Lotte Lehmann Akademie is a program that is held in Perleberg, Germany this year (and I a…

Success in Stuttgart!

So, I have been notoriously bad at keeping abreast of the wave of things that have been happening here lately, however, I am making it up to you all right now by filling you in!

This post will be dedicated to my positive experience in Stuttgart at an audition for their Bundesagentur fuer Kuenstlervermittlung (which covers the German States of Baden-Wuerttemberg, Saarland and Rheinland-Pfalz, and that's it--I think!) and which is basically a different branch of the same government agency that I visited in Cologne in June, but only covers the regions listed above in the parentheses.

This particular experience was much MUCH easier and enjoyable than the one in Cologne from the very beginning. It was a four-hour drive to Stuttgart (closer to 4.5 more likely) and it was a gorgeous day! The sun was shining, it was hot and the sky was blue- so far, so good. Then, miraculously, we did not encounter a single traffic jam on the way there (which is a miracle considering that summer is the…

And.....Voila! It's Butter! Wait, what?!

Dear Friends,

It's time for cooking in the kitchen with Julia! And, since I'm no Julia Child, I will start us off with the tale of a seemingly harrowing happening with a happy ending that took place recently in the kitchen here in Germany with Yours Truly.

It is a popular custom here in Germany to eat cake (or dessert that looks like cake but is not filled with calories like our American cake counterparts) and drink tea and coffee around 4pm each afternoon, and specifically on Sundays. That being said, I decided that it was high time for me to try my hand at creating one of these cake varieties and actually feed it to the guests at my birthday party. Well, easier said than done, I'll admit!
No sooner had I gone to the store, bought all the supplies, printed out the recipe from the internet (Sanella's Himbeer Joghurt Torte) and gotten on my cooking apron that I realized that this would be the very first time that I worked with any sort of cake that required skill. I…

Extra Cool thing for you film Buffs....

I saw while I was in Essen, the location of the majority of German film premieres: The Lichtburg, which is a theater that has maintained a long and important history since its opening in 1928 and has the most seats of any movie theater in Germany (1,250- if you were wondering). Hopefully sometime soon I will be able to see a film there, and then there will be more photos to follow! :)

Flying Grass Carpet in Essen and Blumenregen (Flower Rain)

A ‘Kulturhauptstadt’ is a special title given by the European Union each year to two different cities in Europe. Anyway, this year the Ruhr Area was chosen, and in particular, the city of Essen (which is about an hour east of Duesseldorf. And, to go along with the honor of being a cultural capital in 2010, Essen and the Ruhr Area have organized many different festivals and special cultural attractions to take place during this year in Essen and the wider Ruhr Area (encompassing the cities of Dortmund, Duisburg, Gelsenkirchen, and Bochum). I had the luck of attending one of these special events that took place just last weekend on Friday (July 3rd) in Essen. It was called 'The Flying Grass Carpet' and it was a celebration of art (in that all the events that took place happened on this AstroTurf oriental rug with a variety of different colors and textures and which was the size of an entire 'platz' (or market square) in Essen. The opening ceremony was the highlight o…

My first German Vorsingen Experience....and reassurance in Berlin

My very first audition experience in Germany was in Cologne at the Bundesagentur fuer Kuenstlerisches Betriebsbuero (which is basically a government run office that has an outpost in every larger city that helps opera companies find opera singers for roles that they still need to cast). (Note: This office also does auditions for dancers and actors- for straight theater as well as TV and Film, for those of you who aren't Opera singers but still want to make a go at working in Germany!) Thinking that I was well prepared for this first experience after reading every book that was published on Opera singing in Germany (those books being the following: “What the Fach”; “Auditioning in the 21st Century”; “So You Wanna Sing in Germany?”; “Nail Your Next Audition”; and “Singing Opera in Germany”) I was in for a big surprise! The building itself looked like any other office building, and the audition was being held on the top floor (6th), with practice rooms on the 5th floor (two, possibly…

Oh, the places I've been!

I want to provide you all with something entertaining and interesting at the same time (I'm a total sucker for educational things, I admit it!) so that reading this blog doesn't become a drag, and I thought that maybe something interactive would be neat.

So, I have decided to include a listing of the cool things I've seen and done since being here (primarily things that have website links so that you too can check them out and kind of experience them with me):

1. I went to Transit restaurant in Berlin for dinner (check out their menu--it was as good as Thai in NYC--I was delighted!!):

Transit Restaurant


2. I participated in something in Dortmund (a festival of sorts) called 'Extra Schicht' which is actually one night where all the cultural points of interest in the entire 'Ruhr' Area stay open until the wee hours of the morning allowing everyone to visit multiple sites with public transit(buses, trains, streetcars) under one single entry price (it cost 12 …