I promised Cabaret Photos
From Feb. 5-11, our group (Group 48) was busy singing (and some of us dancing) our hearts out at our annual Cabaret show. The Cabaret is a show that happens at the spring semester of the third year of training that culminates all the singing classes that have begun in the second year of training.
I've been in a couple of musicals in the five years that I've worked as a professional theater actress in the Philippines. In those musicals, I've always been put in the soprano parts in ensemble numbers - for a long time I believed I was a soprano. There was one Filipino composer/musical director who mentioned to me that he thinks I might be an alto all this time. It confused me then, but fast forward to months into my singing training at Juilliard, my singing teacher said that she thinks that my singing voice falls into the alto/mezzo range. For this Cabaret I was cast in alto/mezzo ballad parts and I loved it.
During my late teens and early twenties, I had bought into the notion that a "leading lady" or an "ingenue" was a soprano. I might have unconsciously forced myself into being a soprano because I wanted to be a "leading lady." Much of my Juilliard journey (which includes my casting and my work in scene study classes) have challenged all these ideas of "leading lady," "ingenue," "character actress" and so on. "All acting is character acting," one of my acting teachers said. I am very happy to have begun letting go of this hold to become of a particular mold and embrace my voice and my self and my soul as IS. I love that I am an alto. I love that I can sing deep notes. And I love that I can sing high notes, nevertheless. Having range is good.
One of the great things that I am reclaiming in this journey (framed under the "Juilliard Journey") is my Voice. Not only my inner voice, but my literal speaking and singing voice as well. It feels very affirming, after searching for so long, to arrive at my Self in this way, and to be able to move forward with a sense of more Wholeness.
Last Class with Stephen Mckinley Henderson
It has been a pleasure to be strengthening acting muscles with our Master class teacher for this quarter, Mr. Stephen McKinley Henderson. He's been in a couple of films (Lincoln, Fences, Lady Bird), he was in Group 1 of the Drama Division and was recently the commencement speaker of the 2017 Juilliard Commencement ceremony.
We're now on our spring break and when we come back we're gonna be on the last leg of our third year of training. Most graduate drama schools only have three years of training. Juilliard Drama has four years. We get three full years of pure acting training, and then we'll have the fourth year as the bridge to the profession. If one looks at it this way, I am then approaching the last leg of the real deal, and then the fourth year is probably going to feel very different (or not).
I am a Graduate Drama student at The Juilliard School from Quezon City, Philippines.