Today I read a really interesting comment in an online article called "How to become a pop star".
The author gave several useful tips for how to make you dreams come true. One comment he made really stood out to me as thought provoking. It was on the topic of studying music. Here's what the author said:
"Study right. There’s no escaping it: if you don’t study at all, it’s difficult to sing with an amazing voice, write unique songs, play an instrument like an angel, and dance like a devil. On the other hand, if you study too much, you run the risk of alienating yourself from the mainstream, becoming a virtuoso appreciated only by connoisseurs of whatever style you are into."
REALLY? Did I read that right?
So why did this jump out at me?
Because I have always been taught that the more your study the better you get.
I never once considered that there could come a point where you become too educated and then alienate your audience. MAYBE this is why Katherine Jenkins is so popular in the mainstream - because she has educated herself to exactly the right point that makes her accessible. She has balanced the scales in learning enough in order to be able to be good at what she does, but not over tipped the balance by becoming a virtuoso and over intellectualizing her artwork.
But wait - so many opera fans hate her. If you haven't already read this article (or viscous attack) in The Telegraph on the mezzo-soprano, then I think it very articulately describes why opera officianados don't find her credible. Steve Silverman calls her a pretender whom "hasn't got the voice or the technique to sing opera." - Meow!
Yet at the same time Katherine defends herself in an article in the same newspaper by arguing that it sells VERY well. So a huge majority of people must love her art in order to pay money for it and keep her producing more albums."Classical music snobs who want to preserve opera only for the elite are being proven wrong by record sales, the singer Katherine Jenkins has suggested, as she argues the genre must be accessible for everyone."
Do the mainstream really want a watered down, less educated version of something? Does that make it more accessible?
If Katherine educated herself more and became the opera buff that critics would like her to be - would she then become less marketable?
Your thoughts please...
A SOPRANO starlet has self-released her debut album with a 'pay what you want’ scheme in a bid to raise enough cash to fund her studies at the country’s most prestigious music school.
Jennifer Coleman, of Burnham Lane, is hoping to raise £10,000 to fund a graduate diploma in vocal studies at the Royal College of Music in London, which she starts in September.
She released EP Simple Gifts on Valentine’s Day. The former Burnham Grammar School pupil, 24, said: “I believe that classical music should be accessible to everyone.
“My mission is to share a piece of my heart with as many people as possible through the medium of song.”
The soprano performs across the UK and internationally.
She has also bagged a host of awards in her fledgling singing career. They include the Mavis Bennett Award for Grand Opera and the John Lightfoot Award for Musical Theatre at Maidenhead Music Festival.
She is under the tutorage of Professor Susan McCulloch and has been awarded a place at the Royal College of Music after completing her undergraduate degree with honours at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester.She has performed on the Sky Arts channel, on Channel 4 series Hidden Talent and the 2006 series of The X Factor, in which she got through to boot camp. She added: “I have decided to sell my music on a 'pay what you want’ philosophy – if you aren’t too sure about classical music this gives you the option to try before you buy. If you don’t have money you can download it for free, but I ask that you share my music with your friends in return. If you like it you can always come back at another time when you are able to.”
To download the EP, visit www.gumroad.com/l/simplegifts or www.jennifer-coleman.co.uk
Filmed in HD for TV pilot 'Is this Talent' in November 2013
ARTICLE IN THE BURNHAM ADVERTISER
07:55 Monday 10 March 2014 Written by Michael Owens
A classically-trained soprano has released her first EP as the next step in her quest to find fame.
Jennifer Coleman (centre) has released her first solo EP backed by a string quartet
Jennifer Coleman pursued stardom from a young age and appeared on The X Factor in 2006.
Since then the 24-year old has graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester and toured with her vocal group, The Sirens.
While they still perform together, the former Priory and Burnham Grammar School pupil has gone solo and released Simple Gifts to expose her talents to a wider audience.
"I thought life is short and you only live once so I made a bucket list and one of the things I really wanted to do," she said.
"I thought why wait for someone to ask me, so I made it happen."
The collection of six of her favourite songs was recorded last year.
It was released with a 'pay what you want' philosophy to try and attract new audiences to opera.
Listeners can sample her music before they pay for it and download it for a fee or for free if they're on a tight budget.
Jennifer's main aim is for as many people to hear her work as possible.
"The more people that can get access to my music the happier I am," she said.
All of the profits raised from the CD will help fund her studies at The Royal College of Music in London, which has annual tuition fees of more than £10,000.
She hopes an education at the prestigious institution – which begins in September - will help her on her way to international acclaim.
"My vision is to continue my singing and I would love perform internationally and be one of the leading singers around the world," she said.
"As long as I'm making music I'm happy.”
Visit gumroad.com to download Jennifer's EP.
It is also available on the iTunes music store.
Jennifer will perform with The Sirens in aid of the Stroke Association Saturday April 5 at All Saints Church, Marlow.
Call 01628 483597 for ticket information.
Jennifer Coleman is a soprano who works as a classical singer and vocal coach. Available for performances across the UK and internationally.