On the 29th November 2014, I flew to Norway with some singer colleagues and Leos string quartet. This was the culmination of a lot of work for me. I had taken on the mammoth task of being the manager of the project back in August. Since then I had spent many hours putting the programme together, casting, sourcing sheet music, organising rehearsals and many other organisational matters that go with such a big job. I was a bit nervous when we flew over but I really didn't need to be. An event like this is all in the planning, so by the time you get there everything should slot together perfectly if it has been planned correctly.
Rehearsals on the Friday went very well. We got to see the theatre for the first time. It was a 700 seater theatre called Forum Scene. It has a splendid acoustic for the un-amplified operatic voice, it felt as though my voice just floated around the theatre with minimal effort. But best of all was the stunning set that we could use; a winter village scene like something out of Charles Dickens' 'A Christmas Carol'. After running through staging and perfecting a few harmonies, we went for some well earned pizza and then to bed at our hotel.
Saturday seemed to be the longest day ever! I managed to schedule some free time in the morning to explore Bergen. We all jumped on a tram to Bryggen a UNESCO World Heritage site by the water front, explored some food markets (some of the others tried reindeer burgers for lunch, but I opted out) and a jolly browse around a Christmas Shop. It was a hilarious morning. Everyone was in good spirits, telling jokes and feeling very excited about the fresh air and change of scenery in Bergen.
On Saturday afternoon we had a quick down time before we had to go back to work and start rehearsals for the afternoon's performance. After topping and tailing everything with the String Quartet on stage, we ran to our dressing rooms and put on our act one costumes and performance faces.
SHOWTIME went perfectly. I am very excited about how the show went and am hoping that we can repeat the performances for you in England in the near future. There are no words to describe the music, acting and magic that happened on stage that night. The audience loved it and were kind enough to give us a standing ovation. All I can say is that you will have to come to a performance to view it for yourself. Please keep your eyes peeled and sign up to my newsletter to find out about future performances which I am hoping to begin organising soon.
After the show we went to a little Italian restaurant and had Pizza again before heading back to the hotel for Prosecco, celebrations and a short sleep prior to our flight home!
WITH A VERY BIG THANK YOU TO:
FORUM SCENE Theatre, Bergen
MEINIR WYN ROBERTS
RACHEL SHAKESPEARE cello, Leos Manager
ALI VENNART viola
EMILY PETTET violin II
MICHAEL JONES violin I
TIM A. DUNCAN
Jennifer Coleman is a soprano who works as a classical singer and vocal coach. Available for performances across the UK and internationally.