To be honest, I started this blog while working a soul-sucking day job. Like many bloggers, I desperately needed a reminder that I was working that job to support my habit (singing — for anyone who wasn’t sure.) I would also like to make an open apology to those that had this displeasure of knowing the unhappy me during that time. Luckily, I have moved on to much greener pastures, a happier me, and I still hold on to the blog. Why do I keep doing it? I read this quote yesterday from Anaïs Nin, “We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospection.” I am inundated with amazing and interesting music. Plus, I get to meet such fascinating musicians, composers, and entrepreneurs along the way. Who wouldn’t want to taste the sweetness of those experiences again? There are so many creative professionals giving of themselves to add to the world and they are not acknowledged nearly enough. All that to say, there are more than three reasons why I blog here at the Sybaritic Singer and around the classical music interwebz but here are three damn important ones.
First, I want to perform everything. If that’s not possible (which it isn’t), then I want to go to everything. I desperately want to hear soul-stirring performances and have life-changing cultural experiences. I like going to performances in huge, traditional concert halls as much as I enjoy going to performances in small, acoustically suspect spaces. The fact of the matter is that I want a wide array of musical experiences that cross genre, venue, performance practice, and programming lines. By writing reviews, I find out about more recitals, concerts, and events than I could ever fit in my schedule.
Access also means the ability to approach people and ask for their time and thoughts. Blogging provides a platform that allows me to ask composers, performers, executive directors, and audience members in-depth questions about what they love. It inspires me to hear about the projects to which they have committed and it inspires my readers as well.
In fact, that brings up a good point. This first reason also means access to you, dear reader and Sybaritic Faithful members. No matter whether you have stumbled to this post or you have subscribed to the blog, being able to communicate with you directly is one of the most important reasons for why I blog.
2. To Shine a Spotlight
Baltimore is not New York City. I get that. That’s one of the reasons I live here and not there. But, we have a bustling music scene here and so does our lovely neighbor Washington D.C. Both cities have traditional stalwarts as well as exciting new music ensembles all deeply mission-driven. I wasn’t just being cheeky with the “Tim Smith can’t be everywhere” tag line. He really can’t and neither can Anne Midgette and that is why bloggers fill in those gaps.
I blog because I am in an eternal battle with all the lazy journalists writing those “Classical Music is Dead” articles. If it were dead, I’d have a lot more time for yoga and bourbon…
As I mentioned earlier, there are so many creatives who are pouring their everything into their work. I want to make sure to spread the word about those truly special people, works, and ineffable performances. Plus, I do not have to ask my editors whether or not I can review a show with only one run. I can share the news about a one-off performance because it’s about making the connection between the community and the artists. The community can start to participate in the buzz around homegrown talent and continue to support the arts in the future.
3. To Connect with My Tribe
My goal in writing the “let’s discuss” and “quick news” pieces is to connect with my tribe. Seth Godin writes, “A group needs only two things to be a tribe: a shared interest and a way to communicate.” I have connected with so many people who love classical voice throughout the years. From opera productions to summer festivals, arts conferences to internships, concerts to conservatory, we have assembled over debates and conversations about the art form that we love. The “28 Days to Diva” series alone has started some heated discussions. Having a blog is a way for me to continue that conversation with the people who are not in the practice room next door anymore and start the conversation with those whose path I haven’t crossed yet.
I have heard some people describe having a blog as being better and cheaper than therapy. That’s not why I am still here. I am here because I want to learn, I want to highlight the amazing work others are doing, and I want to get better. This isn’t a brief love affair. It’s the real deal. Thanks for going along for the ride.