Living La Vida 'Lorca'
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A couple of weeks before opening night, there’s
a spike in the intensity level of rehearsals. All of the activity
has moved into Freud: fittings, run-throughs, set construction,
lights. There are no more days off; rehearsals are over when Stockhammer
says they are. Gondek cautions the singers to take extra care of
their health and their voices. Hughes makes sure he gets 10 hours
of sleep a night and drinks water by the gallon.
The odd thing is that nobody is looking for perfection.
A perfect performance, Stockhammer says, “is quickly forgotten.”
When singers take chances, mix it up a little, try different things
— that’s when you get a memorable performance, the conductor
When the curtain rises on opening night, Stockhammer
says, his job is basically over. The singers know what they need
to do. The musicians have the music in front of them. All that is
left for the conductor to do is give everybody permission, with
a nod or gesture, to get on with their jobs. From time to time he
might need to steer them back on track if they wander off course.
Other than that, he just gets out of the way and
lets it happen.