JenSop: The Singing Traveler!

Idealist. Dreamer. Singer. Explorer.

Sick singers

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So, um, remember that post I wrote a little bit back about singers being horribly paranoid about getting sick?

Yeah.  I got sick.

Not for opening weekend – that went great.  And our mid-week performance on Wednesday was good too.

I started feeling it on Thursday – kind of a scratchy feeling in my throat.  I got through Friday night’s show and Saturday afternoon’s okay.  I could tell I was a little off, but everyone assured me that I sounded just fine.  By our last show of the run on Saturday night, my voice was almost completely gone.  I was a victim of INSANE post nasal drip.  In the beginning I thought it was allergies, as post nasal drip is the only manifestation of allergies that I ever get.  (Believe me, I’d rather have a runny nose and itchy eyes than have gunk drip down on my vocal cords.)

It’s times like these that I’m insanely grateful for good vocal technique.  The skills I’ve learned over the many years of being a singer – support, placement, control, and just totally knowing the inner workings of my voice – really came in handy.  When I was faced with a voice on the fritz, I was able to salvage things fairly well because of knowing HOW to sing the right way.  I knew I was not singing my best.  Others said they couldn’t tell. (My insecure inner self thinks they’re all just saying that to be nice.)

I’ll be honest – I was pretty much freaking out the entire time backstage.  (My friends in the show will assure you that I am not exaggerating that statement…)   Instead of enjoying my last performance, I was stressed to the brink.  By Monday, I was full out sick as a dog, as that gunk fell into my chest resulting in a horrible cough that’s still lingering today.  Although, today I finally feel like my voice is starting to sound like me again.  Not quite ready to do any full out singing, but I don’t sound like a raspy baritone anymore – hey that’s progress, right?

In opera, a theatre will announce if the lead singer is vocally ill before the performance.  It’s usually a difficult decision for the singer and management to make, but is sometimes necessary so as to not hurt your career.  But I found out that that’s not done in musical theatre.  (Or at least most of it?)  I was living in total fear of crashing and burning out there on stage and having people think of me as bad.  But perhaps that fear gave me enough of an adrenaline rush to keep me hanging on for dear life.  Which might also explain why I crashed so hard and got so sick after the show was over.

I’ll be looking forward to my next big sing – a recital on May 14th in Quakertown to promote my most recent CD.  And you KNOW I’ll be in total paranoia mode the entire week before!  Haha!  🙂


Author: JenSop

One of my favorite quotes is, "If your dreams don't scare you, they're not big enough." I guess I've been a dreamer all my life - I set my sights high and then I try to reach the sky. Some might call me a naive idealist, but that's just the way I am. I believe in always taking the high road, I believe in true love, and I believe in treating people the way you want to be treated. If you put good out into the world, good will come back to you! Being the dreamer that I am, I pursued singing as my primary life's calling - I've got two degrees in classical voice under my belt, and I sing just about anything under the sun. I also love a good adventure. Over the past few years, I've done quite a bit of world traveling, and have even lived abroad for stretches at a time: mostly in Vienna (Austria) and Croatia. A few years ago, I was lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time, and I became a travel agent who specializes in Disney vacations. (Seriously, I KNOW Disney - I've been going regularly since I was a little girl - and I LOVE it!) And with all my experience traveling and living in Europe, I'm becoming quite the specialist in that travel category as well. (And last year, I started working as a Tour Director in Central Europe!) As to the other juicy details of my life - I'm originally from Pennsylvania, I'm married to an awesome Croatian man named Miloš who is the BEST adventure partner a girl could ask for. (He's also an expert on knowing how to make me smile.) He's truly the love of my life! I've also had all kinds of other jobs along the way, besides singer and travel pro. (Which is pretty standard for those of us who went to school for music.) I've worked part time weekends as a Disney Princess look-alike for children's parties. I've been teaching for almost 20 years, and have lots of experience in retail and customer service. Oh, and I should also probably mention that I'm a huge Lord of the Rings/Star Trek nerd! :-) Let's all go along for an adventure, shall we?

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