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Stephanie J. Block: This woman takes her job seriously.

Parks
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My friend told me that Kendra and Stephanie went into his mom's shop over the weekend (...which means they were about 3 blocks away from my house. Wow, just realized that...moving on). Stephanie supposedly wouldn't say a single word because she was saving her voice for the show. She must REALLY care about the show. I have a lot of respect for her.
"If it walks like a Parks, if it wobbles like a Parks, then it's definitely fat and nobody loves it." --MA
Updated On: 10/12/05 at 10:45 PM
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MrBundles
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I love her...so much.
Your fupa is showing.
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CATSNYrevival
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see, that just makes me think that she doesn't know how to preserve her voice properly and makes me think less of her...
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Craig
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Performers from all levels go on vocal rest. It's nothing to criticize for - it's very common.
"A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men" - Willy Wonka
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Khashoggi
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"See, that just makes me think that she doesn't know how to preserve her voice properly and makes me think less of her... "

See, that comment just makes me think that you're an absolute a**hole, and if I had any respect for you in the first place, would lead me to have less for you. Unfortunatley, I never had any respect with you to begin with.
Different performers have different methods for dealing with vocal fatigue, and different people's voices handle eight shows a week differently. YOU try singing that role eight times a week. No matter what you think of the show, you can't deny that the role of Elphaba is a vocally demanding one. If she feels that not speaking is the best way to ensure that her voice is at 100% then good for her.
Until you're headlining a show like Wicked and have that massive responsibility to your audience, shut the hell up. :)
-J.
"I will join this conversation on the proviso that we stop bitching about people. Wigs, dresses, bust sizes, penises, nightclubs and bloody Kylie!" - Bernadette, Priscilla Queen of the Desert the Musical
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cathywellerstein
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i've never completely rested my voice like that. has anyone here? does it work?

i feel like, for me personally, that if i didn't use my voice all day, it would get tired and i'd probably have to warm up for a longer amount of time. maybe it's just different for everyone? or should i try not speaking for a long period of time?

(sorry if this is steering too far away from the original thread)
Kringas
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It wouldn't be a Wicked-related thread without some sort of pissy comment from Cats, now would it?
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Popular
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Seriously CATSNY, that is the silliest thing I ever heard. Perhaps she wasn't talking as a PRECAUTION and not cause she couldn't. NOT talking shows that she DOES know how to perserve her voice....by NOT talking! Even the most trained and careful singers experience fatigue...it's called being a lead in a very vocally demanding show. Check back in with us once you've tried it.
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BroadwayGirl107
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I'm actually missing the purpose of this thread to begin with. countless performers go on vocal rest or do minimal speaking during the day to preserve their vocal energy for their performance. Do we need a thread commending the work ethic of all of them now?
"This country, this experiment, America, this hubris: what a lament if no one saw it go. Here today, gone tomorrow. Dissipation is actually much worse than cataclysm."--August: Osage County
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Ebonic_Singer
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cathy--it works for me. I try to speak as little as posible, drink tea and rest. I do have to warm up a little bit longer, but it really puts my voice in top shape!
Parks
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...did I miss some memo saying to be pissy tonight? Some of us aren't being very nice tonight.
"If it walks like a Parks, if it wobbles like a Parks, then it's definitely fat and nobody loves it." --MA
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almostxfamous
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Cathy, I agree. I tend to think that when I talk/warm up more, my voice is better. Maybe when it comes to being in Wicked, which is so vocally exhausting, you have to tweak your techniques.

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BroomstickBoy
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Resting your voice by not speaking is a method that works quite well. It's one of the better ways to keep your voice healthy if you're involved in a show. I remember reading in an interview with Kate Reinders saying that Bernadette Peters lived like a nun while she was doing Gypsy, as if she had taken a vow of silence :-p.

But yes, it works. Just don't talk, drink plenty of liquids, warm tea or water, and don't get around anything that may be harmful. Try to stay inside too, in case allergies are an issue. I've recently had a case of hay fever allergies and pharyngitis and had to refrain from being outside, talking, etc. To quote Ursula "No more talking, singing, ZIP-AH!"
I don't WANT to live in what they call "a certain way." In the first place I'd be no good at it and besides that I don't want to be identified with any one class of people. I want to live every whichway, among all kinds---and know them---and understand them---and love them---THAT's what I want! - Philip Barry (Holiday)
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Anakela
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I saw Stephanie entering herself in the Wicked lotto in L.A. a few times, one day while doing the whole non-talking thing too- complete with writing on white board when she couldn't seem to make herself understood by mouthing words. I thought it was great how much she was willing to conserve her voice.
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Taken straight from a Q& A she did in response to how she manages to sing 8 times a week:

Stephanie: ANYONE who uses their voice as much as a leading role on Broadway is going to experience fatigue and swelling of the vocal cords! ANYONE...trained or untrained! It is a muscle and just as an athlete tears tissue, or sprains a muscle, etc...so will a singer. Now, to what extend and how quickly this occurs is the key. Note: Opera singers seem to "respect" the voice as a precious instrument as they only perform 4 shows a week...no more!
Natural talent is a gift from God and how lucky you are if you have it! But without proper training, you will not last 8 shows a week. You will not last 3 shows a week...especially when you are performing on a long term contract. You must study. I began with my voice teacher when I was 11 years old. I had an "Annie" belt and everyone "ohhed and ahhed". My teacher did not allow me to sing a song for almost 2 years. The training was all about mastering breathing, mouth shape, the study of the anatomy of the voice, etc...Then we began a more classical training. She felt if I could sing the classical material, then musical theatre would be a "breeze". Of course, the musical theatre songs have become quite difficult. In most of the "pop" musicals, you have to have a 3 octave range. This comes from training!When I am not onstage, I protect my voice by not drinking caffeine or alcohol. I do not smoke and try to stay away from smokers. I speak as little as possible avoiding loud restaurants and over use of cell phones. I ALWAYS warm up before a performance and cool down after a performance. I am aware of my environment...steaming my cords, having a humidifier by my bed. I know this sounds completely crazy and over the top. But believe me, for a demanding role like Elphaba, it's necessary! Singing is a discipline as well as a gift.
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StephanietheStar
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It's gonna suck to be me...I talk waaaaayyyy too much to ever stop. When I'm in a 8 times a week show--I will be like Sara Ramirez and never be there re: Stephanie J. Block: This woman takes her job seriously. I suck....

I *heart* Stephanie J!
and all that I could do because of you was talk of love...
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rKrispyt
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Oh good Lord, I don't know anyone in the voice program at my school who DIDN'T have to do this.

We were basically 'assigned' by our voice teacher or music director to go on vocal rest, and they MEAN that - to the point that we were given notes for profs for the rest of our classes as well as a dry erase board that was smaller so we could carry it with us, and that was our means of communications when we were on vocal rest.

It always helped me a lot. Especially cause it prevented things I"d never think before doing that were harmful to my voice - like talking in cars, or in the cafeteria where you don't realize you kick up your volume to be heard...

I definitely recommend it if you're able.

If I show you the darkness I hold inside, will you bring me to light?
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cathywellerstein
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ebonicsinger- thanks. i find that drinking tea helps too! maybe i'll try resting my voice a bit more as well before i have to go through some intense singing.


broomstickboy- when i stagedoored after i saw gypsy, bernadette didn't speak a word the whole time. she barely moved her mouth at all except to crack tiny smiles. but that was it. (ps, your icon of sherie is making me drool...even though i'm a straight girl.)
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rKrispyt
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lol, when I saw the farewell tour of jcs, carl anderson was in this giant fur leaving the stagedoor area (it was enclosed but a rather small space, the dead of winter in cleveland, ohio, and so if the door opened, you couldn't escape the freezing air/winds that came in) and this huge scarf around his neck. He was generally pleasant, but, as more people started to come into that area (people heeading to the parking lots that noticed he'd come out adn such) he started gettin' a lil diva nad warning/threatening in this totally jekkyl and hyde way that he would have to leave if people didn't keep the door closed until he was completely bundled up and ready to leave and finally someone else opened the door to either leave or join, and he handed this little girl back her program mid-signing and was like "that's it! I TOLD you all if you kept opening that door I was leaving!" threw his scarf around his neck and stormed out past all these people waiting for him.

I understand and I don't at the same time - I get wanting to preserve your voice, but he was enclosed, and already pretty much wrapped up, all he needed to do was wrap his scarf around his neck - couldn't he do that inside and continue to sign?

I dunno, it was one of the only true diva moments (don't get me wrong, I like him and think he's great) I've ever experienced...
If I show you the darkness I hold inside, will you bring me to light?
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emo_geek
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She has had more voice training then a lot of broadway performers.
"I never had theatre producers run after me. Some people want to make more Broadway shows out of movies. But Elliot and I aren't going to do Batman: The Musical." - Julie Taymor 1999
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zoran912
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Um...you realize that Carl Anderson died after that tour, don't you?
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The Distinctive Baritone
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I have one word to contribute here:

RICOLA

It is God's gift to singers. It's herbal, unlike other products that use menthol which is very bad for singing, as it numbs your throat.
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Hanna from Hamburg
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Well, generally, speaking is one of the worst things for the voice. It usually falls in a register that just grates on the vocal cords. Limiting the amount of speaking a performer does outside of a show is just a smart thing to do -- especially for a vocally demanding role like Elphaba. When you add all the background noise (in restaurants, stores, stage doors, cars, etc.) that will force you to strain a little bit more, perhaps you can see why Stephanie is limiting her speaking. She's already been out quite a bit because of the accident in Toronto with the new flying technique. I'm sure she doesn't want to be out of the show with back spasms AND vocal strain! What would everyone say about her then?
". . . POP . . ."
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freeadmission
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This makes me feel guilty for being a waitress. LOL Maybe I should be more concious of speaking more heady during work rather than in my chest as per usual.
Tir Na Nog
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****She must REALLY care about the show. I have a lot of respect for her.****

If she had any respect for herself she would have thought twice before getting involved with such a HORRIBLE musical.
"One difference between poetry and lyrics is that lyrics sort of fade into the background. They fade on the page and live on the stage when set to music". - Stephen Sondheim