“This humorous, heart-warming overture presents us with a promising work-in-progress; a project that I would love to see come to fruition. Hopefully, d’Lumiere’s quest will lead to her returning to the festival in 2022 with a full show. Because of course, ‘the score isn’t settled until the Trans Lady Sings.’”
Alice d’Lumiere outlines her musical ups and downs before declaring her commitment to learn to sing in a year. She does so with disarming wit and with the help of poems, an impression or two and a burst of the Moonlight Sonata. Who knows what she – and Tête à Tête – might bring next year?
WHAT THE CRITICS SAID ABOUT “Until the Trans Lady Sings”
But have I learned to sing? Well… Sort of… Not yet to a professional standard, but enough progress has been made to make me desperately yearn to carry on with learning opera and create a show about the experience.
Whilst a DCYP has no pressure to conclude with a finished show, just as my Opera year began by laying down the challenge at Tête à Tête: 2021, for Tête à Tête: 2022 I planned to return with a feedback piece. I had learned so much, but I didn't feel able to deliver a show to the standard the Festival deserved. However, the project remained in development and now “Trans Lady Sings” finally will take to the stage at Tête à Tête: The Opera Festival 2023prior to beginning a national tour, supported once again, by Arts Council England.
I would like to thank everyone, particularly Tête à Tête for their amazing support and encouragement during this crazy adventure.”
I am a Spoken Word Artist, but I have always yearned to sing. Yet to me music seems terrifyingly stratified: Soprano, Contralto, Tenor, Bass; is the role you play always ordained by the limits of your vocal physiology? However, in the superficially respectable world of Opera, gender seems temptingly bendy; which is very enticing to a gender-fluid person such as I. Unfortunately I’d never been able to hold a note, in either gender...
Just prior to lockdown I finally decided to try and overcome this frustrating childhood inhibition. With funding from Arts Council England’s “Developing Your Creative Practice” scheme I began attempting to challenge my perennial lack of skill in singing by training in - yes, you guessed it - Opera!
Oh well, I've always firmly believed in throwing myself in at the deep end...
On the 2nd of August 2021 I performed a fun little 15 minute piece called "Until the Trans Lady Sings" at Tête à Tête: the Opera Festival 2021. I called it a "Spoken Word Overture" and it was intended as a curtain-raiser to this forthcoming year of training; using my existing spoken word skills set to explain the challenge I had set myself.
Do please check out the Tête à Tête website; they do amazing work and were both kind and brave enough to let me into their Festival! If you couldn't get to the The Cockpit Theatre to see the piece, and want to get a sense of where I began, please check out the You Tube video below.
Over my DYCP year I received generous advice from some wonderfully knowledgeable and supportive people at The Royal Opera House and Britten Pears Arts, plus the practical help of some seriously talented singing teachers.