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What is an Opera Singer?
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Author: Suzanne Mentzer
When did operatic singing become something that needs to be souped-up or dumbed-down?

..................Just what is an opera singer anyway?

When did operatic singing become something that needs to be souped-up or dumbed-down? Ok, not everyone has been exposed. I would like to add a little perspective on what it is like to make an operatic sound.

Let's just say, for starters, that one is born with this type of instrument. This is not enough. Opera singing is an athletic endeavor.

Just as an athlete is trained, we are trained in the technique of propelling a sound into a large space -- sometimes 3500-4000 seats. Many assume we are amplified. No mic. No net.

Here is a good analogy. We, like baseball pitchers, have to get the right speed, spin, placement of a ball way out over home plate. They wind up and release. We wind up and release. Like pitchers, we do not play two games in a row as we need days off to rest our instruments. Like pitchers with their jackets over their arms, you will see us with scarves around our necks.

We have two little strings in our throats upon which our talent and livelihood rely -- the vocal chords, which we also use to speak, hum, snore, cough. We cannot put them away when not in use. Temperatures, humidity levels, diet, exercise, hormones, emotions, illness, and age affect them. We have little choice but to stay in pretty good shape.

Just as nine innings in baseball can brief or endless, operas can run 45 minutes to 5 hours. This does not.........

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