Resources

This page is a listing of the useful websites and podcasts that have been mentioned throughout the podcast, organized by type as best I can!


Diction Books


Business Resources/Useful Websites

  • Musical America - a directory of over 14,000 performing arts organizations in the Americas and worldwide, including festivals, concert series and competitions. Many agencies list what their performers are doing there, as well.
  • Opera America - members have access to a comprehensive listing of opera companies in the Americas and worldwide, including Young Artist information, chorus auditions, job listings and contact names through Opera Source.
  • Technology for the Classical Singer - with video tutorials on how to get the most out your technological tools and blog postings about everything from online treatises on singing to links to foreign language dictionaries to videos on how the vocal mechanism works--a must-have resource for everyone!
  • What the Fach?! The Definitive Guide for Opera Professionals Auditioning and Working in Germany, Austria and Switzerland - now in it's second edition, this book is an invaluable resource for performers looking to audition in German-speaking countries. It includes tons of information on auditioning for agents and houses, as well as interviews with American performers who are over here already, a glossary of useful terms and lists of useful websites. Available in paperback as well as all kinds of electronic mediums.
  • YAP Tracker - a must-know resource for singers looking for young artist programs and competitions. This site last year had over 2,600 audition listings, with information on registration, a tracking system that reminds members of deadlines and tracks what needs to be done when and online reference forms for your teachers and coaches.

European Summer Programs


Online Librettos/Scores

  • International Music Score Library Project - online scores of all music in the public domain (check public domain laws in your country before downloading anything!), including full scores and piano vocal scores in most cases.
  • The LiederNet Archive -a terrific resource for song texts in the public domain, with songs in over 100 languages indexed by poet, composer, text and language.
  • Neue Mozart Ausgabe online - the complete critical edition of Mozart's works. Copies can only be made for personal use--perfect resource for looking up instrumentation as well as double checking piano/vocal score discrepancies.
  • Opernführer (Opera Guide) - a website with librettos and background information for many operas in several different languages.

Specific Opera librettos

Dictionaries with phonetics

  • Dizionario d'ortografia e di pronunzia (from RAI Italian television)
  • Harpers Collins Sansoni Italian-English Dictionary (or Harpers Collins Italian-English Dictionary as iPad app)
  • lo Zingarelli Italian Dictionary (also available as iPad app)

Language Podcasts

  • A Taste of Russian - podcast with native speakers having conversations all in Russian. After the conversation, the narrator goes through the text again, explaining everything and spelling it out (in Russian!). A great way for people with some experience in the Russian language to continue studying, and a great diction lesson for beginners to Russian.
  • Audio storie, fiabe e favole per bambini - podcast of fairy tales all in Italian, spoken with beautiful diction! Available free on iTunes.
  • Podcast Francais Facile - a terrific podcast with grammar exercises for all levels available free on iTunes. The website also includes fill-in-the-blanks exercises.
  • The Russian Sound System - podcast with a native Russian reading lists of words with common letters or sound combinations.

Language Study

  • Hungarian Reference - sound clips of the Hungarian alphabet
  • Hungarian Studies 103 - a free online language course from the University of Kansas
  • iTunes University - with classes ranging from mathematics to history to the Fine Arts, these are downloadable audio or video recordings of university classes. Just go to your iTunes store and look for the iTunes U heading at the top.
  • Omniglot - a website dedicated to all the writing systems and languages of the world, with tips on learning languages, useful phrases, tongue twisters and pronunciation guides for each language that include phonetics
  • Wikipedia articles on some of the lesser-known languages that we've discussed are here at: Euskera (the Basque language), Pennsilfaanich Deitsch also known as the Pennsylvania Dutch language
  • Russian Alphabet - for beginners to the Cyrillic alphabet, the Wikipedia article can help with the basics (including some of the older letters that we run into in older scores), as well as Language Helper's page which includes sound clips of each of the letters.
  • Russian Language Lessons - website with free online Russian language lessons, now including audio clips.
  • Verbal Planet - an online "language school" that connects teachers and students for lessons over Skype. You can pick a teacher who suits your needs according to their native language as well as any second language they speak, and set up lessons according to your schedule.

Diction Study

  • Hungarian Vocal Music - article from the Journal of Singing, including an Introduction to Hungarian Lyric Diction
  • Les liaisons - a website (in French) containing the rules of French liaisons.
  • Phonetics: The sounds of spoken language - a flash animation website from the University of Iowa, which shows in motion the side view charts that many diction books use to show tongue position in English, German and Spanish.
  • SingersBabel, a diction website with video clips so that you can follow along with song texts (including IPA) as you listen to a native speaker reading. With lots of French, German and English art song to choose from, SingersBabel also has many choral works, as well as most of the Bach Cantatas.

Phonetics for the Vision-Impaired

History

  • Commedia dell'Arte - the Wikipedia article about a style of theater that has permeated opera throughout the centuries.
  • Fête Galante - the Wikipedia article about Fête Galante, an important part of French art and poetry used often in Mélodies.
  • The History of Rome - a terrific podcast that chronicles the entire history of Rome starting with Romulus and Remus. Several episodes have terrific background information that are relevant to standard repertoire operas.
  • iTunes University - with classes ranging from mathematics to history to the Fine Arts, these are downloadable audio or video recordings of university classes. Just go to your iTunes store and look for the iTunes U heading at the top. Specifically discussed the History 5: European Civilization to the Present classes from UC Berkeley.
  • Roman Mythology/Greek Mythology -these are just links to the Wikipedia pages for these topics, but I didn't want to leave out a topic that is so important to opera. These articles are enough to give us a start, since so much of early opera is based on mythology that it's important to have a good basis in the subject. For more specific topics, follow the links on Wikipedia for specific gods and goddesses or check out Theoi Greek Mythology, Mythweb, Encyclopedia Mythica or get a copy of Edith Hamilton's Mythology.
  • Zarzuela! a brief History - exactly what you'd expect from the title of the web page! This history also includes links to many of the great zarzuela composers, their biographies and lists of their works, for anyone looking to broaden their Spanish repertoire.

Literature

  • Talent is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers From Everybody Else by Geoff Colvin
  • Classic Authors - a limited resource for online literature in the public domain, available to read on the website itself.
  • LibriVox -free audiobooks of classic writing in the public domain in many languages. They are always looking for people to help record, so it's a nice way to volunteer for a good cause and practice your own diction!
  • The Literature Page - a limited resource for online literature in the public domain, available to read on the website itself. It also includes important historical speeches (remember that presidents used to actually write their own speeches!).
  • Project Gutenberg - free eBooks of classic writing in the public domain (in the USA) available for download in every electronic form. As with any website, before you download anything double check the public domain laws in your country, they may differ from the USA.

Translation

  • dict.cc - an online dictionary that relies on users of the site to help supply translations, with entries in many languages. It doesn't have phonetics, but it does have sample recordings of many of the words and a vocabulary training program.
  • Dolmetsch Online Music Dictionary - an extensive online dictionary of musical terms, including translations of them into French and German.