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I stole these interview questions :) 

***So, how did you get started on Your Musical Path? Perhaps which Songs, Musicals, albums, etc.. 

Some of my earliest musical memories are at my grandparents' house -- my grandma had two VHS tapes of Calamity Jane and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (I was smitten with Howard Keel and his big, booming voice). My grandpa was always singing old honky tonk country songs, like The Wabash Cannonball. I was also obsessed with a cassette tape of "contemporary Christian music" soprano Sandi Patty. 

***Do you have a vocal coach, if so ~ What age did you start lessons? 

I began piano lessons at age five, joined a children's choir at ten, and had my first voice lesson at twelve. I studied with various teachers all the way through college, and have been singing with the same local choir (that I was fortunate enough to tour Europe with) since I was sixteen. 

***What musical genre do you consider yourself besides Classical Crossover (aka: which way do you lean in the Classical Crossover genre)? 

I love taking the songs of Laurel Canyon - women songwriters such as Joni Mitchell and Laura Nyro - which are naturally very melodic and emotive - and putting my classically trained spin on them. (This is something I'm working on; I haven't shared it publicly yet.) My own original music is a hybrid of my love for the symphony and classic Hollywood musicals alongside traditional folk music. I love darker art songs, such as Mahler's Kindertotenlieder, and I like to take the opposite approach and sing art songs as if they are folk songs - which in a way, as songs of the people, or based on traditional texts, they are. 

***What are your all-time favorite theatrical musicals & why? 

West Side Story - Leonard Bernstein is my favorite composer - and The Scarlet Pimpernel. Honorable mention to Hamilton because it was so innovative and successful; Lin-Manuel Miranda is a genius. Funny Girl will always have a special place in my heart since I was able to play Fanny Brice in 2012. 

***If you could sing with one singer who would it be ~ (can be living or deceased)? 

Douglas Sills - best known for the lead role in The Scarlet Pimpernel 

***Any Special Musical Performance Plans for 2019? 

No performance plans, but recording wise... 
1) I am really trying to focus on writing original music. I like to write whimsical folk music with a dark twist, and I'm also learning Acid / Magix software to create electroswing tracks. 
2) I have a set of art songs and American folk music that I hope to record in the near future - the songs are united with a theme of mysticism, death, the afterlife, and fairyland. 
3) I really hope to record at least a few tracks with my bandmate Justin Trowbridge (we are known as Hotel Gypsies, but will be re-branding soon) of our original songs and murder ballads. 

***What is Your Ultimate Career Goal? 

I would like to be a prolific writer and collaborate with other musicians around the world. As a bucket list item, I'd love to sing at Carnegie Hall someday and/or appear on NPR's "Live From Here" (fka Prairie Home Companion). 

***What do you consider to be your best recorded song? 

I'm fond of my "The Summer Night" EP; I was fresh off Funny Girl when I recorded that and I had discovered a more natural, musical theatre side to my voice. 

***Which songs would you consider the most fun to perform? 

Since I am a very introverted person prone to stage fright, I like performing in groups best. Playing with my rock band Echopod was always nerve-wracking (I played a keyboard with multiple effects pedals as well as manipulating a voice effects kit) but so much fun to make loud rock n' roll noise with my friends! Soloing with a choir is something I really enjoy, as well - being somewhat in the spotlight but having that wall of sound behind you is thrilling. 

***What would you consider your signature song? 

"I'd Rather Burn" is probably what I'm best known for performing / having written. 

***What is your favorite color dress and/or style to wear when you sing? 

Liza Minnelli is a huge influence on my style; dramatic black, red, and sequins. If I'm performing folk or original music, I might wear something more flowing and gothic, like Stevie Nicks. 

***So, what are your tricks to keep your voice in shape, do you eat/drink or not eat/drink before you sing, what are your tricks for warming up? 

I break all the rules; I like to have a shot of bourbon before a show and I firmly believe in hot toddies for curing a cold / sore throat. I do try to avoid processed sugar before I sing, but dairy doesn't really bother me. I like to warm up with silly cartoon voices; it limbers up my voice and also helps shake out some of the nerves. 

***How many singing competitions have you performed in and/or won? 

I've notoriously lost every competition I entered; I eventually gave up in my late teens. There was one particular singer - who was a friend from choir and is the sweetest, most talented person you will ever meet - that I always seemed to lose to in my age group, as she sang more "country" flavored songs that were popular with the judges. Although, in college, my particular "opera scenes" castmates and I were chosen to perform at the National Opera Association's annual convention in Atlanta.

***Do you have any pets? What are their names? What are your favorite pets? 
I have two cats, Aggie (after Agatha Heterodyne, Girl Genius) and Teddy (Theodore Nostradamus Trowbridge). I love garden animals: snails, hedgehogs, honeybees. 

***Do you have any other hobbies outside of singing? 

I write everything; not just songs. I love reading, and watching British murder mystery shows. I used to be fairly good at web programing / coding but I've fallen behind with the latest versions of coding languages. I don't have space for a garden, but I love flowers and gardening. Since I have a shaved head, I like to loom knit hats for the colder months. 

***What country do you live in? What countries would you like to visit? 

I have always lived in (or near) Manhattan "The Little Apple" in northeast Kansas. Iceland is at the top of my list to visit, and after that probably France. I'd love to revisit Prague. 

Favorite Songs: Nicole Byblow "Without a Soul", Jennifer Knapp "Letting Go" 
Favorite Movies: anything from the "Classic Hollywood" era, Crimson Peak, Inception 
Favorite TV shows: almost anything BBC: murder mysteries, Sherlock, QI, Doctor Who, the "Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell" miniseries 
Favorite Books: I'm going to play the "I can't choose!" card -- I'm a huge reader. My favorite author is probably A. A. Milne; I'm very into non-fiction as well. 
Favorite Food: Sushi... Pasta... Steak... 
Favorite Desserts: lemon cheesecake 
Favorite Color: pink & champagne 
Favorite Subject in School: Physics, English 
Favorite Singer: The name that jumps to mind is Cecile McLorin Salvant; in the opera realm, I love Leontyne Price and Christine Schafer 
Favorite Actor/Actress: Again, all of the classic Hollywood greats! Judy Garland, Ingrid Bergman, Cary Grant, Leslie Howard, Jerry Lewis, Louise Brooks...

Envision Your Ideal Life 

WHERE DO I LIVE 
WHAT DOES MY HOME LOOK LIKE 
WHERE DO I WORK 
WHAT DO I DO (AT WORK) 
WHAT IS MY DAILY ROUTINE 
WHAT DOES MY WARDROBE CONSIST OF 
WHAT DO I EAT 
WHAT DO I READ / WATCH / LISTEN TO 
HOW DO I CARE FOR MY BODY 
WHAT IS MY 'LIFESTYLE' 
WHAT AM I SPENDING MONEY ON 
WHERE DO I TRAVEL 

WHO IS IN MY LIFE 
WHO DO I HANG OUT WITH 
HOW DO I HELP PEOPLE 
WHO IS MY IDEAL PARTNER 
HOW DO I EXPRESS LOVE 
WHOSE APPROVAL / RECOGNITION DO I CRAVE 
WHAT BOUNDARIES DO I SET 

WHAT DO I DO FOR FUN 
WHAT ARE MY SIDE HUSTLES / PASSION PROJECTS 
CAN MY PASSION PROJECT BE MY JOB 
WHAT ARE MY LONG TERM GOALS 
WHAT AM I WORKING TOWARDS 
WHAT ARE MY TALENTS/SKILLS 
WHAT ARE MY PRIORITIES 
WHAT DO I WANT TO LEARN 
WHAT'S ON MY BUCKET LIST 
HOW DO MY CHILDHOOD DREAMS INSPIRE ME 
IT IS IMPORTANT TO ME TO BE KNOWN FOR _____ 
WHAT ARE MY CRAZIEST DREAMS 

WHAT GETS ME FIRED UP / WHAT AM I PASSIONATE ABOUT 
WHO INSPIRES ME 
WHAT IS ON MY MIND 
HOW IS MY MENTAL HEALTH 
WHAT ARE MY VALUES / #COREDESIREDFEELINGS 
WHAT DO I *NOT* WANT TO REGRET 
WHAT AM I AVOIDING (GOOD/BAD)
DO I HOLD BACK IN ANY AREAS 
WHAT IS MY INNER DIALOGUE 
WHAT DO I BELIEVE IN 
WHAT AM I GRATEFUL FOR 
IN WHAT WAYS AM I AUTHENTIC 
AM I MISSING ANYTHING IN MY LIFE 
WHAT MAKES ME HAPPY, WHAT SPARKS JOY

2019 Reading 

I've set my reading goal for 2019 at 75 books. Including all the books below, that gives me a little wiggle room to add a few new discoveries! As you can see, I'm particularly into neuroscience, brain chemistry, and the consciousness / emotions this year.

FINISHED READING: 

  1. Put Your Dream to the Test - John Maxwell 

  2. The Bullet Journal Method - Ryder Carroll 

  3. Welcome to Night Vale - Jeffrey Cranor 

  4. The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner - Terry Pratchett 

  5. Shadow & Bone - Leigh Bardugo

CURRENTLY READING: 

  1. The Shadow Effect - Marianne Williamson, Deepak Chopra, Debbie Ford
  2. Beauty Sick: How the Cultural Obsession with Appearance Hurts Girls and Women - Renee Engeln
  3. Finding Your Element - Ken Robinson PHD 

WANT TO READ: 

  1. Music and Mantras: The Yoga of Mindful Singing - Girish 
  2. F*ck Feelings - Michael I Bennett MD 
  3. Wild Tales: A Rock & Roll Life - Graham Nash 
  4. How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain - Lisa Feldman Barrett 
  5. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life - Anne Lamott 
  6. The Art of Asking - Amanda Palmer 
  7. How Champions Think - Bob Rotella 
  8. The Dark Tower novels - Stephen King 
  9. The Night Circus - Erin Morgenstern 
  10. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society - Mary Ann Shaffer 
  11. Mind: A Journey to the Heart of Being Human - Daniel J Siegel 
  12. From Bacteria to Bach and Back: The Evolution of Minds - Daniel C Dennett 
  13. White Fragility - Robin DiAngelo 
  14. Wired to Create - Carolyn Gregoire 
  15. Buddha's Brain - Rick Hanson PHD 
  16. This is Your Brain on Music - Daniel J Levitin 
  17. The Tell-Tale Brain - V S Ramachandran 
  18. The Brain: The Story of You - David Eagleman 
  19. Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain - Oliver Sacks 
  20. The Secret Life of the Mind - Mariano Sigman PHD 
  21. Self Comes to Mind: Constructing the Conscious Brain - Antonio Damasio 
  22. Anatomy of the Soul - Curt Thompson MD 
  23. The Emotional Life of Your Brain - Richard J Davidson PHD 
  24. How the Mind Works - Steven Pinker 
  25. The Hazel Wood - Melissa Albert 
  26. The Healthy Mind Toolkit - Alice Boyes PHD 
  27. The Mind-Gut Connection - Emeran Mayer 
  28. Designing Your Life - Bill Burnett 
  29. The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself - Michael A Singer 
  30. I Contain Multitudes - Ed Yong 
  31. The Human Superorganism - Rodnery Dietert PHD 
  32. Drink: The Intimate Relationship between Women and Alcohol - Ann Dowsett Johnston 
  33. Pure - Linda Key Klein 
  34. Little, Big - John Crowley 
  35. Consciousness Explained - Daniel C Dennett 
  36. Busman's Honeymoon - Dorothy L Sayers 
  37. The Compass of Pleasure - David J Linden 
  38. Consciousness and the Brain - Stanislas Dehaene 
  39. Molecules Of Emotion: The Science Behind Mind-Body Medicine - Candace B. Pert
  40. The Girls at the Kingfisher Club - Genevieve Valentine
  41. Her Body and Other Parties - Carmen Maria Machado
  42. Joy, Guilt, Anger, Love: What Neuroscience Can--and Can't--Tell Us About How We Feel - Giovanni Frazzetto
  43. Radiance - Catherynne M Valente 
  44. The Enchanted Places & The Path Through the Trees - Christopher Milne 
  45. A is for Arsenic: The Poisons of Agatha Christie - Kathryn Harkup 
  46. Under the Pendulum Sun - Jeannette Ng 
  47. The Voice is All - Joyce Johnson 
  48. We Have Always Lived in the Castle - Shirley Jackson 
  49. The Year of Magical Thinking - Joan Didion 
  50. Words Without Music - Philip Glass

15 + 15 Personal Questions #4 

  1. If your 5 year old self were looking at you today, would it recognize you?
    In a goofy inner self sort of way, sure. Situationally? Nope.
  2. Who is the one person you'd love to have as a mentor?
    Leonard Bernstein OR Jerry Lewis
  3. What is one thing you always get when you go to the store?
    I'm always buying more pens. Especially colored pens.
  4. Do you get seasick?
    I wouldn't know. I've only been on a boat on a Norwegian fjord.
  5. Have you ever gotten sick from eating too much?
    I get sugar headaches...
  6. What is your favorite thing to put in the freezer to eat or drink that normally isn't?
    As a kid I used to eat mozzarella sticks still frozen. Still get an odd craving every now and then... haven't indulged, though!
  7. If you started training for the Olympics, what event would you have a realistic chance at?
    Archery
  8. If you were going to join a music band past or present, what band would fit you best?
    Crosby Stills & Nash (& Young)
  9. How long do you think you could last without your smartphone or internet?
    Oh, one day, tops
  10. Is someone's word enough for you or do you need more?
    If someone matters enough to be promising something to me, then I take them at their word.
  11. What is your favorite eye color on someone else, why?
    Brown/hazel -- why? Sentimental reasons.
  12. Does anything make you feel claustrophobic?
    Being pressed-in all around by too many people (duh)
  13. What do you have on your fridge door?
    A wedding souvenir from my best friend's wedding
  14. What is the most unusual thing you've done on a date?
    Checked out the liquid nitrogen and looked at bacteria through a microscope
  15. Have you ever been laid off from a job?
    No, but I've had seasonal / temporary jobs

 

  1. If a genie offered you three wishes, what would you wish for (not more wishes)?
    - mad piano skills
    - immortality for my cat(s)
    - the ability to listen to 5 symphonies (or whatever) at once, like Data from Star Trek
  2. What housework/chore do you absolutely refuse to do?
    washing dishes by hand
  3. Name something you had a close call with?
    drinking too much & being dangerous to myself
  4. If you could live one week with an uncivilized tribe to learn their ways, would you?
    Honestly, no. I value indoor plumbing too much.
  5. What one thing are you worried will never change for you?
    Financial (in)stability
  6. How do you resolve conflict?
    "Conflict? What conflict?" (It's not healthy, I know)
  7. If you were going to write an essay about your life what would your essay be called?
    "In Which Our Heroine..."
  8. Do you think there should be a salary cap for actors in movies?
    No cap, so long as the women are paid equally with the men
  9. Do you have a favorite furniture designer, if so who?
    I love anything mid-century modern
  10. What is your favorite outfit?
    Leggings, tank top, big snuggly cardigan
  11. What is your point of no return?
    The midway point? This one requires more thought.
  12. Are you godparent to a child, if so whose?
    Nope. It would be cool, though.
  13. What did you think was stupid until you tried it?
    feminism
  14. Would you ever date someone with a kid or kids?
    Again, honestly? No. I don't want kids.
  15. What is the worst thing you've ever tried?
    Oyster dressing (as in, Thanksgiving stuffing with oysters) -- unfortunately it's a family tradition

15 Personal Questions #3 

  1. Do you have any old friends you wish you could meet up with again?
    I miss Megan. Not sure how we fell apart.
  2. If you joined a rock band what position would you want?
    HAHAHA. Lead singer & keyboard player. ;)
  3. Do you know your own worth?
    Probably not.
  4. If you were designing your own fragrance to represent you, what would you call it?
    Ennui
  5. What did you do for your 21st birthday?
    My best friend Sam took me out to Aggieville (what else do you do in MHK?)
  6. What is something that gave you buyer's remorse?
    Every time I shop at Marshall's! lol
  7. Do you know how to jump rope?
    No....
  8. When it's your birthday do you always wear a birthday hat?
    I try not to. But I don't mind for other people's birthdays.
  9. Have you ever been to Legoland?
    NO BUT I WANT TO
  10. What is your favorite ride at any amusement park?
    The Sizzler at the Marshall Co Fair
  11. Describe your most independent decision or moment without others' influence?
    Getting my nose piercing on Dec 31st, 2009 / Going to New York for 3 months in 2008
  12. Have you ever made a scrapbook for yourself or someone else, what was in it?
    No, but I cherish the scrapbook my mother-in-law made for my wedding photos
  13. Do you think a full moon can have an effect on a person?
    ABSOLUTELY
  14. In a relationship do you believe in joint or separate bank accounts?
    SEPARATE
  15. Do you think friends make better lovers or that friends should never cross that line?
    I believe in every relationship beginning with friendship.

15 Personal Questions #2 

  1. If you lost everything you worked for tomorrow, what's the first step in starting over?
    Finding a reason to get up in the morning. Finding a reason to put one foot in front of the other. Living 10 seconds at a time.
  2. Something you believe in that others think is not real.
    Tarot? But I use it for journaling and creative writing, not predication.
  3. What social media platform are you most active on?
    Facebook / Twitter / Instagram
  4. What's the simplest way you have fun?
    Watching Martin & Lewis on YouTube
  5. What is your favorite personality trait you like about yourself?
    My easily-amused sense of humor
  6. Does the sight of blood make you queasy?
    Definitely *uncomfortable*
  7. What makes you feel unstoppable?
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nP0VBB7BO64

























     
  8. Do you think you need to slow down and enjoy life more?
    Slow down? No. Enjoy life more? Yes.
  9. How do you cope with loss or death?
    Honestly? Avoidance. Crying a lot.
  10. What book from your childhood would you want to read to your children?
    No children, but, Winnie the Pooh
  11. What moment from your life would you love to live over and over?
    Wedding night sex *blush*
  12. What news story are you tired of hearing about?
    Anything validating #45
  13. How did you meet your significant other?
    We were in a band together
  14. Who made the worst first impression on you but then later became your friend?
    Honestly, the opposite happens more often. I thought someone was OK but they turned out to be evil.
  15. Have you ever slept outdoors?
    I've napped on top of a hay bale...? lol

Firsts 

  • First friend
    Megan or Kayela
  • First love
    First crush was a cowboy, first celebrity crush Jim Craig / Tom Burlinson in "The Man From Snowy River"
  • First record / CD bought
    Jennifer Knapp - Kansas
  • First foreign holiday
    Norway when I was 7
  • First job
    General office lackey at a recording studio
  • First car
    '97 Dodge Dakota
  • First concert
    Rebecca St. James
  • First school
    homeschooled
  • First kiss
    on Manhattan Hill when I was 21
  • First teacher
    my mother, first music teacher was my piano teacher Loretta Petr
  • First alcoholic drink
    Bacardi & Coke in Budapest at 19

15 Personal Questions #1 

  1. What common pitfalls do you find yourself dealing with in your work life?
    Sleepiness
  2. Do you tend to follow your heart or your head?
    Wish I followed my head, probably follow my heart too much
  3. What celebrity or TV show in your opinion set a bad example for youth today?
    I've never even seen it, but gonna go ahead & say "Keeping Up with the Kardashians"
  4. How do you feel about jazz music, if you like it who is your favorite?
    I love jazz! #1 fav who comes to mind is Cecile McLorin Salvant. (Plus all the great classics,  natch.)
  5. Have you even been diagnosed with something that's challenged you, if so what?
    My diagnoses of depression and anxiety challenge me daily
  6. What is your favorite precious stone?
    My birthstone, ruby
  7. If you had your perfect dream house, what kind of tree/s would you want in your yard?
    Catalpa and weeping willow
  8. Describe your "poker face."
    I have none.
  9. If happiness were the national currency, what kind of work would make you rich?
    Reading & drinking (tea! I mean... tea?)
  10. Do you keep up with current events, why or why not?
    I try to; I listen to NPR / BBC World News daily. I think it's important to be informed.
  11. Did you ever have a mean nickname that kids called you, one you didn't like?
    Not kids; hated when adults sang "Chantilly Lace" at me.
  12. What childhood dreams have you neglected?
    I should maintain my piano skills better. Also, I LOVED writing as a child; struggle with it today.
  13. Do you ever compare your life to anyone else's, if so who?
    There is a certain local female musician who makes me feel inadequate, as much as I admire her. Also, instagram celebrities in general make me feel slimy.
  14. What's the craziest thing you've done in a car?
    Been kissed while driving.
  15. What's something weird you do before bedtime?
    On my phone too much? I don't know!

Favorites 

Favorite song: “Without a Soul” - Nicole Byblow 

Favorite music: https://www.last.fm/user/missnewyork/library/artists?date_preset=ALL_TIME 

Favorite book: Once on a Time (A. A. Milne), Sherlock Holmes

Favorite movie/TV show/miniseries: “Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell” 

Favorite childhood TV show: Wishbone, Bill Nye the Science Guy

Favorite composer: Gustav Mahler

Favorite educational video: Leonard Bernstein Norton Lectures "The Unanswered Question: Six Talks at Harvard"

Favorite audiobook narrator: Stephen Fry

Favorite comedian: Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis

Favorite graphic novel: Agatha Heterodyne Girl Genius

Favorite meal: sushi or manicotti or steak 

Favorite candy: toffee, anything peppermint 

Favorite ice cream: Ben & Jerry’s Cinnamon Buns 

Favorite perfume: Chanel Chance 

Favorite dog breed: corgi 

Favorite big cat: tiger 

Favorite animal at the zoo: penguins 

Favorite pizza topping: chicken + red onion + pineapple 

Favorite tipple: a Manhattan 

Favorite cartoon: The Amazing World of Gumball 

Favorite Actor/Actress: Cary Grant, Judy Garland

Favorite musical: West Side Story, The Scarlet Pimpernel 

Favorite city: New York City 

Favorite color: pink 

Favorite car: Chrysler Crossfire, 1967 Impala 

Favorite soda: Vanilla Coke 

Favorite cereal: Cinnamon Toast Crunch 

Favorite quote: For a person remains of consequence not so far as he leaves something behind him but so far as he acts and enjoys, and rouses others to action and enjoyment. -Goethe 

Favorite magazine: English Home 

Favorite season: summer 

Favorite candle scent: coconut milk mango 

Favorite flower: red geranium, lilac, lily of the valley, violet 

Favorite coffee order: peppermint breve or cold brew with cream

July To-Read List 

Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte

Songwriting Without Boundaries - Pat Pattison

Writing Better Lyrics - Pat Pattison

Last Call - Daniel Okrent

The Left Brain Speaks, The Right Brain Laughs - Ransom Stephens

Strong Poison - Dorothy L Sayers

Walking in this World - Julia Cameron

Creative Recovery - Eric Maisel & Susan Raeburn

Make Peace with Your Mind: How Mindfulness and Compassion Can Free You from Your Inner Critic - Mark Coleman

Why Smart People Hurt - Eric Maisel

How to Write Short: Word Craft for Fast Times by Roy Peter Clark

Make Your Creative Dreams Real by SARK