Thursday, June 19, 2014

Overtures - Workshop with Erika Shannon and Jen DeRosa

Jen DeRosa looks on as Erika Shannon
give physical adjustment suggestions
to students.
Yesterday, the Overtures students had the pleasure of spending a large portion of their day participating in a workshop with Erika Shannon and Jen DeRosa. What started out in the early part of the day as one of the most intense physical warm-ups any had experienced eventually led to a more relaxed and far less sweaty vocal workshop in the afternoon. As one student described the morning warm up / workout, "It was the most intense workout I've ever had. Definitely a lot more exhausting than any class or personal training session I have done at any gym before." Another student cried, "Why didn't you tell us to bring a spare shirt to move in? I didn't think I was going to be sweating this much today." All sweatiness and exhaustion aside, the morning warm-up session ended with tired smiles and energized bodies, exactly what Jen and Erika needed for the work they would do later that afternoon with the students. 

Allison takes note and adjusts her performance
of "You've Got Possiblities"
After a well deserved lunch break and stretching session, the Overtures students were back in the rehearsal room with Jen and Erika to focus on the performance side of things; both vocally and physically. Each student presented a short cut of one of their assigned songs to the instructors and was then given individual feedback. Some may think that only seeing 32 bars of a song is not enough to offer advice to improve ones performance. Those people would be wrong! For every student that presented a piece for the class, Jen and Erika had eclectic and useful advice to adjust physically and vocally to make their songs truly their own. Suggestions and adjustments varied greatly from barnyard animal noises, vocal centers, physical pressence / blocking, to even throwing words and objects around the room. No student was forgotten and none of the students will likely forget this unique workshop session.

Ashley gets some warm up advice from Jen DeRosa as the workshop gets underway.


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