(Credit: Liv Redpath’s Official Website)
Everyone has their opinions on what an artists is or should be. That of course, creates numerous obstacles for artists themselves, who are constantly in search for their own voice and how to develop it. In today’s opera world, that challenge becomes all the more prevalent as the art form’s own identity and expectations remain in flux.
For young singers, this can make that development all the more daunting and stressful.
But carving out that artistic identity shouldn’t cause anxiety – it should be a cause for celebration, as it is for soprano Liv Redpath, who has spent a great deal of time developing her own career under the LA Opera’s Domingo-Colburn-Stein Program and will be competing in this year’s Operalia Competition. Redpath has performed a number of major roles at the LA Opera in recent years and also appeared at the Santa Fe Opera, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Wolf Trap Opera, and Aspen Music Festival, among others.
Here are Redpath’s three keys for developing her own sense of artistic individuality.
1. Learn From Everyone
In the opera world, you are constantly meeting new people with unique personalities and even more fascinating perspectives on art and life. Learn from them. Take in the knowledge they have to offer to develop your own work.
“Enjoy people wherever and however they come into your life, and keep the ones you treasure around, whenever you can. You never know what brilliant, kind stranger might be at your next crossroads. Keep your world big,” Redpath noted.
2. Own Your Artistry
Interacting and learning from other people can be overwhelming and sometimes, you just need to go with your gut.
“You are the gatekeeper to your own artistry,” Redpath noted. “The older I get, the more I realize the value one’s ear, musicality, intellect, and hard work hold. A voice can be beautiful and unique, yes, but what the listener hangs on, after a few moments, is the mind and spirit that are there inside it all.“
3. Take Risks
Finally, at the end of the day, just go for it. All artists will be faced with great creative challenges at some point and the only way to grow is to embrace them.
“Take on ambitious projects and pour yourself into them. It’s always more fun to show up to the next year of your life better and smarter than the last.”