New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - January 20, 1984, New Braunfels, Texas
Friday, January 20,1984 •
Behind the scenes
Opera house prompter keeps show on the road
NEW YORK (AP) — Joan Domemann has had a sword thrown at her by tenor Luciano Pavarotti, played the part of a band on European radio and kept a soprano’s dress from failing off in front of 5,000 people.
But it's all in a day’s work for Domemann, who is one of five prompters with the Metropolitan Opera.
Domemann has spent the past IO seasons in a little box at the foot of the Met’s stage, cajoling, coaxing and otherwise directing singers. Often, she works IO hours a day for weeks at a time.
"Truly, she is not only bravissimo (great) as a prompter, but as a person,” said Mexican soprano Rosario Andrade.
"I occupy a position of unique trust,” says Domemann, who treats the unknowns the same as she treats the famous.
During an interview in her studio backstage ^.-at the Met, Domemann described her task as •Whelping singers to "not be afraid to keep their
On Pavarotti daring a per- and it stuck right out of the formance of “Lucia de prompter’s box next to my Lammermoor”: “He got all head. I’m not sure he ever involved in being emotional... really realized.” — Joan he took the sword and flung it Dornemann.
She says prompting is like ‘very expensive, luxurious
souls on view.’ underwear — underwear.
"You don’t even see it, but the surface is smooth and problem-free. You feel that anything can happen and you’re going to be all right.”
She has many tales in the telling of her prompting adventures.
Once, she said, Pavarotti was singing and waving a sword during a performance of Lucia di Lammermoor.
"He got all involved in being emotional with (the soprano) and didn’t realize exactly where I was,” Domemann said. "He took the sword and flung it and it stuck right out of the prompter’s box next to my head. I’m not sure he ever really realized.”
During a performance of Carmen, the soprano’s dress "started to disintegrate before 5,000 eyes,” Ms. Domrmann said. "So I called up the stage manager and said, ‘Safety pins, we need safety pins! ’
"I motioned some choristers off and they
got the safety pins and just sort of slid back on the stage. And as she was singing, (they) just pinned her up.”
The only time an audience ever notices a prompter is when the prompter’s voice is heard during a lull in the orchestra. Once, during a radio broadcast in Barcelona of La Boheme, a street band never made its stage entrance.
"Everybody on stage started getting very agitated,” Domemann said. So she started humming the melody the band would have played.
“Which was OK,” she said, "except that this was broadcast on Europe-wide radio. So there’s this tape around Europe of Joan being the band in La Boheme. ”
Domemann, who is in her late 30s, was bom in Boston. She has studied music and music therapy at Hofstra University, the Juilliard School and the University for Foreigners in Florence, Italy.
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'Cedar' rocks Bangladesh
Sixteen Bangladesh writers are featured in the Winter 1984 issue of Cedar Rock, published in New Braunfels by David C. Yates.
Contemporary fiction and poetry from Bangladesh is highlighted with nine photographs by Anwar Hoasain, one of that country’s leading photographers.
The writings were selected by Naomi Shihab Nye of San Antonio, whose recent book Hugging The Jukebox won the National Poetry Series.
Nye went to Bangladesh in May 1983 through a program sponsored
by Art America, administered by the U.S. Information Agency. She met with Bengali writers, participated in a public poetry reading with them and introduced them to modem American writing. In her introduction to Cedar Rock's special section, Nye writes that she was "delighted to find a country rich with literary heritage, a country proud of its poets.”
Cedar Rock now in its ninth year of publication, is available locally at Krause Books. It can also be ordered by mail from 1121 Madeline, New Braunfels.
Texas' tryouts set
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CANYON, Texas — Texas, the annual musical drama at Palo Durn Canyon State Park, is looking for singers, actors, dancers, musicians and stage hands to work on the show this summer.
Directors will hold auditions in Austin on Jan. 29, between noon and 3:30 p.m. in Room 1.172 of the University of Texas Drama Building. Dancers should report at 2:30 p.m.
Auditions will also be held in Dallas on Jan. 28, Albuquerque on Feb. 5, Lubbock Feb. 12 and Canyon on Feb. 19. Dallas auditions will be at Southern Methodist University, Room F-210 of the Owens Fine Arts Center, from noon to 4 p.m. Dancers will try out at 3 p.m.
Directors will be looking for four men and four women to fill major roles, six male supporting actors and 32 singers in al) voice ranges. Actors should
prepare a memorized scene, not to exceed three minutes. Singers may audition with an art song, aria, or something from a musical show. They may also try for small speaking parts by delivering a one-or two-minute monologue.
Outdoor voice and presence are important, because Texas is staged in an amphitheater with no microphones.
Twenty-five dancers are needed for the production. Those auditioning should bring workout clothes, and be able to demonstrate ballet or modem training. The orchestra will include two violins, upright bass, standard guitar, banjo and accordion.
AU applicants should bring photos, current addresses and telephone numbers. Company members are placed under contract and must be available May 20 through Aug. 25. The show opens June 13.
So long, folks!
The Goodbye People is into its last weekend at Circle Arts Theatre, with performances at 8:15 tonight and Saturday. Gary Sharrett stars as a 70-year-old entrepeneur who wants to get back in the fast-food business against his family’s better judgment.
Starting tonight. Cinema I will be offering Staying Alive and Flashdance as a double feature, with showings at 12:30, 4 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The 4 p.m. show will be offered at the usual bargain price. The double-header wiU be shown just once tonight, starting at 7:30 p.m.
On the other screen, Uncommon Valor shows at 7 and 9 each night, with
weekend matinees at 1,3 and 5.
Change of place
The Mid-Texas Symphony Chorus wiU be rehearsing at Seguing First United Methodist Church this Sunday, instead of at Texas Lutheran College. The church is located at 710 N. Austin, and rehearsal starts at 3:30 p.m. All prospective singers are welcome.
The Guadalupe County 4-H Adult Leaders will host the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, conducted by Buddy Morrow, on Jan. 28 at the Seguin K-C Hall. Discount advance tickets are on sale at the hall, and at Rogers Music both here and in Seguin.
In area clubs
IH 35 South — Tonight: Firefox. Saturday: Nashville Sounds.
Crystal Chandelier, Loop 337 — Tonight: Jay Erie it the Blieders Creek Band. Saturday: George Strait 8c Ace in the Hole.
Faust Hotel Bar, 240 S. Seguin — Tonight: Aaron It Beth. Saturday: The Grapes of
Texas Dance Hall,
U.S. 281 South -Tonight: Country
Clover. Saturday: Newton Brothers.
Wagon Wheel Inn, FM
306 at Sattler — Saturday, 9-1: Low
Wolfgang’s Keller. 295 E. San Antonio — Bill Knight at the piano, to be joined Sunday by jazz ensemble.
On area screens
290 W. San Antonio — To Be Or Not To Be (PG). Shows at 7:10 and 9:15 tonight through Monday. Matinees Saturday and Sunday at 2:10 and 4:15.
Also The Man Who Loved Women (R). Show times 7:15 and 9:20 tonight through Monday. Weekend matinees at 2:15 and 4.20.
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Success came slowly to singer Deborah Allen
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Singer Deborah Alien remembers living in a run-down boarding house at 1507 16th Avenue South — four blocks from Nashville’s Music Row.
"I was the only one with a bathroom in my own room,” she recalls. "There were a lot at winos there I used to carry a broomstick for protection.”
Today she lives in a remodeled two-story colonial home with husband Rate Van Hoy, a songwriter who, with his wife and Rory Bourke, wrote "Baby I Lied,” a current hit on the country and adult contemporary charts.
I "was not overnight success,” she says, noting that it was IO years ago that she lived in the boarding house — until poor plumbing ran her out. "It’s been gradual. It’s not been, ‘Wham! ’ I’ve been waiting for it (success) for a longtime.
"Baby I lied,” a ballad from her album "Cheat the Night,” has
cemented her success.
"I think people could relate to the song,” the 30-year-old Allen said. "People come up to me and say, ‘I think you’re singing my life story.’”
Allen first gained notice as a background singer and songwriter. She has written ’’Don’t Worry ’Bout Me Baby” for Janie Fricke; "You Do It” recorded by Rita Coolidge and Diana Ross; i’m Not Worth the Hurt” for Sheens Easton; "I’m Only in It for the Love" for John Conlee; “One More Goodbye” for T.G. Sheppard and others.
In 1979, her voice was "overdubbed” on songs recorded by the late Jim Reeves, meaning that through recording technology her voice was placed on record with old cuts by Reeves.
Three of the songs made the top IO of the country music charts, but on the first two her name was kept secret.
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