In regards to the future

It has been a long time, too long since I last posted on here. Ive had one rollarcoaster of a Semester with being sick. I passed out a few times and was extremely physically exhausted for a few weeks. Everything has passed now and I have caught up with my semester and am looking forward to a nice long Christmas break where I can think about how far I want to pursue voice. My goals as of now is to work on my singing technique and acting so I can be prepared for any stage performance. After SMU I would like to go to a good graduate school and complete my masters in voice performance. My goal after that would be to move to Europe and sing professionally for a while and keep singing. God I love to sing! After a few years  I would like to retire from the performance aspect of music and get into the business side of music maybe start my own recording studio for opera. That is all I really have in my mind for the future as of now and its kinda far fetched and out there but as long as I keep working then I can acomplish all of my future goals. However I bet that this “plan” will change as I grow older and in 5 years it could be a completely different plan but for now I going to try and work towards these goals. Thank you.

-David R. Fournie

My Skills

I’m normally not one to brag about myself unless it is in a joking manner so I find this assignment a bit more difficult than most. I am not a big fan of self evaluation because it causes stress and frustration within but here goes anyway. I would have to say my biggest strength/ skill besides singing would be the fact that I can remain cool and optimistic about almost any situation in life. I do not freak out when things go wrong. I just kind of go with the flow so to speak. Surprisingly this skill has really helped me when I am performing  and things go wrong and believe me things have gone wrong for me. So I would have to say that that is one of my biggest skills. Other than that I cannot find anything that is worth while. So please give me a break because I am pretty (pardon my French) damn tired. Anyway if I think of anything else then I might let know but that probably won’t happen. Anyway have a good night y’all.

David R. Fournie

Elevator Pitch

Instead of posting a personal blog, this week I will be posting my elevator pitch. This is a rough draft and feedback would be appreciated.

Hello, I am David Fournie, a baritone studying at Southern Methodist University. I am an aspiring opera singer and my goal is to bring Opera to the masses. You might ask how I would do this? I could accomplish this task in a lot of ways but the most important way would be to really explain the stories to the general public. Opera tells some of the greatest stories on earth and I believe that they are lost in some of the singing. If you have any questions here is my contact information.

-David R. Fournie

Motivation

As a singer I find it both very easy and very hard to be motivated. The reason is that one of my ultimate goals is to be the best singer that I am able to be. Does that mean I will ever be the best? Most definitely not and I am not bothered by the fact that there are people both out in the world and at this university that are far better than me at singing. In fact it is these very people who are better than me that drive me to become the best that I can be. However, saying that I am going to work hard and actually working hard to be the best are two entirely different thing. As of now I have not quite managed my time well enough to be hitting the practice rooms everyday. I have not practiced nearly as much as I would have liked to. I am still learning the ropes here at SMU and hopefully figure everything out very shortly. That being said the only way I can sing at the MET and other major opera houses of the world is by working, working, working. I will work to get better and I hope to strive to reach the levels of those people at SMU who are better than me.

-David R. Fournie

Values

Hello everyone! It is after 1 A.M. here in Dallas and I am stuck listening to Radiohead on spottily (which by the way has  sadly become a major advertising hub for condoms instead of music) and I am trying to think of my values. I have come to a crossroads in terms of my “morality.” Frankly I am going to be straight; while I tend to think of myself as a “good person,” I have no idea how I am going to end up when I am out on the streets as a starving artist. As of now I am not apt to go to extreme measures to get an extra buck because I am in a very comfortable position in life. However that does not necessarily mean that in 5-10 years that I will have the exact values that I have today. For instance as of today, I would never perform on stage in the nude even for copious amounts of cash. I know all of you are disappointed by this decision of mine but I just can’t do it. My parents raised me to be a nice normal kid and that means that I gotta keep all of my clothes on. While this is a pretty specific example, it also is an extreme. It just means that I will not blatantly violate my conscience to perform anything that is in a moral gray area. But as I continue to lose faith in this nation’s media and political system I will change as an overall person. Anyone who wants to remain the exact same during their lifetime is a fool. We are meant to be formed by what we experience in life, both the bad moments and the good ones. So when I finally do hit the streets as an artist bum, I do not have an exact idea of who I am going to be. I have to put everything into perspective and use my imagination. If I become successful then I will most likely not have to do anything drastic. However, if I am dirt poor, then I will most likely do almost anything to “put food on the table.” I still don’t know if I would do the “nude scene” because that is extremely extreme for an extreme but it conveys my idea of what I might have to do to survive in the weirdest and most drastic possible. Anyway this is my late night blog on what I think about my values. I am sorry if not much of this makes sense; I am rather tired at the moment.

-David R. Fournie

Work Habits.

When it comes to work, I am a bit of a contradiction or enigma some might say. On the one hand I can work very hard to achieve  something and feel like I have accomplished something and on the other I can be the biggest procrastinator that God’s green earth has ever seen. I guess I tend to kinda divide my work into two categories. the first category is the work I tend to view as manageable. This are usually short assignments that I can breeze through in 45 minutes to an hour. However, the other category is what I like to call long term projects such as papers or anything that has to do with math or science. When I see these coming, I tend to try and hide from them for as long as I possibly can. Even as we speak now I am checking facebook (which I have admit is a cancer of some sort but have yet to do anything about) and the Cardinal’s scores. When I tend to think that a project will overwhelm me, then I close up and hide until the last minute when I am literally forced to get going so I will not receive an F on the project. However, I must say that even though these are extremely bad habits (I completely acknowledge them but dont know what to do really) they have produced some of my best work. When the crunch time hits academically, then I begin to focus and produce a much better product then if I started weeks earlier. But this is a game like Russian roulette and indeed I have gotten burned before in highschool and if i don’t change will probabaly get burned in college. I am indeed trying to change through the help of the ORACLE class here at SMU but it will take time.

Music on the other hand is a whole different story. When I sing, I find myself focusing completely on the task at hand and I feel like a completely different. It is one of the only activities where I completely go out of my way to try and put in the extra work to improve and actually enjoy doing so. I find it a bit odd that I have this other side of focus. I guess it makes sense that I want to be a singer if I work at it this much but I just wish I could apply the focus to all of my activities. But alas, I cannot and am stuck between two different focusing personalities when it comes to singing and other academics. Perhaps one day I will learn how to use the “singing focus” for everyday activities, but for now I will just have to scrape by.

-David R. Fournie

 

 

 

My Story

This is my first ever writing or even reading really a blog, if you can call looking over your own entry “reading” a blog. This started out as a homework assignment for my FACE class at SMU and I didn’t know what to expect. I have never really written anything about myself and I have to confess that I do not know what to expect. I am generally not too thrilled about doing assignments of this nature but sometimes you gotta bite the bullet with homework. To paraphrase a quote, “the world ain’t all sunshine and roses kid.” Honestly I have no idea where that quote came from or who said but I believe it applies and will continue to apply in my life forever. That topic however, is for another day.

Once I put aside my prejudice of homework assignment, I really began to think about my history so far and really there is not much to say. I could try to pack in all of the performances that I have been in from elementary school until now, but the more I think about it the more that I realize that as much as I would love to relive each of those moments  and soak in the credit, I concluded that they do not really matter in the long term, so I am letting them go and starting fresh. You might ask why I am so quick to let all of these accreditations  go. The honest truth is that singers aren’t released  into the professional world until at least 20. However while there are some exceptions to this, it takes a true rare talent to embark on a professional career at 20. This being said, what I have done up until this point of my life is simply train and develop voice. I have not sung in any full fledged operas as of yet and would like to be patient with developing my voice. You only have one voice in your entire life and if it becomes damaged because of pushing then my friends you are out of luck. Forever. So I feel comfortable to let all of these go and start fresh with everything even technique. During my freshman year at SMU I will be restructuring my technique in order to become a better singer in the long run. This will be a long road and quite a frustrating one so if anyone could keep me in their prayers, that would be much appreciated. This will probably be the toughest and most discouraging year of my life so if there a a little intervention from God, I will have to thank you all.

I suppose I will now talk about my brief but real history. I was lucky enough to be born in a household where my father was a great singer and my mother was tough enough to make me stay on task. Ever since I was little I was exposed to opera, classical and sacred music. I have to admit I fell in love with all of them from a very early age. Something about the music spoke to me in a deep and fulfilling way. However I did not know I could sing until much later in life, I mean sure as a kid I would belt out random notes and lyrics but I never knew I could sing. Whenever my dad would sing, I would imitate him to the fullest and most ridiculous extent then joke that I was a better singer than he was. I was just kidding around. I never thought that I would ever be able to sing in a classical style. Then when I was in 7th grade, I entered a scholarship contest for my middle/high school. The award was 1000 dollars a year for all 6 years. I wasn’t to interested in the scholarship or the money but my mother, God bless her, was and pushed me to audition. At the time I had no clue about singing or what it actually entailed other than just belting out something so I asked my father and he guided during that period. We were singing through “Bring Him Home” when I asked my dad if I could try using vibrato. He said I could try,though I doubt he was expecting much, and I did. Lo and Behold i started using vibrato surprisingly. It felt pretty easy for me (though it took a long time for me to get a firm grasp on.) I ended up not winning that contest which was heart braking for me. I pushed myself to be the best singer that I could be and that is really how I started singing. I started taking private voice lessons at the age of 15 and at 16 joined Opera Theatre of Saint Louis Artists in Training program for 2 years. That is basically a quick summary of my “singing career” at the moment. I hope in a few years to start actually using all of my training for real opera but until then, I have to be patient. Thank you for reading and God bless.

-David R. Fournie

P.S. sorry for the length and any spelling/ grammatical errors I have made. Proof reading isn’t exactly my forte so I hope I am not judged on my many writing errors.