Tenor Michael Bresnahan after warm-up yesterday at St. Vincent's in Petaluma
When I got the call the to audition for Chanticleer, I was ecstatic. I had sent in recordings of Poulenc’s “Nous Avon Fait La Nuit” and “What Do I Need With Love?” from Thoroughly Modern Mille. I was told on this phone call that they were not looking for tenors for the following season, but that I should still come to audition anyway. I was excited to come to San Francisco to sing with one of the best vocal groups in the world. The weekend was an intense one. We had three days of events, including observing the ensemble rehearse, rehearsing with an accompanist, taking part in a recital, an interview, individual sight-singing, and finally a group rehearsal. From even rehearsing with Chanticleer for those four hours, I felt like I became a better musician. Until that point in my life, it was some of the best music I had ever been a part of making. I did not expect anything from the audition, and went home satisfied from the experience. Six months later, I received another call about a last minute opening. I flew out to San Francisco again for an abbreviated version of the callback I had just months before. This time, I won a position in the group as a tenor. I am beyond grateful, because this is such a dream job for me.
This Christmas concert season has been a whirlwind. Between the day after Thanksgiving and Christmas Day, Chanticleer sings 26 concerts! I’ve enjoyed every minute, though. The Christmas season is fun because we get to visit some of my favorite cities: NYC, Chicago, Boston, and Santa Fe to name a few. My parents and grandmother, who live just outside of Boston, were excited to see me for the first time as part of the group. I also had the chance to visit some great friends in Chicago, a city that I lived in for nine years prior to moving to San Francisco in August. The Christmas season is so magical. The audiences are amazing and the music is divine. Singing some of the best music with Chanticleer has been the most wonderful Christmas present I could ever ask for.