JULIA KOT — This morning when I woke up, I was both nervous and excited to perform my dress rehearsal on the main stage of Bard on the Beach. I’ve been working on the role of Susanna, Figaro’s betrothed, since November, and this Monday I get to share the character that I’ve learned so much about. This won’t be my first performance of the role, as I traveled to the Czech Republic in July with UBC Opera and sang Susanna there. The rehearsal process has been exciting for the entire cast because Bard is such a different venue from a traditional opera stage. Nancy Hermiston began staging the opera in the spring, teaching us operatic techniques of playing to the audience while being aware of the conductor. I’ve had the pleasure of learning Susanna from Nancy, a role she has performed countless times herself. Over the last few days, Christopher Gaze taught us a bit about performing in a round space so we can include the whole audience. It’s a challenge that’s well-worth the reward of being able to sing in such a beautiful setting. Our preparation is now over and our show will be the next time we’re all together. The rehearsal today was the final step I needed to be confident in my performances at Bard — now I can’t wait for Monday’s show!