BYE BYE 2012!
December 31, 2012 § 4 Comments
It’s that time of year again – a time to reflect on the past year – the happenings in my life and environs, what I created or didn’t create, what I fell victim to or rose above – the big summary … a completion if you will, so I can move forward into the next year or cycle or phase, with a clean slate!
However, this end-of-year really snuck up on me. I guess I expected more by now.
There are years when by year-end, I have been clear about my successes, failures, upcoming goals. Yet 2012 seems to have come and gone so quickly and with just a few personal blips in the road – both up and down – that with apparently no major breakthroughs, I can barely recognize that the year is over. And that assessment of this past year, leaves me a little uninspired and seemingly with no vision to move forward.
I have work to do to change that.
Intellectually, I know that we all have the opportunity to “reframe” our own past. We can’t change what happened, but we can change how we think about it; even change its effect on us going forward.
With that in mind, my “work” today is to begin to redefine 2012 as perhaps the year I took a break from rushing forward, and took the time to refocus. I like that. That feels better, don’t you think?
So here I being to summarize my 2012 – piece by piece so I can unravel it and say, “Yes, I did that” or “That took more time than I anticipated” or … It’s a worthwhile exercise. I recommend it.
I will keep adding to this, but here is a start to my list of achievements and under-accomplishments for 2012 … in no particular order:
- I had about 30 gigs/shows in 2012 including a couple of benefit performances and pro bono work with Bread & Roses and at the Jewish Home in San Francisco (my mom’s last residence).
- I really love “the show” and in 2012, I did not create or book as many of them as I would have liked – that is now on my agenda for 2013.
- At the beginning of 2012, I thought my new project would have been near completion. It isn’t, but it is moving forward. A lot of work has been done in spite of what I think I should have accomplished! For this project, based on the work of a long under-appreciated composer, I have collected both public and personal stories, sheet music for over 70 pieces of his work – all graciously and generously given to me by some amazing people, all of whom will be revealed later this coming year. And since most of this music is unrecorded, I had help from colleagues who played down these tunes and helped me sight-read them. I am also close to engaging a pianist/arranger/producer to forward this project with a June 2013 opening and CD release in mind.
- Politically, I was engaged in my own way, to say the least, and I appreciate all my like-minded friends in real time and on Facebook, who carried me through! I expended a lot of my creative energy on this. Never knew I was a political junkie until now. From this, I am taking a break in 2013!
- My husband and I will be together 12 years in February and married 3 years in April, and this is my greatest accomplishment. Our families are terrific – we are blessed with caring children, siblings, nieces, nephews, grand children, step-people, dogs and turtles and chickens and fish – in this life, I am happy!
Yet there were the real losses in 2012 of dear people in my life who passed …
John Kroner, songwriter, musical director, pianist, husband, father and very dear friend, died this past February. Suddenly. Leaving behind his husband of over 30 years, Jeff Martin, his young son Marcus, and so many friends and colleagues in music and theater in New York. John and Jeff have been my friends and neighbors (when I still lived in New York on the Upper West Side) since 1980. They have been avid supporters of my life and my musical journey.
Paul Van Wageningen (“Paul VW”) amazing drummer, passed this November after struggling with a cancerous brain tumor and its effects, for 2 years. Paul played on my CD, “Long As You’re Living – the stories & poetry of Oscar Brown Jr.” which won a Backstage Magazine Bistro/BMI Award for Outstanding Recording and for which I received 2 MAC Award Nominations (Best Jazz Recording and Best Female Jazz Singer). Paul also played many shows for me. His memorial service – one of the best concerts I’ve been to all year – was just last week, and included some of the best musicians in the Bay Area both in attendance and on stage. I was lucky to have met him.
Richard Nickol, voice teacher, theater coach, friend and mentor to many. I never studied with Richard, but the ties between the San Francisco cabaret & theater communities brought us together many times to collaborate on events and shared goals. San Francisco is sometimes a very small town so we would cross paths many times over the past 10 years. His memorial service was a musical event he would have been proud of.
Ruth Kurtzman, member of the MAC Board in New York (Manhattan Association of Cabarets & Clubs) who I met several years ago – Ruth came to every one of my New York shows over the past 5 years; we would have lunch or dinner each time I was in New York – died earlier this month from a short bout with an extremely aggressive cancer. Ruth and I met and became fast friends. We’d send each other short little email hellos during the course of any year. I considered her a dear friend even though we hardly knew each other. We had that immediate connection you infrequently have with another person, and in a moment you know that this person is your true friend. Ruth was that for me.
I miss them all. They each have made a difference in my life and have a permanent place in my heart.