Sunday, December 4, 2011

Post-Concert Wrap-up

Syncopasian's Fall 2011 Concert was yesterday.  All the SyncoLadies featuring the Menz.

Let's just say that it was an experience.

I'm going to start off by saying that we had a very ambitious set list, with 9 songs, 6 of them being new songs, on top of our 3 mini group songs, 2 of which were new.  So I would like to say good job to the whole group for being absolutely amazing.  As a whole, I found the concert to be particularly stressful this year, taking a lot of energy from sopranos.  I think this is the first time I was so exhausted after a concert, I didn't feel up to helping clean up.  Luckily, they didn't need my help.  Now to break down the concert.

  1. Allegro Cantabile soloist: Max Wu; perc: Lindsey Shi, Minshu Zhan; arr.: Lindsey Shi
    This was probably the song that the most people in the group were excited about.  It's a fun song, fast paced, and there's a perc-off in the middle of it.  What isn't there to love?  Well, let's just say that we probably started learning this song a little too late.  There was a bit of a collective brain fart in the middle of the song.  Also, the song sped up a bit, and I ran out of air by the end of the song, which made the end a little less than stellar.  However, I would like to give major props to Max for getting it together and sticking it out with the rest of the group messing up.  He was great, and deserved that solo.
  2. Rocketeer soloists: Minshu Zhan, Ami Suzuki, Eric Lau; perc: Max Wu; arr.: Jessie Wang, Ben Chang
    So... I was really excited for this song before we started singing it, since it's a great arrangement of the song and a different arrangement of the song, but then I slowly became ambivalent towards it.  Not sure what else I can say about it.
  3. Gee soloists: Ami Suzuki, Jeannie Yu; perc: Danny Chiao; arr.: Kyumin Lee
    This song was definitely the feel-good-popular song of this semester.  It's one that everyone knows, and is, honestly, a little more silly than artistic when we do it.  I only wish that some people were more enthusiastic about the choreography, since that was the biggest selling point for this song.  When a video is posted, just watch Max.  He is an adorable dancer. 
  4. Silent Night small group: Ami Suzuki, Pudjeeb Buddhari, Eric Lau, Jimmy Liu, Danny Chiao; arr.: Ami Suzuki
    I'll be completely honest.  I didn't like this that much.  Some of the chords were simply weird, and I thought, the first time I heard it, that they were out of tune.  But in reality, that was just what the notes were.  Interesting.
  5. Fau Kwaa soloist: Eric Lau; perc: Minshu Zhan; arr.: Lindsey Shi
    Love this song.  Not going to lie.  This is probably my favorite song (other than Hui Jia) this entire semester.  Of course, sopranos also have a be as loud as you want moment.  Oh wait, that moment is basically the ENTIRE SONG.  And we're singing high notes.  It's just fun to diva out sometimes. 
  6. One soloists: Kyumin Lee, George Cheng; perc: Max Wu; arr.: Jessie Wang
    This was a fun song.  I think the only real problem was that we rushed.  Oh, and we went sharp.  I'm just going to talk a little about our soloists.  They are both great rappers (in my not so informed opinion), but I think Kyumin could do with a better... rapper's presence?  Like, George is being all cool, and then there's Kyumin.  Minor detail, really.
  7. Hui Jia soloist: me (Tiffany Lin); perc: Jenny Wu; arr.: Jessie Wang
    We went sharp.  I'm so glad I have an upper range buffer.  Also, I'm pretty sure that my voice was either really shaky or not quite audible for my first few notes.  I know I over enunciated some words, because I was absolutely terrified up there.  Solos always mess with my mind.  However, I think I sounded good.  Personal bias. =P
  8. Nyan Cat small group: Minshu Zhan, Jeannie Yu, Jenny Wu, Kyumin Lee, Ami Suzuki; arr.: Kyumin Lee
    This was probably... the hit of the show.  I know some people were like eh when they started singing, but then everyone got into it, and were having a good time.  Probably not the most polished song out there, but it was fun.  Also, it was our encore song.  :D
  9. Xiao Qing Ge soloist: Minshu Zhan; perc: Lindsey Shi; arr.: Jessie Wang
    This is one of my favorite songs.  It sounded good (despite going sharp), and I just wish we could do this song sitting down.  Like, it's such a sit down on a lawn and sing type of song, so relaxed and pretty. 
  10. Tik Tok/Heartbeat small group: Lindsey Shi (perc), George Cheng, Jane Wang, Pudjeeb Buddhari, Danny Chiao, Jimmy Liu; arr.: Ben Chang
    This is probably my favorite small group -piece-, although it wasn't my favorite small group performance.  There were some who didn't know the words, or didn't know how to fake not knowing the words.  Every once in a while, George would go quiet, and Jimmy's looking at his cheat sheet cards.  The bigger problem, though, was that Jane decided to tell AV (the Crossproducts) that she needed to be louder because the song wasn't really in her range.  You know what?  That's a lie.  She ended up being way too loud. 
  11. Yesterday Once More soloist: Jeannie Yu, Lindsey Shi, Pudjeeb Buddhari; perc: Max Wu; arr.: Kyumin Lee
    Not the most difficult arrangement from Kyumin.  This song sounded nice too, and instead of going flat, like we usually do, we went sharp.  There were a few intonation issues in the middle, but I think those were easily fixed.   No other comment on this song.  It's a good song, solid arrangement, solid singing (I think).
  12. Konna Ni Chikaku De soloist: Jane Wang; perc: Minshu Zhan; arr.: Kyumin Lee
    I like this song.  I like the new choreo, and I think it's just pretty fun to sing.  I think the most important thing to talk about is the comparison between Jane and the old soloist, Adrianna.  Adrianna and Jane both have this overdramatic (to me) feel to this song.  They're also both classically trained, which means that their sound is often similar.  However, my main beef with the way Jane presents this song is that her words always sound very choppy.  I'm not sure if that's just the way she speaks, or if she simply takes breaths at the wrong places.  With Japanese, there really are right and wrong places to breath.  Adrianna didn't have this problem.  Then again, Adrianna had pretty fantastic lung capacity.
Well, that's all for now!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

So, the whole post once a day thing obviously failed.  Well, in my defense, I've been pretty busy/tired.

But here it is, another post (super late). 

I got the part in Hui Jia.  Which makes me ridiculously happy.  Thank you Lindsey and Jessie for working with me!  <3<3<3

And... I don't know what else to write.  XD

Thursday, November 3, 2011


I was going to post more about makeup, but I felt that I was not in the right place, mentally, to do that.  So instead, insecurities.

Mostly, it's about my singing.  As usual.  I don't think I'm a bad singer.  In fact, I think I'm a pretty good singer for someone who isn't seeking to do it professionally.  The problem is, well, I'm too much of a group singer.  I love choir.  I love a cappella.  I just can't diva myself out there.  I'm not like Jane or Adrianna.  I just can't do it.  So when I audition for something, why does it hurt so much when I don't get it?  Most of the time, I don't really care.  But we're singing two songs this semester that have some meaning to me.  Konna ni Chikaku de and Hui Jia.  So, Konna's already taken from me once, so I'm like, ok.  I'll audition again, now that Adrianna's graduated, and see if I got any better, see if I get it this time.  Nope.  Why do I keep putting myself out there, when I have never made it to the second round of voting?  Seriously guys, it hurts.  Especially since I lost out to someone that I thought had major pitch issues.  Honestly.  Please girls, please sing it in tune when you're singing with a piano, at least.  Please.

We're auditioning for Hui Jia this Saturday.  I sang that song with my dad when I was younger, so it really has a lot of meaning to me.  But I know Jane would also sound nice on it.  I just don't really know what to do about it any more.  Like, my main selling point would be that I hit the high b nicely, but on a Saturday morning, I'm not sure how well I'll do.  And my Chinese isn't as perfect as Jane's, I know.

Speaking of Chinese.  Look, I'm not bad at Chinese.  Frankly, I think my Chinese is damned good when I want it to be.  It's just that most of the time, I don't really care.  So I have an ABC accent, and I slip into Chinglish a lot.  It's not like I'm in Chinese class, where I have to speak all Chinese.  So Jane (and all you other Chinese folks), please stop judging my Chinese.  I'll have you know I won speech competitions in Chinese before.  So shut it.  Your English isn't much better.  (If someone actually does read this, please remember that I just like raging.  Like, I'm upset, but I am not really mad at anyone.  Trust me.)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Makeup? What's going on?

So, second day, and I already have a late post.  Well, my "days" don't really end until I sleep.  So there.

Today's post will be on makeup.  And what I don't understand about my addiction to it. 

As some of you may know, I recently (read since college) developed a small obsession.  I now own more makeup than I really should own, and I don't know if I'll be able to stop myself from buying more.  So that's the main problem.

Another main problem is I have some makeup items that I don't really know how to use properly.  Most notable of these products is probably bronzer.  I get the general idea about it, you know, make yourself look tanner, or perhaps change your face shape.  But honestly, I don't quite understand the whole... mechanics? art? of bronzing your face.

So, one more thing I don't really get is, well, omg all those brushes!  I have a bunch of makeup brushes now because they were cheap, and they were nice brushes, on sale (kinda).  But! before I started using brushes, I was using those silly little sponge tip applicators which, honestly, did make things harder.  However, there are just so many brushes!  I have a foundation brush.  But wait! I also have a stippling brush.  Both are good with liquid foundations.  And then I have my pressed powder, which doubles as my foundation sometimes, and I need to use a powder brush for that... @_@  Back in the day, I used to just use my fingers for the liquid foundations, and a ... sponge circle thingy for the pressed powder.  And then there's the eye brushes.  To me, there are 3 basic shapes: flat and thin, round, and rectangular and thick.  So why are there -so- many brushes?  Oh wait.  They have all 3 types... in different sizes!  And then there's the difference between synthetic and real hair.  Someone please explain that to me?

Well, that's all I have time for today.  I'll be back with more tomorrow!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Starting up again!

So, I read about NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month) off Wei's blog, and I decided that I should probably give it a shot.  I did really well two summers ago, when I had nothing better to do, and I had intended on keeping up, but I never really got around to it.

Well, now I'm going to try again.  A post a day, at least for all of November.  I'm going to try.  If it doesn't happen, oh well, but if it does, then I've accomplished something.

Let's start up with a little update for Syncopasian stuff.  I'll only mention the off campus performances.

The most notable off campus performance was probably Quad A, where all of us went to Chicago, and performed in front of complete strangers.  That was fun.  And quite a while ago, so I don't really remember that much.  I do remember having to perform in the vicinity of Penn Yo, which, to be honest, intimidated me a little.  Penn Yo has a fantastic sound, although they didn't have that much choreo.  In my own biased opinion, of the three well established groups in that performance (odd, how I consider Syncopasian, out for only a few short semesters now, can be counted as well established), I think that Syncopasian is second in sound, beat by Penn Yo, and second in choreo, beat by Treblemakers.  When I say second in choreo, though, I was only comparing, really, to Penn Yo, who didn't actually have many motions planned.  If I compared to the not so well established groups (the ones only around for a semester or a year so far), I'm afraid that we fell short by far.  The smaller groups had fantastic choreography.

The Brandeis performance was quite interesting, although it didn't quite go as we planned.  Due to it being so close to the beginning of the semester, we didn't quite have the time to perfect many of our songs, and therefore got paid a lot less than we expected.  But that's ok.  It was the first time we really did anything of the like, so we expected some issues.  The bigger issue (IMO) is that the sound wasn't that great.  With about half of the size we had last year and a very odd sound system (crowding around mics and hoping we sounded ok), I'm not sure we put out the best performance we could have.  The oddest thing about the entire night, though, was that they paid us in cash.  Cash.  Really?  Did you want this performance to be untraceable or something?

The BU performance went a lot better, I feel.  First off, there was an actual stage.  And then we had good mics.  The soloists had mics.  We had mics.  True, we were around two microphones, and scrunched in close, but I feel the overall sound was better, and the overall performance was enjoyed a lot more, by both the audience and by us.  The best part was when the audience cheered... a little while after Jeanne started singing.  I guess there was a delayed reaction to the song?

Well, this post is long enough.  I'll start off on a new topic tomorrow.  ^_^