Leslie Ann Bradley: Journal Entry #1

written at Toronto Pearson International Airport

Welcome to my new website! This has been such an exciting project and I am so happy to have a virtual home to share with you. My goal with this site is to keep you up-to-date on projects, travels and also share thoughts and experiences on my musical journey.

I have long considered starting a journal. The challenge has been turning my thoughts into words, yet no matter how many cafe americanos I have consumed in hopes of gaining inspiration, I have, thus far, had little success. Perhaps it is writers block, more likely it is not knowing how exactly to put pen to paper and express anything of consequence….but today is a travel day and I often do some of my most successful thinking while journeying from point A to point B, so I’m going to risk it and see what happens.

My intention with this journal is twofold. One; to connect. I am part of an amazing musical community, I have the privilege of working with people who inspire me to learn and grow every day. This blessing makes me want to give back, not just with my voice but with my entire being. What I know for sure is that music makes life better. So how do I do my part to make certain that opera, concert and recital remain relevant and sustainable? Truthfully, I’m not sure….but I want to talk about it. And I am hoping conversation is the first step. I would love to connect with people who feel the same and reach out to people who have not yet discovered this incredibly rewarding musical world.

 My second intention is to be personal. There are so many ups and downs in this career and I know how helpful it has been for me to have mentors share how they navigated the waters. So I will share my successes and challenges in the hopes that readers will have a better understanding of my work, as well as get to know me both personally and as an artist who truly loves her medium.

Finally, I wish to express my gratitude. This website would not be possible without the help of some amazing ladies. Lisa-Marie Mazzucco is an incredible photographer and “director”. The photo shoot was a full scale production, Lisa challenged me to use different aspects of my personality to create a full range of shots. I learned so much about angles and light. She is also a frigging hoot! I have never laughed so hard and had so much fun while taking pictures. Lisa is fearless!! I will never forget walking outside in my beautiful Umetsu gown and high heels only to find a 4 foot snake coiled and hissing by the tree that Lisa wanted in the shots. Her brave son Sascha was already attempting to move this creature because we were running out of daylight. After several near strikes Lisa finally grabbed a long stick, walked up to the angry snake and flung it 15 feet into the forest. “OK, let’s go….I’m not losing this shot.” She didn’t even BLINK. I was trying not faint….

Elizabeth Bowman, or “Saint Lizzie” as I call her, has been an incredible support in connecting me to the world of social media. I appreciate that my finding the “share” button on Facebook is important enough to her  to warrant a 10pm phone call!! Mostly, I am so grateful for the beautiful website.

Last but certainly not least I wish to thank Jill Bradley, the talented stylist and owner of Jillian’s Clothing Boutique in Port Perry, Ontario.  She put my wardrobe together for the Mazzucco shoot and whenever I have an occasion where I need to look my best, she is my go-to lady.

HERE WE GO!! The plane is boarding, warm Vancouver weather is calling and I am so excited to singunder the baton of Steuart Bedford alongside of some of my favourite colleagues and friends.

Thank you for reading my journal and I hope you enjoy the website!