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I can't hide it anymore. I am a coloratura soprano, but I have never vocally or intellectually identified as one. I can't stand the repertoire, my skin breaks out in hives when I put on a large hoop skirt. The leading men are painful and the footwear is torture.

My first experience was singing Oscar. It was a revelation. I could be funny, charming and smart, dramatically it fit like a glove. Better yet I didn't have to die. After that I left my teacher and started to live my life as a . I started with pants roles. A Cherubino, an Octavian here and there. But then I got greedy. My life began when I filled in for a missing tenor at a rehearsal. The Don Ottavio was sick. We had an understudy who sang Zerlina for me and I just never looked back. Before I knew it I was filling in for Rossini tenors.

This was a difficult road. Conductors who doubted my authenticity as a mezzo, colleagues who denied me my mezzo . Even going so far as to cast me as Gilda in Rigoletto. But I committed so strongly to my true vocal identity and eventually was accepted as who I truly am. A woman who likes to disguise herself as a boy onstage. Am I a boy? No. Do I like women no? But I do not like to be stuffed in bags, stabbed and pretend to cough for hours at a time. I like to have fun and most of all be comfortable.

I'm wondering if there is any vocal out there. I love singing and being an professional, but I just can't live my life with the voice I have. I know there are others out there. Baritones who are really tenors, Basses who are really Baritones. The hardest of all are those who identify as Helden.

Does anyone else out there struggle with their vocal assignment? Please share if you know anyone else who is struggling with vocal identity.
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