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I am sitting at my kitchen table in Chicago, listening to the noise on Sheridan Road.  I am drinking a bottle of Diet Snapple raspberry iced tea, suddenly acutely aware that my Snapple intake is about to be curtailed.  When I move to Paris.

It still doesn’t feel real, but here are the facts.  I’m an American soprano, twenty-three years old, a graduate of Northwestern University.  I started learning to speak French in third grade, and I don’t think I can pinpoint the moment when I started singing.  Last summer I was in Périgueux, France doing a summer program, and the connections I made there were so wonderful and encouraging that I decided to figure out a way to spend some time in Paris.  Months of proposal-writing, recommendation-seeking, and application-sending later (and just a few short months ago), I was invited to Boston to audition for a grant from the Frank Huntington Beebe Fund, which supports young musicians in their studies abroad.  I was awarded one of the grants, and now, after a whirlwind of packing, shipping, student visas, international phone calls, and flight reservations, here I am, a week out from the biggest adventure–and the next phase–of my life.  In a few weeks, I will begin my studies at the Schola Cantorum in Paris’s 5th arrondissement.  I will be living in student housing at the Fondation des États Unis, part of the Cité International Universitaire de Paris

It feels a little ridiculous to be starting this blog before I even leave, but on my last Sunday afternoon in Chicago, which has been my home for the last six years, it also feels appropriate, somehow.  So I’ll leave off here, with a little Piaf.