Sunday Routine: How Alyson Cambridge, Operatic Soprano, Spends Her Sundays
Alyson Cambridge made her debut at the Metropolitan Opera in 2004 when she was 24. She has performed there regularly ever since while also appearing on European stages with the Polish National Opera and the Munich Philharmonic. This year, Ms. Cambridge, 39, made her Broadway debut in the musical “Rocktopia” and released her third album, “Sisters in Song,” a collaboration with her longtime friend and colleague Nicole Cabell. The album is a mix of opera duets, classical songs and African-American spirituals. She lives on the Upper West Side.
CAFFEINATE On a typical Sunday off, I sleep till 10. As an opera singer, I perform late and don’t get home until midnight and am usually wide-awake. By the time I actually sleep, it’s 2 a.m., so 10 is not really sleeping in, but I like to get the day started. I can’t function without coffee so the first thing I do is make a giant pot and drink it in a big mug with unsweetened vanilla almond milk. I watch “Meet the Press” while I sip.
TECH CHECK Once I’ve woken up from the coffee, I’ll open up my laptop to check for new emails and reply to ones that I haven’t yet. I usually wake up to 40 to 50 emails, mostly from my agents, managers and voice coaches. Then, I check my Instagram account on my phone and my public Facebook page.
MILES AND MILES I run between six and 10 miles a day, but on Sundays, I aim for 15. I go in Riverside Park and listen to my playlists, which are a mix of top hits, electronic dance music and songs from the British singer Alex Clare. I’m in such a zone that I don’t feel the time go by. I also people watch and take in the nature.
EGGS AND VINEGAR Back at home, I’ll have more coffee and eat three boiled egg whites. They’re my standard breakfast. I also drink apple cider vinegar with lemon water. I swear by apple cider vinegar for digestion.
MEETINGS, FITTINGS Inevitably, I have at least one meeting related to my job, and it tends to be in the early afternoon. I’ll often have to meet a designer for a fitting. I perform in concerts and galas throughout the fall and spring where I’m not in costumes but in dresses. In November, I did a solo concert at Carnegie Hall where I needed to wear a few dresses.
DO-RE-MI It’s important to practice singing a little bit on Sundays. I like to keep my voice in shape, and it’s not ideal to go into a week of heavy rehearsals without some preparation. It keeps my vocal cords warm. I have a small practice room in my apartment.
GROUP GUAC Luckily, I have a great group of friends in the city that I’ve made over the years. Most of them aren’t opera singers, and there are around eight of us. We all try to get together for a meal around 3 p.m. at one of our usual spots. Playa Betty’s is a favorite. We’ll get guacamole for the table, and I get the kale salad with quinoa and avocado. I’ll have them add grilled chicken to it. More than often, I’ll also order an unsweetened spicy margarita.
STROLL WITH LOLA When we wrap up, typically around 5, I like to walk around the neighborhood. There are always interesting street fairs going on, and I like to pop into stores and just browse or window-shop. One of my friends, Lola, is usually with me. She’s a print model who is originally from Texas, and we get along like a house on fire.
SOLITUDE I’m social and extroverted, but I’m around people all the time so I savor the chance to be alone. Sundays are often for that. I’ll grocery shop for the week at Fairway and spend the rest of the night at home. I’ll do an email and social-media check again and maybe watch some TV.
TABLE FOR ONE Around 8, I’ll start cooking dinner for myself. I try to eat as clean as possible and avoid gluten, dairy and sugar so my meals are always healthy. I’ll make a salad and some blackened grilled salmon. I make my own dressing which is a mix of olive oil, lemon juice, a dash of an Italian seasoning blend and a dollop of hummus to give it creaminess. I set a nice table, but I can see the TV from it, and I’ll eat and watch at the same time. I’m a sucker for anything on Bravo or reality TV in general.
MOM AND DAD I’ll call my parents, who live in Arlington, Va., and catch up with them for about an hour. Afterward, I may listen to music, watch more TV or look at my schedule and organize my week. I’m sleeping by midnight.