I've been practicing and practicing both Batti Batti and Gretchen Am Spinnrade. Without my voice teacher to guide me I'm still plugging along trying to figure out how to fix what I perceive as problems. I'm absolutely sure that there are problems that I'm not perceiving. That's why I pay someone to teach me. But really what still gets me is certain vowels on the high notes. Why??? Why can I hit a note nicely with one vowel, but it sounds like a tortured cat on a different vowel?
My latest attempt is to remember to drop my jaw and sort of fudge the vowel. I don't mean that I'll compromise diction - I really don't want to do that - but I do know that for some vowels, like, the word "you," for example, I can open my mouth wide, which makes it less U-ish, yet it still sounds ok. I just have to:
A. Remember to do it and
B. Allow myself to do it.
By allow, I mean, allow myself to almost pronounce it wrong, if that makes sense. Not wrong, but... modified.
One thing I am improving at (I think?) is keeping the energy in the vowel sound more consistently.
I've written this before, but I'll say it again - thinking about what my teacher might tell me, or imagining how she might demonstrate something, helps. It forces me to remember different things she's taught me, some of it several months ago. I'm also getting much better at holding all the various aspects of singing in that imaginary three-dimensional space in my brain. I know I've written about that before.
Then when I'm feeling frustrated I'll sing Una Donna, to remind myself of the trouble I used to have with some parts that seem easy to me now.