My Proof:

Edit: Thank you all for your questions. It was a pleasure answering them.

Comments: 101 • Responses: 26  • Date: 

BTTF8542 karma

What couple in Opera history do you think needs the most counseling, and how would you counsel them?

MetOpera54 karma

Romeo and Juliet. I would have told them to wait a few years to see if their love remained as vibrant at 20 as it was when they first fell in love.

perciva26 karma

How much do the Met singers and orchestra interact off-stage? In university settings I've found that the singers usually talk to singers and the instrumentalists usually talk to instrumentalists; does that sort of passive indifference continue at professional levels, or does it become more of a unified community?

MetOpera22 karma

For the most part, that they don't interact very often. Occasionally, we interact backstage, but more often in the cafeteria.

Maddhatter1414 karma

Have you ever been distracted by the amazing singing of the principle singers during a performance?

MetOpera25 karma

Yes, Elina Garanca.

raindrop77713 karma

Including rehearsals, prep-time (make-up, costume fittings) and performances, how many hour per week do you typically work?

MetOpera18 karma

During the performing season, I work 8-11 hours a day.

T211212 karma

What Is your favorite opera to just listen to and why?

MetOpera40 karma

La Bohème, because I'm a pure romantic at heart.

AlexanderLeGrape11 karma

Thanks for doing this! As a Vocal performance major pursuing a career in opera, I've been seriously considering going the chorister route alternative to a solo career. Do you find your salary at The Met to be sustainable? Or are you working in counseling to cover what's left?

MetOpera18 karma

The Met Chorus job is one of the best paying chorus jobs in the world. Without getting into numbers I can say that I am not a rich man but I am very comfortable. After almost 30 years of singing I am moving toward wanting counseling to be how I spend my working hours.

Perplexinglypiquant9 karma

What advice would you give to a young opera singer these days debating between a professional solo career and one as a professional chorister?

MetOpera20 karma

Talent, luck, and perseverance are in both equations. Challenge yourself, continue to strive for your highest goal. Either you or the passing of time will inform you as to whether to continue in your quest to be a soloist, or to settle for a more secure career as a chorister.

raindrop7779 karma

I love the Met Opera Chorus. I'm so looking forward to hearing you all sing Guillaume Tell this year. Which opera(s) are you most looking forward to this season?

MetOpera15 karma

The Flying Dutchman

ishiiman06 karma

What language do you enjoy singing in the most?

MetOpera12 karma

Italian because I was trained as a Bel Canto singer, and though I was born in this country, singing in Italian has always been most satisfying as an opera singer.

Dsvkb5 karma

If you were given the opportunity to sing one song of your choosing from any opera, which would it be?

MetOpera16 karma

Ah! lève-toi, soleil! because it's the aria that got me my job at the Met, and I have always had a fondness for it.

yanks432155 karma

As someone just being introduced to opera, what shows from this upcoming met season would you recommend?

MetOpera12 karma

The Magic Flute, and Romeo and Juliet.

IguanaMan995 karma

Not sure if I arrived to late to ask a question.

I am considering a music performance major, but I'm not sure I could get a job afterwards. Do you recommend an education major or theory major instead?

MetOpera18 karma

Imagine yourself 20 years from now going to work. Where do you imagine yourself being, and what do you imagine yourself doing that would bring you the most satisfaction?

raindrop7775 karma

Do you ever attend opera performances when you're not singing? Or is that too much of a busman's holiday? :-) What's the last opera you attended as an audience member?

MetOpera10 karma

Very seldom, but recently, after singing the opening backstage chorus of La bohème I decided to look for a seat because I was in the mood for a good cry that night.

raindrop7775 karma

What's your favorite restaurant near the Met?

MetOpera7 karma

Le Pain Quotidien

raindrop7775 karma

Do chorus members have to re-audition? How often?

MetOpera9 karma

No, they don't.

MetOpera7 karma



Hey, thanks for reminding me that they still do the "live in HD" simulcasts, I used to love going to those but stopped some years ago. Now that I've remembered, I'd really like to see a show or two this season with my boyfriend who has never seen an opera. So my question is - which shows this season are the most accessible to a non opera person like him?

MetOpera6 karma

The Magic Flute, and Romeo and Juliet.

Damn_Croissant4 karma

What would you recommend for a non-music-major but competent choral singer who wants to continue his choir singing after graduation?

MetOpera9 karma

Join as many choral organizations that are in your area that meet your professional standards and which you have time to commit to.

raindrop7774 karma

What do you think of encores?

MetOpera9 karma

Its a great thing for the performer because it means the audience wants more of them.

raindrop7773 karma

Do you sing in every opera requiring male choristers? If not, who chooses who sings in which opera? How do they decide?

MetOpera9 karma

No, I don't. Donald Palumbo, the chorus master decides, based on his own set of criteria.

zling1113 karma

I have a few questions 1 (18 y/o) male how long should you wait attempt art songs
2 do you need a music degree or education to be in to chorus 3 do you still have a day job? what is a day in your life on or off season?

MetOpera7 karma

1) Art songs are a great way to begin singing Bel Canto.

2) You don't need a degree.

raindrop7773 karma

Is there a stage director that you particularly enjoy working with? Why?

MetOpera9 karma

I was particularly enamored with Lesley Koenig's style, knowledge, approach to the stage.

raindrop7773 karma

Over the past 29 years, do you have a favorite costume? If so which opera and whose production?

MetOpera7 karma

No, I don't have a favorite costume. What I love most about my job is the singing part of it. Costumes and make-up are things that are required of me, but singing is the part of my job that I enjoy most.

Perplexinglypiquant3 karma

Also, what is your best and worst experience working at the Met these past three decades?

MetOpera25 karma

My best experience was singing as a soloist alongside Pavarotti in Luisa Miller. My worst experience was in a rehearsal of La fanciulla del West a gun was fired near my ear which caused some hearing loss.

DeChSk2 karma

Have you ever found yourself emotionally caught while you were performing?

MetOpera11 karma

In my first years on stage doing Pagliacci, there were a number of times were I overcome by emotion and I was not able to sing. Fortunately, in the last act of Boheme, when Mimi dies, the chorus is on their way home.

Hipster-Stalin2 karma

What is the toughest part in any opera you've had to sing thus far?

MetOpera6 karma

Singing in Czech is especially difficult because much of the language is foreign to my ear.