Thanks for taking the time to converse with me, again, Peter.
Q. First question - it has been a little while since you participated in the 5 Questions interview series. What have you been doing professionally since then?
A. Really? Only a little while? Well, it feels like 2015 was only a short while ago, that’s for sure.
Back to the question, what have I been doing... Most recently I recorded a CD of Mahler’s piano version of Das Lied von der Erde (The Song of the Earth) which was just released in August 2017 in the US and is getting some nice reviews and I’m quite proud of this little CD.
I have been training for some heavy duty Wagner roles. There’s been quite a buzz going around Berlin and Germany in general about me being a ‘real’ Heldentenor (Heroic tenor), which is both exciting and utterly frightening.
I’m going to auditions in New York and Boston this winter to get some buzz happening in the US as well.
I’ve sung quite a few concerts and Liederabends, the most recent being a Liederabend of Beethoven’s ‘An die ferne Geliebte’ (To the distant beloved) which was quite nicely received, and all of Copland’s 'Old American Songs' which I sang with my wife, Julie Wyma (who also sang Debussy’s ‘Ariettes Oubliées). A hometown concert I did in Framingham, Mass in 2016 was great fun (especially as I hadn’t sung in Framingham in 29 years). Seeing one’s High School Music teacher and realizing he has somehow not aged at all is an amazing/humbling feeling. Doing concerts in the US also allows me to return to being a grease monkey, repairing the old cars and various motorbikes my family has accumulated and cared for.
Reaching further back, I performed the roles of Max in ‘Der Freischütz’ and Adam in “Der Vogelhändler’ at Kloster Chorin here on the outskirts of Berlin.
Add to that being a dad to an amazing little violinist (who attended River’s School Conservatory Summer Camp this past summer) and all around smart cookie, and the husband to my wonderfully amazing wife - life has been good.
Q. This is all very exciting. I want to circle back to the performances in a bit, but first a few questions about the recording. I recall studying Das Lied von der Erde in 20th Century Lit. class with the late James Sellers – a terrific work. That was the version with full orchestration. Tell me a little more about the piano version and how you came to select that work in particular for this recording.