A Brief Intro to Me
I am late in loving opera. In fact, for most of my life I avoided opera. I thought it had its moments, but too often was boring and at worst sounded too much like screaming. But a funny thing happened on the way to my later years. My love of pop music hit a bump. I got bored with it, my main genre for listening at that time. It seemed too often that each new song was repetitive or derivative of what was already out there. Country music, my roots, and resource for nostalgia, was not enough by itself. Classical music couldn’t hold my attention consistently. I adore choral music live, but am not that fond of its recordings. So, I started listening to opera as part of a search for something better for everyday enjoyment. Opera somehow became interesting, and then consuming. I joked with surprised friends that maybe a virus had unmasked a latent gene inside me. Gorgeous voices singing beautiful arias was compelling itself, but adding in the storyline, dancing, chorus, costumes and set, and lush orchestral music, all creating a unified dramatic experience, made a convert of me. That was back in 2011, and at this writing, ninety percent of my music listening remains opera.
Truth in disclosure: I am not a musician. My education, training, and work life has been in science. My musical education is limited to a single college music appreciation course. I think I managed a B, but it could have been a C, though I greatly enjoyed the course. My musical ability is best left to singing in the shower and when I do the water is grateful for its escape down the drain. Any opinion you express about opera is equally valid to mine and likely comes from a stronger grounding in music. This is meant to loosen you up and encourage you to share your opinions with me. I think I am educable, though you might find me hiding in the corner. Yes, introverts can love a subject and want to talk about it, though writing is a lot easier than talking for me. So, my qualifications for writing about opera are my love of it, and my devotion to listening to and learning more about it, going on seven happy years now.
One last thing: I have a Ph.D. in medicinal chemistry, and before retiring, I worked for the National Institutes of Health for over thirty years. That might be useful information for you to know because it might help you understand the language I use, or the way I analyze things, or the topics that catch my interest, and the gaps in my knowledge. I will definitely be coming from a scientist’s perspective. What perspective will you be coming from? People from all walks of life discover they like opera, and sometimes, but when that opera gene turns on, a great deal of fun awaits you.