I Was Part of the Verdi Cycle

 

Alexander Koutelias

 

Many of my colleagues at school ask me what is my hobby outside of school. I always take pride in saying “I’ve been a supernumerary in 6 operas over the past 8 years”. 4 of these operas have been Verdi operas. I was the grandson of the Doge of Venice in I Due Foscari (2008), a page in Don Carlos (2009), an altar boy in Giovanna d’Arco (2010), and a torch carrier in I Lombardi (2011).

 

In these operas, I’ve had the privilege of collaborating with hundreds of amazing singers and fellow supernumeries, and meeting countless inspiring role models a long the way (Maestro DeRenzi, Stephanie Sundine, and Martha Collins to name a few). Often being the youngest person in a professional production, the adults treated me not as a kid, but as an adult, or even as an equal, and I am deeply appreciative for the respect and kindness people have showed me over the years at Sarasota Opera. Many of the happiest moments of my life have been at Sarasota Opera, whether it be performing, seeing productions, or just meeting with friends and discussing opera.

 

After supering in my second opera, Don Carlos (2009), from then on I knew that opera was my favorite form of music, and I credit my love of opera to Maestro VerdiDon Carlos remains my second favorite opera and my favorite Verdi opera, and I Lombardi (2011) and Otello (2012) are in my top 10 favorite operas as well.

 

I hope to be supering in Il trovatore this upcoming season and I eagerly await the Winter 2015 Verdi opera, the Paris Version of Don Carlos! Viva Verdi!