HomeOperaQ & A with Edward Parks

Q & A with Edward Parks


Ed Parks, sporting a brown hat, white shirt, and black vest and pants, sits on a paisley chaise lounge.

By: Jennifer Colgan

GRAMMY® Award-winning baritone Edward Parks makes his Opera Colorado debut this winter as the enduring Jack Torrance in Moravec and Campbell’s The Shining, on stage on the Ellie beginning February 26. Together with being a prolific performer of each new and traditional works, this gifted artist, who was destined for the stage from a younger age, wears different hats as household man and craftsman. Get to know Ed, and be sure you see his efficiency in The Shining!

Tickets for Moravec & Campbell’s The Shining begin at simply $35>>

WHAT WAS YOUR INTRODUCTION TO OPERA?

Ed Parks as Schaunard in La bohème on the Metropolitan Opera.

I began taking voice classes on the age of eight and had opera in thoughts from the very starting. I had a Pavarotti CD that I listened to time and again—I simply cherished it. My first opera was La bohème on the Metropolitan Opera once I was fourteen years previous. I bear in mind sitting there saying, “I’ll sing on that stage someday.” Later, whereas I used to be within the Lindemann Younger Artist Growth Program on the Met, I sang Schaunard in that exact same Zeffirelli manufacturing. Desires can come true!

HOW DID YOU SPEND YOUR TIME DURING THE COVID-19 SHUT-DOWN? WHAT DID YOU MISS MOST ABOUT PERFORMING, AND HOW DOES IT FEEL TO BE BACK ON STAGE?

Man poses with daughter, playing with toy mallets
Ed and his daughter in January 2021. 

One of the best a part of quarantine was spending a lot time with my household. I’ve a younger daughter, and it has been a blessing to spend a lot time along with her and my spouse. I did lots of leatherworking and woodworking. I began promoting my leather-based items on-line and tackled a couple of constructing tasks.

I missed the performances. I missed making new associates and spending time with previous ones. I missed making music. It feels great to have the ability to return to work.

HOW DOES IT FEEL TO HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO PLAY JACK TORRANCE? HOW DO YOU PREPARE TO PORTRAY AN ICONIC CHARACTER THAT IS ENGRAINED INTO OUR CULTURAL PSYCHE?

Edward Parks as Jack Torrance kneels before his son Danny, played by Michah Vonfeldt
Edward Parks & Michah VonFeldt in Opera Colorado’s 2022 manufacturing of Moravec & Campbell’s The Shining, based mostly on the novel by Stephen King. Picture: Opera Colorado/Matthew Staver

I can not wait to sing Jack Torrance. I’ve cherished the novel and the film my complete life. I had an enormous poster of Jack Nicholson (along with his face coming by means of the door) on my wall in school. When it comes to preparation, I prefer to scrape away all of the floor issues we all know and that we see and attempt to discover the basis of the human. He’s a person. He’s a husband. He’s a father. He’s a recovering alcoholic. He has real-life demons. I really like that the opera is extra just like the e book as a result of he’s extra of a human being within the e book. He’s not possessed from the beginning. He has an actual arc as a personality.

I really like challenges, and I’m actually trying ahead to the depth of this function and manufacturing. I can not wait to create a secure surroundings with our solid so issues can get as loopy as they have to be in these intensely dramatic moments.

YOU WORKED WITH MARK CAMPBELL BEFORE FOR THE (R)EVOLUTION OF STEVE JOBS. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT WORKING WITH HIM?

Ed Parks in The (R)Evolution of Steve Jobs. Picture by Ken Howard for Santa Fe Opera.

Let me simply say at first that I LOVE MARK CAMPBELL. He and I’ve labored collectively many instances. Mark makes my job rather a lot simpler. I by no means have to take a seat and assume, “why is my character saying this? Why does this scene not work? He at all times paints an attractive image along with his phrases. I really feel just like the spotlight of my profession is working with artists like Mark.

TELL US ABOUT THE OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES THAT COME WITH PERFORMING NEW OPERAS.

Performing new works has develop into one thing I do lots of. If you happen to had requested me ten years in the past if I might be primarily singing modern opera, I might have referred to as you loopy, however I like it. I really like that I’ve the constant alternative to make one thing my very own. Sure, it’s a lot more durable to study. Sure, generally the music is wild, however I really like it and really feel honored each time I’ve the possibility to work on new music.

Edward Parks takes a swing on the manic character of Jack Torrance in Opera Colorado’s 2022 manufacturing of The Shining.

YOU ARE ALSO AN AVID WOODWORKER AND LEATHER CRAFTER. WHAT PARALLELS CAN YOU DRAW BETWEEN MASTERING THOSE ARTFORMS AND THE ART FORM OF SINGING?

Ed’s leather-based carving of Jack Nicholson in The Shining.

This stuff are all crafts. If you begin out, you aren’t superb at it. I like to think about myself as a craftsman. I like to problem myself to do issues I’ve by no means accomplished earlier than. I like to have a look at an area and assume, “this could be a lot extra useful with some built-ins,” after which determine find out how to make them. It takes time. It takes fortitude, similar to being an opera singer.

 

 

 

 

 

If you happen to cherished attending to know Ed on this put up, you’ll love seeing him carry out dwell and in particular person! Tickets for Opera Colorado’s February/March manufacturing of Moravec & Campbell’s The Shining are on sale now>>

What else would you prefer to learn about Ed? Which components of The Shining are you most trying ahead to?

 

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