Was there a specific moment when you knew you wanted to be a singer?
Not one specific moment but more a growing desire over several years in my childhood. I still remember the excitement I felt as a choir boy of 12 or 13 before a performance of say Bach’s Matthew Passion or Brahms’ Requiem, and the complete sense of being engulfed in the music during the concert. So I think that feeling, and the encouragement I took from my first singing teacher at the age of 15 upon finding that I still had a voice after the change of it from soprano to baritone, prompted me to shock my parents with the confession of wanting to forsake the path of medicine for the one of music.
How do you feel about performing such masterpieces as Handel’s Messiah, which audiences know so well?
The simple answer is that I love it! But on a more thoughtful level it presents the challenge of needing to perform it as if it were the first time, always finding new things (which thankfully isn’t difficult in truly great music), and taking the audience on a journey they haven’t been on before, to make them feel...