We’re so excited to have Joshua Dennis in Annapolis for our production of Faust! He was kind enough to answer a few questions for us to get to know him better. Thanks, Joshua!
- What led you to a career in singing?
- “I studied theater in college and did musical theater. When I was supposed to transfer to an acting program, my musical theater teacher asked me to sing for a friend of his who had just retired from an international opera career. I sang for him and as he gave me a voice lesson, I was totally hooked. I decided that day that I would study voice and I have never looked back.”
- Tell us about the character you play in Faust.
- “I play the role of Faust. Faust is a sad man. He starts the opera saying goodbye to the cruel world as he is about to kill himself. He is an old man who apparently lived a long, sad, and disappointing life. The only thing that makes him want to live longer is youth and love, and he gets those things briefly and his entire life changes. One can’t help but feel for him and hope that he gets the happiness that anybody deserves. He gets a second chance and he tries not to waste it. He’s relatable. We’ve all felt very low, we’ve all wanted a second chance, we all need love, and so it’s easy to sympathize with him.”
- Do you have any advice for aspiring singers?
- “Practice! Practice, practice, practice. Live this art form. Don’t get discouraged. And if you do get discouraged, practice more. The difference between being masterful at something and having it be a hobby is the amount of good time you put into your craft.”
- If you could play any role (regardless or voice part, gender, etc.), what role would it be?
- “That question is hard to answer. I love the Puccini heroes. Rodolfo, Cavaradossi, etc.”
- Do you have any pre-show rituals/are you superstitious when it comes to the theater?
- “I like to have dinner by myself. It’s usually something filling like steak and potatoes. I also like to get to my dressing room early and just relax.”
- What do you have coming up after Faust?
- “I’ll be heading up to Detroit to sing the role of Tamino in The Magic Flute at Michigan Opera Theater.”
- Why do you love opera?
- “Opera is a showcasing of the raw human voice. I love how human it feels to make beauty out of, essentially, yelling. It’s one of the only things that can make me weep without knowing what the singer is singing about.”
- Other than opera, what are you listening to now? (What’s on your iPod?)
- “I listen to everything. All of the hits, from country to pop. The last thing I listened to was Mumford and Sons.”
- What do you do for fun/what hobby or interest do you enjoy outside of performing?
- “Food! I’m a big foodie! I love to cook and especially eat. My wife and I love trying new restaurants and trying new flavors. When we are in a new city, we will try to do some type of food tour. I do have many many hobbies though, but a good food and wine pairing is heavenly.”
“On a separate note, it may be interesting to some people that my wife’s grandfather is the Hall of Fame Soccer coach at the Naval Academy, Glenn Warner. I believe they named the Soccer complex after him. My father-in-law is a Naval Academy Grad who retired as a Navy Seal Commander. And my mother-in-law was born and raised in Annapolis.”