by Daniel Hathaway
Baritone Jordan Shanahan is in town to sing the role of Enrico in Opera Cleveland’s upcoming production of Lucia di Lammermoor on May 20, 22 & 23. He recently sang Horatio in the Metropolitan Opera’s production of Ambrose Thomas’ Hamlet and has been featured in Opera News’ column “One to Watch”. We had the opportunity to interview Jordan at Opera Cleveland’s offices earlier this month.
Daniel Hathaway: Is this your first time in Cleveland?
Jordan Shanahan: It is. I’ve driven through it, passing back through between New York and Chicago but this is the first time I’ve spent time.
DH: We’re kind of in the way between New York and Chicago. But you’re Hawaiian by birth, right?
JS: I am! I grew up in Hawaii — on Oahu — and was there until I was 21.
DH: It must be a hard place to leave.
JS: Oh, you have no idea! Sometimes when I have two weeks off I go home to Chicago and it’s ten degrees! The weather in Hawaii is always nice, the atmosphere is good with the ocean breezes, people are friendly. It’s a great place.
DH: So you started your career as a trombonist?
JS: Actually I started as a tuba player for a year, then I switched over to trombone. I was pretty good at it. I got a scholarship to go to the university. My trombone teacher said, “you should take some voice lessons”, which led to my doing a couple of choruses with Hawaii Opera, and a couple of musicals. I enjoyed it. [Read more…]