LA Opera is a family company. Nowhere is this more evident than in the returning singers that spend long stretches of their career gracing the stage at Dorothy Chandler. Greg Fedderly is the epitome of these singers. Throughout the course of LA Opera’s history, Fedderly has been in 63 productions – that’s over 390 performances in 30 years (and counting). This includes Borsa in Rigoletto (1993, 2010), Monostatos in The Magic Flute (1992, 2002, 2009), Red Whiskers in Billy Budd (2014), and many, many more.
But performing was not always Fedderly’s goal. “Opera was not big in Wisconsin,” recalls Fedderly, before going into makeup for his current role as Gherardo in Gianni Schicchi. It was at the suggestion of his professor at the University of Wisconsin that Fedderly began performing and from then on he was hooked. He pursued a career in opera, while simultaneously taking on roles in musicals, such as West Side Story and Sweeny Todd.
Yet, it was working with LA Opera and Plácido Domingo that would define his career. “Working with Plácido has been such a pleasure. It’s really fantastic for the people of Los Angeles to have seen Plácido in some of his best roles at LA Opera throughout the years.” Fedderly began as a Resident Artist (now called Young Artist Program), making his LA Opera debut in 1988 as Flute in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and steadily taking on roles throughout the decades. His favorite experiences include portraying Rodolfo in La Bohéme with Domingo conducting (1997) and Alfredo in Marta Domingo’s production of La Traviata (1999). Of the latter, Fedderly appreciates Marta Domingo’s amazingly discerning eye. “She’s very detail-oriented and it truly shows in her work,” Fedderly says.
After such a successful career that also features several performances at The Metropolitan Opera (since his 2003 debut as Don Basilio in The Marriage of Figaro), San Francisco Opera, and Houston Grand Opera, it is only fair to ask what advice he gives to aspiring opera singers. Fedderly responds that it’s important to get into a good young artist program, but also stresses that the crucial thing to realize is that there are various paths to take. There’s no one single career path and as long as artists stay true to their passions and relentlessly pursue their dreams, that’s the most important life choice.
When Fedderly isn’t singing, he also owns and operates a restaurant in Hollywood called Off Vine. He feels lucky to have both his passions in his life. It’s a good place to be.
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