Richard Paul Fink as Rigoletto
We recently caught up with dramatic baritone Richard Paul Fink, who will be singing the title role in the upcoming Lyric Opera of Kansas City production of Rigoletto, to ask 10 questions inspired by our readers:
1. How did your initial interest in the art form of opera begin?
I started performing community theatre at the age of ten and always had an ear for musicals. While I was a junior in high school I went on choir trip to see the Metropolitan Opera’s touring production of La Traviata with Robert Merrill. A little voice in my head said, “this is what you will do!”
2. Where did you grow up?
Massillon, Ohio. A small steel mill and football town mid state Ohio, where I was recently honored as a “Citizen of Distinction.” It is also home to Helen Hayes, Rose Bampton, Jan DeGaetani, David Canary, and a multitude of sports superstars.
3. Do you have any family?
Sharon; wife, President & CEO of Birkman International. Three daughters; Margaret, Amy, Alexandra. Alex/Lexi, is the singer/actress and this January/February she the lead in 42nd Street at Memorial High in Houston.
4. What is an average performance day like for you?
On performance days from 1:00 p.m. on, I focus on the show and maybe take a nap before a role like the title role in Rigoletto.
5. What is an average, non-performance day like for you?
When I am on the road on my days off I like to play golf and watch Sci Fi. When I am at home I like to do wood working projects and spend time with my family.
6. What is your favorite opera to watch/experience?
Just about any Verismo Opera
7. Have you performed your role in Rigoletto before?
I have performed it at; Welsh National Opera, Opéra de Montreal, Calgary Opera, and covered it at the Met. Having three daughters, the role touches me deeply.
8. What language(s) do you speak fluently?
9. What facts about you would our audiences be surprised to learn?
I was a mascot, played flute, piccolo, and baritone sax in high school. I have been a machinist, worked in welding shops, been a maintenance man at churches and apartments, loaded trucks with fabric to steel, and helped design own home.
10. What is the opera role you haven’t performed, but would like to perform the most in your career?
I would like to be in Falstaff, Il Trittico, Kismet, Man of La Mancha, and Carousel.