On the Couch with Shanul Sharma

Shanul Sharma AAR On the CouchWho is Shanul Sharma?
Someone who loves music and it’s power. He is also an Indian born Australian former heavy metal singer turned opera tenor who has just returned from singing Rossini’s Il Viaggio a Reims at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow and is about to sing it at the Sydney Opera House!

What would you do differently to what you do now?
Nothing! For me, I cannot think of a line of work more exciting than being an opera singer. I get to sing some of the most amazing music ever written, play different people (sometimes in period), create art and work with some of the most inspiring people of the planet; all the while sharing my most profound feelings with an audience.

Who inspires you and why?
People who are completely and truly committed and immersed in what they do. It could be anything from someone acting their heart out on stage to a carpenter turning a piece of wood into something special.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
A lyric from Sting’s Russians comes to mind: “We share the same biology, regardless of ideology…”. Also, I would love to be able to introduce more people to the arts in general. I feel that it gives us freedom to imagine and to be expressive – an essential part of being human. And when we spend time embracing our humanity, we have little time for much else.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Italy. For the food, wine and romance (not in the obvious sense). It’s really a place with so much preserved history and culture where every street has a story that is centuries old waiting to be uncovered.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
As I’m currently living in Sydney, I would take them on the train ride to Circular Quay station and show them the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House as they emerge from the train tunnel. Then I’d walk them to the steps of the Sydney Opera House. Simply – because the view of the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House together is like no other in the world; especially on a clear sunny day.

What are you currently reading?
Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse.

What are you currently listening to?
Random James Brown songs – I love his energy and also a couple of operas that I need to prepare for in the near future.

Happiness is?
To be in love!

What does the future hold for you?
A few very exciting projects – but in general, more singing!!

Shanul stars as Conte di Libenskof in Opera Australia’s production of Rossini’s Il Viaggio a Reims – in the Joan Sutherland Theatre – Sydney Opera House until 2 November 2019. For more information, visit: www.opera.org.au for details.

Image: Shanul Sharma (supplied)