News

November 4, 2008

Music Is a Family Tradition

Sean Gough ’09 interviews his grandfather, world-renowned opera signer Ronald Naldi, Nov. 5

Sean Gough ’09, a music and history double major, will interview his grandfather, internationally-acclaimed opera tenor Ronald Naldi, during a presentation held at 4:15 p.m. Nov. 5 in Gendebien Room of Skillman Library.
During his 40-year career, Naldi has sung at the Metropolitan Opera, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Salzburg Landestheater, and the Verona Opera. He has played over 100 operatic roles and has sung over 250 performances at the Metropolitan Opera. This season, he will be singing in the Met’s productions of “Lucia di Lammermoor” and “The Magic Flute.”

Naldi’s talk, which is sponsored by the Friends of Skillman Library, will highlight his life as an opera singer, both onstage and backstage, and will feature a one-on-one interview with Gough.

“We’ll talk about his career’s unlikely genesis; his time as a professor of voice; his subsequent decision to become a performer; his experiences on, off, and backstage; and his maturation as an artist,” says Gough. “But this discussion is not a forum for my grandfather and me to talk about ourselves, or a chance for others to meet someone who works with some of the most respected musicians in the world. Really, it’s an opportunity for the campus to hear from a man who has worked most of his life chasing a dream. A good student who thought he would become a high school teacher/basketball coach – and who now sings at the Metropolitan Opera.”

Gough is also a musician in his own right. Playing piano since the age of eight, he has been actively involved on campus, studying classical and jazz piano with Alexis Fisher, visiting instructor of piano, and Skip Wilkins, associate professor of music; performing with numerous ensembles; and premiering works of his own and other student composers. He also performs professionally with the Jack Furlong Quartet and Ojespa Jazz Project at locations throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey, and has released two recordings.

“This isn’t just his story, either,” says Gough. “It’s the story of all those who dare to live their life doing something they love. It’s a story of the extraordinary and unpredictable journey that every student should hope to embark on when they leave this place.”

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