OPERALAND follows Richie Verdun, a funny, fearless little dynamo, as he enters the glamorous and treacherous world of opera facing almost impossible odds. He’s in his early forties, unusually old for a beginner, and hasn’t had the benefit of either musical or theatrical training. To make matters worse, this irrepressible fireplug of a man is overly fond of inappropriate, almost infantile jokes that are wildly out of place in his sophisticated new surroundings. We first meet him as a hustling car salesman in upper Michigan, deeply devoted to his literate and caring wife Kit and their three young children. When his family urges him to try his luck as an operatic tenor, he enters a world that is utterly foreign to him. The struggle is intense and rejections proliferate, but Richie’s energy and ambition never desert him. A seemingly ordinary man unleashes his inner artist and discovers a new way of life.
Winner First Prize North Street Book Prize
WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING
What a pleasure to follow Richie through Operaland! I am sure people in and out of the operatic world will find his story laugh-out-loud funny.” Paul Plishka, Leading Bass — Metropolitan Opera
An excellent read. Every moment of getting to know the delightful characters and personalities in Operaland is a true joy.” William Neill, Leading Tenor - Deutsche Oper Berlin, Paris Opera, New York City Opera
A moving love story from two points of view- love of opera and love of the family. The somewhat simple car salesman Richie is liberated through his work in opera to becomes a more confident and assertive husband and father.” Ulla Hahn, bestselling German author