Adventure, love and… glitter

Alexander Lewis grew up in a musical family. The son of renowned opera singers Patricia Price and Michael Lewis, he and his brother Ben spent their childhood hearing top voices in full flight. Joan Sutherland sang at their primary school fundraisers. Every New Year’s Eve, they watched their parents perform at the Sydney Opera House.

“I just wanted to do what my Dad did,” Lewis says “I was encouraged to push the boundaries a lot through drama.”

He discovered musical theatre at university and went on to the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts. He began to get the roles and reviews any aspiring performer could dream of. He auditioned for two of the world’s most prestigious opera training programs: the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program at the Metropolitan Opera of New York and San Francisco Opera’s Merola Opera Program. He won places in both. Fast forward fifteen years, and he’s performing roles all over the country, including one of his favourites, the title role in Candide, for a co-production bringing together State Opera and State Theatre Company South Australia for the first time in over a decade.

“I’m a huge Leonard Bernstein fan. Much like some of his other musical scores (West Side Story anyone?), Candide is full of absolutely glorious musical numbers, with a big chorus and a full symphony orchestra.” He says “I’ve been lucky enough to straddle both worlds of opera and musical theatre and the wonderful thing for me, Leonard Bernstein sits absolutely in the middle: this piece is operatic in scale, with the ease of a musical comedy.”

“I was last in Adelaide a few years ago with The Merry Widow and the audiences here are so energetic and vibrant, as a performer I love that exchange. And I can’t wait to be working with Mitchell Butel again: I did Candide with him directing us before, with the Sydney Philharmonia Choir, and with Annie [Aitken] and with Caroline [O’Connor] as well, so the gang’s getting back together. Add cabaret star Hans to the mix, this will be a cracker both on stage and behind the scenes.”

Leonard Bernstein’s Candide Presented by State Opera South Australia and State Theatre Company South Australia | 23rd – 25th of May, 2024 Her Majesty’s Theatre. Tickets on sale now

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