Thomas Hampson


Date June 24, 2016
Thomas Hampson’s wikipedia entry reads, “Thomas Walter Hampson (born June 28, 1955) is an American lyric baritone, a classical singer who has appeared world-wide in major opera houses and concert halls and made over 170 musical recordings. … Hampson’s diverse and expansive discography has earned him an Edison Award for Lifetime Achievement, four Edison Awards, four Echo prizes, numerous VEB Deutsche Schallplatten, Gramophone Awards, and Grand Prix du Disque, as well as six Grammy Award nominations, and one Grammy Award.”

Harkening back to my university days where I studied Vocal Performance and the Eastman School of Music, I spent hour upon hours listening to Mr. Hampson’s interpretations of some of the greatest music every written for the baritone voice. So you can imagine my delight when I saw that he was to be providing a musical performance and talk as the last speaker on day one at this year’s NOAH Berlin conference.

As luck would have it, I headed back to the backstage area to empty my cards, I open the door, and low and behold, who should be standing there but one of the world’s greatest Baritones, Mr. Thomas Hampson. Noting that he’d already been mic’d up to take the stage, I politely introduced myself and asked him if we could do a shot together after his performance. I might have also dropped the fact that I am an Eastman alumni in the conversation, and we’d forged a connection immediately.

Focusing on event photography has really introduced me to a lot of cool, interesting, and important people, but I have to say that standing no further that 3 meters away from one of the greatest voices I’ve ever heard. Well, as you might imagine, I did have a moment of, “is this for real? He’s really right there, right? And there’s no one in between us? And I have access to a singer that others pay hundreds, if not thousands of euros/pounds/dollars to hear this close?” Yeah. …and I got the shot too.

After listening to Mr. Hampson’s passionate talk about Idago we retired to the backstage area where I quickly fired off a few shots of Thomas. And as my mom is a huge fan of opera, and specifically Mr. Hampson, I asked the rare ask, and got a selfie.

All in all, a super down to earth opera rockstar. Tom, thanks for the shot, love your work mate!

Talk to me at @mountaindan or via the contact form.

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