LOS ANGELES – Talented actress/singer Jen Faith Brown takes on opera in her newest musical project, as a featured artist in the Eloy Sherlock's biblical opera “Genesis,” which was performed in Los Angeles recently and is also set to become a film.
A professional singer and recording artist in her own right, Brown plays an angel who narrates much of the action and sings some of the opera's most memorable pieces inspired from the Bible's Book of Genesis.
Brown’s musical work is in keeping with her musical background that has included a number of off-Broadway plays and musical theater that includes such classics as “The Glass Menagerie,” "Phantom,” “Man of La Mancha,” and many others. Her television work includes in such shows as “Law and Order,” “All My Children” and others.
Besides her stage and television work, she is adapting a film version of her play “Only a Girl,” based upon the life of Irene Gut Opdyke, a Polish nurse who at age 17, hid Polish Jews in a Nazi officer's cellar during World War II.We caught up with the multi-talented New York-born performer for an insightful interview on her recent work and career.
Question: How did you prepare for singing opera? What vocal exercises did you do to hit those high notes?
Answer: I actually do vocal exercises every day. I have always trained classically and try to work on arias and other classical pieces to stay in shape. I also sing in a choir and I find choral work is great for staying in shape vocally.
Q: How did you get interested in music and acting? Do they compliment each other?
A: I started acting when I was 8 and my first show was Annie. I think that singing is just an extension of acting. Singing gives you the opportunity to have the character express themselves in a very beautiful and powerful way. It is interesting because I received my MFA from a fellowship at The Alabama Shakespeare Festival. The voice and physical training we did for classical acting has been enormously helpful in my work as a singer. I received my BFA in Musical Theatre from Syracuse and the training was very focused on acting.
Q: Have you done much singing while acting?
A: Acting is always a part of singing for me. I always note my best experience as "Only a Girl." This is a play based one person interviews I had with Holocaust rescuer Irene Gut Opdyke. I am always so honored to share her story and we have incorporated a great deal of music and singing in the play.
Q: What other projects are you working on these days?
A: I just shot an episode of "Raven's Home" where I got to sing and that was great fun. I also got to sing for a new project called "Glass Ceilings." The musical chronicles several women who have broken the Glass Ceiling. I played Sybil Ludington, a female Paul Revere! I also do a great deal of recording work and I am currently working on a new arrangement of "Goodnight Soldier"
Q: Where can we learn more about “Genesis”?
A: For more information about Genesis as well as other recordings visit www.JenFaithBrown.com