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OPERA San Antonio in the News

Artist Spotlight: Q&A with David Portillo

Credit: Simon Pauly

When did you know you wanted to be a singer?

I always loved to sing, but I remember the exact moment that I fell in love with singing solo on stage. It was when I sang a solo in a church choir concert in Florida.


Which singer(s) inspired you the most while growing up?

I remember listening to recordings of Steve Green, Sandi Patti, the Three Tenors and my first art song recording was Dietrich Fischer Dieskau.  A lot of inspiration came from a more personal level as well. My church choir director always inspired me to sing, and some of my favorite singers were high school friends. 


Which singer(s)r do you most admire now?

I am a big fan of tenors Piotr Bezcala and Atilio Glaser, mezzos Jamie Barton and Elizabeth DeShong, bass-baritone Kyle Ketelson, and soprano Rachel Willis-Sorenson.  


What has been your favorite role?

I love to sing Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni and Tamino in The Magic Flute.


What is your dream role?

I would love to sing Nemorino in Elixir of Love.


What’s your favorite opera?

I love to listen to The Marriage of Figaro and love to see Carmen.


Who is your favorite composer?

Mozart is my favorite of all time.  But there are so many that I enjoy - Berlioz, Schumann, Gershwin, Jake Heggie, and Missy Mizzoli.


Who is your favorite writer?

James Baldwin, Ta Nehisi Coates, Guillaume Apollinaire.


Who is your favorite actor/actress?

Edward Norton, Jim Carrey, Julianne Moore.


What is your favorite book?

To Kill A Mockingbird


What is your favorite film?

            Three Amigos


What has been your proudest moment?

            Marrying my husband.


When/where are you the happiest?

Grilling in my backyard and enjoying family and friends.


What is your greatest fear?



If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

            I would stop apologizing unnecessarily.


What is your most treasured possession?



If you weren’t an opera singer, what career would you choose?

Teacher… probably of music.


Favorite place to spend your paycheck?



“People might be surprised to know that I……?”

Really enjoy step aerobics!


“On my day off, I like to….?”

Cook, watch TV, go to the movies, bike…


“In five years, I’ll be….?”

            Singing new fun roles and spending a lot more time at home.


What TV show are you addicted to?

The Office


Your last Google search was…

The artist Ta-Coumba Aiken


What movie do you always leave on when you come across it on TV?

            Tommy Boy


Which celebrity would you want to have over for dinner?

            Ru Paul


What’s the last book you read?

Between the World and Me, Tahenesi Coates


See David Portillo live in La Traviata this September 13 & 15 at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts. Click here for Tickets.

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