Opening the door of the downtown coffee shop, it’s not hard to spot Alexander Lewis. He’s the angular, good-looking fellow staring at an electronic score on his iPad and conducting along discreetly as he engages in some furtive note bashing. I’ve only been in New York for a couple of weeks, but by complete coincidence the Australian tenor, currently enjoying a run in Opera Australia’s Merry Widowopposite Danielle de Niese, has suggested we meet in what turns out to be my local. Hardly surprising, I guess, as good coffee in New York can be hard to find and an Aussie needs a sensitive nose to sniff out a decent flat white.

Alexander Lewis Alexander Lewis. Photo © Dario Acosta

Right now, Lewis is here to reprise his role as a duplicitous Confederate soldier in American rising star composer Matthew Aucoin’s powerful first opera, Crossing. But in fact, Lewis, who has lived in New York for most of the last five years since he joined the Metropolitan Opera’s prestigious Lindemann Young Artists Program, has recently resettled in Melbourne following his marriage to fellow singing actor and Helpmann Award winner Christina O’Neill (Melbourne audiences...

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