British-Australian bass-baritone Duncan Rock is soon to take on his seventh Don Giovanni for Opera Queensland’s upcoming new production, directed by Lindy Hume and set in Victorian England. One of his calling card roles, he has appeared in the part to acclaim around the world, most notably at Boston Lyric Opera in 2015, where one critic said, “From his fervently shaped Là ci darem la manoto his exuberant Fin ch’han dal vino, Rock’s Don Giovanni is a life force, comic, witty, intelligent, never mean-spirited.” Starting out as a chorus member with West Australian Opera, Rock has since sung at the Metropolitan Opera, Royal Opera House and English National Opera. This interview was given in the second week of rehearsals for Don Giovanni.
Duncan Rock in Don Giovanni. Photo supplied
You obviously consider Don Giovanni a signature role by now. Was it always a natural fit for your particular voice?
Actually, it wasn’t. I always thought I would sing the role of Leporello. His big Catalogue Aria is one of the pieces I sang way back in 2006 when I won the Australian Singing Competition, the Mathy Award, because my voice always sat in a...