We had the pleasure of speaking with Harold Theurer ‘17, a winner of the Berkshire Symphony Soloist Competition. Harold is a theater and political science major and will sing “Hai Già Vinto La Causa” from Le Nozze di Figaro with the Berkshire Symphony.
You have been doing theatre for quite some time: what got you into singing specifically?
It’s actually kind of a funny story: my parents took me to an Elton John concert, and on stage in the background they had this whole choir of children my age. And so I turned to my Dad and said, “I want to do that.” So my Dad contacted that same organization that performed at the concert, and I auditioned and got in. So I was part of that organization, the Brooklyn Youth Chorus from third grade until eighth grade. I’ve kind of come full circle because when I was in seventh grade the organization once again performed with Elton John.
So for the competition, you sang one of the arias for The Marriage of Figaro: can you say what drew you to this character, this aria?
It was originally at the suggestion of [Williams Opera Workshop co-director] Keith Kibler, and we had done Marriage of Figaro in the Opera Workshop [Williams Opera Workshop 2016], and he said, look there’s this great song I’d like you to sing from the Count, it’s an actor’s piece and it would be great for you. I listened to it and said, wow I really love this one. We worked on it since last spring, almost a year to this day.
I remember you played Figaro when we did The Marriage of Figaro in the Williams Opera Workshop. How is it different singing the Count, Figaro’s adversary?
It’s totally different! Now, I’m trying to portray this guy who’s confused and conflicted and angry, so it’s a totally different piece, but what I love about it is that it allows me to have this wide range of emotion, and as somebody with a theater background, I couldn’t ask for a better piece.
Since you are a senior, do you know what you are doing after college?
I’m from New York, so I’ll be back in Brooklyn pursuing acting full-time. Last summer I joined the Screen Actors Guild, so that was a great step forward.
What types of things did you do to get into the Screen Actors Guild?
I went back to New York [last summer], took classes and auditioned just to get used to that. I was going to Equity Principal Auditions for TheaterWorks, but at the same time, I wanted to reacquaint myself with what a film set looks like. So I started doing extra work on film sets, really starting at the bottom. I got really lucky and got a few feature background spots in a bunch of different shows. I think by the end of the summer, I worked on 15 different TV shows total. It takes some people years to do it and it takes some people weeks, and I just feel very lucky that that happened the way it did.
So, after college are you thinking of doing more screen acting, more stage acting, or both?
My passion has always been theater, and this [film acting] was kind of a new experience for me. I also love doing voiceover work, so between those three, I’m trying to keep my options open.
Interview by Christine Pash ‘18