Title: Singing and Dreaming through Life
Author: Michael Renier
In his intensely personal autobiography, Michael Renier takes the reader from his childhood in small-town, scenically beautiful, rural South Africa to his discovery, on shellac 78 rpm records and radio, of the magic the tenor voice held for him. The reader follows him in his quest for a career in singing, to the London Opera Centre, the Equity hurdle, contracts in Germany and an eventual career launch as international opera tenor, spanning more than 40 years. He sang in Opera Houses all over Europe, in Britain, South Africa and Japan.
Michael discusses most of the operas in his repertoire – and even some operettas – in clearly annotated sections chronologically inserted within the course of his life story, and from the point of view of the tenor. He advises singers about the various roles in the operas that he knows so well; he discusses a multitude of arias from these productions and points out certain pitfalls which he encountered, to the young singer embarking on a career. A brief Epilogue at the end of the autobiography summarises some important pointers in the learning of roles and of voice production, with some fatherly advice on the mindset an opera singer should strive to cultivate.
This book will appeal to the lover of Opera as genre, to the reader of biographies and also to the student of opera who wishes to enrich himself through the vast experience of a tenor who made it in the competitive world of European opera.