What is the best thing that I love about my work?
No matter how tired or sad I can be, I always find some joy in what I do.
What is my idea of perfect happiness?
Living in the present, with an open heart to the people around me.
What is my greatest fear?
Regrets. I want to be able to look back on my life, and know that I have tried everything I really wanted.
What is the trait that I most deplore in myself?
Punctuality. I find it difficult to finish what I am doing and move on to the next step in my day so I tend to always run a bit behind.
Which living persons in my profession do i most admire?
That is such a difficult question. I grow to admire everyone I work with. Opera is beautiful and very fulfilling, but it is not easy. I guess the people I admire the most are those who are able to maintain a good balance between their personal and professional life.
What is my greatest extravagance?
I always sing. Constantly. If you meet me on the street or the bus, you can probably hear me hum something. I sometimes sing out when I am biking at night if the streets are empty. I love the feeling of complete freedom I get from it.
On what occasion would I lie?
I try to never lie, it makes me feel way too awful. I sometimes get very excited about a story though, and I might exaggerate certain details when I tell it.
What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work?
The solitude. When putting together an opera, the biggest part of the work is done alone; translating your text, studying the diction, memorizing the music and researching the character and the story. I love to be working with a team, and the preparation time feels quite lonely to me. I also have to be away from my loved ones a lot.
When and where was I the happiest, in my work?
When I get to sing for a small audience. House concerts are my favorite, because you feel connected to everyone you sing for. There is something quite extraordinary about singing for someone who sits a meter away from you.
If I could, what would I change about myself?
I would like to trust more. Trust my voice, trust my coworkers and trust that everything will happen at the right time.
What is my greatest achievement in work?
I would say that just to be able to sustain myself as an artist feels like a great achievement.
Where would I most like to live?
I love my city (Montreal), and I wish to be able to live here for as long as I can. The three other cities where I have felt like I could build a home are Boston, Milan and Strasbourg.
What is my most treasured possession?
I wouldn’t say that I possess her, but I definitely couldn’t live without my cat.
What is my most marked characteristic?
Besides the fact that I am very tall, I am an absolute daydreamer.
What is my most inspirational location, in my city?
My grand-mother’s house. This is where I feel the safest, and where I can remember who I am.
What is my favorite place to eat and drink, in my city?
There is a wonderful little coffee-shop right by my place called Pagaille. I love it because it is very small, it almost feels like a secret place. Their breakfast menu is delicious.
What books influenced my life and how?
The Glass Bead Game by Hermann Hesse. This is the book that made me understand the discipline and the intellectual passion I needed to dedicate my life to music. It fed my love for serious studies when I needed it the most.
Who are my favorite writers?
Kundera, Beigbeder, Vian, Ionesco, Mouawad, Hesse, Duras, and who am I kidding, I can’t name them all.
You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day?
Duruflé’s Requiem, which I happen to be singing tomorrow night. It very much fits the way I experiment spirituality.
Who is my hero or heroine in fiction?
I got to sing the role of Bradamante last fall. A real heroine who puts on her brother’s armor to go save her beloved. I admire her courage and felt much empowered while playing her.
Who are my heroes and heroines in real life?
My life partner, Marco Piana. He is inspiring me every day to dedicate myself to my work and remain as kind and generous as possible just like he is. I have never met someone as hard working and talented as he is.
Which movie would I recommend to see once in a lifetime?
The most beautiful movie I have ever seen is Lars von Trier’s Melancholia.
What role plays art in my life and work?
I feel like to make art you need to always feed your imagination. You should try to absorb as much art as you can. Although, you need to be careful about what you are exposed to, because bad works will influence you as well.
Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime?
My Mother, Yolande Naggar, is most definitely my greatest fan. She tries to come to every performance I give, even if it means she needs to travel. She has always supported me in every way possible.
My aunt, Mireille Naggar, is the one person who keeps me in line with myself. I always call her when I feel insecure or challenged. She is like my anchor, she helps me to stay true to the artist and the person I want to be.
Whom would I like to work with in 2017?
Jonathan Patterson, a director that I have met plenty of times but have never actually worked with. I admire his creative mind and the way he works with singers.
Which people in my profession would I love to meet in 2017?
I would love to have a couple of voice lessons with Jennifer Larmore.
What project, in 2017, am I looking forward to work on?
I am very excited to do my debut with l’Opéra de Montréal in their fall production of Rossini’s La Cenerentola. I will be singing the role of Tisbe, one of Cinderella’s evil step-sisters.
Where can you see me or my work in 2017?
This summer I will sing my first Carmen with the Halifax Summer Opera Festival. As of late August, I will be one of the resident artists of l’Atelier lyrique de l’Opéra de Montréal. I also have a lot of recitals coming up that you can follow on my website.
What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me?
I think that when you truly love what you do, it follows you wherever you go.
Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?
The wonderful Jessica Derventzis, a successful young opera director with whom I have very much enjoyed working over the last month.
How can you contact me?