Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Ryan McKinny's ripped Stanley Kowalski at L.A. Opera

Ryan McKinny as Stanley Kowalski (Photo: Robert Millard for LA Opera)
The Los Angeles Opera has been marketing their upcoming performance of André Previn's A Streetcar Named Desire around mega-star Renée Fleming as Blanche DuBois. Fleming, who is a major exponent of American opera, and for whom the role was written when the opera premiered at the San Francisco Opera in 1998, certainly deserves to be the star attraction.

We, of course, were curious to see if the long tradition of casting a gym-toned barihunk as Stanley Kowalski was being upheld. The original Stanley was the Rod Gilfry in his vocal and physical prime. The role has subsequently been sung by a veritable Who's Who of barihunks, including Teddy Tahu Rhodes, David Adam Moore and Philip Cutlip. The L.A. Opera didn't disappoint, as they cast Ryan McKinny in the role, who like a bottle of 1982 Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion just gets better and better with age.

Ryan McKinny as Stanley Kowalski and Stacey Tappen as Stella (Photo: Robert Millard for LA Opera)
McKinny became a household name in the world of opera after performing the Dutchman in Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer at the Glimmerglass Festival under the direction of Francesca Zambello. Not only was McKinny's Dutchman vocally stunning, but it was the sexiest portrayal of that role in operatic history. The photos on our site went viral and almost doubled the traffic to our site.

In addition to Fleming and McKinny, the all-star cast also includes  Stacey Tappan as Stella and Anthony Dean Griffey as Mitch. Performances are on Sunday, May 18th at 5 PM and May 21 and 24 at 7:30 PM. Tickets for all three performances are available online.

You can read an interview with Ryan McKinny on the LA Opera blog