Opera Singer Goes Pop/Rock/Techno During Quarantine as Impresario-Releases 'Songs From Inside'
With a singing foundation in choirs as an 8 yr old, Valerian went through the full range of musical youth straight on to pop singing in his teens and 20's. Looking to get out of his hometown, he and fellow Buffalonian, Emmy Award winning Jack Levy moved to Los Angeles via two years in Alaska working in fish canneries in 1988. Valerian sang, wrote songs, Jack played keyboards and drum machine with their first band Paradox. They ended up with a spec deal at A&M Records that only materialized into a few recorded tracks. Eventually returning to Buffalo, Valerian completed a BA in Vocal Studies at University of Buffalo and the scholarship only AVA (Academy of Vocal Arts) diving into classical music training and opera. Valerian went on to an international 25 year opera career along with creating Nickel City Opera, a non profit arts organization now in its 12th year producing over 25 productions and was also inducted into the Buffalo Music Hall of Fame in 2011.
An Impresario is a person that can accomplish many different creative tasks. Valerian thinks singers should be able to sing the entire spectrum from pop to Broadway to jazz to opera and he's tried them all. "Throughout my life, I wanted to see what the voice could do, how developed the voice could become and was told by my teacher's my voice was good enough to have a career singing opera. Singing pop music is just as difficult as singing opera. Pop songs are like a magician spinning plates, you have to keep the plates spinning to keep the listener engaged. Balancing 3-4 plates, you have to throw in dashes of spice throughout the songs. This was my goal for 'Songs From Inside'." Impresario is a project based collective of musicians, singers, writers and producers with additional projects in the works.
Valerian's next endeavor is 'The Strange Case of Igor Lukovsky". A podcast about a deranged eccentric opera fan that tries to jump off a balcony to rescue the lead character in a live staged production eventually ending up in a mental hospital. A musically humorous introduction to the world of opera as Igor explains his fascination with opera to his psychiatrist. Available on all streaming platforms this summer.
Valerian can also be heard on Naxos 'A Night At The Opera', New World Records 'Victor Herbert Collected Songs', George Robb's 'Americana' and the Deutsche Grammophon, Metropolitan Opera DVD, 'I Puritani'.
Listen to 'Songs From Inside' now on Amazon:
'Living In My Dreams' video from 'Songs From Inside'
'Lean On Me'-from 'Songs From Inside'