Basso-Profundo Mark Haddad earned his BM in Vocal Performance from Texas Tech University and his MM in Vocal Performance from the University of Delaware. Aside from his work with Haymarket Opera Company, Mr. Haddad currently sings with Chicago-based chamber choirs Bella Voce and the William Ferris Chorale, as well as the choir of St. Chrysostom’s in Gold Coast. He is also a member of the supplemental chorus for the Grant Park Music Festival, and performed the Rachmaninoff Vespers in July of 2017. In August of 2017, as a member of the Lakeside Singers, he performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the Ravinia Music Festival. In March of 2018 he will perform the role of Herbert in the World-premiere of Ross Crean’s The Great God Pan with Chicago Fringe Opera. When he is not singing, he works as a substitute teacher with Intrinsic Schools of Chicago and also works security at various concerts and festivals. In his free time, he works out regularly, and is an avid pool player.
Hear Mark in Oratorio per la Settimana Santa March 8 & 10, 2018 - Get your tickets now!
What is the story of how you first came to love music and opera?
I have had a deep love of music, and of singing, for most of my life. However, when I was 17 years old, I went from a very high Tenor, to a low Bass, over night. That is when I really started to consider pursuing an education (and career) in music.
What is the biggest challenge you face as an artist?
For me personally, the biggest challenge has been determining which avenue I really want to pursue in my career. Right now I perform in a variety of genres, including; classical choir, vocal jazz, voice-over, and opera. I am going to have to choose one at some point, and it is my hope that as my voice continues to mature, the natural choice will present itself.
Do you have a favorite performer?
My favorite performer in Opera would have to be Kurt Moll. However, my favorite Basso-Profundo is Glenn Miller.
Do you have a favorite role? Aria? Opera?
My favorite role would have to be Osmin from Die Entführung aus dem Serail by Mozart. My favorite aria to sing right now is The Song of the Viking Guest from Sadko by Rimsky-Korsakov. My favorite opera is probably Don Giovanni.
Do you have any favorite books about music?
This probably isn’t the answer you’re looking for, but I would have to say any of the volumes of Nico Castel libretti.
What else are you reading?
Currently, most of my free time is being taken up by studying biology. I am a substitute teacher at a charter school in Chicago, and starting immediately after the Rossi, I will be covering an AP biology class for a teacher who will be on her maternity-leave. While all of the lesson-plans and day-to-day schedules will already be done for me, I still need to have enough knowledge of the subject matter to be able to answer questions and tutor students.
Who are your favorite 17th- and 18th-century composers?
In the realm of opera, Mozart wrote for the bass voice extremely well. I also love singing Handel oratorios.
If you were stranded on a desert island, is there one piece of music you would like to have with you?
The All Night Vigil by Rachmaninoff is hands-down my favorite musical work of all time. I could listen to it every day, and smile every time.
What do you love about HOC?
I am new to the Chicago area, and don’t have much experience with Haymarket itself. I have however, had the pleasure of working with several Haymarket musicians through performances with other ensembles, and they are extremely talented and consummate professionals.
What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not making music?
Whenever I’m not making music, I spend as much time as possible with my girlfriend. She is not a musician, but she is extremely supportive of the life and career I have chosen for myself.
What is the first thing you think about in the morning?
Coffee is probably the first thing, but then that is almost immediately followed by looking at my planner to see what the day has in store for me.
Do you have any heroes/heroines?
My father is my hero. I owe everything that I am, and everything I have done, to him. If it wasn’t for him, I would probably still be living in El Paso, TX, working as a C.P.A. and only singing in church every Sunday.
What music do you listen to most often?
I have been told that I have a very eclectic taste in music, and I listen to a little of everything every day.
If you had not entered into your current career what do you think you would have done instead?
I would have definitely been a Certified Public Accountant working in my Father’s Firm in El Paso, TX. There’s nothing wrong with that life, but I am extremely glad that I do what I do instead.