Attacking My First Audition Season

Bravery and other excitements of Sidney Walker

In the coming weeks, this blog will publish a series of profiles of young American, Canadian, and British singers who went to Germany to sing and live. Their answers to a small set of questions show what it takes to move to a foreign place, mainly to Berlin, and pursue the career of their dreams.

Your name:
Sidney Walker

From where:
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Your Fach:
Lyric Mezzo Soprano

Photo Credit: Les Koob. From a production of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”


Since when in Berlin:
March, 2016

Your favorite role:
Strauss’s Octavian from Der Rosenkavalier.

What do you think of Regietheater?
Illuminating when successful.

Best opera production you saw in Germany:
Elektra, Hamburg Staatsoper 2015

Craziest opera production you saw in Germany:
I have yet to witness first hand one of the famous, off the wall productions Germany is known for, but I already see a number of provocative upcoming productions that are sure to satisfy. I am beyond excited to experience my first full Opera season in Germany!

Your hero in opera:
Anne Sofie Von Otter

Your hero in real life:
My grandmother, Olene Walker, who was the first woman Governor of Utah. She proved, every day, that it’s never too late to pursue new and ambitious paths in life.

Photo Credit: Dani Werner

Two things you like about Berlin:
The diverse neighborhood, the arts scene

Two things you don’t like about Berlin:
Too many people speak English, so it’s difficult to practice mein Deutsch; there are so many exciting opportunities that there is no way to experience it all!

Your most recent performance:
As One, as Hannah with International Opera Projects here in Berlin.

Your next project, performance, and where:
At the moment, I’m attacking my first full audition season in Germany, but there are some exciting things in the works!

Your favorite quality in a singer:

Your favorite German word:

Find more information including audio about Sidney Walker at

Watch a video with Sidney Walker:


* The compound noun Kummerspeck consists of der Kummer (sorrow, grief, heartbreak) and der Speck (bacon, flab). If you suffer heartbreak or other kind of sorrow, you might eat more than usual, chocolate maybe or cake or pints of ice cream while watching tv or staring out of the window. The inevitable result around your hips will be Kummerspeck. (Comment: Bernd Hendricks)


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Bernd Hendricks. Born in Duisburg, Germany. Based in Berlin. Writer, German Language Educator. I was six years old when I went to the opera for the first time. My Grandma took me to Hänsel und Gretel at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Duisburg. The first time I met an opera singer personally was during my time as foreign correspondent in New York when at a Christmas party a baritone pelted me with questions about the language of Zauberflöte. He was preparing for his role as Papageno. After my return to Berlin in September 2010, I have been giving German lessons to singers on their audition tours. My workshops in Berlin, Vienna, and London are based on my widely read book Ach, ich fühl’s—German for Opera Singers in Three Acts: Studying, Speaking, Singing. My latest book, Die Frist ist um—Navigate the Language of 10 German Operas, takes you on a journey through the language of the most popular and often performed operas in the German-speaking countries. I am also the author of several non-fiction books and two novels.

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