6 November 2013
Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro, Enrico VIII in Anna Bolena, Leporello in Don Giovanni, Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, Caliban in The Enchanted Island… Renowned Italian bass-baritone Luca Pisaroni has gained a reputation for being a versatile and charismatic singer, as well as for having a highly captivating personality.
Luca Pisaroni has received thunderous applause from opera lovers across the globe. Meanwhile, there are two fans out there who get to express their deepest devotion to Pisaroni’s talent through cheerful barks and energetic tail wags.
Luca Pisaroni and his wife, Catherine are the proud owners of the two adorable dogs: golden retriever, Lenny 2.0, and miniature dachshund, Tristan.
In his exclusive interview with gbtimes, Pisaroni reveals why he finds it so important to always have the dogs around on his numerous trips and gives useful tips for those who feel reluctant or insecure to travel with pets.
Fluffy and cuddly companions
“I can't imagine my life without my dogs, honestly. They are the best companions. They really make my life better,” Pisaroni gladly confesses.
"A dog to me is like a small person, trapped in a four-legged body."
According to the singer, he enjoys watching the two dogs interacting with each other. “Lenny and Tristan are best friends, they are inseparable. I'm always amazed about their relationship.”
"I think everybody should have a pet. I'm sure people would be in a much better mood in general and they would be much less aggressive."
As often happens, Pisaroni’s dogs have taken a lot after their owners. “My wife is certainly more like our golden retriever, and I'm much more like our miniature dachshund. Lenny is such a sweetheart, always happy, always in a good mood, relaxed, and positive. But Tristan, just like me, always needs to be in control of the situation, needs to know exactly what's going on, and is a little bit less relaxed,” Pisaroni reveals the family secrets.
But the biggest thing that Pisaroni and his dogs have in common is, without a doubt, a passion for opera.
“Lenny and Tristan certainly have a sophisticated and healthy life. Whenever it's possible, I take them to the rehearsals and to the performances. They are used to it. I don't know if they like opera, but they certainly know when I have a performance. When I start singing in the afternoon to warm up in preparation for a performance, they lie down on the floor and look at me. I’m sure in those moments they are thinking there is a performance tonight because he's singing again.”
The cuddly and sweet doggies are also incredibly friendly. “I need to keep the door of my dressing room closed, otherwise I'm sure Lenny and Tristan would both be on stage singing with me and my colleagues,” Pisaroni remarks with a smile.
On the road
Being a much sought-after opera singer with his schedule packed for years to come, requires a lot of traveling. When Pisaroni is involved in a production, he and his wife have to stay away from their home in Vienna, Austria for a couple of months or longer.
“I really make an effort to take my dogs with me everywhere I go, because they keep me grounded and they give me a sense of family. No matter where I am, I feel like I'm at home when they’re around. I don't actually miss being at home because my wife and my dogs are with me all the time. I can be in San Francisco, or New York, or Vienna, or Paris, or London, and it feels the same to me because everybody is there, my family is there,” Pisaroni frankly notes.
"Dogs enjoy what they are used to. If you take them on your trips, then they know that traveling is part of their life."
And the dogs seem to be enjoying such a busy artistic lifestyle, as their owners are aware of what should be taken into consideration prior the departure.
“To be honest, the day of traveling is a tough day because it requires a lot of coordination. When we travel we have our dogs, lots of suitcases, and hand luggage with us. When we are at the airport, it looks more like a traveling circus than a couple going to work,” Pisaroni says with humor in his voice.
"Traveling with a pet is not difficult at all. It just requires a bit more time, coordination and organization."
But after all the hustle and bustle, it all pays off. “There is one thing I love doing after my opera performances: when my wife and I walk the dogs. Even though it’s normally already quite late, it's great because we all go out. We talk about the performance or what's going on, and it's a very soothing and calming thing for me to do.”
Sharing is caring
Unlike their celebrated owner, Lenny and Tristan have never had their stage appearance. At least, not yet. “It’s the only thing missing for both of them to become completely famous,” Pisaroni notes. “I will work on it, I promise.”
Despite being literally behind the curtain, Lenny and Tristan, however, have managed to establish a strong media presence with their own “Lenny & Tristan” Facebook fan page and a“Dogs on the road” special section on Pisaroni’s official website.
When asked why he feels like sharing Lenny and Tristan’s adventures with his audience, Pisaroni mentions two reasons: “Firstly, I want to show that traveling with a pet is absolutely possible and it's not that hard. It just requires organization, but it's not impossible. It is my message to all dog owners who leave their pets behind when going on vacation. And the other reason is that I want Lenny and Tristan to put a smile on everyone's face. I think they're incredibly funny, and I want everyone to be able to enjoy their love, their positive energy and their good vibes, just like I do,” Pisaroni points out.
Aren’t those cuddly sweethearts and their fantastic owners one more reason to love opera?