Harvard fullback plans opera career
BOSTON ” Harvard senior fullback Noah Van Niel plans to trade the gridiron for the opera stage after the Crimson’s season finale this year.
The tenor has apprenticed in Florence, Italy, and New York and says he’s ready to see how far his talent can carry him. This fall, he’ll audition for postgraduate programs in vocal performance.
The bruising sport and the singing art both involve mastering certain skills and both inspire nervousness and self-doubt about performing for large crowds, Van Niel told The Boston Globe.
And while the Harvard football playbook may be complex, opera playbooks come in English, Italian, German and French. “You’ve got to know them like the back of your hand,” says Van Niel, who has taken two years of college Italian.
On the football field, Van Niel scored the first two touchdowns of his college career last weekend when Harvard defeated Lafayette, 27-17. On the likelihood of his football career ending, he notes that playing college football is “four more years than most people get.”
Participate in The Longevity Project
The Longevity Project is an annual campaign to help educate readers about what it takes to live a long, fulfilling life in our valley. This year Kevin shares his story of hope and celebration of life with his presentation Cracked, Not Broken as we explore the critical and relevant topic of mental health.
He isn’t Harvard’s first operatic football player. Ray Hornblower, a halfback on the school’s unbeaten 1968 team, is a lyric tenor who has performed throughout Europe.