Five minutes with this year’s Joan Carden Award finalists – Soonki Park

Soonki Park

Soonki Park

Born in 1983 in South Korea, Soonki Park studied Bachelor of Music Performance (voice major) at the National University of Busan. Subsequently he came to Australia to study Opera at the University of Sydney.

Soonki kindly answered questions about how and when he first decided to pursue a career in music.

What influenced your choice to embark on a musical career? Do you remember the first time you performed in front of an audience?

At the first time I used to be a violin player until I was 15 years old. I could not keep playing violin because I realised that I was not happy when I play the violin.

So, I entered into the normal school rather than the art school. After that, I joined one of the clubs which was a missionary boys choir. Over a year my senior recommended me to learn classical singing – then I started, finally.

How would you describe your musical journey so far?

I struggled with many hardships — I failed many competitions even including the university. Once, I decided to stop singing and I really worked the other job over a year.

Then, just before I came into Australia, I was supposed to go to the USA.

Having said that, I met the beautiful teachers Robert Gard and Barry Ryan.

They always sincerely taught me how to sing better and how to enjoy the music.

Which role/piece of music have you enjoyed performing most, and why?

My first opera was The Magic Flute by Mozart when I was in the second year of the university. It was such a great opportunity to study and perform ‘Papageno’ which made me to decide to be an opera singer.

Although it needed full concentration from in the morning to the late night, everyday, I got the indescribable feeling when I finished the show on the stage.

Where do you hope to be in five years?

I definitely want to be Opera House as a principal working with other companies through the world.

The finals of the Joan Carden Award will take place this Sunday, 16 August 2015, commencing at 3pm, at the Great Hall, University of Sydney. Tickets are available from the Seymour Centre and Ticketmaster.

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