INTERVIEW WITH GUEST SOLOIST JONATHAN ANTOINELAMC: What drew you to classical music?
JA: At first, it was pure serendipity of going to a high school that happened to have a singing teacher and enjoying being in productions like Bugsy Malone and The King and I. It simply came as a natural progression. Nowadays, however, it's a much more complicated concoction of reasons. Foremost amongst them is that much of Classical music was the pop music of its day and being able to feel that strong relation to people who are so long gone is an incredibly powerful thing. Think of how hard it is to understand people who are living today and having that deep, complex, emotional link to the past seems like a miracle.
LAMC: What are some of your favorite holiday songs or music?
JA: I've recently found a lot of joy investigating the holiday traditions of other cultures and hearing the beautiful music that even our European brethren, so close to myself culturally and geographically, have wonderfully curated through the centuries. I must admit, though, my personal favourite will probably always be “White Christmas.”
LAMC: How does it feel to be performing for the first time in Los Angeles at the world-famous Walt Disney Concert Hall?
JA: A question like this brings to mind the oft-repeated phrase ‘I’m just happy to be here!’. I never thought I would get this far is a dramatic understatement and I pinch myself every day, certain that soon the dream will end. The most wonderful thing to me is the trust, or belief, or perhaps even acknowledgement levied onto me, by allowing me this wonderful opportunity. I've taken to loading up the website occasionally and just having a virtual peek around, imagining what it'll be like - That's not weird, right?!?
LAMC: What are you most looking forward to about collaborating with Director Grant Gershon, Kiki & David Ginder Artistic Director and the Los Angeles Master Chorale?
JA: Music for the sake of music. Embroiling oneself in the 'industry' can have its benefits, but meeting with a group of musicians of the highest caliber with the intent to simply produce something pre-eminently wonderful to be enjoyed by the people, is an artform that I fear will soon be lost.
LAMC: What can we expect from the album you'll be recording with legendary songwriter Diane Warren?
JA: The intertwining of the stories of two (or more!) wholly unrelated individuals by the most wonderful happenstance. We want to use this excellent repository of great, meaningful music to tell a story. Whether it happens to be ours, yours, or all of us is to be seen! A short tale if I may: As I write this, there is something currently being kept secret from me! I've been unplugged from my emails and phone whilst travelling to perform in Belgium. It seems some interesting developments have turned out, so I've been asked not to read my emails so that they can reveal this good news to me in person! These are the types of twists and turns that you can keep abreast of by supporting the project on ArtistSharel
LAMC: What other future projects are you working on that audiences can expect from you?
JA: I am always plotting some absurd creative endeavour in my head, and around one one-millionth of a percent of those ever see the light of day! I have at least two novels that I'm writing and may well be writing until I am dust. I have a gameshow that I want to present and several podcast ideas that I'm sure someone out there would enjoy. I've been writing a heavy metal album for the past 14 or so years, and I've been writing scripts for all kinds of things. I think I'm getting pretty good at it now. All of this to say that if anyone happens to want to give me a hundred million dollars to fund all of these ridiculous ideas, that would be wonderful. Ha! Ha! Oh, and I do also imagine a fair bit of singing will happen in the future.