Las Vegas high school senior sets sights on opera career — VIDEO

Through her Pennsylvania home’s screen door, Jennifer Perroots heard a stream of “oohs” and “las” come from the deck while cooking dinner.

“My ears perked up,” she says. It was the first time Jennifer learned her daughter, Arianna, who was just 5 and was playing with bubbles outside, could sing.

She persuaded Arianna to sing again for her husband, Len, when he arrived home from work. A few days later, Jennifer introduced her daughter to “Phantom of the Opera.”

“By choice when she was little, she exclusively listened to ‘Phantom of the Opera’ 24/7,” Jennifer says. “She practiced singing it and tried to mirror their voices based on what she was hearing.”

Now 18 and a senior at Bishop Gorman High School, Arianna still sings every day, but she has developed a passion for a different sound — opera.

Her core group of friends are all artistic, Arianna says. Some of them draw, others play instruments. But her talent is a bit more unique, particularly at the high school level, where there isn’t a club to join and opera isn’t the kind of music that most of her friends and family listen to.

“We all do different types of art, but mine is by far the most out there,” Arianna says. “They probably have the most difficult time relating to me in that sense.”

Although she’s in the early stage of this career she’s chosen, many milestones await her this year, including college applications and conservatory auditions.

She practices almost every day and takes voice lessons once a week in addition to her school work. She isn’t nervous about committing to opera as a career.

“All of it is relatively challenging, but it’s easy for me to love it,” Arianna says.

When she first met vocal coach Lynn Fitzpatrick almost three years ago, she didn’t realize it would completely change her path.

Arianna and a friend from high school were practicing for a local thespian competition, their song of choice being from Arianna’s favorite musical, “Phantom.” A friend, Grant Gatsky, knew Fitzpatrick from training with her previously and introduced the two during practice.

“She opened her mouth, and I thought, ‘Holy cow,’ ” Fitzpatrick says.

Until that point, Arianna had her sights set on musical theater, auditioning for most of the musicals at school.

“(Grant) introduced me to his voice teacher who in turn basically told me I’m supposed to be doing opera,” Arianna says. “It just all made sense.”

A year later, she started training with Fitzpatrick, but she had to start from scratch.

Opera isn’t just about “singing pretty.” It involves learning about languages and diction, the composer, history and even acting.

“She’s so musical, and she’s such a hard worker that learning the notes and the composition comes very quickly,” Fitzpatrick says. “She’s moving through the things that hold her back.”

Jennifer and Len Perroots know their daughter is a gifted singer. It still made them nervous when Arianna decided to make opera a career goal.

“There was resistance from us in the years leading up to this,” Jennifer says. “We tried to push her into some kind of double major or find a backup profession.”

Then she started getting into prestigious summer programs, such as the Schmidt Vocal Institute at Miami University of Ohio and Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan.

She won awards and scholarships. She even worked with famous opera musicians.

Even with the professional recognition, Jennifer says it’s her daughter’s dedication to opera that reassures the family. Every day after school, Jennifer hears Arianna sing upstairs in her bedroom for at least an hour.

“It’s one thing being the mother and having those mother ears thinking my daughter has an awesome voice, but with the competitions and scholarships she’s been offered and awards she’s received, it confirms that it’s not just the mom ears,” Jennifer says.

With just several months of high school remaining, Arianna looks to move east. Her top choice program is the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in Oberlin, Ohio — 2,050 miles from home.

After that, her opportunities are infinite, she says.

She could teach music, work at a church or put on her own recitals or shows at community theaters. Her dream is to one day sing at a famed opera house, but Arianna is happy as long as she keeps singing.

“I know eventually I’ll get to be up on stage,” she says. “Even if my name isn’t in flashing lights, that’s fine. I just want to be able to sing opera.”

Arianna Perroots’ Spotify playlist

■ “Del cabello mas sutil,” Fernando Obradors

■ “Hebe,” Ernest Chausson

■ “L’heure Exquise,” Reynaldo Hahn

■ “Pictures at an Exhibition,” Modest Mussorgsky

■ “Nessun Dorma,” Giacomo Puccini

■ “Che Gelida Manina,” Giacomo Puccini

■ “Sure on this Shining Night,” Samuel Barber

Artists from Cirque du Soleil contribute art to Las Vegas art exhibit
Artists from Cirque du Soleil contribute art to Las Vegas gallery exhibit
Red Plate on the Las Vegas Strip serves a cocktail made with blooming jasmine tea
Red Plate on the Las Vegas Strip serves a cocktail made with jasmine tea
Benny the Ice Skating Dog
Benny is a Las Vegas Labrador who was rescued by former pro skater Cheryl Del Sanyo, and trained to ice skate. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The Nevada State Museum
The Nevada State Museum of Las Vegas, located at the Springs Preserve, covers all eras of the state, from prehistoric to today.
Throw a better dinner party
Cash appears at Baseball Winter Meetings
Lights FC mascot Cash plays the electronic drums at the EZ Inflatables’ booth on Tuesday at the Baseball Winter Meetings trade show at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino.
5 albums to soundtrack your holiday gatherings in style
1. Various Artists, “Holidays Rule," with Rufus Wainwright, The Shins, Calexico and more. 2. Various Artists, “We Wish You a Metal Xmas and a Headbanging New Year," with Lemmy Kilmister, Alice Cooper, Chuck Billy and others. 3. Various Artists, “Christmas on Death Row," featuring Snoop Dogg and Nate Dogg to name but a few. 4. Bright Eyes, “A Christmas Album.” 5. Various Artists, "The Motown Christmas Album." (Jason Bracelin/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Inside the kitchen at Springs Preserve
The staff of Divine Events do party preparation in the kitchen at Divine Cafe at Springs Preserve. With nine parties the following day, this is a particularly busy time for the crew. (Heidi Knapp Rinella/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
WinterFest in Henderson.
Miss Rodeo America Fashion Show
The 28 women contestants of Miss Rodeo America compete in a fashion show at the Tropicana on Dec. 7, 2018.
Tournament Of Kings Holiday Show
Wizards and warriors are ready for the holidays at Excalibur's Tournament of Kings Holiday Dinner Show.
Take a dive with the Silverton mermaids
A visit to the Silverton Casino Hotel is not complete without taking in the popular, and very unique, mermaid show.
Cowboys and western aficionados can buy virtually anything at Cowboy Christmas
Vegas Golden Knights Christmas Display
In the Las Vegas Valley, the chances of getting a white Christmas are slim. But this year, you can have a “Knight” Christmas. A Henderson resident has a Christmas lights display that is synchronized to the entrance music for the Golden Knights. GG Misa’s Knights light show is played every 30 minutes from 5 to 10 nightly. His light show consists of two songs: Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” and the entrance music, “Le Castle Vania,” from the movie “John Wick.” The display is located at 730 Bollons Island St. (Richard Brian/Las Vegas Reivew-Journal)
Holiday Hooch At El Cortez is Just in Time For Repeal Day And Christmas
Holiday Hooch At El Cortez Is Just In Time For Repeal Day And Christmas. Janna Karel/Las Vegas Review-Journal
TV's LGBT superheroes
Green Valley Ranch's Winter's Village
The Mob Museum
Best Friend Menu Reveal Wednesday
Chef Roy Choi tells us what to expect from Wednesday’s Facebook Live Menu Reveal for his new Park MGM restaurant Best Friend. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Quick Chat With Criss Angel
James D. Gish and Susan Anton rehearse
Susan Anton will be special guest at James D. Gish’s holiday concerts Dec. 7 at Summerlin Library and Dec. 9 at Clark County Library. (John Przybys/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Bellagio Winter Wonderland
"Majestic Holiday Magic" at the Bellagio Conservatory.
Underwater Santa At The Silverton
Santa takes a dive Sunday, December 2, at the Silverton Casino Hotel. (Mat Luschek / Review-Journal)
Cowabunga Bay Christmas Town
Las Vegas Natural History Museum
Las Vegas Natural History Museum, which opened in 1991, has exhibits of mechanical dinosaurs and taxidermied animals, along with live snakes, fish and sharks. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Magical Forest Lights
Cirque Du Soleil Performers Team Up For New Show "Kinekt"
Through dance, acrobatics and aerial arts, “Kinekt” tells a story all too familiar to modern families: how to maintain a human connection in the digital age. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Ethel M Holiday Cactus Garden
The Pinball Hall of Fame in Las Vegas
The Pinball Hall of Fame was created by Tim Arnold and opened in 2006. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Jump! The Ultimate Dog Show at Springs Preserve in Las Vegas
Trainer Lou “Mack” McCammon guides several rescue dogs through a series of tricks and jumps two shows a day weekends through December at the Springs Preserve in Las Vegas. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like