Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Opera May Be The Dirtiest Job

If you watch the Discovery Channel series Dirty Jobs, then you are familiar with host Mike Rowe. He is seen each week "performing difficult, strange, disgusting, or messy occupational duties alongside the typical employees." What you may not know is that he is a former opera singer. He participated in theater and singing at the Overlea High School in Maryland. After overcoming a stuttering problem, he went on to Essex Community College and sang with the
Mike Rowe on a clean day
Chorus of the Chesapeake. He later graduated from Towson University with a degree in Communication Studies. In the 1980s he attended an audition for Baltimore Opera in hopes of getting enough work to receive his union card in the Screen Actors Guild. "I joined the opera to get my union card and meet girls. I was a saloon singer, so I went down to the Baltimore Opera and learned an aria and auditioned. I figured I'd do one show and quit. But the girls were everywhere and the truth is, the music was really decent." He ended up staying with the company for several years supplementing his income by working to negotiate computer contracts by day and appearing in plays and commercials when not performing at the opera. After auditioning for a host job on QVC, he left the singing world behind and the rest is TV history. 

Click here for a photo gallery of Mike Rowe in some of his toughest jobs.

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