Interview: Loren Meeker for Manon Lescaut

Have you ever had to choose between love and money?
Personally, no. I have been extremely fortunate in my life. I have a career that I love and that supports me financially, a boyfriend who is generous and loving, and a family who is supportive of the choices I have made in my life. I could not be more opposite from Manon!
Are you a romantic at heart?
Absolutely. Even as a young girl I always wore my heart on my sleeve. I dreamt of being swept off my feet by a man and falling hopelessly in love. Fortunately, I have met a wonderful man who is just as romantic as I am!
What appeals to you about Puccini’s work?
I find his music to be passionate and his characters to be very human and relatable. He also keeps the story moving forward all the way through the opera. Manon Lescaut is one of his earliest operas. But you can clearly see and hear signs of the composer he is to become.
What has been the most rewarding part of this project?
The experience of travelling to Asia for the first time has been absolutely amazing. Exploring new countries and cities is part of what I love about my job. This is my first time working with Singapore Lyric Opera. Getting to know the people in the company and in the cast has been a really fun experience so far.
What do you hope audiences will take away from this show?
I hope that the audience finds the story to be timeless and relevant. Opera is not a historical art form. The struggles these characters face are struggles we still go through today—virtue versus vice, love versus luxury.
Manon Lescaut is on August 31-September 4 at the Esplanade Theatre.