Mike MacKenzie is Borsa
Mike comes from a musical background – dad ran one of the most popular dance bands in Scotland and his sister studied voice and violin at Warwick university- but it was not until he finished college in 1980 that he started to take a serious interest in singing. Since then however, he has not let the grass grow under his feet and has chalked up over 200 stage productions with various societies covering most if not all of the musical theatre genres. Mike’s first performance was in Kurt Weill’s “Down in the Valley” with Opera 3 in Cheltenham and thus “Opera” has remained a constant in his repertoire ever since. During the years he has sung an eclectic mix from the Savoy Operas of Gilbert & Sullivan, to musical comedy and main stream musicals such as by Andrew Lloyd Webber and along the way has even managed the odd play and tap dance routine too. His involvement is not restricted to just performing as he also directs, designs sound and lighting, stage manages, serves behind the bar and on occasion has been found sweeping the stage. Possibly best known locally for his appearances in musicals (he has been the recipient of 3 Sussex Best Performer awards) some of the groups he has worked with are The Wandering Minstrels, (many G & S principal roles) Southwick Opera, (Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus) Oxted Operatic (Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof) and of course with us here at Heber Opera. Being in such demand we are delighted that Mike is back with us for his 5th outing with Heber. In 2011 he appeared as the jailor in “Fidelio”and a couple of years ago took the demanding tenor role of Nadir in Bizet’s “Pearl Fishers”. Mike says he first fell in love with Verdi’s masterpiece when singing the role of Marullo so is looking forward to portraying another character, Borsa, the libidinous Duke’s right hand man in our forthcoming production of “Rigoletto”. When not singing Mike has his head in the “cloud” working for an international IT company. His two lovely daughters having now flown the nest he lives with his dance teacher partner Karen, and their large but loveable retriever in Turners Hill. Along with Rigoletto (Nick Forrest) Mike also enjoys sampling a post rehearsal brew at one of the local hostelries. Purely medicinal of course!