Tuesday, July 23, 2013
A Terrific Musician in a Musical No Man's Land
KOZINN: You studied classical music formally, didn’t you?
PARKS: Yes. In 1952 I went to the Columbus Boychoir boarding school, near Princeton, and that same year I was on the stage at the Metropolitan Opera, with Victoria de los Angeles — I was an urchin in “La Bohème.” Our choir worked with Beecham, Ormandy, Mitropoulos, Walter, Toscanini — all of them. I had an immersion in legitimate music that is absolutely indescribable in its abundance and opportunity. Now I’m caught in no man’s land. I’m not “legitimate” because I lie down with dogs. And yet, doggone it, I’m not a rocker because I work with a premeditated intent. So I’m not really at home in either camp, but I’m at home between them.
From Allan Kozinn's interview with Van Dyke Parks in today's New York Times.