Caroline Selia is a rising singer and actress who is originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, graduated with Honors from the prestigious Carnegie Mellon University and completed her Masters of Music degree at the University of Tennessee where she was a member of the Knoxville Opera Studio Apprenticeship Program. She was recently the leading lady in two new electronica opera pieces: "Wednesday Before Last, "written by Kristin Hevner, Daniel Wyatt, and Royce Vavreck and "XOXMas: An Electronica Opera" by Kirsitn Hevner, Daniel Wyatt, and David Caudle, which was part of the Musaic Concert Series she also produces.
Caroline recently recorded the original musical "Show People" by James Rubio & David Caudle based off the Actor's Equity and she was seen last summer belting it out at the charity benefit concert "Singin' in the Shower" with American Idol finalist and B'way veteran Diana DeGarmo for Broadway at Birdland Jazz Club in NYC. She has also filmed several television spots including a memorable role as a singing neighbor in the series "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" as well as filming a guest spot on a E! Entertainment Pilot "PR Girls" as a rock n' roll singer.
Caroline is also involved with various charity programs throughout New York City and has appeared on television as a part of the 'Wednesday's Child Adoption Program' as both singer and teacher to six year old Eligahes which helps recruit adoptive families who can provide permanent and loving homes for New York City foster children. Among the other charities close to Ms. Selia is the suicide prevention program To Write Love On Her Arms (TWLOHA), for which she holds annual concerts in dedication to her dear friend Melissa Frederick.
Her favorite opera roles to date include, "Susannah" in "Susannah," "Roselinda" in "Die Fledermaus," and "Liu" in "Turandot." Favorite musical theatre productions credits include "Irene" in "Crazy For You," "Liat" in "South Pacific," "Dana" in "Smile," and "Mary" in "Do Black Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?"
Currently, Caroline can be seen in Metropolis Opera Project's production of Kristin Hevner-Wyatt, Daniel Wyatt, and David Caudle's (fellow "Adaumbelle's Quest" participant) new electronica opera "One Hot Kitchen" along with fellow "Adaumbelle's Quest" participant Paris Carney at Medicine Show Theatre in NYC (549 West 52nd Street) from December 1-4 and 8-11. According to press notes, "'One Hot Kitchen' serves up a five-course feast in a Hell's Kitchen walk-up. For starters, a couple fresh from the Midwest, followed by two gay men suddenly free to make it legal, mismatched roommates, a booty call gone bizarrely awry, and a tragic hypochondriac. Some are more seasoned than others, but all are trying desperately to connect." Click here for tickets!
1. Who or what inspired you to become a performer? Its funny because I always loved putting on shows in backyard in Pittsburgh, PA and singing along to that "Bodyguard" Soundtrack, but I think it was the first musical I ever saw which was "Peter Pan" at the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera with Cathy Rigby, no less, that really did it for me! I saw her up on that stage flying and I knew that it was just something so magical that I had to be a part of it!
2. Who is the one person you haven't worked with that you would like to? Even though we both went to Carnegie Mellon University at the same time, Sara Jean Ford Gehling and I were never onstage together, just class! In fact -- I'd love to sing with both her and her husband Drew!
3. What attracted you to "One Hot Kitchen" and what do you hope audiences come away with after seeing the show? "One Hot Kitchen" is a story about human relationships and how we all are connected every day whether or not we realize it. It's also funny how the story takes place in an apartment building and what your neighbors are REALLY up to behind those closed doors -- something most New Yorkers don't even think twice about today. I really think that Norm Johnson, our director, had a great time with having the cast explore those relationships and with the beautiful set by Adrianna Desier Durant, and production by Zachary James of Metropolis Opera Projects, I think people are going to be blown away by the simplest of actions in the scenes that will be magnified by the music & words. I want the audience to walk away saying...I've never seen anything like that and when is the next production?!
4. What do you identify most with about your character in "One Hot Kitchen"? Well my character, Jane, is quite the lady! She takes charge and owns her sensuality which I love and can definitely relate to in a very positive way. It's also fun getting to romp around stage playing a mistress and indulge in that sinful way that you can only do on stage and not feel guilty about later.
5. This is your second time working with David Caudle. What is it about him and his work that you like so much? First off, David and I actually share the same birthday, December 12th -- and we found that out the first time we ever met so I think it was always destined for us to just "get" each other. He writes the lines I wish I could say when I'm living my everyday life! I also had the great pleasure of recording some songs for his other musical with composer James Rubio, "Show People", this past summer- so there is something to this thing we have together! His words sometimes just take my breath away and are so powerful that even in the other scenes of "One Hot Kitchen" I'm still so moved after seeing them multiple times.
6. What is your favorite part of the rehearsal/preview period in a show? Where is your favorite place to rehearse/practice on your own? I love having room to play with a scene, especially during dress rehearsals, when the music and text are second nature. Its also a great feeling when you're comfortable enough with your scene partner you can do that -- which fortunately with my current co-star Michael Deleget I definitely am!! We have some very intimate, sexy moments that keep changing which makes every performance exciting for both of us & the audience. I adore rehearsing at Shetler Studios -- it's so convenient and the staff & managers are very understanding of performers needs.
7. What have you learned about yourself from being a performer? I can do and learn anything in just a few hours notice -- and not be scared of it! I'm definitely much tougher and more patient than I ever give myself credit for in everyday life and with living in NYC that's super important. And most importantly I can make up words to any song and make them sound sexy!
8. What do you like about electronica opera as opposed to traditional opera? How does electronica opera fit your voice and style of performing better? Electronica Opera is such an interesting and very freeing way to express yourself as an actor and singer. You can do things like riff on your vocal life and mess with the rhythm that you definitely can NOT do in traditional opera. It doesn't hurt to have these amazing melodies to sing that were hand crafted for me by the composer, Kristin Hevner Wyatt. She knows me so well personally and professionally that I feel like a rock star every time I sing her music! The coolest thing is that she does this for every member of the cast because she wants her singers to be their best. It's also funny that through electronica opera I have been contracted to do much more musical theatre and am loving every minute of my sassy belting!
9. What is the best advice you've ever received? The best advice has always been from my parents Marie & Jay Selia, who have always been so super supportive of me, which is spend your life loving what you do and being with who you love because it's the only way to be truly happy in this lifetime.
10. If you could dream about anyone while you sleep, who would it be? My very good friend Melissa Frederick, who passed away a few years ago, comes up in my dreams sometimes and I love it! It's like dreaming about a great episode of "Sex and the City" because we always have such fun girl times over a martini.
11. Favorite way to spend your day off? Favorite way to stay in shape? I call days off - "diva days" and occasionally I partake in them which includes sleeping in late and watching the last hour of the Today Show with Kathie Lee Gifford & Hoda Kotb with a strong cup of coffee. Usually afterwards if the weather is nice out I love running in Fort Tryon Park which is right next door to me up in Washington Heights. And I love taking tap classes with Ray Hesselink -- great way to stay in shape!
12. Favorite skin care product? I will swear on any stack of holy books -- Shiseido White Lucent Brightening under Eye Cream is a miracle worker!
13. Favorite website? RocketHub.com lately because that's where we are hosting our fundraising for "One Hot Kitchen" -- but beyond that I am a total Facebook junkie. How else are you gonna see that cute dog picture from your friend in Holland?!
14. Superman or Wonder Woman? Well clearly I AM Wonder Woman...now I just need to find my Super Man! Note that I did not say Super Boy.