Jem Sharples, part of the hugely popular Tenors Un Limited (otherwise known as the Rat Pack of Opera), talks about life on tour
There probably aren’t many musical performances where opera is thrown in the mix with belting Broadway songs and good old knees up concert hall tunes. But this combination has been a huge success for the trio that is Tenors Un Limited on their current Venice to Vegas tour.
‘This is a great family show of a kind that just isn’t seen on TV anymore,’ says Jem Sharples, who is one third of the group, alongside Scott Ciscon and Paul Martin. ‘There are no Shirley Bassey specials, no regular Sunday Night at the Palladium.’
The tenors have built up their reputation over the last 10 years, with their good looks, charm and rich voices converting thousands into fans – whether it’s at Wembley where they sang at the FAC Cup Final, supporting Sting’s tour in London or accompanying Lionel Richie.
‘What we do is a great way of introducing people to opera – there’s so much youthful energy to it nowadays. The three of us are a real team – we write songs as a group or individually.’
With a lot of time spent on the road on tour, making time for family is really important. ‘We have seven children between us who have travelled all over the world – and to us, that is success, being able to balance our work and family life.’
Part of that success is being invited to sing at really diverse events. Says Jem: ‘One day we might be singing in Monte Carlo and the next performing at a private party in front of a handful of people. To sing at a couple’s wedding is just as wonderful – and more profound – as singing at Wembley.
Included in the Venice to Vegas performances will be eclectic show stoppers such as Rigoletto’s La Dorme Morganelli and Moon River as well as some of their own songs.
The Richmond Theatre concert is raising money for the local charity, the Holly Lodge Centre in Richmond Park, which the tenors have supported for many years and they’ll be joined on stage by the Kew Prep School choir. ‘The centre does such great things,’ says Jem. ‘It’s a charity close to our hearts.’
It seems the tenors will be capturing a few more hearts in Richmond, too!
Tenors Un Limited are at Richmond Theatre on 7 June