Former US footballer to sing with Met Opera

29 October 2012, 10:54 | Updated: 18 September 2014, 14:46

Keith Miller, a former American Footballer who narrowly missed out on playing in the NFL, is now due to sing with Metropolitan Opera.

An American footballer who was a University fullback and almost ended up playing in the NFL will sing in the Metropolitan Opera's production of Verdi's Un Ballo in Maschera on November 8th.

Keith Miller, 38, underwent a career u-turn in 2001 when he decided to audition for an opera at a Michigan music festival. To his surprise, he got the part. He then juggled his football playing with music, enrolling for four years at the Philadelphia Academy of Vocal Arts.

After a failed initial audition for the Met's Young Artist Development Programme, they cast him in a production of Puccini's Madame Butterfly - which is when his opera career really took off. After stints with the Washington National and Seattle Operas, he is due to sing with the Met again next month.

Talking to the Wall Street Journal, Miller described the setbacks he faced in getting the part: "It's like looking at an opponent in football — even if I have flaws or things I need to work on, I will outwork the other person."

He also commented: "Instead of a number, you're a character, but the spirit of competition is the same, and you do it for the love of the art versus the love of the game."