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Intersection: From The Big Top To The Opera- A Conversation With Jonathan Iverson

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Jonathan Lee Iverson. Photo: Matthew Peddie, WMFE

At the age of 22, Jonathan Iverson became ringmaster of the Barnum and Bailey, Ringling Brothers Circus. Nearly 20 years later the circus has packed up its tent and Iverson has a new role- Artistic Director with Opera Del Sol

Growing up in New York City, Iverson sang in the Boys Choir of Harlem and wanted to pursue a career as an opera singer. Then the circus came calling.

“I thought I’d do it for a year or two, and just have something there and just go back to my other pursuits,” says Iverson.

“But as they say in circus, once you get the sawdust in your veins, you’re never the same.”

Iverson reflects on his life with the “Greatest Show On Earth” and his new role with the opera.



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Matthew Peddie

About Matthew Peddie

Host of WMFE's Intersection & Assistant News Director

Matthew Peddie grew up in New Zealand and studied journalism at the University of Western Ontario. After graduating with an MA in Journalism he returned to Christchurch, working as a reporter for Radio Live and Radio New Zealand. He’s reported live from the scene of earthquakes, criminal trials and rugby ... Read Full Bio »