Noah Stewart - pure classic

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Noah Stewart is an operatic tenor hailing from Harlem, New York. Throughout his career, Noah has worked all over the world to huge success - particularly in the UK where his debut album ‘Noah’ reached number 1 on the UK Classical Chart. I caught up with Noah to find out how his musical journey began, his must-have skincare products, and what moments of a jam-packed 2017 he’s enjoyed most...

Hi Noah, how’s it going?

Hey! I’m great buddy!

For those who might not know you, tell us a little bit about your career so far

Sure thing. My name is Noah and I’m an international operatic tenor from Harlem, New York.

When you were growing up, did you always see yourself doing what you do today? 

No way, I was nerd who got to school early and left late. I was terrible at judo and science lab was my favourite class. One day I discovered Classical music in an audition for junior high-school choir and my life changed forever. 

A few years back you released your debut album Noah which was really well received in the UK - how did it feel becoming the first black artist to get to number 1 on the UK Classical chart? 

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It felt pretty surreal at the time. I think that in today’s world we are all moving so incredibly fast that we rarely have time to process things, but looking back I feel proud knowing what we accomplished. 

Were you surprised by how successful the album was? It was number one for 7 weeks!!!

Ha! I was very surprised. I still am in a way. I’m a person who rarely stops. I’m always pushing myself, looking for inspiration. I can’t wait to take things to the next level! 

It must be great to see all your hard work paying off - but looking back on when you first started out, what were some of the more difficult moments for you?

The life of an artist is great, but can also be demanding. The life of a classical musician can be a pretty isolated at times - there’s a lot of practicing and studying and focusing involved. I love having friends and people around, so all the travel can wear you down. It’s part of the job, but no one  prepares you for your own journey. I think that’s the beauty of life. Sure, people can give you advice, but each person must stumble and fall a few times in order to learn to walk and then to run.

It looks like you’ve had a VERY busy 2017 performing all over the world - what have been your highlights?

I have been blessed to have a very varied career so far. Earlier in the spring I made my Scandinavian debut at Gothenburg Opera as Don José in Bizet’s tragic opera, Carmen. It was my first time in Scandinavia and I had a blast. Great views, clean air, friendly people and great seafood! Other highlights were returning to the UK with appearances at Wembley Stadium and performing on BBC’s Radio 2's 'Friday Night Is Music Night' concerts. I’m so grateful that the UK has always supported me. London feels like my second home. 

Your work takes you across the globe - do you ever get homesick for New York or do you just love experiencing new places? 

To tell the truth I do get homesick sometimes, but I always try to hang out with locals wherever I go. I like to feel a part of the community I am visiting and also take back a few recipes to try with my friends.

Here at ThatSkinGuy we always want to know what you’re using day-to-day on your skin. What are your must-have products and why? 

My must haves are Kiehl’s Facial Fuel and daily moisturizer. I don’t leave home without them. I wrestled with bad skin through my late teenage years and 20s. I tried many products and Kiehl’s was one of few that didn’t cause breakouts. I also learned that I can only use electric razors for trims and shapeups, especially if you have curly facial hair. Oh, and I almost  forgot. Carmex Lip Balm, especially for the winter months!

As someone who’s regularly on-stage or performing in public, do you feel a pressure to always look your best?

Absolutely. In this day and age, many events are filmed and photographed and everyone has social media and is posting constantly. Although I hate spending time in the mirror, I definitely want to put my best face forward. 

2018 is just around the corner now - is there anything specific that you want to achieve next year? 

Yes, I want to take more chances and push the envelope. I want to step out of my comfort zone and see what happens. I have a feeling 2018 will be one exciting ride!

Finally Noah, if there was one thing you could tell your 18-year-old self now, what would it be? 

I would tell my 18 year old self to chill out. Don’t be afraid to mistakes and fail big. Be good to your friends, because you will need them and they will need you. You are entering some of the best years of your life. Soak life and books up and ask questions.

I couldn't agree more. Thanks Noah, wishing you a happy and successful 2018!

You can listen to Noah's album 'Noah' on Apple Music, or follow him on Twitter @NoahSofficial

Calvin Draper-Wright