Chelsea Rose is a brilliant Canadian actor and vocalist. Versatility is the name of the game with this fantastic artist’s abilities ranging from musical theatre to heavy metal and everything in between. We were lucky enough to chat with Chelsea Rose about her band, Ophelia Falling, what it has been like to maintain momentum during the pandemic, and why the band is like a… hamburger? Read our interview here:
MG: Ophelia Falling has been busy lately! Having just released new music videos for the songs “Savage Love” and “Witigo” how has it felt to get some newness out there with the band?
Chelsea Rose: After such a weird year, of course, and not being able to see people’s faces it’s really good to be able to put something out there for people to see. We feel really lucky to have the opportunity to create these music videos during all of this. It’s been really nice and the feedback has always been awesome.
MG: As an actor/vocalist you’ve tackled such an array of performances. From being lead vocalist in a metal band to acting as Snow White in radio mysteries…is there a dream role you’d love to someday play, and/or a type of musical project you’d love to do but haven’t yet?
Chelsea Rose: If there’s a dream role in a musical… I don’t know if you know the musical Spamalot… It’s the best. There’s this character called Lady of the Lake and she sings so many ridiculous parts that are just… you have to look it up. Spamalot is hilarious, it’s based off of Monty Python. It’s just amazing so for a musical, that would be the dream. In film and TV too, I’ve always wanted to be an action hero, like Tomb Raider style. I’ve always wanted to play those kinds of roles. Hopefully one day.
MG: Do you have a favourite production that you’ve worked on?
Chelsea Rose: I guess probably RENT the musical where I met Mark, our guitar player. Mark and I met doing the RENT musical in 2012 and even back then we connected right away. We knew that the other person was into rock and metal and we talked about forming a band at some point. It took six years but we finally got there. I created so many bonds with so many people I met in RENT. It’s just so much fun to do rock music on stage.
MG: I have always wondered this about you because your voice is so pristine, you’re so good live. What does a show day typically look like for you? Do you have any special rituals or things you do in preparation?
Chelsea Rose: I do, I’m pretty careful about – even the weeks leading up to shows- really keeping my body clean, I don’t drink any alcohol for at least a week before a show. I let myself sleep in on a show day so I feel nice and rested. I get a workout in, whatever that means, it could be a walk, a bike ride, some yoga, whatever, but I make sure I get a workout in. Just to make sure I’ve got the endurance for later as well. I drink a heck of a lot of tea… I don’t like tea, I’m not a tea person, but I drink throat coat tea, which always feels really good. I drink it after shows as well. I try to keep the day pretty calm. I spend a lot of time warming up – mostly in the shower, because then I feel like I’m not bugging anyone. And once the show is over, and you know this, I have a tradition after every show I go and get myself a beyond meat burger from A&W. I don’t know how that started but it’s every show now.
MG: What is your ideal setting for songwriting? What brings you inspiration when writing?
Chelsea Rose: That’s a good question. Well, ideally when I’m songwriting it’s usually in collaboration with Mark. He’ll send me something he’s been working on and usually what will happen is I’ll listen to it over and over again and I’ll see if it inspires any words, if it inspires any vocal lines at all. I kind of start there with him and then we get together and we work on our songs together, hopefully I’ll have brought in some lyrics by then, or at least a few different vocal lines to work on. But honestly, anything can spark ideas for songs or spark words. I could be on a bus and suddenly I’m like, ‘Oh my god, that’s how this needs to go.’ I listened to a line from Mark and it was like, ‘This sounds like water.’, and that’s how “Anybody’s Daughter” came to be. It sounded like “water” and then what rhymes with water…daughter. And then you know, you go from there and see what happens. So it really depends. I do like to be in a quiet space when I write, but I don’t really get liberty very often.
MG: Speaking of “Anybody’s Daughter”, there is a line in the song that actually says “Ophelia Falling”. Is that where you got the band name?
Chelsea Rose: No actually!
MG: What! What is the story there?
Chelsea Rose: Mark came up with it before he even knew he was starting the band. It just had a good flow to him, he liked the sound of the name. As I was writing “Anybody’s Daughter” and writing about the character Ophelia in Hamlet I was just like, ‘Man, it just makes sense to put this in here, hopefully people don’t think it’s super weird that our band name is in a song.’ It just fit and I really like it. But definitely the name came first.
MG: Sometimes I like to ask a weird question or two, so here is my weird question: If you were to compare Ophelia Falling’s sound and overall vibe to a food item, what would it be and why?
Chelsea Rose: Well, firstly my head just went straight to burger because I think of burgers when I think of the band. Wow… that’s a good question… I think burger works! Burger works because we’ve got so many different layers and you can change it however you want. We’ve got the meat of the music, we’ve got the extra sauce on top with Jamie and his awesome keyboard parts and his orchestration. Then you’ve got the bass with the buns and I think drums are probably the pickles. Yeah, we’re a burger!
MG: What has been your big silver lining over the last year?
Chelsea Rose: Band-wise, it probably comes down to the fact that we are still working. We never stopped working. We put out our album in October, we just pressed our CD’s and they are finally available. At the beginning of the year we released “Anybody’s Daughter” the video, then halfway through we got the “Witigo” one. We actually have three more videos in the works and we are already working on new music. We were just in the studio starting to record a new single which I’m really excited for. So, the silver lining is: even though we couldn’t be in front of people we still can create, we still have the ability. Now especially with zoom, we have zoom band meetings all the time and we are able to make music no matter what.
MG: You mentioned physical copies of the Destroyed in Delight album for sale, what is the best way to order these and how else can fans show some support?
Chelsea Rose: The best way to get them is on Bandcamp. We use Bandcamp for everything, it’s just the best platform for bands. They really help us all out by giving us the most money back and the most support. So Bandcamp is the best place to get a CD, we do have signed copies available, so if you buy it on there you can send us a little note that you want a signed copy and we’ll do that. And we have T-shirts available. We are actually about to release some information, we’re in partnership with the company called RedBubble. RedBubble allows you to put our artwork and our band name and our pictures on basically anything you want. So you’re gonna be able to get a shower curtain with our faces on it if you want it, mouse pads, random leggings…anything you want. That’s also going to be a good way to show us support and love.
MG: What are your plans for the summer and what is next for Ophelia Falling?
Chelsea Rose: Well, for summer, we are not going to be able to play shows until at least September, but we do have a couple of festivals already lined up for 2022. We had a tour that was supposed to happen in 2020 that we are hoping to make happen in 2022 as well. We are going to go halfway across Canada. Manitoba and back. And next for us, like I’ve said we have a couple of music videos coming out. Karen Lam, the director of “The Curse of Willow Song.” Which is a horror film that “Anybody’s Daughter” is in- she directed and created our music video for that and she is working on another one with us for “Destroyed in Delight”, so that will be exciting. We’ve got tons in the works so just keep an eye on what we’re doing because honestly it’s non-stop. We never stop working.