But Pascal has another passion. He has always swum, cycled and run to keep fit and decided to put the three together and follow in the family footsteps of his brother as a thiathlete. He runs for the Shepherd Centre, which supports the education of deaf children, and hence the outfit – “go flower power!!”.
He rates his biggest sporting achievement as completion of last year’s Port Macquarie Ironman in a respectable 11hours and 46 minutes – That’s a full marathon of 42.2km after you have already been going for 7 hours with a 3.8km swim and 180km bike ride. Pascal was racing alongside local boy Tony Abbott and took some joy in overtaking him on bike circuit
<ed: Pascal now claims to have lapped Tony on the bike circuit, which is credible given Tony recorded a generous 14 hours for his ironman>
All this work takes a lot out of your body – Pascal lost around 5kg in fluids on the ironman. At the Australian Long Course championships he fell off his bike and “opened up” his back and all down one side of his arm. Despite the pain he completed the course, spurred on by friends and family. Pascal sees it as a test of your limits and a chance to learn what you are truly capable of when you put your mind to it.
He has brought the same courage and dedication to his music. He was already 4 years into an accounting career when he decided to leave work and start singing full time. Following the passion is paying off now that he’s studying in the opera school at the Sydney Conservatorium and getting an increasing number of solo engagements. We are sure Pascal’s career will go from strength to strength and we hope to see him at many more Manly Warringah Choir Concerts.
But doesn’t all this sport clash with his musical ambitions? Pascal replies that “it’s a question of balance. Your body is your instrument and you must look after it. When you are tired from exercising 3 hours a day you have to be so careful to look after your voice, and when you swim a lot your abdominals become tight and twitchy which interferes with singing. So stretching and yoga are essential to loosen up. But singing itself is also hard work, so strength and fitness are valuable assets.”
With all these outdoor pursuits Pascal is tempted by the Northern Beaches lifestyle, but he admits that he cannot lay claim to being a surfer – “not blessed with the genes that enable balance!”. He has though recently moved a lot closer but is still on the “wrong side” of the spit bridge. Lets hope that before long we will be able to claim him as one of our own.