Category Archives: Tenors

Keon Woo Kim Wins Top Prize at Operalia 2016

Tweet Korean tenor Keon Woo Kim shared the first place award at Operalia’s 2016 competition. Founded by Placido Domingo in 1993 to launch the careers of outstanding young singer, the event is still under the guidance of Domingo. The other first place award went to French soprano Elsa Dreisig. Born in 1985, Kim is a graduate of…


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Antonio Paoli

Tweet Antonio Paoli (1871-1946) was a Puerto Rican tenor; he was the first opera singer from the island to achieve international renown. The son of a Venezuelan  mother and Corsican father, orphaned at 12, he moved to Spain with his sister where he began vocal studies. He continued these studies in Italy and made his…


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Sergei Lemeshev

Tweet Sergei Lemeshev (1902-77) and Ivan Kozlovsky were the two great Russian tenors of the first half of the 20th century. I’ve already covered the latter and promised to get around to Lemeshev later. Well, later is today. Lemeshev was born to a peasant family in the Kalininsky District of Tver Oblast in the Russian Empire. He…


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Javier Camarena

Tweet Mexico is producing great tenors with the same astonishing frequency as the Dominican Republic emits major league baseball players. Javier Camarena is the latest, and perhaps the best, of the Mexican tenors to appear at the world’s great opera houses. He has sung only 20 performances at the Met, but has already emerged as…


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Recording of the Week: Lauritz Melchior Collection

Tweet Lauritz Melchior (1890-1973) was the great heldentenor of the first half of the 20th century. Toscanini called him Tristanissimo, which is also the name of his authorized biography. He sang over 500 performances at the Met where his career was mainly made, though he did sing extensively elsewhere. Born in Denmark, he became an…


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Michael Spyres Sings Bellini’s A tanto duol From Bianca e Fernando

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gs5yvm3n__A

Tweet Michael Spyres is probably the best tenor now active never to have sung at the Met. This aria is in dog whistle country. In case the video disappears a link to it is below.   Spyres Bellini: Bianca e Fernando – A tanto duol


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The 10 Best Tenors of the 20th Century

Tweet I’ve listed the 10 tenors that I think were the best of those active in the 20th century. Obviously, this list is entirely subjective and reflects nothing more than my tastes and opinions. Readers are invited to submit their own lists in the comments section. I have tried to pick a selection for each…


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Max Lorenz

www.youtube.com/watch?v=oQKmK9EUAjc

Tweet Max Lorenz (1901-75) was the great Wagner tenor of the first part of the 20th century. I’m leaving out Lauritz Melchior who inhabited a universe of his own. He made his debut in Dresden in 1927 and quickly became a great star in Europe. While the bulk of his career was in Germany and…


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Yonghoon Lee in Cavalleria Rusticana at the Met

Tweet Last night Yonghoon Lee sang his first performance as Turiddu in Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana at the Met. The Korean has been increasingly impressive since his debut at the New York house is 2010. Before the performance an assistant manager made an announcement that Lee was suffering from a cold, but would sing nevertheless. It’s…


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Lensky’s Aria

Tweet The only reason that impresarios can convince leading tenors to take the part of Lensky in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin is the second act aria ‘Kuda, Kuda’, hereafter referred to as Lensky’s aria. Even then tenors dislike  playing a character who dies in the second act. This was why Richard Tucker dropped the role after 1957-58 ….


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