Occasion: 2018 Richard Tucker Gala
Date: October 21, 6 p.m.
Venues: Gala Live performance at Carnegie Corridor and VIP Reception at the Plaza Lodge
Verdi, Verdi, and extra Verdi. Purple roses, pink roses, roses galore.
A lush carpet of roses lined the lip of the Perelman Stage at Carnegie Corridor whereas many Italian arias tumbled from the lips of some of the world’s most acclaimed opera singers.
The occasion was the 2018 Richard Tucker Music Basis Gala 2018–an excellent, star-studded night with a glittering roster of Richard Tucker Award winners and reigning Metropolitan Opera stars:
Christine Goerke, soprano (2001 Richard Tucker Award-winner)
Angela Meade, soprano (2011 Richard Tucker Award-winner)
Anna Netrebko, soprano
Nadine Sierra, soprano (2017 Richard Tucker Award-winner)
Stephanie Blythe, mezzo-soprano (1999 Richard Tucker Award-winner)
Javier Camarena, tenor
Yusif Eyvazov, tenor
Michael Fabiano, tenor (2014 Richard Tucker Award-winner)
Quinn Kelsey, baritone
It was an evening of lasered prime notes, unimaginable arias, and lovely legato strains throughout all voice elements–a holy providing from some of the greatest opera singers in the world tackling the most difficult works in the mainstream repertoire. Sheer gloriosity.
Full disclosure: This Operatoonity.com occasion protection was written from a singular vantage level for this reviewer–as the visitor of Richard Tucker’s center son, Dr. David Tucker, writer of a brand new memoir referred to as The Arduous Discount. It was a privilege to attend a profit live performance honoring Richard Tucker’s legacy, and I’m thrilled to have the ability to share my expertise with readers.
The program opened with an audio clip of the late Metropolitan Opera primo tenore Richard Tucker singing from “Cielo e mar,” the heralded second-act aria from La Gioconda. Tucker’s richness, his squillo crammed the Stern Auditorium, his voice washing over the crowd like a blessing to all in attendance. In accordance with David Tucker, roses held particular significance for his father. At the opera, he had a single rose or roses in his dressing room. He beloved the flower and the perfume and would take of their perfume throughout his breaks backstage.
This yr, the Richard Tucker Basis acknowledged bass-baritone Christian Van Horn with the coveted award and its good-looking $50,000 money prize. It is just the third time in the basis’s 40-year historical past that the Tucker Basis has chosen a bass-baritone.
Van Horn opened the program with Verdi: “Oh, chi piange?…Del futuro nel buio discerno” from Nabucco. For his second quantity (King Phillip’s signature aria from Verdi’s Don Carlo), Van Horn handled listeners to a powerhouse rendition of “Ella giammai m’amò.” His bass-baritone is colourful and expressive–virtually surreal in its versatility for a voice half that’s not often the romantic lead or recognized for vocal calisthenics. Amidst all the lightness and brightness of the Stern Auditorium, Van Horn’s efficiency evoked a dark kingdom dominated by a damaged king, overcome by the drive of his suspicions.
Nadine Sierra, the 2017 winner of the Richard Tucker Award, took the stage subsequent to sing “Me llaman la primorosa” from El Barbaro de Sevilla. The aria’s title means, “They call me the beautiful one.” None might argue with the gifted American soprano for choosing to carry out that showpiece for the gala live performance since Sierra has such a sleek, charming stage presence.
One of my favourite performances was the duet from Manon, “Toi! vous!… N’est-ce plus ma main,” that Sierra sang with tenor Michael Fabiano, the 2014 Richard Tucker Award winner. This award-winning duo shared an electrical chemistry for a live performance setting, replete with a passionate embrace and lingering kiss at the finish. Although the occasion didn’t incorporate subtitles and most of the program was sung in one other language in addition to English, Sierra infused her efficiency with the physique language and intonation of a seductress, and Fabiano willingly surrendered to opera’s most well-known tart-with-a-heart. Nobody was unsure as to what that quantity was all about.
It was a deal with to listen to soprano Christine Goerke sing Ariadne’s aria from Ariadne auf Naxos. As the 2001 Tucker Award winner sang, “Es gibt ein Reich,” she demonstrated a superior expertise for singing Strauss–her diction, her intonation, her potential to convey the which means and intricacies of the German language by way of track are nonpareil.
Mexican tenor Javier Camarena relayed a heartwarming story earlier than singing from Florestan by Spanish composer Manuel Garcia. Whereas Camarena was singing in Barcelona, he was robbed. The thieves stole his cufflinks and tuxedo studs, amongst different issues, however did not nab his new CD, he lamented to the viewers. After the housebreaking, Camarena referred to as Barry Tucker, the oldest son of Richard Tucker and President of the Richard Tucker Music Basis, Inc., who shared his late father’s cufflinks and studs with the singer. Camarena then poured his entire coronary heart and expertise into an impassioned, “Dieu! Pour venger un père…Ô ciel, De ma juste furie.”
For sheer virtuosity, my favorites performances of the night have been from American soprano Angela Meade, with Camerena from Armide, and Meade’s solo aria from I Lombardi all prima crociata: “Oh madre, dal cielo…No, no! giusta causa.” She sang the Verdi with purity and precision, as if the position have been written for her. Since profitable the Richard Tucker Award in 2011, Meade’s rise has been meteoric. Based on her bio in the program, she was gained 57 vocal competitions, together with some of the most necessary opera prizes worldwide.
Hawaiian Baritone Quinn Kelsey sang Verdi’s Falstaff with an influence and keenness by no means earlier than witnessed by this reviewer. His “È sogno o realtà” was a tour de drive. He’ll return to the Metropolitan Opera this season to sing Amonasro in Aida and Germont in a brand new manufacturing of La Traviata.
Kelsey than joined Van Horn in a duet from Bellini’s I puritani: “Riccardo! Riccardo!…Suoni la tromba that introduced down the home. It will be sheerly superb to see these two onstage in such a manufacturing.
That’s one of the most fantastic qualities of the Gala Live performance. It was sheer want achievement. If solely we might see the troopers’ duet from Bellini…if solely we might see spinto soprano Anna Netrebko and her husband, tenor Yusif Eyvazov, sing a duet from Andrea Chenier. Voilà!
For sheer magnetism, none might prime Azerbaijani tenor Yusif Eyvazov’s rendition of “Ah, sì ben mio…Di quella pira,” from Il trovatore. He might have been donning a tuxedo, however his spinto tenor transported the viewers to the chapel at Castellor, circa 1400 A.D.
In addition to the introduction of Ruth Bader Ginsberg in Barry Tucker’s opening remarks, the most talked about performances, the clear viewers favorites have been Stephanie Blythe’s numbers. Now a celebrated mezzo-soprano, maybe the most heralded since Marilyn Horne, Blythe gained the Richard Tucker Award in 1999. Since then she has created a wealthy and numerous musical profession throughout genres. Actually, she talked about the 2013 launch of a brand new CD of pop songs from the American songbook proper right here on Operatoonity. Her crossover presents have been evident in the night’s rendition of “Take Care of This House,” from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue by Leonard Bernstein. What a becoming tribute to honor Bernstein’s Centennial.
A shock addition to the gala live performance program was Blythe performing a candy and sultry “Habanera.” In her pretty glowing ensemble, she was a glamorous, flirtatious, rose-tossing sensation. Oh, to be one of the males in the viewers favored by a pink rose. You don’t should take my phrase for it. Here’s a clip from the efficiency proven on Medici TV:
Bellísima, Ms. Blythe. All hearts handily gained over. The males adored you. The ladies fangirled you.
Talking of goals turned actuality, right here is that this reviewer’s most cherished photograph of the night: Dr. David and Lynda Tucker, my daughter, and I following the live performance, in the Stern Auditorium, with the homage of roses to the late, nice Richard Tucker framing the photograph.
This star-studded live performance introduced everybody’s dream arias to life, accompanied by the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra beneath the baton of Maestro Marco Armiliato.
The live performance was adopted by a luxurious VIP dinner at the Plaza Lodge.
Friends generously supported the reside public sale on behalf of the basis, bidding on such prizes as a personal live performance by three Richard Tucker Award winners at a setting of their selection, and an opportunity to take the baton at the Metropolitan Opera Gala.
Grazie mille, Dr. Tucker, for the magical night. It was an interesting exploration into the distinguishing qualities amongst artists who sing the similar voice half, one thing one not often experiences in a single program. It was nothing brief of entrance row seats to the soiree of the season.
È sogno o realtà, certainly!