Big brash bass-baritone Bryn Terfel, currently in the middle of an Australian tour, spoke to OC on behalf of Limelight Magazine for the April 2013 issue while he was in Milan this past spring as Falstaff and Der fliegende Holländer at La Scala. Read the interview here.
Milan last greeted Verdi’s final opera Falstaff in 2004. Nine
years ago, Teatro alla Scala was closed, pending restoration, so the Giorgio Strehler
production curtained under Muti's baton at Teatro degli Arcimboldi on the
city's outskirts, dedicated to Tito Gobbi's death-year 20th anniversary for his
enduring, late 1950s whiskered Falstaff with Herbie von Karajan and Elisabeth Schwarzkopf.
It was also the year of OC's inaugural Milan visit, and
over summer break, she visited La Scala's museum, its collections temporarily
housed in a stunning palazzo on Corso Magenta that overlooked Santa Maria della
Grazia. The Northern Italian city of understated, un-boastful elegance struck OC as one who
never tried too hard -- the very definition of cool -- and instantly
reverberated with New York-based OC. Aaaand you guys pretty much know the rest
of the story.
Falstaff (tonight in its penultimate replication) is the
only Robert Carsen- stamped production in Teatro alla Scala’s 2012-13 season (in
coproduction with Royal Opera House and the Canadian Opera Company) and as
Carsen Crusaders, we weren’t going to miss it. We find his b-side, hidden track
of ripe sexuality -- never vulgar or desperate (unless it has to be) -- and his
fashion title familiarity a winning match for Milan, and since we’re not convinced
that Falstaff needs a traditional Shakespearian director to stage it, we loved
We've never supported a buffo Falstaff staging and feel
that it needs a delicate balance between commedia lirica and opera seria -- a fat
knight mocked in his twilight, a bittersweet glimpse of flawed man too arrogant
to realize it until everything converges in absolute absurdity -- tutto nel
mondo e' burla -- and that's where a lot of lazy directors get it wrong.
(Above: Robert Wilson and half the cast of Grace for Grace. Photo Montblanc)
Opera Chic was in gorgeous Montecarlo last week to celebrate the launch of Montblanc's Collection Princesse Grace de Monaco line among a VIP guest list including royals (Princess Caroline, Prince Albert II and Princess Charlene) and celebrities (dainty Steel Magnolia flower Daryl Hannah and Emmanuelle Béart).
The evening began at the intimately-luscious Opéra de Monte-Carlo for a Robert Wilson-curated vignette of performances by Shenyang, Bryn Terfel and Diana Damrau (among other performers such as Rufus and Martha Wainwright) and the evening continued to the Hotel de Paris for an elegant gala.
Welsh bass-baritone Bryn Terfel spoke to the FT about his upcoming Wagner’s Die Meistersinger for Cardiff's Welsh National Opera, a premiere for both the opera house and for Terfel's repertoire, having never before sung a full Hans Sachs.
Following-up on this post, we present you with twenty-two seconds of heaven. Oh, she's just being Anna...noddin' her head like yeah, movin' her hips like yeah.
Below, Bryn Terfel takes his turn. He's talking about some random Michael Jordan stuff, but if he's not shaking his hips like Netrebko, we're not listening. Harding, you're next! And it better be good! Then it's Hilary's turn. I'm Opera Chic -- make it happen!
Welsh bass-baritone Bryn Terfel swung around his big bear arms, woods & irons the other day on the Twenty Ten Course at The Celtic Manor Resort in Wales. Terfel was playing in the "Year to Go" exhibition match, an event which marked the one year countdown to the 2010 Ryder Cup.
European Captain Colin Montgomerie and BBC Radio’s Chris Evans took on US Captain Corey Pavin Bryn Terfel in nine holes. Terfel said, "It was wonderful to share a stage with two of the greats in the world of golf. In a year’s time thousands of people will be here, lining these holes, and it will be tremendous."
We're happy to see Terfel taking proper sport on the links, but we're dashed that the old scout's not dressed like Bertie Wooster. Dashed, I say!
Click the link below to see more of Bryn swinging around his woods & irons...
(Above: Boyzone member Ronan Keating *unf unf unf*)
Welsh big boy Bryn Terfel just released his new Deutsche Grammophon CD "Scarborough Fair: Songs from the British Isles", which may or not be burning up the charts...but it's burning up my ~panties~.
Terfel returns to his native roots and brings a few guest soloists along on his quest to record traditional folk songs of the British Isles. One of the invitees is Irish pop singer, 31-year-old Ronan Keating [*warning: embedded sound filez], who is currently enjoying a solo singing career, although he still hangs out with his former Boyzone band mates, which is the poor man's Take That.
DG has released a teaser of Terfel discussing his new album, which includes a small clip of Ronan Keating and his flesh-colored beard. The two singers collaborated on "Danny Boy", singing with the London Symphony Orchestra.
Go here for a few seconds of heaven. Below are a few screen shots for those technically impaired.
But then, the man does have redeeming qualities: he's in love with the Frick. Although he either gets a special discount for millionaire baritones or he hasn't been there for a while -- he says they charge him 7 bucks, but adult admission is actually 15. whatevs!
If not for the fact that he's
a Welsh national - and is certainly too smart to want the job - I
suspect that Bryn Terfel could be elected president tomorrow.
I don't even know what his position is on trade, or how well he
bowls. But on Thursday night, in a magnificent recital that marked his
first visit to the Bay Area in eight years, the great bass-baritone
revealed an ability to woo a crowd that most politicians could only
He sat down this weekend and spoke to The Times, mainly about his youngest son (of three), Deio Sion, the catalyst for his recent stage disappearances, as it was the boy’s broken finger that became Terfel’s replacement role. He passed the time in their family home in North Wales playing Mr. Mom and has no regrets, especially regarding The Royal Opera House, who were miffed.
"Of course there was an opera house that was very disappointed that one of their British singers was cancelling a run of six operas, but I tell you there would have been a six-year-old who would have been much more disappointed. And there were two older boys who needed a father while mum was in hospital. I made the right choice.”
Onto the future, demands Terfel, tersely injecting towards the end of the interview, “I'm not dwelling on it now. Move on. It's done now. It's history. Have a sandwich.” (or, like, six -- ed). He is set to make his comeback this Monday at the Wales Millennium Centre performing his trademark Verdi's Falstaff, the bass-baritone's bread & butter. That he puts on his sandwiches. This could be the new milkshake meme for the opera world. I have your sandwich.
We are concerned anyway for that little breath problem -- in a very nice "Lunch with Terfel" story, the Financial Times exposes for ther first time the great man taste for elaborate condiments: the man eats garlic right before a rehearsal, likes Bocelli a lot and really think there's nothing wrong with those lame crossover albums (that he cranks out, too, so we're gettign a bit defensive there, aren't we BrAEn?).
But he also sings a pAEan to our dear Rolando Villazon (and yes, he did the right thing by endorsing the -- losing, dang -- fight of the Welsh workers), so we forgive him.
While Bryn Terfel is keeping busy belting-out Gianni Schicchi at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, his eighth annual Faenol Festival is barging ahead with a freshly-minted lineup.
Since its inception in 2000, Faenol Festival (a.k.a “BrynFest”) has been organized by the Welsh baritone, with four days in late August set aside to showcase classical and pop music in Northern Wales, near Snowdonia.
Bryn is hoping that his four-day festivals will garner a larger/private sponsorship this year, allowing him to transform them into weekly-long events, drawing larger-billed performers such as Elton John and Tom Jones. His public funding apparently is just enough to get the concerts off-the-ground, but does not allow him luxuries even such as toilets. ew. oh gawd lets please hope that they get some $$ benefactors this year.
Burberry plans to close its factory in Treorchy, Wales, with the loss of 300 jobs, and switch production to -- big surprise! -- China. A bunch of Welsh celebrities (Tom Jones, Rhys Ifans, the prince of Wales -- who's technically English, we believe, but whatevs -- and other famous people with funny Welsh names mostly unknown to Opera Chic) have joined efforts to lobby Burberry to do the right thing and keep the Welsh factory alive. Opera Chic's beloved giant teddy bear of a baritone, the awesome Bryn Terfel, has joined the cause, too.
Now, Opera Chic loves her classic trench coat, her bag, her V-neck sweater, all made by Burberry. She's also happy, strangely, that they're not made in China. As apolitical as she is, she happily joins the protest: you don't want to piss Wotan off, Burberry.
I present to you a lovely synopsis of Mr. Q from the excellent NY Times Magazine article on Quasthoff, “A Transcendent Voice”. Btw, if the NY Times claimes this story as an unfortunate casualty of their archives in the next few days, this week only (from November 6-12, 2006) is, “Free Access Week,” and you can test-drive their TimesSelect premium $$$ package for free, and catch-up on all the tawdry NYC tales since 1851.
(Oh yeah, it’s also Bryn Terfel’s birthday today, too, but I have a message for him: Bryn, put down that damn piece of cake! It’s going to go straight to your hips!) :(((
(btw, am I the only one who thinks Bryn Terfel and Mario Batali were separated at birth?)