Native New Zealand baritone Teddy Tahu Rhodes (thy blessed saint of laboriously-crafted guns and cut abs), just gave a colorfully complex recitial as part of South Australia's Adelaide Festival of Arts. Between Schumann's 2nd, Brett Dean's Etüdenfest, Glanert's orchestration of Brahms's Four Preludes and Shubert's Erlkönig, TTR (and his noticeably shaved head) gave the Australiann premiere of [The Greatest Living Composer] Henze's Erlkönig. The five works were accompanied by the petite Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and conductor/artistic director Sebastian Lang-Lessing.
We're getting "Interview with a Vampire" vibes from Opera Australia's new Manon Lescaut, opening on July 16. It happens. Director Gale Edwards serves up the Puccini heroine as an irresistible sacrifice for Lescaut...or should we say ~Lestat~? With our leading hunk Lescaut as Teddy Tahu Rhodes, Cheryl Barker sings Manon and Jorge López Yáñez sings Des Grieux. López Yáñez rules...he made a mariachi CD! How bad a$$ is that?
October 2008 Ventiquattro magazine ran a nice piece on that nice piece, Teddy Tahu Rhodes, the 41-year-old New Zealand baritone who favors ripped jeans, t-shirts, and kicks rather than playing dress up. Of course, half the article waxed erotic of the tall&skinny, tan&tattooed, athletic beach boy...and even mentioned his romantic travails prior to the "October Surprise"!
The article continues that Rhodes has been called "The Brad Pitt of Opera" in Australia, while The New York
Times called him a cross between Paul Bettany & Viggo Mortensen, and
the Washington Post called him a hunky version of Sting. Personally, Headquarters O.C. likes to refer to him
as John McEnroe's younger, h0tter, cawk-blocking brother.
We've heard it all before, but we'll jump at any chance to publish more TTR pictures! We'll also jump at any chance to endorse O.C. via photoshop if any poor sucka dares to wear a white t-shirt for a photoshoot! Here's the ~real~ image:
I'm addicted to you...Don't you know that you're toxic?
Scripture -- doesn't matter if you're Jewish, Christian, or Muslim -- agrees that Elijah was capable of raising the dead, could bring fire raining down from the sky, and was taken up to heaven on a whirlwind.
Frankly, what is nowhere to be found is that he was also an Aryan-looking, buff surfer dude with rock-hard abs and a penchant for wearing too-tight wifebeaters.
An awesome article from Cincinnati's City Beat perpetuates our endless fascination with all things Teddy Tahu Rhodes, where we get details of his Maori-inspired tattoo, and a confession that he's 'totally flummoxed by the clamor about his good looks and charismatic stage presence'. C'mon Teddy...if you got it, flaunt it! Ain’t no shame in the game.
Tonight those lucky patrons of the Cincinnati Opera get to see Rhodes star as Guglielmo in la prima of Mozart's Così fan tutte, with direction set in 1930s Hollywood. Rhodes, heart made of gold, waxes chivalric on da Ponte's libretto:
"It's actually quite dark," Rhodes admits. "The idea of tricking the other's partner doesn't sit well now. I'd have great difficulty if the music wasn't so great and it wasn't so much fun."
O teddy…you could be improvisationally singing the libretto in Icelandic for all we care. in bocca al lupo tonight!
We're huge fans of Cincinnati, that most musical of cities -- the Orchestra that introduced Mahler 3rd and 5th to the American public, the orchestra once led by Thomas Schippers, that American genius, and frankly, we just like to say "Järvi" a lot.
OC also loves the Cincinnati Opera, with their clever performance descriptions (Gounod’s Faust is commodified as "devilishly good" = teh loals), their endearing opera-centric events (Opera Dogs = kawaii), and the tremendously baffling -- but awesome -- contact sheets for PR shots. We also have the highest respect for Opera Chic readers that come to us from the Greater Cincinnati home base, not to mention the lovely, endless comedy fodder when it comes to the craptastic legacy of the Cincinnati Reds and Mark Twain’s couched barbs. And we will always have a soft spot for the ambitious programs of the Cincinnati Opera, especially regarding a recent fundraiser...
On Thursday, June 14, an opening night cocktail, gala dinner and auction was organized by the Cincinnati Opera in celebration of this year’s 87th Summer Festival, followed by la prima of Charles Gounod's Faust. (and btw fyi memo to Gelb: We heard that Ruth Ann Swenson has been rawking the house with her performance of Marguerite, bravely appearing in the final act in her post-chemo, shorn hair sans wig.)
But the part that makes OC squeal in delight?: an auctioning-off of everyone’s favorite shirtless baritone, "that big lumberjack of a sek-say baritone," Teddy Tahu Rhodes (although lately he seems to be in a tie with Erwin Schrott’s London Don Giovanni among opera's h0rniest gourmets of sexy select cuts, we still think Teddy has an edge -- I mean those abs are just inhuman, and he also dripped oceans of testosterone all over the stage with his Streetcar performances, making it difficult for the other performers to negotiate that messed-up-floor).
At $100 per person, Artistic Director Evans Mirageas held the auction block mast at full attention. With items ranging from a Christian Dior makeover (which fetched $450) to a Tiffany & Co. pearl necklace (fetching $1,150), from a Kentucky Maker's Mark Distillery tour (a sweet, drunken $850) to a random supernumerary role for next season (a cool $750), there was only one item that made us giddy: While Mirageas himself fetched two winning bids of $2,500 with the promise of a home-cooked meal of his own design, the *real* winning bid of the evening (not in monetary value, but in super h0tt, pulsing, invisible currency) was a $1,400 dinner TBA with Teddy Tahu Rhodes at a restaurant PhoParis, described as “French cuisine with a Vietnamese accent”. More like "New Zealand home slice with a hotornot.com rating of 10." Or "10+++AAA would do dinner again!"
We haven’t heard yet if he is required to dine shirtless or not, but we’re guessing not, since the bidding would have gone up to like 100 million dollars if that was the actual stipulation.
At Vienna's Theater an der Wien New Zealander surfer dude Teddy Tahu Rhodes and his abs star as Stanley Kowalski in André Previn's A Streetcar Named Desire. Sister-in-law Blanche is played by Janice Watson and preggers wife Stella is played by Mary Mills.
This was the Austrian premiere of an operatic version of Tennessee Williams's superawesome 1947 play