Aug 18, 2014

Macht und Musik: Die Magie der Dirigenten event in Salzburg; Deutschlandradio Kultur broadcast 22 August

This Wednesday, 20 August, Rolando Villazón joins Wolfgang Herles, Helga Rabl-Stadler, Ivor Bolton, and Echard Roelcke for a discussion on “Das Blaue Sofa” held at Salzburg-Kulisse at 15:30. The conversation will be recorded and broadcast on Deutschlandradio Kultur at 18:07 on Friday, August 22. Access the live stream here.

Aug 18, 2014

Sold-out Mozart Matinee Performances at Salzburg Festival with Ivor Bolton

On August 22 & 23, Rolando Villazón’s summer season continues with two sold-out Mozart Matinee performances at the Salzburg Festival with conductor Ivor Bolton. As the concerts' featured soloist, Rolando performs Mozart’s “Per pietà, non ricercate”, K. 420 and “Or che il dover” – “Tali e cotanti sono”, K. 36–concert arias captured on his recent solo Deutsche Grammophon album. Gluck’s “Unis dès la plus tendre enfance” from Iphigénie en Tauride also features on the program. Ivor Bolton leads the Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg.

Aug 11, 2014

Rowohlt releases German edition of Rolando Villazón’s debut novel Kunststücke August 15

This Friday, August 15, Rowohlt releases the German edition of Rolando Villazón’s debut novel Kunststücke. To celebrate the occasion, Rolando is the featured guest of Friederike Westerhaus on radio show Klassik à la carte, airing August 15 from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm CEST. That same day, Rolando appears on NDR Talk Show, an episode that will be broadcast that evening from 10:00 pm to midnight. Preview the episode here. 

Order now from Rowohlt

Preview: Rolando on Kunststücke

Rolando’s debut novel is also available in Spanish as Malabares (order here) and in French as Jongleries (order here).

Aug 4, 2014

Rolando Villazón’s staging of “L’elisir d’amore” arrives on DVD & Blu-ray August 18, 2014

On August 18, 2014, Deutsche Grammophon will release a DVD & Blu-ray recording of Rolando Villazón’s performance in and staging of Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore. Inspired by the cartoon character Lucky Luke and the Spaghetti Western-tradition, Rolando's staging for the Baden-Baden Festspielhaus is not only a film studio in the thirties but also a Western at the same time. In addition to the opera, the DVD & Blu-ray include a special “Behind the scenes ‘Rolando Villazón's 'L´elisir d´amore' in the wild West’ feature, filmed by Friedemann Hottenbacher. The production marks Rolando’s debut as both stage director and singer.

The production features a leading cast of singers, including Rolando as Nemorino, Miah Persson as Adina, Roman Trekel as Belcore, and Ildebrando D'Arcangelo as Dulcamara. 

Order the DVD || Order the Blu-ray


Jul 11, 2014

Die Entführung aus dem Serail at Festspielhaus Baden-Baden

Rolando Villzón kicks off the summer festival season at the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden, where he stars opposite Diana Damrau in three gala concert performances of Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail July 21, 24 and 27. The performances are part of Rolando Villazón and conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin’s Mozart opera cycle for the Deutsche Grammophon label.

Rolando portrays the sensitive Belmonte in the company of a leading cast that includes Diana Damrau as Konstanze, Thomas Quasthoff as Bassa Selim, Anna Prohaska as Blonde, Paul Schweinester as Pedrillo, and Franz-Josef Selig as Osmin. Nézet-Séguin conducts conducts the Vocalensemble Rastatt and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.

Deutsche Grammophon has released complete recordings of Così fan tutte and Don Giovanni. Last fall, Rolando released a solo album of Mozart Concert Arias, a collection of rarely recorded concert arias for tenor written by the genius composer​, with Antonio Pappano and the London Symphony Orchestra. Discover the Mozart discography here.

Jun 10, 2014

Rolando to make stage debut as Ferrando in new production by Claus Guth of Così fan tutte at Teatro alla Scala

Following his solo recital at the Milan house last month with Daniel Barenboim, Rolando Villazón returns to the Teatro alla Scala to make his stage debut at Ferrando in Mozart’s Così fan tutte in performances June 19 to 30. The Mexican tenor portrays Ferrando in a new production by Claus Guth opposite Maria Bengtsson as Fiordiligi, Katija Dragojevic as her sister Dorabella, Adam Planchetka as Guglielmo, Serena Malfi as the cunning Despina, and Michele Pertusi as Don Alfonso. Daniel Barenboim conducts. Purchase tickets here.

Rolando's performance of Ferrando is captured on Deutsche Grammophon’s complete recording of Così fan tutte, the second installment of the Mexican tenor and Yannick Nézet-Séguin’s cycle of Mozart's seven mature operas. Order the album here.

May 20, 2014

La Scala recital with Daniel Barenboim May 25

This Sunday, May 25, Rolando Villazón appears in recital at the Teatro alla Scala with the eminent pianist and conductor Daniel Barenboim. Together, they present a program comprising Robert Schumann’s Dichterliebe, Manuel de Falla’s Siete Canciones populares españolas, and selections from Giuseppe Verdi’s Sei Romanze and from Fernando Obradors’s Canciones clásicas españolas. Purchase tickets here.

Rolando’s recital anticipates his appearances at La Scala in Così fan tutte, conducted by Daniel Barenboim. Performances take place June 19 to 30.

May 12, 2014

Rolando Villazon’s 2014/15 season

The 2014/15 season features Rolando Villazón as singer, director, and author, with highlights including an eleven-city concert tour; leading roles at the Staatsoper Berlin, Bayerische Staatsoper, Deutsche Oper Berlin, and the Royal Opera House; original stagings of Donizetti’s Viva la mamma, Verdi's La traviata, and Puccini’s La rondine, and the launch of his debut novel Kunststücke in German.

Following performances at the Verbier and Salzburg Festivals as well as the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden this summer, Rolando Villazón launches the release of his debut novel in German under the title Kunststücke at a release event with the Berliner Ensemble in the theatre company's namesake city on August 29. In the fall, he takes his book on the road for readings in Vienna (September 7), Hamburg (October 1), Cologne (October 8), Göttingen (October 15), and Munich (November 27). Following the presentation of Kunststücke in Berlin, Rolando heads to the Musikfest Bremen to reprise his acclaimed performance in Monteverdi’s Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda on September 4.

A major highlight of the autumn will be an eleven-city concert tour with soprano Pumeza Matshikiza and the Bohuslav Martinů Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Guerassim Voronkov. The tour takes Rolando to Zlín (October 11), London (October 14 w/ Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra), Moscow (October 17), Vienna (October 20), Paris (October 22), Hamburg (October 28), Düsseldorf (November 1), Munich (November 4), Helsinki (November 8 w/ Estonian State Symphony Orchestra), Aalborg (November 13), and Hannover (November 26).

The 2014/15 season also sees Rolando stage directing a number of productions. On January 17, 2015, he presides over the opening night of his production of Viva la Mamma at Volksoper Wien. Donizetti’s operatic comedy marks his directorial debut at the Austrian house. Later in the spring, Rolando Villazón brings his directorial vision to La rondine at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, which presents Puccini’s bittersweet romance beginning March 8, 2015. Finally, from May 22 to 29, the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden mounts a new staging of Verdi’s La traviata, as helmed by Rolando.

Onstage next season, Rolando will also be heard as featured guest with Daniel Barenboim for the Staatsoper Berlin’s New Year’s Concerts, on December 31, 2014 and January 1, 2015. He continues his appearances at the German house as Macduff in Verdi’s Macbeth (February 7, 11, 15) and as concert soloist with the Staatskapelle Berlin under the baton of the legendary Plácido Domingo on February 17. From March 28 to April 4, Rolando reprises his highly acclaimed title role performances in Offenbach’s Les contes d’Hoffmann at the Bayerische Staatsoper. Rolando then returns to the Deutsche Oper Berlin to star in the title role of Verdi’s Don Carlo April 23, 30, and May 3.

Next summer, Rolando will reprise his Don Ottavio in Mozart’s Don Giovanni at London's Royal Opera House. The tenor’s Covent Garden performances take place June 12 through July 3. On June 21, 2015, Rolando joins his frequent collaborator Yannick Nézet-Séguin for a concert in Montréal with the French Canadian conductor’s Orchestre Métropolitain. The duo reunites July 16 and 19 at the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden for gala performances of Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro.


May 8, 2014

London Mozart Concert Arias performance caps off European tour to critical acclaim

Rolando Villazón and the Kammerorchester Basel, led by Florian Donderer, capped off their seven-city European tour together at London’s Cadogan Hall with a performance hailed by The Guardian as “a serious reinvention project well executed by a singer of note, to illuminate neglected arias by someone who never wrote anything that can be overlooked”–four stars.

The Times, in its review, also awarded the concert four stars as it noted Rolando’s "chuckling coloratura that revealed a still impeccable technique and sense of showmanship. It made even the tiny aria Va, dal furor portata, written in London by the nine-year-old Mozart, into a thrilling vocal and emotional workout.”

Praise followed Rolando throughout his tour. In Munich, “The audience went ballistic, and rightfully so,” noted Abendzeitung München. Suddeutsche Zeitung praised Rolando’s signature commitment to the music: “Villazón begegnet Mozart mit dem stimmlichen Aplomb, bisweilen auch den veristischen Gestaltungsmitteln des 19. Jahrhunderts. Es ist ein stark rhetorisches, sehr gestisches Singen, das Mozart quasi zum Italiener ehrenhalber macht. (…) (Das) verschafft Villazóns Gesang eine große Direktheit und Dringlichkeit. (...) Damit tut Villazón, was Mozart in einem Brief fordere: Dass der Sänger auch im Konzert vollständig in die Figur hineinschlüpfen solle. Vielleicht sollte man ihn nicht mehr nach Sängermaßstäben messen, sondern nach denen eines ungemein sympathischen Gesamtkunstwerks.” In Prague, where the Mozart Concert Arias tour began, relished Rolando’s voice in the repertoire: "Villazon and his darker tenor voice completely govern intonation, breath, declamation and vocal technique, including coloraturas.”

Later this month Rolando Villazón returns to the Teatro alla Scala, where he gives a recital with Daniel Barenboim (May 25) and stars in Così fan tutte June 19 to 30.

May 1, 2014

Mozart Concert Arias tour culminates in Berlin & London, La Scala recital and Così on the horizon

Rolando Villazón looks ahead to the culmination of his Mozart Concert Arias European tour, celebrating the Austrian composer’s rarely recorded works for tenor in concerts across Europe. The spring tour with the Kammerorchester Basel and Florian Donderer culminates in two final stops at the Philharmonie Berlin this Friday, May 2 and at London’s Cadogan Hall on Tuesday, May 6.

In its review of Rolando’s Munich concert, Süddeutsche Zeitung praised Rolando’s total commitment to Mozart’s music: “Villazón begegnet Mozart mit dem stimmlichen Aplomb, bisweilen auch den veristischen Gestaltungsmitteln des 19. Jahrhunderts. Es ist ein stark rhetorisches, sehr gestisches Singen, das Mozart quasi zum Italiener ehrenhalber macht. (…) (Das) verschafft Villazóns Gesang eine große Direktheit und Dringlichkeit. (...) Damit tut Villazón, was Mozart in einem Brief fordere: Dass der Sänger auch im Konzert vollständig in die Figur hineinschlüpfen solle. Vielleicht sollte man ihn nicht mehr nach Sängermaßstäben messen, sondern nach denen eines ungemein sympathischen Gesamtkunstwerks.”

Just yesterday, Rolando appeared at the Apple Store in Berlin to host the presentation of Daniel Barenboim’s new digital record label Peral Music. On May 25, the Mexican tenor performs a vocal recital with the pianist and conductor at the Teatro alla Scala. Rolando’s La Scala appearances continue from June 19 to 30, when he reprises the role of Ferrando in Mozart’s Così fan tutte under the direction of Barenboim.