10/12/2017, Dvořák Hall of the Rudolfinum, Prague
One of the greatest opera stars, tenor Juan Diego Flórez returns to Prague! This is the third time he accepted the invite of Nachtigall Artists: first, he performed in Prague in December 2012 with pianist Vincenzo Scalera and they brought a fascinating evening of French and Italian lieder and arias. The second time, in December 2014, he prepared French arias for Prague, with the accompaniment of PKF – Prague Philharmonia.
Born in Lima, Peru, Juan Diego undertook music studies both in his native Lima and at Curtis Institute in Philadelphia. In 1996 the twenty-three-year-old Juan Diego made his official operatic debut in Matilde di Shabran at the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro, where his expressive voice and astonishing agility immediately won him critical accolades. Since then, he has become the tenor of choice in major international theatres, concert halls and music festivals, including the Metropolitan Opera, Covent Garden, Venna State Opera and festivals in Salzburg and Pesaro.
Juan Diego recently expanded his already broad repertoire (forty four operas): in November 2015 he assumed the role of Edgardo (Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor), in March 2016, Massenet’s Werther and in November 2016, he made his debut as Raoul de Nangis (Meyerbeer: Les Huguenots). Since June 2016, he has been an exclusive Sony artist. In total, including his discs for other companies, he has recorded 8 solo albums, 12 complete operas on CD and 11 on DVD, and made another 7 albums that fall into other categories, such as cantatas or oratorios. His recordings have won many awards, including the Choc du Monde de la Musique, Diapason d’Or, Echo Klassik Preis, Cannes Classical Award, Gramophone Award and a Grammy nomination for the album Bel Canto Spectacular.
On February 20, 2007, Juan Diego made history at La Scala when he broke a 70-year-old taboo and gave the first encore in the theatre since 1933, much to the audience’s delight. The aria in question was “Ah! Mes amis” from Donizetti’s La fille du régiment, renowned for its nine high Cs. He repeated the feat in 2008, at the Met, and in 2012 at the Opéra de Paris, where no encores had been heard since its inauguration in 1989.
Juan Diego has received a number of awards, including the Rossini d’Oro, the Abbiati Prize given by the Italian Association of Music Critics, the Aureliano Pertile, Francesco Tamagno and Plácido Domingo Awards and the honorary title “Kammersänger” from the Minister of Cultural Affairs of Austria. From the Government of Peru he received the maximum honour, the Orden del Sol in the grade of Gran Cruz. In 2006 Juan Diego was granted Austrian citizenship on artistic merit, but continues to retain his Peruvian citizenship as well. He has always maintained a close relationship with his native country, and has also set up a foundation in Peru with the aim of encouraging the creation of children’s and youth orchestras and choirs on a national level. The project is inspired by the Venezuelan “El Sistema”.
He will come to Prague with the renowned Italian pianist, a famous piano partner to many esteemed singers (Carlo Bergonzi, Andrea Bocelli, Montserrat Caballé, José Carreras, Vittorio Grigolo, Katia Ricciarelli, Sumi Jo, Renata Scotto, Cesare Siepi, as well as Juan Diego Flórez – including recitals at the Salzburg Festival in 2015 a 2016). During 2017, both artists will perform together on a tour (Moscow, Valencia, Barcelona, Birmingham, Pamplona, Marseille, Toulouse, Prague, etc.). On the stage in 2017, Juan Diego will assume the roles of Elvino (Bellini: La sonnambula) and Romeo (Gounod: Romeo & Juliette) at the Vienna State Opera, Massenet’s Werther in Zurich and Gennaro (Donizetti: Lucrezia Borgia) at the Salzburg Festival in August 2017.
Gioachino Rossini (1792–1868)
Addio ai Viennesi
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791)
Ich baue ganz auf deine Stärke (Belmonte)
Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Act III
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Si spande al sole in faccia (Alexander, King of Macedonia)
Il re pastore, Act I
Che ascolto? Aimè… Ah, come mai non senti? (Rodrigo)
Otello, Act II
Ruggero Leoncavallo (1857–1919)
Vieni amor mio
Giacomo Puccini (1858–1924)
Avete torto! – Firenze è come un albero fiorito (Rinuccio)
Che gelida manina (Rodolfo)
La bohème, Act I
Jules Massenet (1842–1912)
Pourquoi me réveiller (Werther)
Werther, Act III
Lunge da lei – De’ miei bollenti spiriti – O mio rimorso (Alfredo)
La traviata, Act II