12/3/2012, Smetana hall at Prague's Municipal House
Prague Symphony Orchestra
Julian Kovatchev – conductor
For the first time in Prague – British baritone Simon Keenlyside! Musical America Vocalist of the Year 2011 and holder of two Laurence Olivier Awards enthrals opera audiences in Covent Garden, Metropolitan Opera, Vienna and Bavarian State Operas, Paris, Salzburg, etc. as Don Giovanni, Figaro, Count Almaviva, Hamlet, Rodrigo, Macbeth, Rigoletto, Onegin, Wozzeck… In Prague, he will present a bouquet of the most remarkable baritone arias.
Simon Keenlyside is one of Britain’s most sought after and charismatic singers noted for his versatility and highly charged performances on stage. He has been acclaimed for Billy Budd and Prospero in the world premiere of Thomas Adès’ The Tempest at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden; Count Almaviva in Milan and Vienna under Riccardo Muti; Don Giovanni in Ferrara under Claudio Abbado, Pelléas in San Francisco, Geneva, Paris, and most recently in Salzburg, Berlin and London under Sir Simon Rattle, his first Wozzeck at the Paris Opera, Posa (Don Carlos) at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden under Sir Antonio Pappano and at the Metropolitan Opera under Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Eugene Onegin and Macbeth in the Vienna State Opera.
His operatic discography includes the title role of Don Giovanni (conductor: Claudio Abbado), Marcello in La Bohème (Riccardo Chailly), the title role of Billy Budd (Richard Hickox), Count Almaviva (René Jacobs), Papageno (Sir Charles Mackerras); the latest releases include Valentino in Faust (EMI, Antonio Pappano), Posa in Don Carlos (EMI., Antonio Pappano) and Macbeth (Opus Arte, Antonio Pappano). For Sony BMG he recorded a CD of opera arias titled Tales of Opera (Munich Radio Orchestra/Ulf Schirmer) which received a 2007 Gramophone Award for The Best recital, as well as an operetta CD with Angelika Kirchschlager. His concert recordings include Orff’s cantata Carmina burana (Deutsche Grammophon, Christian Thielemann) and Britten’s War Requiem (LSO Live, Gianandrea Noseda).
Since appearing in recital at La Scala in 1998 he has gone on to give recitals all over the world. With Simon Rattle, he recorded Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn for EMI and for Sony BMG he recorded Brahms’s songs and Schumann’s cycle Dichterliebe (piano: Malcolm Martineau). He also recorded songs of Schubert, Wolf, Fauré and Ravel (piano: Malcolm Martineau) for Wigmore Live.
Simon Keenslyside made his professional operatic debut in 1987 as Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro at the Hamburg State Opera. He was a soloist of Scottish Opera of Glasgow between 1989 and 1994. In 1989 he made his debut at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden (Silvio in I pagliacci), while other debuts followed soon-after: English National Opera, Welsh National Opera, opera houses in San Francisco, Geneva, Paris and Sydney. In 1993 he made his debut in Glyndebourne and in 1996 he appeared for the first time at the Metropolitan Opera (Belcore in L’ elisir d’amore). Since then he’s been returning to the MET regularly as Olivier (Capriccio), Marcello (La Bohème), Papageno (Die Zauberflöte), Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro) Hamlet and Posa (Don Carlo). The audience all over the world was able to experience his art at cinema broadcasts (Met – Live in HD) in the last two roles on 27th March 2010 and 11th December 2011.
In 2012 he performed at the Covent Garden (Giorgio Germont), Bavarian State Opera in Munich (Giorgio Germont, Eugene Onegin, Count Almaviva and Wozzeck) and in Vienna State Opera (Posa). He will also sing Prospero in Adès’ The Tempest at the Metropolitan Opera (live broadcasts into cinemas on 10th November 2012).