ROBERTO ALAGNA TO PERFORM AT SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE


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Making his debut tour of Australia, Roberto Alagna, one of the greatest voices of his generation, will be performing in the Concert Hall, Sydney Opera House at 7 p.m. on Thursday 21 July. This is a rare chance to hear the magnificent Italian/French tenor, one of the most sought after opera stars in the world.

Roberto Alagna’s career spans over 30 years, but unlike most other tenors, he has a performing background in cabaret, giving him the ability to cross boundaries. During his tour, as well as performing some of the great operatic arias, he will sing popular songs that reflect his Sicilian, Neapolitan and French musical background.

As a young man he studied accountancy, sang in Parisian cabarets and released a pop album.  Influenced by the films of Mario Lanza, he made the switch to opera. In 1988, when Luciano Pavarotti came to Paris and was signing copies of his recordings, Alagna pushed his way through the throng and told Pavarotti he wanted to be an operatic tenor. Amused, Pavarotti invited Alagna to sing one note and when he did, Pavarotti’s jaw dropped. The maestro invited Alagna to audition to earn a ticket to the finale of the Pavarotti Competition in Philadelphia. After winning his ticket to Philadelphia, Alagna then won the prestigious competition and overnight, at age 24, his operatic career took off. Lead roles and acclaim at opera houses such as La Scala, Royal Opera House Covent Garden and the Metropolitan Opera in New York followed.

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Roberto Alagna will be supported on his Australian tour by a young German based Australian soprano, Siobhan Stagg, who has quickly established herself as a rising star of the opera and concert stage. Stefano Miceli, who is currently working with the NYC Opera Renaissance and Bellini Opera Foundation in Michigan, will conduct the Australian Sinfonietta Orchestra in Sydney. Maestro Miceli is a regular guest artist as pianist and conductor at festivals and theatres across Europe, Asia and the USA.

Brought to Australia by the arts patron and philanthropist, Lady Southey AC, a co-director with Franca Smarrelli of SkyHigh, Roberto Alagna has a repertoire of over 60 roles, including two operas composed specifically for him. His diverse discography boasts numerous gold, platinum and double platinum sellers. Enjoying the devotion of a vast mainstream audience, while never compromising on his rigorous approach to singing the great operatic repertoire, Roberto Alagna has sold millions of albums of his unique crossover blend.  Deutsche Grammophon and Universal Music Australia are delighted to release Alagna’s 2-CD album “Robertissimo” in conjunction with the Italian/French tenor’s much anticipated Australian tour. This official tour edition of “Robertissimo” includes arias from Verdi, Donizetti, Massenet and Puccini.

Undoubtedly his tour will be a high point on the Australian cultural calendar and follows on the back of a three month season starring with the New York Metropolitan Opera in the role of Canio (Pagliacci) and as Pinkerton (Madama Butterfly).

Sandra Tiltman

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