Don Carlo: "Ella giammai m'amò" -- Ferruccio Furlanetto (Met Opera)
PICTURES AT AN EXHIBITION
SONGS AND DANCES OF DEATH
NIGHT ON BARE MOUNTAIN
Available on ITunes
Buy at the Wiener Staatsoper
Buy on Amazon.com
Ferruccio Furlanetto sings Winterreise. Gute Nacht. Piano - Igor Tchetuev
SIMON BOCCANEGRA - as part of VERDI Collection 2
DVD Teatro Massimo, Palermo
SIMON BOCCANEGRA -
DVD Teatro alla Scala
IT’S ALL ABOUT THE BASS
Ferruccio Furlanetto's interview in the WAG magazine
Published June 19 2015
Ferruccio Furlanetto was recently Honored by New Rochelle Opera, in his interview to the WAG magazine at this occasion he talks about his best-known roles and the lifestyle of an opera star.
About Philip II: My approach to this fascinating role started in 1981 when I had the chance to have my debut in Kassel, Germany. At that time I was totally inspired by the superb artists of the time, (Cesare) Siepi and (Boris) Christoff in particular.Needless to say, a character so profound and mature grows together with the artist and changes accordingly with the acquired maturity of the singer, and so it did in my case, changing drastically in the years and with the opportunity to do it with great artists like Herbert von Karajan. Today my King Philip is light years away from that young singer of Kassel in 1981. Now in a production like The Met’s, I have really the chance to live this character under my own skin, 100 percent in agreement with what the direction requires. .
About Don Giovanni: “I had my debut in ‘Don Giovanni’ as the Don when I was 27 years old and I sang it continuously and everywhere for 28 years. I sang Leporello only when Karajan asked me for the recording first and for the Salzburg production in ’87. I did it again in 1990 in the (Franco) Zeffirelli production at The Met, but on that occasion (alternating) roles with Sam Ramey…My favor went to the Don, although the Salzburg Leporello opened all the doors in the world for me.
About future plans for the year: Now that The Met’s ‘Don Carlo’ is over, I am traveling to Vienna for a big gala at the Vienne Staatsoper, then a recital at the old Opera de Paris, the White Nights Festival of St. Petersburg, Sydney for ‘Don Carlo,’ Vienna again for ‘Macbeth’ and ‘Eugene Onegin,’ a recording of Verdi arias, a recital in Moscow, ‘Onegin’ in London. And the year is gone..
Don Carlo at the Mariinsky Theater
Ferruccio Furlanetto gave three performances at the Mariinsky Theater with great success. On May 30 he sang Philipp II in Don Carlo during The Stars of The White Nights Festival. The performance was conducted by Valery Gergiev. Don Carlo – Mikhail Vekua, Rodrigo - Vladislav Sulimsky, The Grand Inquisitor - Sergei Aleksashkin, Elisabeth de Valois - Anna Markarova, Princess Eboli - Ekaterina Semenchuk.
With Love to the City and to the Great Theater
RIA Novosti anticipates Ferruccio Furlanetto performances
Published May 22 2015
Ferruccio Furlanetto opens his performances at Mariinsky Theater today with his acclaimed role of Don Quichotte. In a telephone interview during his way from the airport he reviled his love to St.Petersburg, Mariinsky Theater and Russian music:
I’m coming to St.Petersburg for eleven years, it is incredibly beautiful city that I really love and use every opportunity to come back here. And, of course, such a desire is associated with the Mariinsky Theater - one of the greatest theaters in the world, headed by great musician and my friend Valery Gergiev. We have a lot of projects ahead with the Maestro, which we will discuss during my visit.
He also spoke about Russian music: he was the first Italian who sang Boris Godunov in Mariinsky and the only Western artist who performed this role on both historical stages of Russia – Bolshoi and Mariinsky. During this visit he will sing a Mussorgsky-Rachmaninov recital: The Mussorgsky’s music is a tragic one and Rachmaninov’s - is full of romantic love. … Both are dear for me, but I must confess that Mussorgsky is closer to my heart.
The fruitful collaboration between Italian bass and Maestro Gergiev has started from 2000 at the Salzburg Summer Festival (Don Giovanni and Don Carlo) and at La Scala (Boris Godunov). In 2004 Ferruccio Furlanetto appeared at the Mariinsky theater for the first time in the roles of Philip II and Boris. At the Mariinsky he also sang Fiesco inSimon Boccanegra, Gremin in Eugene Onegin, performed bass part in the Verdi's Requiem and sang three solo recitals. From 2010 he perrformsn St.Petersburg his favorite Don Quichotte in the Massenet’s opera, first in concert version (several performances in St.Petersburg, and at the Easter Festival in Moscow). Regarded as the best Don Quichotte of our time, he also recorded the opera with young Mariinsky soloists under the lead of Valery Gergiev for the Mariinsky label (the release has got terrific reviews and was nominated for the Grammy Awards). The premier of the new Yannis Kokkos production of Don Quichotte was designed for Ferruccio Furlanetto. It was shown in Moscow and seen again at the Mariinsky. On May 22 2015 he will return to Don Quichotte again and this time it is scheduled for DVD. He will be also opening the concert program of The Stars of White Nights Festival on May 27 with the solo recital, and will sing his acclaimed Philip II in Don Carlo on May 30.
Ferruccio Furlanetto sings Don Quichotte during Easter Festival in Moscow with Valery Gergiev and Mariinsky Orchestra.
Photo Ken Howard/Met
Ferruccio Furlanetto on King Philipp
Limelight Magazine feature about Don Carlo
Published May 15 2015
Ferruccio Furlanetto will sing his celebrated King Philipp again. On May 30 at the Mariinsky Theater in St.Petersburg and in July-August under the under the iconic sails of the Sydney Opera House (his debut in Australia) with 9 performances.
In advance the Limelight – Australian classical music and art’s magazine - published a big feature on Don Carlo with Ferruccio Furlanetto sharing his vision of the role.
Ferruccio Furlanetto’s first experience of Don Carlo came playing the modest role of the monk in a production starring Boris Christoff as the King. He also played the Inquisitor, once, to Nicolai Ghiaurov’s Philip, and has sung it under Herbert von Karajan and James Levine – so he knows a lot about the role:
“King Philip gives you a thousand possibilities of interpretation, and in 35 years, I can tell you, I went through a lot of different intentions. In the beginning (not that I was trying to copy because it would have been wrong and not helpful), I was playing a Philip that was closer in intention to Christoff – he was a dry, severe monarch from beginning to end. He was really a sort of monster throughout. But I think Verdi gives us the possibility in music and with the text to show in the moments of solitude the human side of the most powerful man on Earth. In this profession you must always paint with contrast. Therefore if you are a severe and nasty king in the auto-da-fé, I think it’s wonderful to turn another page in the following act. …. I just finished Don Carlo in Vienna and it’s amazing that even after 35 years of the role you can still find something new – some new colour, a new intention. This is the absolute greatness of this opera”.
“Without any doubt, in that moment King Philip was the most powerful man on Earth, but he was under the Church,” Furlanetto explains. “I had a chance to visit the Escorial outside Madrid and I saw the little Spartan room where he was sleeping when he was visiting the palace. The only window in his bedroom was looking over the altar of the cathedral. So you really get a picture of what kind of religious bigot he was. In this amazing duet with the Inquisitor you have the proof of it. Philip is using the Church – we shouldn’t forget his reign went into bankruptcy twice. He was using the Church to fight his enemies – even his creditors. Nevertheless, he was clearly under the Church and the Grand Inquisitor was, if you want, his Father, with the power of life and death even over the King, and over his son.”
Winterreise at the Palais Garnier
Ferruccio Furlanetto presents Shubert’s cycle in Paris
Published May 8 2015
On May 10 Ferruccio Furlanetto will sing Schubert Winterreise at the Palais Garnier and it will be his debut with this program in Paris. Piano – Igor Tchetuev.
“Ferruccio Furlanetto, acclaimed bass on the world operas stages, travelled in the darkened country of the soul, full of grief, pain, depression, longing for death. With sonorous voice despite of its fullness and dark timbre, he did justice to the fragile architecture of the Schubert’s work with the deep and concentrated interpretation”. “Kleine Zeitung”
Photo Ken Howard/Met
"Tragic Figure of Shakespearean Dimensions"
More press about Don Carlo
Published April 28 2015
Critics praise Ferruccio Furlanetto performance in the terrific reviews and features
“The Metropolitan Opera’s revival of the opera, with two final performances tonight and Saturday, stars the eminent Italian bassFerruccio Furlanetto, who over the course of 35 years singing the role has fleshed out and polished his Philip into a tragic figure of Shakespearean dimensions.” - writes Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim at The New York Times feature about "Don Carlo", where you can find Ferruccio Furlanetto's interview as well.
“In the most powerful scene of the work (and one of the greatest in all of opera), the public and private merge in Philip's room. It starts with the famed "Ella giammai m'amo" in which the King laments his private life and his ultimate lack of power in his old age. Ferruccio Furlanetto, who has become the go-to Philip at the Met (and for good reason), was at his heart-breaking best. He started the aria quietly, his eyes closed as if the King were in a dream. He awakened during the second section of the aria, his voice slowly growing until the climax of the section as Philip laments not being able to see the thoughts of others. And then suddenly a pause before he retakes the opening theme, lamenting his wife's lack of love for him. And on the climactic phrase "Amore per me non ha," his voice wept, almost giving the sense that he was about to break into tears. He came to a slow conclusion here and held out the final note until it died away into nothingness.” - David Salazar, the Latin Post
“Commentary on Ferruccio Furlanetto's Filippo would seem almost superfluous, but last night's performance proved that he is not resting on his laurels. His presence is absolutely compelling, his use of text chillingly effective. More even than this, he gave a performance of great immediacy, as well as of great authority; every decision of the king seemed to be weighed in the moment, every emotion keenly and freshly felt. The emotional and dramatic pacing of Ella giammai m'amò was extraordinary. It is, of course, an iconic aria; Furlanetto gave it its full, shocking intimacy, with the use of its silences, as well as incredible richness of textual coloring, to show us the dangerous vulnerability of a tyrant. And his treatment of the queen's jewelry box--gazing at it, caressing it, whether absently or with dreadful fixity--set up the following scene brilliantly. Furlanetto's Filippo was also brilliant in interactions (both public and private) with the rest of the court. I could gush further; happily, the audience (along with the orchestra, conductor, and cast) acknowledged what we were hearing, with riotous and prolonged acclaim.” - Opera Obsession blog
Three Evenings in St.Petersburg
Ferruccio Furlanetto returns to the Mariinsky
Published April 26 2015
Ferruccio Furlanetto makes three significant appearances at the Mariinsky Theater in May: he sings his acclaimed Don Quichotte on May 22, opens the Concert program of The Stars of White Nights Festival with the solo vocal recital on May 27 and sings Philipp II in Don Carlo on May 30.
Mariss Jansons Radio Recordings... with Ferruccio Furlanetto
New CD release
Published April 25 2015
The unique 13 CD + DVD set dedicated to Mariss Jansons collaboration with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra has been released in April. Drawing from the Dutch Radio archives include Mussorgsky’s Songs and Dances of Death performed by Ferruccio Furlanetto and Mariss Jansons in Amsterdam (it was then repeated at the Salzburg Summer Festival).
“Rarely is such a warm, captivating and smooth voice heard here in the Netherlands,” - wrote Peter van der Lint in the Dutch newspaper Trouw following the Italian bass Ferruccio Furlanetto performance with the RCO, for which he garnered wide acclaim with the orchestra singing Musorgsky’s Songs and Dances of Death on 25 August 2010.
After having released boxed cd sets dedicated to former chief conductors Willem Mengelberg, Eduard van Beinum, Bernard Haitink and Riccardo Chailly (now only available as part of the RCO Live Radio Legacy, RCO 13006), the Anthology-series is now brought up to date with radio recordings featuring Mariss Jansons. After being chief conductor for eleven seasons, Jansons has resigned for health reasons.
Mariss Jansons Live, The Radio Recordings 1990-2014 is a limited edition: no more than 1500 copies are available. Catalog No.: RCO 15002, Barcode: 814337019143, 13 Stereo CD & 1 DVD, Weight: 480 gr.
“It’s not a profession, it’s a privilege”
Opera News Awards report
Published April 25 2015
“I trust that this kind of song — tellurian voices practical to this song — will be always living,” - Ferruccio Furlanetto said in the interview during the 10th Annual OPERA NEWS Awards - “The assembly loves this kind of music. For us it’s not a profession, it’s a privilege.” He and 4 other honorees - Teresa Stratas, Sondra Radvanovsky, Samuel Ramey and Piotr Beczala – were awarded for the distinguished achievement in the field of opera.
More then 400 guests attended the ceremony including celebrated performers Marilyn Horne, Renata Scotto, Marin Mazzie, Angela Meade. There was musical performance from Stephanie Blythe and bySusan Graham, once-in-a-lifetime OPERA NEWS cover photo shoot with acclaimed photographer Dario Acosta, silent auction and a private dinner party.
OPERA NEWS has been published by the Metropolitan Opera Guild since 1936; it has the largest circulation of any classical music magazine in the United States. Edited by F. Paul Driscoll, the monthly publication is a winner of four ASCAP-Deems Taylor Awards for excellence in music journalism.
Opera News honors Ferruccio Furlanetto. In a special tribute Louise T. Guinther says honoree, Ferruccio Furlanetto, has a "vocal quality that couldn't come from anyone else." Read the full article here.
You can look at the photos from the Opera News Awards here.
Photo Ken Howard/Met
King Ferruccio et al.
More press about Don Carlo
Published April 17 2015
What opera should you take to the desert island? – asks Fred Plotkin at WQXR . - Don Carlo with Ferruccio Furlanetto:
“For the towering role of King Philip II, it would have to be Ferruccio Furlanetto and no one else. I have seen many great Philips in my time but no other bass has so completely essayed this complex character who can rule half the world yet cannot manage the complexities of his own household. Furlanetto weds Shakespearian acting to powerfully tragic music sung in a way that is alive to each moment but also attuned to the grandeur and pathos in Verdi’s art” You can read more here.
“The great Italian bass Ferruccio Furlanetto owns the role of the isolated, ruthless Philip II” – points again Antony Tommasini at the New York Times listings.
Fortunately, Ferruccio Furlanetto, a chillingly authoritarian Philip, and Dmitri Hvorostovsky, a glamorously voiced Rodrigo, are standard-bearers in their roles. (New Yorker)
Ferruccio Furlanetto found a fresh, sharp bitterness in King Philip’s music – adds The Observer
Ferruccio Furlanetto and Dmitri Hvorostovsky gave stirring performances as King Philip II and Don Rodrigo respectively. …The opera’s last act contains some of the best music for both characters and the ovations they each received at the end of their respective arias was long lasting and well deserved. Furlanetto was attuned to the King’s mood swings. It is for this reason that King Philip is the most interesting character in the opera. As needed, Furlanetto sounded ferocious in his warnings to Don Rodrigo and equally poignant in his Act III “Ella giammai m'amò.” Gregory Moomjy for the Operaclick
Furlanetto’s Philip is as good as anyone’s anything. At this point, it has virtually no competition. … it’s all there: the beauty, the gravity, the diction, the subtlety, the technical security, the pathos, the volume. … his voice has a natural and potent glow – writes Jay Nordlinger at the Newcriterion.com
This opera lives or dies by its principal singers, and the MET has assembled a cast of impressive soloists headed by the amazing Ferruccio Furlanetto, who these days owns the role of Philip II. His deep bass has matured into the kind of instrument that is able to express the anguish of a character who has married a woman who has never loved him, and raised a son who threatens his power. His failure as a husband is now compounded with the thought that in order to save his kingdom he might have to sacrifice his son. Mr. Furlanetto beautifully conveys the character's agony as he realizes the church might not be able to absolve him of the murder of his first born. His is one of the great opera characterizations of our times. - impressions from the Wagner operas blog
There is three more performances of Don Carlo left For more information and tickets
Gremin at the Royal Opera House
Addition to the 2015-16 season
Published April 16 2015
The Royal Opera House announced their 2015-16 season. Don’t miss Ferruccio Furlanetto who will be singing Gremin in Eugeny Onegin under the baton of Semyon Bychkov.
Tchaikovsky’s most famous opera is given an elegiac telling in Kasper Holten’s production. In the cast: Eugene Onegin – Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Tatyana – Nicole Car, Lensky – Michael Fabiano, Olga – Oksana Volkova. Performances on December 19, 22, 30 2015 and January 2, 4.
Solo Recital for the Grand Opening
Ferruccio Furlanetto will open the Concert program of the Stars of the White Nights
Published April 15 2015
On May 27 Ferruccio Furlanetto will be opening the concert program Of The Stars of the White Nights Festival at the Mariinsky Concert hall in St.Petersburg with his Russian program.
This program, which he will be also presenting in Moscow next season, includes romances and songs by Rahmaninov and Mussorgsky with the “Songs and Dances of Death” at the end. At the piano - Igor Tchetuev. This cycle was recently released by Furlanetto in orchestra version with Valery Gergiev and Mariinsky orchestra at the Mariinsky label.
Don Quichotte Again
Ferruccio Furlanetto returns to St.Petersburg for his acclaimed part
Published April 13 2015
Ferruccio Furlanetto will sing Don Quichotte in the Massenet's opera at the Mariinsky theater on May 22.
The Don Quichotte project is one of the most successful collaborations between Valery Gergiev and Ferruccio Furlanetto. The highly successful Don Quichotte story in Mariinsky had started in 2010 with a concert performance of Massenet’s opera in which Ferruccio Furlanetto triumphed. After several successful concert performances in St.Petersburg and Moscow and recording on Mariinsky label (it got Grammy nomination) it was staged by Yannis Kokkos. The production was done for Furlanetto from the first scratch and his stellar performances captivated the public and press completely.
“Furlanetto, with his ‘noble’ voice, quiet and expressive in its every sound, is majestic and, at the same time, penetrates the soul with some kind of translucent purity, appearing as some rare and priceless ‘antique’ in the production.” ( Irina Muravieva, Rossijskaya Gazeta). You can read more press here and here.
This time in the cast: Ferruccio Furlanetto (Don Quichotte), Irina Shishkova (The Beautiful Dulcinée), Andrei Serov (Sancho Pança), Eleonora Vindau (Pedro), Regina Rustamova (Garcias), Andrei Ilyushnikov (Rodriguez), Dmitry Koleushko (Juan). The conductor - Valery Gergiev.