May 13, 2014

Joseph Calleja sings Verdi’s Requiem with the Santa Cecilia Orchestra in Birmingham and London

After making a return to the Bayerische Staatsoper’s production of Rigoletto this month, Joseph Calleja continues his acclaimed interpretations of Verdi’s repertoire with two performances of the composer’s Requiem with the Santa Cecilia Orchestra. The Maltese tenor joins Sir Antonio Pappano at Birmingham’s Symphony Hall on May 16 and London’s Southbank Centre on May 18. The performances also feature soprano Hibla Gerzmava, mezzo-soprano Ekaterina Semenchuk, and bass Carlo Colombara.

Joseph’s performances of Verdi’s Requiem have earned him acclaim throughout his career. Of a 2008 performance of the work at the BBC Proms, The Times raved, “Best of all, though, was the young Maltese tenor Joseph Calleja’s unforced and open-throated ardour, soaring through the Hostias with real grace and, yes, true devotion.” Three years later, Joseph’s reprisal of the work with the same historic festival had The Guardian praising his “penetrating, elegant tenor, [which] was ravishing in both Ingemisco and Hostias.”


Joseph's Blog

May 16th, 2016

Quo Vadis Eurovision and other stories

Malta did not win the Eurovision but lo and behold the sun still rose and the island (the center of the known universe) still spun…

My two cents is that Ira Losco gave a really good performance and that the whole presentation was excellent. She shouldn’t have performed cause she is pregnant? Come off it – I have performed repeatedly with pregnant opera singers well into their 7th and 8th month of pregnancy and trust me when I say that rehearsing and performing for a full opera production is much more physically demanding than a couple of days at the Eurovision. Of course there are those who know much better than the undersigned and who went on to say that the presentation was a tad “camp”…oh the irony when one considers that the Eurovision is the campest of them all.

Meanwhile, this wouldn’t be Malta and the Eurovision wouldn’t be the Eurovision unless its politicized to the exhaustible hilt. The inevitable “mud slinging competition,” which we will see a lot of in the coming 22 months, ensued and even yours truly (inexplicably) ended up in the midst of the fray, in yet another “supernova” in a tea cup. The Eurovision suddenly became an interchangeable bullet to be used ad nauseam by both sides much like bitter parents who use their innocent children during disputes.  I have always found sycophants interesting, even amusing but they will not be getting the much desired Streisand effect from me, thank you very much. It is part of human nature after all to conjure conspiracies and we are not going to let the simple truth get in the way of some exciting and convenient fiction.

Speaking of “conjuring” is it me or is a company advertising real estate using a chap “connected” with the tragic and unnecessary death of an underage girl? It must be a clone or a”doppleganger”, otherwise this would be the epitome of bad taste and a 100 shades of wrong. Don’t get me wrong I am all for “second chances” and all of that but shouldn’t there be due process first? After all Lisa Marie didn’t get a second chance did she?