March 8, 2017

‘Rigoletto’ and 50th Anniversary Concert at The Metropolitan Opera

This spring, Joseph Calleja returns to The Metropolitan Opera stage to star as the Duke of Mantua in Verdi’s Rigoletto. The production, featuring the famed Michael Mayer setting in 1960’s Las Vegas, also features Željko Lučić in the title role, Olga Peretyatko as Gilda, Štefan Kocán sings Sparafucile, and Nancy Fabiola Herrera is Maddalena. Performances take place April 19, 22 & 27, led by conductor Pier Giorgio Morandi.

“In his latest outing as the Duke in Rigoletto, Joseph Calleja proves himself to be the Brazil Of singers: he’s the tenor of the future, and always will be. The big, honeyed tone [is] the purest and most appealing Italianate sound since Pavarotti.” (The New Yorker)

Following his Rigoletto performances, Calleja joins an acclaimed roster of colleagues for The Metropolitan Opera’s 50th Anniversary Gala Concert on May 7. Director and set designer Julian Crouch and projection designers 59 Productions set the stage for this unforgettable celebration, which also features the talents of Plácido Domingo, Anna Netrebko, James Morris, Sonya Yoncheva, Joyce DiDonato, and many more. A formal dinner will also follow the concert – visit for tickets and additional information.


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?