Dallas Opera Casts Paolo Gavanelli as Rigoletto

The Italian baritone Paolo Gavanelli has joined this spring’s Dallas Opera performance of Verdi’s Rigeletto. Having performed the role more than 200 times, the star doesn’t just have critical acclaim – these days, he owns the role.

As Dominic McHugh of MusicalCriticism.com wrote in 2007, “Probably the most tremendous performance of a Verdi opera I’ve ever heard was at the Royal Opera House on 10 June 2005 when Sir Edward Downes led a stellar cast including Anna Netrebko and Piotr Beczala in Rigoletto.  But it was the singer in the central role that really made an impact: Italian baritone Paolo Gavanelli…frankly, I don’t imagine I’ll ever hear it performed more convincingly…he has made the part his own the world over.” 

Below, Gavanelli performing in the final scene of Rigeletto. A full release is after the jump.

THE DALLAS OPERA

PROUDLY ANNOUNCES

PAOLO GAVANELLI

AS RIGOLETTO 

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WORLD-RENOWNED ITALIAN BARITONE TO SING

SIGNATURE ROLE IN HIS DALLAS OPERA DEBUT!

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      DALLAS, AUGUST 30, 2010 – The Dallas Opera is thrilled to announce that the internationally acclaimed Italian baritone, Paolo Gavanelli, has agreed to sing the title role in the company’s Spring revival of Giuseppe Verdi’s RIGOLETTO.  The production opens Friday, March 25, 2011 at 7:30 PM in the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House at the AT&T Performing Arts Center in Downtown Dallas.

      Mr. Gavanelli has performed the role more than 200 times in prestigious venues around the globe and is widely considered “the foremost Verdi baritone of his generation” (Hugh Canning, The Sunday Times).

As Dominic McHugh of MusicalCriticism.com wrote in 2007, “Probably the most tremendous performance of a Verdi opera I’ve ever heard was at the Royal Opera House on 10 June 2005 when Sir Edward Downes led a stellar cast including Anna Netrebko and Piotr Beczala in Rigoletto.  But it was the singer in the central role that really made an impact: Italian baritone Paolo Gavanelli…frankly, I don’t imagine I’ll ever hear it performed more convincingly…he has made the part his own the world over.”

Born in Padua, Mr. Gavanelli studied law and music simultaneously before making his debut as Leporello in DON GIOVANNI, and swiftly achieved star status among audiences from Covent Garden to New York’s Metropolitan Opera.

In 2005, Mr. Gavanelli was honored with the prestigious Bavarian title of “Kammersänger.”  Three years later he was nominated for a Grammy Award for his outstanding portrayal of Germont in a Bavarian State Opera live recording of Verdi’s LA TRAVIATA (conducted by Zubin Mehta) praised by John Nemaric of Audiophile Audition as “the most beautiful, heartfelt voice for this part (Giorgio Germont) you ever heard.”

“It’s a great, great coup,” says Dallas Opera Artistic Director Jonathan Pell.  “We’ve made efforts in the past to bring this tremendous artist to Dallas but schedule conflicts made it an impossible dream—until now.  And the chance to experience this Verdian masterpiece with Paolo, Laura Claycomb and James Valenti sharing the Winspear stage is exciting beyond words!”

RIGOLETTO opens Friday, March 25th with additional performances on Sunday, March 27th (matinee), March 30th, April 2nd, April 7th and Sunday, April 10th (matinee), 2011.  The star-studded international cast also includes Raymond Aceto and Kirstin Chavez in her company debut.

All evening performances begin at 7:30 PM, Sunday matinees begin at 2:00 PM.  Patrons are invited to attend the “Joy and Ronald Mankoff Opera Overture,” a free public lecture conducted one hour prior to curtain.  Subscriptions are available now and single tickets go on sale Tuesday, September 7th.

Contact the Dallas Opera Ticket Services Office at 214.443.1000 or visit us online at dallasopera.org.

Paolo Gavanelli – Bio

With a repertoire of over 50 roles, Paolo Gavanelli has appeared in most of the leading opera houses of the world and is internationally celebrated as the leading Verdi baritone of our time. The Italian baritone is publicly and critically acclaimed in the title roles of Rigoletto, Nabucco, Macbeth, Simon Boccanegra and Falstaff.  He made his professional debut in 1985 as Leporello in Mozart’s Don Giovanni at Teatro Donizetti of Bergamo in Italy. Within five years, he made debuts at the Metropolitan Opera in Il trovatore, Teatro alla Scala in Milan in La traviata, Barcelona’s Gran Teatre del Liceu as Valentin in Faust, the Bavarian State Opera in Munich as Renato in Un ballo in maschera, and at the Teatro la Fenice in Venice as Marcello in La bohème.  Appearances followed at San Francisco Opera in Andrea Chenier, Il trovatore, Rigoletto, Nabucco, Simon Boccanegra, at the Arena di Verona in Aida, Rigoletto, Nabucco, Macbeth, Un ballo in maschera, Cavalleria Rusticana, Madama Butterfly; the Opera National de Paris Bastille in Rigoletto, Nabucco and Lucia di Lammermoor; the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, in Otello, Simon Boccanegra, Falstaff, Rigoletto, La traviata; the Metropolitan Opera in New York (I puritani, La traviata, Rigoletto, Un ballo in maschera, Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci, Aida, La bohéme; the New National Theatre of Tokyo (Nabucco, Un ballo in maschera, Andrea Chenier), Vienna State (Il barbiere di Siviglia, Trovatore, La traviata, Don Carlos, Un ballo in maschera, Rigoletto, Cavalleria/Pagliacci, Lucia di Lammermoor, Andrea Chenier, La bohème), Bavarian State Opera in Munich (Macbeth, Simon Boccanegra, Nabucco, Il trovatore, La traviata, Un ballo in maschera, Tosca, Madama Butterfly, Lucia di Lammermoor, I puritani). In Italy,

Mr. Gavanelli appears at La Scala, Milan (Attila, La traviata, Madama Butterfly), Florence, Rome, Genoa, Turin and Naples. In Spain’s Bilbao (Rigoletto, Nabucco, Macbeth, Otello, La traviata, Il barbiere di Siviglia), and at the Santander Festival he sang Rigoletto, Tosca and Aida.  Paolo Gavanelli can be heard on CD recordings of Nabucco, La bohème, Beatrice di Tenda, Jerusalem, Alzira, and Poliuto. His performance in his signature role of Rigoletto, in a new production by David McVicar for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, was committed to DVD by the BBC in 2001, and the production was awarded the Diapason Prize in 2002 as Best DVD of the year.  It also achieved the status of bestselling opera DVD of the year.  Among his engagements in the season 2004/05 were revivals of Falstaff, Butterfly, Manon Lescaut, Lucia di Lammermoor at Bavarian State Opera Munich, revivals of Aida, Nabucco and Puritani (with Edita Gruberova) at Dresden’s State Opera and a revival of Rigoletto at London’s Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.  Recent successes have included a revival of Rigoletto at Hamburg’s State Opera, at The Metropolitan Opera in New York and at Berlin’s Deutsche Oper, where he also debuted the role of Michele in a new production of Il tabarro. At the Bavarian State Opera in Munich he appeared as the Miller in Luisa Miller as well as in revivals of Rigoletto and Roberto Devereux, Falstaff, I puritani and Don Carlo. At Dresden’s State Opera he appeared in Nabucco and Beatrice di Tenda, and he returned to Vienna State Opera as Rigoletto.  At Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw he sang the role of Ezio in Attila, and he appeared with great success as Dulcamara in L’elisir d’amore, a new Laurent/Pelly production at the Royal Opera House, London, and as Scarpia in Tosca.  Other recent appearances include a return to London as Don Pasquale, to San Francisco Opera in Il trittico and in the title role of Gianni Schicchi.