The World's Greatest Tenors - Placido Domingo
The World's Greatest Tenors - Placido Domingo
The World's Greatest Tenors
The World’s Greatest Tenors – Placido Domingo
I first heard of Placido Domingo sometime in the late 1960s through a classical record club that I was a member of. The brochure said that he was potentially the next Caruso, I don’t recall the record now. I do remember being impressed with his voice but I didn’t believe what the record label claimed.
Placido Domingo was pretty young then, probably in his late 20s because he was born in Madrid, Spain in 1941. He had already made his debut with the New York City Opera on June 17, 1965, in the role of B F Pinkerton in Madame Butterfly.
He made his debut at the Metropolitan Opera in 1968 when he substituted for Franco Corelli in Adriana Lecouvreur singing with Renata Tebaldi. His main competition then was the magnificent tenor Richard Tucker but soon he would be compared to another great tenor, Luciano Pavarotti, who debuted at the Met in 1972.
In spite of this stiff competition, he managed to hang around for more than 3500 career performances with a repertoire of 136 roles - more than any other tenor and he still performs at more than 70 years of age.
This is a good time to present two of his recordings so that you can judge for yourself if Domingo is the next Caruso. Here are two Caruso standards sung by Domingo:
"Una Furtiva Lagrima" from L[Elisir D'Amore by Donizetti and
"E lucevan le stelle" from Tosca by Puccini
Una Furtiva Lagrima
E lucevan le stelle
Jose Placido Domingo Embil was born on January 21, 1941, in Madrid Spain. In 1949, his family moved to Mexico where he studied piano. He made his first professional appearance in 1957 performing at a concert with his mother.
In 1959, he auditioned for the Mexico National Opera as a baritone but was persuaded to switch over to tenor. From 1962 through 1965 he sang 12 different roles and 280 performances with the Israel National Opera in Tel Aviv.
I had the good fortune of hearing Placido Domingo perform live on two occasions. Once was when he sang a role in a less than memorable opera in Detroit. The other time was also in Detroit when he appeared with the Three Tenors at Tiger Stadium in 1999. He was in fine form that night, although it is impossible to upstage Pavarotti. Domingo had put on some weight and that seemed to actually improve his singing.
The following two recordings show Domingo's Spanish Heritage and the influemce of the Italians:
"Granada" and "O Sole Mio"
O Sole Mio
In addition to all of the operas that he has performed, he also managed to record more than 100 complete operas and his recordings have won him 12 Grammy awards. He has also conducted more than 450 operas and concerts. In 1993, he founded "Operalia", an international voice competition.
When most singers have retired, he continues to remain active. He celebrated his 70th birthday with a gala concert, which was arranged by the king and queen of Spain. During the 2011/2012 season he conducted Romeo et Julliete and sang the title role in Simon Boccanegra with the Los Angeles Opera Company. He is truly one of the world’s greatest tenors.
Finally, we conclude with the aria that was Pavarotti’s signature song:
"Nessun Dorma" from Turandot by Puccini.
More of the World's Greatest Tenors
- The World's Greatest Tenors
Any list of the greatest anything is based on personal opinion and experience and this one is no different. I have been fortunate enough to hear Pavoratti, Domingo, Careras and Bocelli live. The others are based on my exposure to recordings and biogr
- The World's Greatest Tenors - Andrea Bocelli
Blind since the age of twelve, Andrea Bocelli's albums have sold more than 75 million records world wide. That makes him the biggest selling artist in the history of classical music. A protoge of Pavoratti, he is often referred to as the fourth tenor
- The World's Greatest Tenors - Luciano Pavarotti
Luciano Pavarotti is considered by many people to be one of the two or three greatest tenors who ever lived. Certainly, he is the greatest tenor to appear in my lifetime. I had the good fortune to hear him live in concerts twice and once again in a l
- The World's Greatest Tenors - José Carreras
Jose Carreras is the least well known of
- The World's Greatest Tenors - Mario Lanza
Although he only performed in one full lenght opera, Mario Lanza did more to promote interest in opera than anyone before him. When people heard his rich voice on the radio or in a movie singing
- The World's Greatest Tenors - Joseph Schmidt
Joseph Schmidt was one of the world's greatest tenors yet he remains relatively unknown in America. Born to Jewish parents in the Romanian village of Davidney he began singing in the local synagogue. In 1929 he began singing on the radio in Berlin. J
- The World's Greatest Tenors - Richard Tauber
Born in Linz, Austria, Richard Tauber first performed in traditional operas. However, living during the golden age of Viennese operetta, he soon discovered that he was better suited to that form of singing. Between 1925 and 1934, Franz Lehar wrote 6
- The World's Greatest Tenors - Beniamino Gigli
Often referred to as
- The World's Greatest Tenors - Enrico Caruso
Whenever an outstanding young tenor comes along he is referred to as
Madrid, Spain Montage
The Three Tenors
Placido Domingo recordings
More by this Author
Any list of the greatest anything is based on personal opinion and experience and this one is no different. I have been fortunate enough to hear Pavoratti, Domingo, Careras and Bocelli live. The others are based on my...
Jose Carreras is the least well known of "The Three Tenors". By himself, he has a magnificent voice, but singing next to Luciano Pavarotti and Placido Domingo his voice is not as rich. At one point his career...
Any list of the "World's Greatest" is subjective and this one is no exception. I have limited my choices to ten violinists who have made at least one recording and to those who have passed the test of time....