Bravo Cura

Celebrating José Cura--Singer, Conductor, Director

 

 

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Summer doldrums--no performances until September when José Cura takes the podium in Tallinn to conduct his production of Fanciulla del west, so this week we catch-up with the summer concerts.

We have a few items from across the concert spectrum and then we have the final photos we took in Prague in June for Cura's farewell concert for his 3-year residency.  (But he'll be back:  a concert is already scheduled and tickets are available for his concert next year.)

 

 

San Francisco Opera's 2018-19 Season

 

The double bill of Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci, or Cav/Pag, (September 7-30), last seen on the War Memorial Opera House stage 15 years ago, returns in famed Argentine tenor José Cura's staging that sets the action for both operas in Buenos Aires' La Boca district, known for its tango performances and colorful houses. Each of the Italian works features an international cast with mezzo-soprano Ekaterina Semenchuk, tenor Roberto Aronica and baritone Dimitri Platanias starring in Cavalleria Rusticana and soprano Lianna Haroutounian, tenor Marco Berti, baritone David Pershall and Platanias in Pagliacci. The double bill will be conducted by Italian maestro Daniele Callegari in his San Francisco Opera debut and Cura's production will be directed by fellow Argentine Jose Maria Condemi.

All War Memorial Opera House performances (except the September 7 season opener and October 21 concert) feature a Pre-Opera Talk beginning 55 minutes prior to curtain. Pre-Opera Talks are open to tickets holders for the corresponding performance. Visit sfopera.com/learn for information about opera talks, preview events and other enrichment programs.

OperaVision screens, suspended from the ceiling of the balcony section at select performances, provide close-up and mid-range ensemble shots in high-definition video; English subtitles appear at the bottom of each screen. OperaVision is made possible by the Koret-Taube Media Suite. Visit sfopera.com for OperaVision dates.

 

            

 

  Fri 09/07

8:00PM

Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci

War Memorial Opera House

  Wed 09/12

7:30PM  

Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci

War Memorial Opera House

  Sun 09/16

2:00PM  

Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci

War Memorial Opera House

  Wed 09/19

7:30PM  

Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci

War Memorial Opera House

  Sat 09/22

7:30PM

Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci

War Memorial Opera House

  Fri 09/28

7:30PM

Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci

War Memorial Opera House

  Sun 09/30

2:00PM

Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci

War Memorial Opera House

 

 

 

 


 

Cura in Dresden

13 May 2018

Argentine Songs

Singer, Arranger, Composer

Semperoper Dresden

May 13, 2018, 11 o'clock

 José Cura & Dresdner Kapellsolisten

 The well-known Argentinian tenor José Cura has made a name for himself on the international opera and concert stages [and] as well as his celebrated performances as a singer, above all in the Italian repertoire, as a conductor and director.  In the triple role as singer, composer and arranger, the versatile artist now introduces himself in the Semperoper.  The program combines songs from his homeland, his own arrangements and settings of texts by Pablo Neruda.  The works express the deep melancholy of this South American music and are also a declaration of love by the star tenor to his biographical and musical roots.

Argentine songs

 Works by Felipe Boero, Carlos López Buchardo, José Cura, Alberto Ginastera, Carlos Guastavino, Hilda Herrera, Héctor Panizza and María Elena Walsh

 Cast: Tenor: José Cura; Dresdner Kapellsolisten, Conductor: Helmut Branny,

 

 

 

 

Songs by Argentine composers: Herrera, Walsh, Boero, Buchardo, Ginastera, Guastavino, Cura

The Semperoper was virtually full to welcome José Cura who was singing, conducting and had arranged the songs so this certainly felt like a one-man show. During the concert Cura speaking in English throughout told several anecdotes and right from the start his big personality shone through. He introduced himself, the programme and orchestra, and then heavily criticised errant use of mobile phones. Soon after he started singing a mobile phone rang, an instance he used to reinforce what he had been saying. Surely, he didn’t stage this!

Cura explained he loves singing the Argentine songs of his homeland and how he was exasperated by the view of one particular critic – I think he said from England – who disparaged Cura remarking that the music was not for Cura’s own pleasure. No wonder my interview request to his management went unanswered. Often admirers come along to see Cura sing and are disappointed he has chosen to sing Argentine songs rather than the opera arias from Verdi, Puccini and the verismo he is famous for. Yet Cura explained that now twenty-years old Anhelo his 1998 album of Argentine songs was a best seller, outselling his earlier album of Puccini arias.

For the concert Cura chose some thirty songs from the pens of seven Argentine composers working in the twentieth-century. The lion’s share came from leading composer Carlos Guastavino who was represented by six songs in the first half of the concert and the whole of the second half. In the programme Cura also included three of his own compositions. After living in Europe for nearly thirty years this is music to which Cura feels inexorably connected, which serves as a tribute to the legacy of his Argentine heritage and he sings it noticeably with love, tenderness and passion that all feels so authentic.

Sat on a stool surrounded by the players of Dresdner Kapellsolisten, Cura himself was directing. Overall the songs were of a tender and nostalgic ballad style yet there were a number of welcome dramatic episodes serving to enliven the proceedings. My highlight was the tender Guastavino song ‘Se equivoco la palomo’ beautifully performed with a sure sense of longing together with notable contributions from guest guitarist Barbora Kubikova. Striking too was Maria Elena Walsh’s ‘Postal de guerra’ with its light, delicate string writing and stronger wind accompaniment. Here Cura was in striking voice with a song that required a range from very soft to his high register all negotiated with comparative ease. Cura who has such an easy way with an audience seems to relish the intimacy that is not present in his operatic roles. At one point during a song Cura had an episode of coughing so he stopped, had a drink of water and said that air conditioning here is very good but not for a singer. Quite lovely, if rather a plain song, I enjoyed Cura’s rendition of Guastavino’s ‘Cuando acaba de llover’ which he stated was so optimistic it should be sung every morning to help one face the day. Cura could hardly have asked for finer support than Dresdner Kapellsolisten, numbering around twenty players, giving remarkably stylish playing which felt completely satisfying.

As an artist of rare talent, the multi-talented José Cura didn’t disappoint, singing an attractive selection of Argentine songs, but I simply can’t forget his verismo roles especially his heartfelt portrayal of Canio in Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci.

Michael Cookson

 

 

Note:  This is a machine-based translation.  We offer it only a a general guide but it should not be considered definitive.

 

Argentinean star tenor José Cura sings songs of joy and sorrow from his homeland

SZ-Online

13 May 2016

Rainer Kasselt

 Welcome to Germany!  José Cura shakes his head in amazement.  "Here we work on Sunday at 11 clock." Even if the time is unusual for him, he is immediately fully there, in the music.  The Argentine tenor, 55, in demand worldwide, is in the Semperoper with his "wonderful friends," the Dresdner Kapellsolisten, in an acclaimed matinee.  Kapellchef Helmut Branny follows the concert of Argentine songs from the stalls.  José Cura leads the performance, gives sensitive performances and then rolls out the sound carpet as a conductor himself.

The singer, director and composer has been working in Europe for thirty years and lives with his family in Madrid but he is always pulled back to the melodies of his homeland.  He sings of pampas grass and mother of pearl in the wind, becomes a flower gardener out of love, yearns for water lilies and purple fuchsia.  Cura laughs, saying in amazement: "On this stage I have stood as Otello. Today I praise the blue of the morning glory." With charismatic charisma and impressive stage presence, he comments in English throughout the morning.  His voice can do anything: it whispers and revels, is full of longing and drama, is tender and melancholy, bold and cheerful.  "Music should give pleasure," says the versatile artist with thick, gray-flecked hair and mischief in his eyes.

José Cura sings self-composed songs to his beloved, following the poetic lyrics by Pablo Neruda.  The verses reveal what he feels at the age of "lost wonder" and recall the "sharp sting of desire" in youth.  They tell of the gentleness of a love, the happiness of loyalty and the grief of abandonment.  Cura boasts the richness of Argentine folk and art music.

What for Germans is Schubert or Schumann are for him are compositions by Hilde Herrera or Carlos Gustavino.  He sees himself as a cultural ambassador of his homeland.  Years ago, audience members in an unnamed German city showed their disappointment by returning their tickets, says Cura in amusement.  There was no talk of that on Sunday.

 

 

 

                                              

 

 

                                                         

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veszprém

 

            

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

Prague Concert, June 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Upcoming Performances

 

Winterthur, 13 October 2018

 

 

 

https://www.musikkollegium.ch/de/event-detail?event=19741

 

Tickets

 


Concert Retrospective

In summer, prime concert season, we look back over the extraordinary concert career of José Cura

 

Back when our computer is healthy ....

 
 

 

Calendar 2018

 

Month

Dates

Work

Theater

City

January

1

Concert:  New Year

 

Warsaw

February

20, 23, 25, 28

Peter Grimes

Oper de Montecarlo

Monte Carlo

March

3

Otello

SemperOper

Dresden

  March

15, 17

Pagliacci

Royal Opera House Muscat

 Oman

 March

21, 22

Concert: Debussy / Ravel

Smetana Hall Municipal House

Prague

 March

29

Concert:  Cura Compositions (Modus, Magnificat, Ecce Homo)

 Béla Bartók National Concert Hall

Budapest

May

5

Samson et Dalila in Concert

 St Petersburg

May

13

Recital:  Argentine Songs

Semperoper

Dresden

June

 13, 14

Concert:  Argentine Songs/ Karlowicz 7th Symphony

Smetana Hall Municipal House

Prague

June

28, 29

Nabucco / Set Design / Stage Director

Prague National Theater

Prague

 July

7

Concert:  Singer / Conductor (Open Air)

Rychenbergpark

 Winterthur

July

10

Concert

Zagreb

July

13

Concert

 História Kert 

 Veszprém

July

28

Concert

Festival Katlony

Tokaj

September

7, 12, 16, 19, 22, 28, 30

Cav / Pag -- José Cura Production (Ličge)

War Memorial Opera House

San Francisco

September

21, 23

Fanciulla del west / Set Design, Stage Direction, Conductor

Tallinn Opera House

Tallinn

October

7

Concert:  Argentine Songs / Dvorak 9th Symphony

Stadthaus

Künzelsau

October

13

Recital:  Argentine Songs

Stadthaus

Winterthur

 

Resources

 

 

 

 

 

 

Find Cura on Wikipedia!

 

Want to know more about José Cura?  Check out his Wikipedia page (click on the photo and find out such neat things as.....

  • Full name:  José Luis Victor Cura Gómez
  • First starring role:  Bibalo's Signorina Julia, Teatro Lirico Giuseppe Verdi, Trieste, Italy, 1993
     
  • First performance in US:  Giordano's Fedora, Chicago Lyric, USA, 1994

 

 

This page is an UNOFFICIAL fan page Mistakes found in these pages are our mistakes and our responsibility.   

 

This fan page is dedicated to promoting the artistry of  José Cura.  We are supported and encouraged by Cura fans from around the world:  without these wonderful people, we wouldn't be able to keep up with the extraordinary career of this fabulous musical talent. 

 

If you have something concerning Mr. Cura you would like to share, contact me at bravocura@cox.net

 

Note that some of the material included on these pages are covered by copyright laws.  Please respect the rights of the owners.

 

 

 

Last Updated:  Thursday, August 09, 2018  © Copyright: Kira