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Tuesday, May 6, 2014


(Bryn Terfel in “Tosca.” Pic by Brian Tarr)

The acclaimed Welsh bass-baritone Bryn Terfel will give one recital in the Durban City Hall on May 9 as part of his South African tour.

It is presented under the auspices of Charl van Heyningen Enterprises, Purveyors of Class Acts.

Hailed in the global press as Britain’s greatest singing sensation, the superstar will appear in Durban with the internationally recognised South African pianist, Nina Schumann, as his accompanist. They will perform an enticing programme of music spanning three centuries.

Songs will include among others, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Some Enchanted Evening from South Pacific; John Ireland’s Sea-Fever; Schubert ever-green songs, Die Forelle and An Sylvia; a group of Celtic songs, among them the much-loved Loch Lomond and Danny Boy; and Frederick Keel’s highly engaging Salt Water Ballads.

Also on the programme are a group of famous operatic scenes titled Bad Boys of OperaSon Lo Spirito from Boito’s Mefistofele; Gershwin’s It Ain’t Necessarily So from Porgy & Bess; the seductive serenade Deh Vieni from Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Moritat von Mackie Messer from Kurt Weill’s Die Dreigroschenoper. A group of popular songs by 19th century Welsh-American composer and baritone, John Charles Thomas, rounds off the evening.

Bryn Terfel is acclaimed as a towering presence in the international music world. Whether in the fields of opera, oratorio, art song, musical theatre or popular song, both live and recorded, his powerhouse combination of a great voice, superb diction, a commanding stage presence and supercharged acting skills have seen the singer triumphing as one of the world’s hottest property artists for more than two decades.

Following his stage debut with Welsh National Opera in 1990, singing Guglielmo in Mozart's Così fan tutte, he steadily established his operatic repertoire. His international career began in 1991 when he sang the Speaker in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte at the Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels. This led to a series of engagements in Salzburg, paving the way for an illustrious career which has taken him to all the major houses across the globe.

Two of Terfel's indelible signature roles have been Figaro in Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro and the title role in Verdi's Falstaff. In 2004 he made his role debut as Wotan in Wagner's Ring Cycle at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, winning rave reviews in the British press. Critic Rupert Christiansen wrote in The Daily Telegraph that “in his first Wotan, Bryn Terfel fulfilled his destiny as an operatic singer".

On the recital platform too, Terfel has fully realised the promise shown when he won the 1989 Cardiff Singer of the World Lieder prize. In the recording studio, he has long been an A-list member of Deutsche Gramophon label’s stable of exclusive artists, with a string of prize-winning recordings to his credit. These number many complete operas and recitals, as well as several best-selling crossover albums, including discs of show songs by Rodgers & Hammerstein and Lerner & Loewe. Terfel also performs and records his beloved Welsh folk songs - not so much a crossover project as a return to his singing roots.

Awards for his work are numerous, ranging from the Grammy Award for Best Classical Vocal performance in 1996 to Male Artist of the Year and Album of the Year for the platinum-selling Bryn in the 2004 Classical Brit Awards. He received the CBE in the 2003 New Year Honours. Bryn Terfel was awarded the Queen's Medal for Music in 2006, an honour given to musicians who make a major impact on the musical life of Britain. Master of the Queen's Music, composer Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, described him as an "inspiring figure", not only for his performances in the opera houses of the world but also due to his popularisation of music to a wider audience through his television performances and his festival at Faenol in north Wales.

Bryn Terfel’s Durban recital on May 9 starts at 19h30 in the Durban City Hall. Tickets R350 and R420 available from Computicket on 0861 915 8000 or for online bookings. Early booking is advised.

Bryn Terfel and Nina Schumann will also appear in recital on May 6 at 20h00 at the Linder Auditorium in Johannesburg, and at the ZK Matthews Hall at UNISA in Pretoria on May 11 at 16h00. Booking through Computicket.