TENOR CARLO BERGONZI AND BARITONE PABLO ELVIRA SING "HO VEDUTO IL NOTARO... LA DONNA E UN ANIMALE...AI PERIGLI DELLA GUERRA", FROM DONIZETTI'S "L'ELISIR D'AMORE".
THIS IS A SINGING LESSON!!! HERE BERGONZI IS 65!!! MOST TENOR IN THEIR 30'S WOULD KILL TO SING LIKE THIS, WHILE ELVIRA HITS A HIGH A NATURAL BETTER THAN MOST TENORS!!!
DRESS REHEARSAL, NEWARK 1989.
Pablo Elvira, 1937-2000
Born on Sept. 24, 1937. A gifted musician, native of San Juan, Puerto Rico and the son of a dance orchestra leader, Elvira began his musical career playing jazz trumpet (after playing piano, alto sax and bass fiddle!) with his father's group and later formed his own orchestra.
A meeting with the famous cellist, composer and conductor Pablo Casals led to his pursuing a career as an opera singer. In 1960 Casals finished work on a biblical oratorio for world peace, ''El Pesebre,'' one of the cellist's small body of compositions. Needing five soloists for a recording and tour of the work, Casals heard Mr. Elvira audition and asked him to sing the baritone part.
One of Mr. Elvira's most memorable performances of ''El Pesebre'' came in 1969, when Casals, by then 92, conducted it in Jerusalem before an audience of 3,000.
In 1966, he participated in the Metropolitan Opera Auditions in New York and was selected by the Dean of the Indiana University School of Music to join their voice faculty. He remained there for eight years and performed leading baritone roles in the opera school's productions. Elvíra maintained his primary residence in Bozeman, Montana, and he became known as a strong supporter of opera in that state.
After a year spent performing in Europe, he returned briefly to Indiana before moving to New York and debuting with New York City's Metropolitan Opera in 1978, becoming one of the leading baritones and performed there over 100 times during the next 12 years. In 1974, he made his first appearance with the New York City Opera. He performed with such opera greats as Joan Sutherland, Beverly Sills, Renata Scotto, Roberta Peters, Marilyn Horne, Cecilia Bartoli, Carlo Bergonzi, Justino Diaz, Luciano Pavarotti and Placido Domingo, who stated Elvira was "By far the greatest baritone in the world."
During his career, Elvira sang in France, Germany, South America, Australia, Puerto Rico, Israel and throughout the United States. Among others, he received honors and distinctions like the "Israel Medal", Honor Awards by the US Government, Honors in New York from Governor Mario Cuomo and Mayor Ed Koch. He was the first baritone singing in the opening of the Michigan Opera Theater, as well as the openings of Chang Kai Shek Memorial Theater in Taiwan and the Melbourne Australia Performing Arts Center. In 1967-68 he sang in the world --premiere of Jerome Hines' opera "I am the Way", first in Indianapolis and reprising it at the MET. In 1972 he sang the title role in the world premiere of John Eaton's opera ''Heracles,'' which inaugurated Indiana University's 1,460-seat Musical Arts Center.
Among his vast repertoire, his signature role was Figaro in Rossini's"Il Barbiere di Siviglia" (The Barber of Seville) and critics and colleagues alike crowned him "The best Figaro" of his generation. His musicality, solid technique, breathing control (which he developed by many years of trumpet playing) and seamless legato; along with his great acting skills, sets him apart and creates a real admiration from his colleagues, as Jerome Hines documented in his book "Great Singers on Great Singing".
Pablo Elvira died in 2000 at 62. The musician, artist, singer and above all great human being is greatly missed. Some commercial recordings are proof of his art, and other private sources too:
*Montemezzi: L'amore dei tre re
(Moffo, Domingo; Santi, 1976) RCA
*Mascagni: Cavalleria rusticana
(Scotto, Domingo; Levine, 1978) RCA
*Donizetti: La Favorita
(Alfredo Kraus, Shirley Verrett, James Morris;
Eve Queler, NY City Opera, 1975)
GALA Records [live]
*Puccini: Manon Lescaut
(Scotto, Domingo; Levine, Menotti, 1980) [live]
*Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor
(Sutherland, Kraus, Plishka; Bonynge, Donnell, 1982) [live] Books:
*Great Singers on Great Singing: Opera Star Jerome Hines Interviews 40 Famous Opera Singers on the Technique of Singing,
by Jerome Hines