Metropolitan Opera star in benefit for Concurso San Miguel

By Shari Alexander

Celebrated American tenor Michael Sylvester will be the Concurso San Miguel 2014 “Master Teacher” and will headline a benefit fundraiser for the company’s scholarship program. The exciting benefit, “Two Tenors Talk: An Evening of Conversation and Music with Metropolitan Opera Star Michael Sylvester,” will take place in the grand ballroom of Rosewood San Miguel de Allende, beginning with a cocktail reception at 6pm, Thursday, March 6. Tickets go on sale today, February 21, at the Rosewood concierge desk.

“Two tenors talk: an evening of conversation and music with Metropolitan Opera Star”
With tenor Michael Sylvester
To benefit Concurso San Miguel’s programs
Thu, Mar 6, 6pm
Rosewood Hotel Ballroom
Nemesio Diez 11
350 pesos


Widely considered one of the finest lirico-spinto tenors of his generation, Michael Sylvester has sung leading roles in the major opera houses of the world, including the Metropolitan Opera, Covent Garden, La Scala, Vienna Staatsoper, Sydney Opera House, San Francisco Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Dallas Opera, Paris Opera, Teatro Colon, Houston Grand Opera, Teatro La Fenice, Staatsoper Berlin, Grand Theatre de Geneve, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Hamburg Staatsoper, Bonn Staatsoper, Frankfurt Staatsoper, Opera de Toulouse, the New Israeli Opera and many others.

USA Today named Sylvester one of the two most important tenors of his generation, and during the 1990s he sang more performances at the Metropolitan Opera of Radames in Verdi’s Aida than any other tenor. In addition to Radames, which he has performed more than 150 times worldwide, his repertoire includes the title role in Don Carlo, Calaf in Turandot, Gabriele Adorno in Simone Boccanegra, Cavaradossi in Tosca, Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Rodolfo in La Boheme, Bacchus in Ariadne Auf Naxos, Der Kaiser in Die Frau Ohne Schatten, Samson in Samson Et Dalila, Don Jose in Carmen and Pollione in Norma. All in all, he has performed nearly fifty leading roles.

Among his recordings are the title role in Don Carlo with James Levine (Sony Classics), Gabriele Adorno in Simone Boccanegra with Sir George Solti (Decca), Calaf in Turandot (EMI video) and Mahler’s Symphony #8 with Robert Shaw (Telarc). He has been featured in numerous Saturday afternoon radio broadcasts from the Metropolitan Opera and in other broadcast and televised performances from around the world, notably Turandot from San Francisco Opera.

“Two Tenors Talk” on March 6 will feature Mr. Sylvester discussing his remarkable career in a lively interview with Opera San Miguel’s Artistic Director, John Bills, who himself was a tenor at the Metropolitan Opera for 26 seasons. Both men will take questions from the audience, and the evening will be interspersed with exciting video highlights of Michael’s extraordinary career. Following the presentation, Michael Sylvester will join audience members for conversation and cocktails.

Created to give the finalists of Concurso San Miguel, the company’s contest for young Mexican opera singers, the opportunity to receive insight and instruction from the major operatic figures of

the day, The Master Teacher Program has been generously sponsored by Rosewood San Miguel de Allende since its inception in 2012 and continues today due to the enthusiasm of General Manager and opera aficionado, Alfredo Rentería.

Michael Sylvester will conduct two full days of master classes with this year’s finalists, on March 4 and 5. “We are delighted to have a teacher of Michael’s stature and experience working with our finalists this year,” says Mr. Bills. “This is a unique and valuable opportunity for them, and we are very thankful to Rosewood San Miguel for making it possible.”

Since retiring from the operatic stage, Mr. Sylvester has devoted himself to sharing his insight and experience with today’s aspiring singers. He has served on the voice faculty at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music and teaches frequent master classes. He is currently a member of the voice faculty of DePaul University (Chicago) and also maintains a studio of young professional students.

Don’t miss “Two Tenors Talk,” a unique opportunity to meet a true operatic star and at the same time help lift up the next generation of Mexican opera stars! Cash bar opens at 6pm with complimentary botanas courtesy of Rosewood San Miguel. A cocktail reception follows “Two Tenors Talk.” Tickets on sale February 21, Concierge Desk, Rosewood San Miguel de Allende, Nemesio Diez 11. All tickets sales benefit Opera San Miguel Scholarship Program. 350 pesos.

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