Opera San Miguel Tenor Scores in Montréal
By Shari Alexander
Fabián Lara, star of last season’s Opera San Miguel Gala with Orchestra, and second prize winner of Concurso San Miguel 2013, has won the top International Prize for 2014 at Les Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyriques de Montréal. In addition to a substantial cash career grant, Mr. Lara was offered debuts with the Helikon Opera in Moscow, Russia, and the Dutch National Touring Opera in the Netherlands, as well as a concert debut at the legendary Concertgebouw in Amsterdam.
Through a new strategic initiative begun this year by Opera San Miguel Artistic Director John Bills, Mr. Lara became the first Mexican singer ever invited to participate in the Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyriques program in its 22 year history. “I am so excited about this new partnership in Canada. As a result of our participation this year, I have been asked to become a permanent member of the organization’s International Committee of Directors, and to present one or more Mexican singers at their event each year. I can’t emphasize enough how important this new opportunity is for singers from Mexico who will now be heard, and hired, by opera company directors and agents from North America, Europe, and Asia.”
Les Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyriques is an international training and development program for opera singers at the beginning of a professional career. Each year, after nationwide auditions in Canada, the most talented Canadian singers are named Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyriques. In November, a weeklong festival and gala presents the Canadian laureates, as well as invited winners of international singing competitions, to sing for opera directors from Europe, Asia, and North America, who then offer audition tours, concerts, professional training sessions, and professional engagements. The program also gives prizes and grants for traveling and living expenses abroad. To date, the program has developed a network of more than 80 partners in 16 countries. This year, that group of partners was expanded to include Opera San Miguel, the first Mexican opera company to be so honored.
John Bills cemented this new partnership in Montréal by presenting the Opera San Miguel Prize to Canadian soprano Tamara Rusqué. “Tamara will be joining Fabián Lara in a very special joint concert here, the fruit of this new international relationship, and the first of what will be an annual Mexico-Canada Co-OPERA-tive Concert here in San Miguel de Allende,” says Bills. “I hope everyone will celebrate this new partnership with us in February, and I especially encourage our Canadian expat community to come out to show their support.”
Opera San Miguel presents “First Annual Mexico-Canada Co-OPERA-tive Concert, February1 at 4pm, Auditorio Miguel Malo, Bellas Artes, Hernández Macías 75. Tickets go on sale January 5 at La Conexion, Aldama 3, 350 pesos.