“This track, this simple song, represents everything I am hoping to express about Leonard Bernstein and about American music – about inspiration and collaboration, tradition and innovation.
Thomas Hampson began his career under Bernstein’s guidance, learned and performed Bernstein’s music under the Maestro’s baton, knew LB as a mentor and a friend, and took from him inspiration for his own life in music.
I first saw Tom perform when I was a student in Vienna, and I recognized him immediately for what he is: an American original. Like Leonard Bernstein.
American music brought us together. Way back when I was putting together my album American Ballads, I happened upon Tom’s Song of America project, and I fell in love with a new world of music. American songs, the American vernacular, our history, our story, told in music… And a light went on for me. You could be an artist, a great performer, a scholar, a teacher, an explorer… Like Thomas Hampson. Like Leonard Bernstein.
And all these years later, Tom and I are making music together, and it’s magic. What he does with A Simple Songbegan back in the day with LB. I feel so lucky, so blessed, to be here today with Tom.
And this is our journey – American music, American musicians – passing a torch, sharing a story, walking down this long road of history, singing a simple song.”
See more & download the track and album at LaraDownes.com
Thomas Hampson makes his highly anticipated debut with the Canadian Opera Company in the world premiere of Rufus Wainwright’s Hadrian. Hampson sings the title role in this epic love story, based on the life of the Roman emperor Hadrian, with libretto by Daniel MacIvor. Led by Johannes Debus, the monumental production by Peter Hinton will open the COC’s 68th season beginning October 13 through October 27.
Thomas Hampson travels to the Tanglewood Festival this month to celebrate the centennial of his late mentor, Leonard Bernstein, and to perform Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
“At this pivotal time in history, Americas art song literature provides a means of communicating, in the simple beauty of word and music, the truths of a nation born of an ideology whose language celebrates the individual. This language of heart and mind says everything about the culture that created it. And when we sing our own songs, those who hear us will have experienced the best of what freedom of thought and purpose can achieve in the creation of great art.” -Thomas Hampson
Thomas Hampson and Luca Pisaroni head to Austria and the United States for their successful “No Tenors Allowed” concerts this August.
Thomas Hampson travels to Vienna for a special jubilee concert honoring the 100th year since the end of World War I.
On August 2 at the Stephansdom, Hampson will sing with the European Youth Orchestra and the Czech Philharmonic Choir under the baton of Manfred Honeck. Additional soloists include bass-baritone Luca Pisaroni, soprano Maria Nazarova, soprano Cornelia Horak, mezzo-soprano Iris Vermillion, and speaker Christoph Wagner-Trenkwitz.
The program will include music by Holst, Górecki, Respighi, Schubert, Haydn, Mahler, Bruckner, Boulanger, and Mahler. Artistic director and conductor Manfred Honeck asked at the beginning of rehearsals with the European Youth Orchestra, “More than 70 years of peace – do we and our youth in Europe know what that means?” With this concert, the ensemble hopes to commemorate the lives that were lost in this life-changing war and the peace that has continued through Europe for the past 100 years.
This month, Thomas Hampson will make appearances at the Munich Opera Festival in Puccini’s Tosca, and he will perform a recital with his longtime colleague, pianist Wolfram Rieger, in Toblach.
In song, you have one of the most amazing diaries of any generation’s culture at a given time.