“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
On April 26, Thomas Hampson presents an all-American concert programme in Moscow. This event will feature the Russian premiere of Michael Daugherty’s Letters from Lincoln, along with traditional songs, opera arias, and works by Bernstein and Cole Porter. Valentin Uryupin leads The Moscow State Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko Music Theatre Orchestra for the concert, which is graciously presented by Opera Apriori International Festival of Vocal Music and supported by the US Embassy in Moscow.
Thomas Hampson and pianist Wolfram Rieger reunite this spring for recitals throughout Germany, featuring a programme they have titled “Freiheit!” (‘Freedom’) which highlights selections by European and American composers, including Mahler, Schubert, Ives, Bernstein, and others. They will perform these works at Munich’s Prinzregententheater on April 16 and on April 19 at the Kongresshaus Stadthalle in Heidelberg. On April 29 they perform together again at the Boulez Saal in Berlin, with an all-Schubert evening.
Thomas Hampson returns to Heidelberg this spring, to lead his annual series of master classes as part of Heidelberger Frühling (Heidelberg Spring Festival). Hampson’s sold-out classes take place on April 6, 7, 8 & 11, with a final concert featuring the class participants on April 12. These events are presented in collaboration with Heidelberg University, and are hosted at the Kongresshaus Stadthalle Heidelberg. Videos from past classes in Heidelberg can be found via Mr. Hampson’s artist page on medici.tv. Additional live streams will also take place this year, read on for details.
This month, Thomas Hampson is a featured soloist at Opera Gala concerts throughout Europe, with distinguished colleagues and ensembles. Mr. Hampson is joined by tenor Piotr Beczała and soprano Anette Dasch for Operetta programmes on February 11 (Festspielhaus Baden-Baden), February 15 (Mupa Budapest) and February 18 (Kölner Philharmonie), featuring vocal selections and overtures by Strauss Jr., Lehár, and more. Maestro Pavel Baleff leads both programmes; the February 18 event will receive a livestream via Philharmonie.tv.
Watch some of today’s top singers and pianist Lara Downes share a night of fond memories and extraordinary music in honor of Leonard Bernstein’s centennial. Opera stars Thomas Hampson, Ailyn Pérez and J’Nai Bridges, as well as vocalist Theo Bleckmann, will each perform one of their favorite Bernstein songs. Watch the entire ensemble sing “Somewhere” from West Side Story.
The 11th Anniversary of Thomas Hampson’s annual Voice Master Class is today from 2:00pm-4:00pm in Miller Recital Hall at the Manhattan School of Music. For the first time, they will be collaborating with Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien for a videoconference. Stay tuned for the archive recording later this week if you can’t make the live show!
Seating in Miller Recital Hall is limited, so make sure you don’t miss out another momentous master class with Thomas Hampson.
In song, you have one of the most amazing diaries of any generation’s culture at a given time.