“In the title role, Thomas Hampson is stellar. His strong body, handsome face, and kind smile is suited perfectly to the beloved Emperor. He plays his Hadrian as proper, reserved, and polite yet with this undercurrent of charisma roiling beneath the surface. The singing is outstanding. Often skirting the line between operatic and musical theatre production (similar to Wainwright’s score), Hampson takes us on a viable emotional journey in an accessible and visceral way; his aria in Act II reveals layer after layer of a man torn between honoring his true self and the conquering, ever-masculine Roman Emperor at the time of Jesus’s rise to prominence.”
“Thomas Hampson is magnificent as Hadrian, bringing expressive depth and broken regality to the ailing emperor, caught between Turbo and Plotina’s counsel and a paralyzing grief over Antinous. He makes excellent use of the range given to his character: at the opera’s outset, Hadrian remains collapsed on the floor, singing only his lover’s name in a melancholic, exhausted voice (Act I sees Hampson singing for lengthy periods of time while seated, an affecting and demanding choice from director Peter Hinton). His grief—though often present—is never one-note, but layered. When he goes back in time to the night he first met Antinous, he is a man transformed, his voice rich and full of vigour.”
“There was honest chemistry between Thomas Hampson (Hadrian) and Isaiah Bell (Antinous); Hampson is an endearing mix of vigorous and weathered, and Bell has a gorgeous arc from young caution to mature confidence. And perhaps this is the first time I’ve thought this in an opera, but the sex scene – much hyped and beautifully done, I thought – helped us connect with the two men.”
“Hadrian is a huge sing, and Thomas Hampson at age 63 did an amazing job… he sang strongly and indefatigably, commanding the stage with a mix of regal dignity and vulnerability.”
“A courageous performance”
Anthony Tommasini, The New York Times
“Toronto playwright Daniel MacIvor provides us with a simple plot: the early-second-century Roman emperor (excellently sung by American baritone Thomas Hampson)…”
“Renowned American baritone Thomas Hampson makes his COC debut in the title role. He delivered solid singing throughout…”
“Hampson is solid as a rock in his portrayal, and for the most part the one we’re watching throughout.”
Thomas Hampson returns to Teatro alla Scala for his greatly anticipated role debut as Altair in Strauss’ ravishing Die ägyptische Helena. Strauss and Hofmannsthal’s re-imagination of the Helen of Troy myth will feature a new production by Sven-Eric Bechtolf, with set design by Julian Crouch and costume design by Mark Bouman. This production marks the first time Die ägyptische Helena will be staged at La Scala. In 2017, Mr. Hampson made his operatic debut at the house as the title role of Don Giovanni, garnering praise for his “smooth, smart, deft, and ever-interesting” portrayal (The New Criterion).
This week, Thomas Hampson joins the Orchester Wiener Akademie to sing orchestral versions of selected Schubert songs arranged by Franz Liszt, Jacques Offenbach, Johannes Brahms, and Anton von Webern. Under the baton of Martin Haselböck, performances take place on October 9 at the Brucknerhaus Linz, part of the Brucknerfest, and on October 13 at the Musikverein, marking the ensemble’s first concert of the season at the Musikverein.
The award, including an endowment of €10,000, honours personalities committed to teaching classical music.
Thomas Hampson will be awarded the 2020 Heidelberger Frühling Music Award. The award, which includes an endowment of €10,000 and will be presented at the eponymous music festival, honours the American baritone star’s decades of commitment to the ‘Kunstlied’ (art song).
Performing together since 2010, Thomas Hampson and Luca Pisaroni bring their “No Tenors Allowed” concert to Brigham Young University and to Buenos Aires’ Teatro Colón this fall. On October 1, Hampson and Pisaroni share the stage at the de Jong Concert Hall, performing selections from opera, including Donizettti’s Don Pasquale and Mozart’s Don Giovanni, along with Broadway show tunes and popular songs, with pianist Kevin Murphy.
From September 23 – 28, Thomas Hampson and Melanie Diener, worldwide acclaimed soprano from Waiblingen, teach – for the first time in 2019 – an opera workshop to the next generation of outstanding singers at the Bürgerzentrum Waiblingen. The first International Waiblingen Opera Workshop has chosen 13 singers from eight countries, including Germany, Spain, USA, Israel, Russia, Serbia, Korea, and China.
On September 13 & 17, Thomas Hampson performs at the first-ever Tsinandali Festival in Georgia. For the first concert, the extraordinary virtuoso pianist, Jan Lisiecki, joins Mr. Hampson for a recital including the Heine songs from Schubert’s Schwanengesang, and Schumann’s Dichterliebe. Schumann composed his Dichterliebe during a creative surge in 1840, also known as his “year of song,” where he produced more than 130 Lieder.
In song, you have one of the most amazing diaries of any generation’s culture at a given time.