May 20, 2019
Photo: Peter Meisel
“Ein Stück amerikanische Kultur wollte der deutsche Immigrant Kurt Weill seiner neuen Heimat schenken, als er sich daran machte, Gedichte des großen amerikanischen Lyrikers Walt Whitman zu vertonen. In diesem Jahr würde Whitman seinen 200. Geburtstag feiern und daher ist es kein Zufall, dass der Whitman-Fan Thomas Hampson und das Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks den Dichter mit Weills Four Walt Whitman Songs bei ihrem Konzert im Herkulessaal würdigen wollten.
Apr 28, 2019
Photo: Lynn Lane
“The cast is exemplary, with the added frisson of legendary superstar baritone Thomas Hampson as Da Ponte. Who wouldn’t want him in their world premiere? He has a rogue’s presence, a pro’s assurance, and that molten voice that caresses and etches space. You immediately know you’re in the presence of someone special.”
Apr 28, 2019
Midway through our recent conversation, Thomas Hampson paused, trying to find the right word relating to a musical concept.
“You speak German, don’t you?”
He couldn’t see me, but I wanted to crawl under my desk with shame. Here I was speaking to one of the most celebrated living opera singers in history and my wall of Anglo-Canadian linguistic ignorance was as glaringly solid as ever. Hampson, ever the gentleman, patiently (dare I say enthusiastically) explained, expanded, and engaged, as is his custom in both life and in art.
Apr 26, 2019
Dear Luca, this musical occasion in Toronto must be pretty exciting. However, we know it is not the first time for you in Canada. What struck you about Toronto and what do you expect from the Canadian public in this occasion?
I have beautiful memories from Rossini’s “Maometto II” that I had the pleasure of singing at the COC in 2016. It is a company where you work very well and that has a very attentive audience. I am very happy to return to Koerner Hall after my solo recital in 2014. It is a hall with an incredible acoustics and a very enthusiastic audience.
Apr 25, 2019
In 1805, Lorenzo Da Ponte, formerly a celebrated librettist employed by the Viennese court, found himself at the lowest ebb of his life—selling groceries in rural Pennsylvania. He happened upon a review for a London performance of Mozart’s Don Giovanni, for which he had written the story. While gushing about the work and its performance, the reviewer failed to mention Da Ponte’s name.
Apr 16, 2019
At the age of 63, the great American baritone Thomas Hampson shows no sign of slowing down, nor does he give any indication that he has lost interest in musical exploration, having recently taken on, to stellar reviews, the lead role in the controversial new opera Hadrian by Rufus Wainwright premiered in Toronto by the Canadian Opera Company.
In this new Cedille recording, Songs From Chicago, Hampson turns his attention to mostly unfamiliar songs by composers who lived in Chicago at one time or another, giving magnificent voice to music that is exceptionally thoughtful and beautiful.
Read the rest of this review via Classical Voice America.
Mar 02, 2019
Baritone Thomas Hampson had heard, and even asked, the questions countless times: Who’s the American Brahms? The American Schubert? What about the American DeBussy?
But Hampson, who hails from the Tri-Cities and went to school in Spokane, realized long ago that those were the wrong questions to be asking.
Mar 01, 2019
Grammy Award-winning baritone Thomas Hampson has returned to his hometown for a concert of his own creation, entitled “Song of America: Beyond Liberty,” and he came to our studio to tell us a little bit about it. The show will feature Thomas, acclaimed pianist Lara Downes and an ensemble of musicians from the Spokane Symphony as they explore more than 250 years of American history through music and poetry.
The performance will be at 8 PM on March 1 in the Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox.
Visit the website for the Spokane Public Radio to listen to the full interview.
Feb 12, 2019
“Hampson is a genius with words as well, but selections really explored the plush and confident legato phrasing that remains at the core of his arsenal. While his voice had a forceful potency in the “Hai già vinta la cuasa,” which he kicked off as Pisaroni was walking offstage, there was a gentle quality in “Deh vieni all finestra,” amplified by the repetition of the aria being sung with the softest fil di voce. All the while, he looked up into the balcony of Jordan Hall, seemingly singing to someone. It was enchanting.”
Feb 08, 2019
“Eloquent and elegant as always, baritone Thomas Hampson launched a “Schubert Week” at the Pierre Boulez Saal in Berlin with a solo recital. Together with his longtime accompanist Wolfram Rieger, they performed Schubert Lieder that were far from mainstream and showcased the high art of this genre.
The pièce de résistance was the approximately 20-minute long ballad Der Taucher (The Diver) with text written by Friedrich Schiller in 1797… Hampson, justly famous for his excellent diction, used this long ballad as a consummate storyteller, with dramatic phrasing and pauses just long enough to hold his public in suspense until the bitter end.”