Luca Pisaroni triumphs as Leporello at Met
In the first of several high-profile appearances this season, Italian bass-baritone Luca Pisaroni earned universal acclaim for his star turn as Leporello in the Metropolitan Opera’s new production of Mozart’s Don Giovanni, which ran from October 13-November 11. He sang alongside such talents as Peter Mattei and Mariusz Kwiecien (as Don Giovanni), Barbara Frittoli (Donna Elvira) and Ramón Vargas (Don Ottavio), led by Met principal conductor Fabio Luisi.
For those who couldn’t catch the Met’s Don Giovanni, Pisaroni turned heads as Leporello in a lauded 2010 Glyndebourne production of the opera that was documented on an EMI Classics DVD, released this spring.
Next up for Pisaroni are his performances as Caliban – alongside Plácido Domingo and Joyce DiDonato – in The Enchanted Island, the Met’s freshly conceived Shakespearean tableau of music by Handel, Vivaldi, and Rameau, conducted by William Christie (December 31-January 30). He makes his Chicago Lyric Opera debut in February 2012, reprising his acclaimed portrayal of Argante for a new production of Handel’s Rinaldo (February 29-March 24). Pisaroni returns to the U.S. next summer to sing the title role in the Rossini rarity Maometto II at Santa Fe Opera, a world premiere of the score’s new critical edition.
Born in Venezuela and bred in Verdi’s hometown of Busseto, Italy, Luca Pisaroni established himself as one of his generation’s most captivating singers with his debut, at age 26, at the Salzburg Festival with the Vienna Philharmonic under Nikolaus Harnoncourt. During his 2010-11 season, he was the Figaro of choice in productions of Le nozze di Figaro for three new music directors: Nicola Luisotti at San Francisco Opera, Philippe Jordan at Opéra de Paris, and Franz Welser-Möst at the Vienna State Opera.
Gaining renown for his dramatic versatility, Pisaroni made his house and role debut last spring at Houston Grand Opera as Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro – this after more than 100 performances as Figaro in Mozart’s famous opera. About his performance as the Count, The Houston Chronicle said: “With his dashing looks and proud manner, Pisaroni exudes complete authority and magnetism. His potent bass-baritone unfurls with such grandeur and resoluteness that one can easily believe this is a fellow who has spent his entire life getting his way.”
Opera News got to the crux of the Italian singer’s talents, saying: “Pisaroni’s vocal personality is akin to the brewing of an inner storm that is then distilled into a well-articulated purity of emotion. The singer’s dramatic versatility cannot be overstated: his ability to execute written notes with consummate tone, translated directly into the essence of feeling.”