Baritone Eugene Villanueva
Saturday, February 22, 2014
Peace United Church of Christ
900 High Street, Santa Cruz
An evening of art song in collaboration with acclaimed pianist John Churchwell, Head of Music Staff at San Francisco Opera.
The opera world has seen a few stars get their lucky breaks & rise to fame serving as replacements. We saw it with tenor Salvatore Licitra stepping in for an ill Pavarotti at a gala Met concert in 2002 in New York. This was also the case for American baritone Eugene Villanueva, brought in with less than 24 hours notice at the world renowned Hollywood Bowl in 2008. Since this amazing debut, he has enjoyed an exciting career performing at the many famous stages throughout the world including Carnegie Hall and the Shanghai National Grand Theater.
American baritone Eugene Villanueva has been hailed by critics for “a voice as handsome as his countenance” (San Francisco Classical Voice). His “full resonant instrument, flowing legato line, gorgeous vocalism allied to passionate declamation, and exemplary diction” have brought him many successes in opera and concert halls throughout the United States, Europe and Asia.
The San Francisco native has performed with many prestigious international companies & festivals including the San Francisco Opera (USA), Festival d=Aix en Provence (France), Teatro Comunale di Bologna (Italy), Theater Basel (Switzerland), Royal Opera of Versailles (France), Opera Theater of St. Louis (USA), and the Shanghai National Grand Theater (China) in repertoire that includes the title roles of Don Giovanni and Eugene Onegin, Figaro (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Lescaut (Manon), Il conte Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro), Danilo (The Merry Widow), Prince Yeletsky (The Queen of Spades), Dandini (La Cenerentola), Schaunard (La bohème), Albert (Werther), among others.
An avid recitalist, he made his Carnegie Hall debut in 2008 and returned again in 2011. He was a member of the Marilyn Horne Foundation, which presented him in recital in New York and Pennsylvania. He has also presented concerts for San Francisco Opera=s prestigious Schwabacher Debut Recital Series, the New York Festival of Song and was featured in the prestigious Podium der Jungen series in Hannover, Hamburg & Frankfurt (Germany).
He has been featured as soloist with orchestras such as the San Francisco Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Toscanini Orchestra of Parma, the Norddeutscher Rundfunk (NDR) Philharmonie and the Orchestra de la Suisse Romande in repertoire that includes Orff’s Carmina Burana, the Fauré and Brahms Requiem, Copland’s Old American Songs, Vaughan Williams’ Songs of Travel, the Dvorák Te Deum, and Ligeti’s Aventures & Nouvelle Aventures.