October 26, 2020
Born in Mexico City, Diego Torre has been a leading tenor for Opera Australia for many years.
Diego’s most celebrated roles include Radames (Aida), Turiddu (Cavalleria Rusticana), Canio (Pagliacci), Calaf (Turandot), Cavaradossi (Tosca), Pinkerton (Madama Butterfly), Edgardo (Lucia di Lammermoor), Rodolfo (La Bohème), Gustavus (Un ballo in maschera), The Duke (Rigoletto), Gabriele Adorno (Simon Boccanegra), Rodolfo (Luisa Miller) and the title role in Don Carlo.
In this conversation with Opera Australia Artistic Director Lyndon Terracini, Diego shares stories from his life and career, starting with his days as a young singer in Mexico City. Diego reflects on his career and performs the very well known song 'Granada' by Agustín Lara in his native language.
October 19, 2020
Elena Kats-Chernin is one of Australia’s most successful and prolific composers, working across opera, concert music, ballet and film. She even composed our first opera for television, The Divorce, which aired on ABC TV across four episodes in 2015. Most recently, she won rave reviews for the score of Whiteley, our 2019 opera about the life and work of Australian painter Brett Whiteley.
Kats-Chernin was born in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan (at the time part of the Soviet Union) and studied in Moscow before moving to Australia in 1975. She studied piano and composition at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Soon after graduating, she moved to Europe where she worked in some of the world’s most innovative theatres, before returning to Australia in 1994. Since then, she’s composed for many of Australia’s leading orchestras, including the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Sydney Symphony Orchestra, and for the opening ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.
In this interview with our Artistic Director, Lyndon Terracini, Kats-Chernin talks about her composition process, the advantages and disadvantages of being born with perfect pitch, and how the world of theatre and her many collaborations keep her inspired.
October 12, 2020
The Opera Australia Orchestra is the busiest of all Australian orchestras, giving around 300 performances every year. This extraordinary group of musicians is led by Concertmaster and Orchestra Director Jun Yi Ma. In this conversation with Opera Australia Artistic Director Lyndon Terracini, Jun shares stories from his life and career, starting with his days as a young violin prodigy. At just 12 years of age, Jun travelled from his home in Shanghai to perform for President Ronald Reagan at the White House. He would go on to be tutored by one of the greatest violinists of all time, Jasha Heifetz. Jun also reflects on his career, the role of a Concertmaster, and performs the beautiful Méditation from Massenet's opera, Thaïs.
October 5, 2020
There are few singers who have achieved the same career longevity as Graeme Macfarlane. For 47 years, he’s been singing tenor roles from across a broad repertoire, and is still going strong. In this interview with Opera Australia Artistic Director Lyndon Terracini, Graeme discusses making his Opera Australia debut in 1973 in War and Peace, our first production at the Sydney Opera House. He also speaks about making the career move from baritone to tenor, the key to his long career, the changes he's seen over almost five decades as an opera singer, and explains how a police choir brought him back to the stage. The interview also features a performance of an art song by Australian composer Vera Black, accompanied by Tahu Matheson.