Appropriately, I’m speaking to Michael Fabiano on Skype. The brilliant young American tenor will open this year’s Glyndebourne Festival in May in the title role of the first professional production in Britain of Poliuto, a Donizetti opera of a pomp that brings to mind Verdi’s Aida. Fabiano is a thoroughly modern performer who teaches schoolchildren about opera via Google video chatrooms on the internet – “I’m always shocked by how interested the kids are in what I do” – and assiduously updates his Twitter and Facebook feeds with news and selfies.
He is vocal about the need to grow opera audiences with the help of technology, a project to which Glyndebourne is also committed: last year cinema screenings and online streams, hosted by the Telegraph website, brought an additional audience of 98,000 to the Festival’s productions. Screenings and streams of four more operas are planned for this summer.
Michael will be featured in The Italian Americans, a new two-part, four-hour documentary series about the Italian experience in America, which will premiere on PBS on Tuesdays, February 17 and 24, 2015, from 9–11 p.m. ET . The series, written and produced by John Maggio and narrated by Academy Award-nominated actor Stanley Tucci, explores the evolution of Italian Americans from the late nineteenth century to today, from “outsiders” once viewed with suspicion and mistrust to some of the most prominent leaders of business, politics and the arts today.
In Michael’s own words: “As a very proud Italian American, I was thrilled to have been asked to participate in this riveting and moving documentary that so beautifully illustrates all that the Italian heritage has brought to our culture.”
PBS – Tuesday, February 17 and 24, 2015 at 09:00-11:00 p.m. (ET) (check local listings)
Live From Lincoln Center: 40th Anniversary Season
On Friday, January 23, 2015, PBS will broadcast one of the most celebrated opera events of the year, the Richard Tucker Music Foundation’s annual gala concert. The event, recorded last October at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall, features some of today’s most acclaimed opera singers performing selections from works by Puccini, Mozart, Bellini, Massenet, Donizetti, Verdi and Bernstein. The broadcast will be part of the 40th anniversary season of Live From Lincoln Center.
As the winner of the 2014 Richard Tucker award, Michael Fabiano is the star of this year’s broadcast of the Richard Tucker Opera Gala. performing an aria from Verdi’s Il Corsaro, sharing the stage with his close friend and colleague, soprano Joyce El-Khoury, in the duet from Massenet’s Manon, and singing Edgardo in the sextet from Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor with soprano Angela Meade as Lucia. Maestro Emmanuel Villaume conducts the New York Choral Society.
Friday, January 23, 2015 at 10:00 p.m. (ET) (check local listings).