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Davide Luciano: However, in the end everyone plays their role, the singers sing and interpret, the public listens and applauds or criticizes.  But respect must be at the base of everything. 

Italian baritone Davide Luciano was born into a family of musicians in Benevento and studied with Gioacchino Zarrelli, with whom he continues to work. His engagements in 2019/20 and 2020/21 have included Belcore (L’elisir d’amore) for his debut at La Scala, Milan, Guglielmo (Così fan tutte) and Count Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro) for the Dutch National Opera in Amsterdam, Marcello (La bohème) at the Opéra de Monte-Carlo, Malatesta (Don Pasquale) at the Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Figaro (Il barbiere di Siviglia) in a production by the Rome Opera at the city’s Circus Maximus and Guglielmo and Ford (Falstaff) at the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia in Valencia. Other recent highlights include his Metropolitan Opera debut as Belcore and his return to the house as Schaunard (La bohème), his first Count Almaviva at the Opéra national du Rhin in Strasbourg and subsequent appearances in the same role at the Deutsche Oper in Berlin, Schaunard at the 2018 Tanglewood Festival with the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Andris Nelsons, Rossini’s Figaro at the Teatro Regio in Turin and for his debut with the Dutch National Opera, Silvio (Pagliacci) at the Teatro San Carlo in Naples and Marcello for his debut with the Bavarian State Opera in Munich. As a member of the Accademia Rossiniana, Davide Luciano appeared as Don Profondo (Il viaggio a Reims) at the 2014 Rossini Opera Festival, since when he has returned to Pesaro on a regular basis as Haly (L’italiana in Algeri), as Batone (L’inganno felice), as Macrobio (La pietra del paragone), as Figaro in 2018 and as Buralicchio (L’equivoco stravagante) in 2019. Davide Luciano appears regularly at the Deutsche Oper in Berlin, where his roles have included Don Giovanni, Rossini’s Figaro, Marcello, Belcore, Cecil (Maria Stuarda), Don Profondo and Nottingham in concert performances of Roberto Devereux.

Davide, thank you for accepting our invite! Where do our questions find you right now and what are you performing next? What are your hopes and dreams at the beginnings of this new year?

At the moment I am in Rome to shoot the film of La Bohème directed by Mario Martone. I hope to be able to live up to my upcoming commitments, to be able to find new stimuli and that all the people I love are happy and healthy. I hope I am wise enough in my time of need. I dream of a world where there is more humanity and tolerance. Where there is less discrimination and more brotherhood. I know I’m asking too much but dreaming is free.

You had your debut in Arena di Verona in 2020, on the occasion of the summer Festival Nel cuore della musica, right after the first pandemic lockdown. How did you feel like singing in the biggest open air theater in the world, after such a disturbing silence imposed by health emergency? And how about the 2021 performance of Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci? What are the challenges of Arena di Verona?

Everyone knows how special the arena is and I certainly don’t presume to be able to describe it. What I can say is that I found it elegantly imposing. Singing in the Arena was extremely comfortable from an acoustic standpoint. It was a special evening because it had been raining all day and the chances of going on stage were decreasing by the hour, when all of a sudden only half an hour before the start of the show it magically stopped raining and the clouds gave way to a breathtaking moon that framed a truly magical evening. Then everything became even more special because in the audience were my mother, my father and my brother. The biggest challenge in the arena, but in general when you sing outdoors, is to find the right size not to overdo it vocally. The challenge is not to be afraid to sing like you do in a traditional theater with the difference that here we are in a much larger venue where the temptation to overdo it is always around the corner.  Singing is above all measure and control. Singing is not about excitement but about emotion. Obviously doing it in a place like the arena while trying to maintain sufficient control of the instrument is more difficult. That to me is the biggest challenge.

Read the entire interview here, in the 2th/2022 issue of OPERA Charm Magazine.

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