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They don't make 'em like they used to

April 07, 2009

  • date
    April 07, 2009
  • article type
    Press
  • category
    Opera Carolina News

They don't make 'em like they used to

Charlotte, NC - With comparisons to Martinelli, Pertile, and Caruso under his belt, it’s no wonder tenor Roy Cornelius Smith has garnered the attention he has. With a natural, beautiful voice and compelling interpretations, this tenor made his mark on the opera world, and promises to make his mark on Princess Turandot’s icy heart in Opera Carolina’s upcoming production of Puccini’s Turandot. In his inaugural appearance on Charlotte’s operatic stage as Prince Calàf, he’ll work to gain vicious Turandot’s love. If any man’s up for the challenge, it’s Roy Cornelius Smith.

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With his captivating performances, Mr. Smith has been heard on the biggest and best operatic stages, including the Metropolitan Opera, Salzburger Festpiele, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Volksoper Wien, Teatro Lirico di Cagliari, and the New Israeli Opera. Recent featured performances include Hoffegut in Braunfel’s rare Die Vögel at Spoleto Festival USA and Rabbi in the reintroduction of Kurt Weill’s Der Weg, der Verheissung (The Eternal Road) with the New Israeli Opera in Tel Aviv, Chemnitz Opera, and at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. His Metropolitan Opera début came in 2000 in Aïda, and the tenor has returned for 12 productions, including Tanhäuser, Boris Godunov, Salome and Nabucco.

The tenor’s interpretation of Calàf has been honed internationally, from Vienna to Brisbane to Barcelona. Critics rave over this recent work in Turandot. Musical America writes, of a new Turandot production at the Volksoper, “his voice is huge, dusky and Italianate, his phrasing and use of dynamics generous and elegant, his stage presence endearing…Just when you think they don’t make ‘em like they used to, along comes Roy Cornelius Smith as Calàf to send you back to the Golden Age for comparisons.” When the famous aria “Nessun dorma” arrives in the final act of, Smith is sure to awe. In Vienna, “’Nessun Dorma’ stops the show cold…Triumphs like this are one in a million.”

Die Presse writes: “The Calàf of Roy Cornelius Smith was stunning. He flew into the hearts of the public with his powerful and beautiful voice.” Charlotte -- be warned.

Turandot will be performed at the Belk Theater of the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center April 16 at 7:30 p.m., April 18 at 8:00 p.m. & April 19 at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are available by calling 704.372.1000 or visit us at http://www.operacarolina.org/. Full cast listings and bios are available at Opera Carolina Cast Bios. To download images of this production please visit Opera Carolina Media Photos. Current images available include headshots, production photos, and the Opera Carolina logo.

Turandot is sung in Italian with projected English titles and is recommended for G audiences. All performances feature the Opera Carolina Chorus and the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra. This production is made possible by Presenting Sponsors Margaret and Price Zimmermann, and The Hearst Corporation. Principal Artists sponsored by Drs. Ki-Hyun and Sun Shin Chun. Additional support provided by Duke Energy, Faison, U.S. Airways, and Blue Restaurant & Bar. Media support provided by The Charlotte Observer and WTVI. Consistently appearing in The Charlotte Observer’s “101 Things to Do in Charlotte,” check Opera Carolina off the list and be a part of the 2008/2009 season!