Jonas Kaufmann has not sung since September when he sang the programme from his glorious new cd, Dolce Vita, at Teatro San Carlo in Naples. He was forced to cancel his imminent appearances due to voice problems… then a few more dates… then a few more, even cancelling his appearance at the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony.
Well, the good news is that his annus horribilis is over and with 2017 he's back. He's in Paris, rehearsing for a revival of the production of Lohengrin he appeared in when it opened the season at La Scala in Milan in 2012. It starts on 18 January.
It's been hard. I love singing and I've never had such a long time away from it. It wasn't easy, but I didn't have a choice. I tried to be patient, follow my doctor's advice, and ignore the gossip that was going around about my health.
In 2011 he announced that he needed to cancel commitments in order “to have an operation to remove a node in my thoracic area”. It was a non-malignant tumour, but his recent absence got all the tongues wagging again.
Kaufmann told Giuseppina Manin of the Corriere della Sera what had happened.
My voice was out of action because of bruising on my vocal chords. A disaster for someone who must push them to their limits every night.
Christa Ludwig, apparently had had the same problem and told him, “You mustn't be hasty; don't return until the bruising has been completely reabsorbed.”
For days now I've been at work at the Opéra Bastille, happy as a kid in a candy store. The doctor was clear that I could resume work, but steadily… one step at a time.
Kaufmann's beautifully interpreted album of Italian songs – which passes from Neapolitan songs to Lucio Dalla – is a love letter to a country that is particularly fond of
I have very special ties to Italy. As a child, I spent many summers on the Adriatic coast. I discovered how music and singing are a fundamental part of Italian life. I was six-years-old when I saw Madama Butterfly in Munich and understood the magic of opera. If you love Puccini and Verdi, you can't not love the great Italian songs, capable of stimulating emotions just like an opera aria.
After the Second World War in Germany, as in other countries, compositions changed. Composers were searching for a new beginning and the result was creations that were very intellectual, but ignored the most important component: passion. Italians, however, modernised the musical language without sacrificing melody. They love singing, therefore instinctively search for something singable.
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.
great to hear job kaufmann is back.
i had very similiar circumstances recently ,and being patient is the most difficult .
although i don’t have such a profile career as jonas ,i still sing,this is was made me,it is our identity.
i returned after a monthand a half,a bit early,my doctor in berlin though gave me the green light,but i overdid it at some point.easy to do if you are used to a certain way of “pushing your voice,which happens if problems occur,and you try to compensate by doing this.
now i have to learn to breathe better,focus on a slightly different way to sing.this is not easy,but my last concert on the 26.th of december gave me reassurance that i am on a good way.
compared with me,jonas must have suffered the incredible pushing and pressure of the media,propably the industry itself too.
i wish him the very best,and he is in charge of his voice,only he himself..with such a precious gift it needs consideration to serve the goal of a longlasting career.
the best of luck.
Erm… not so sure. However, I love him!
Enjoyed the article – I’m happy for any artist who is able to return to his specific love.
You’ll make me an opera buff yet. I need to slow down sometimes and smell those proverbial roses so opera will be on my to do list next season !