|Lawrence Brownlee | Photo Credit: Derek Blanks|
Bel canto and Bebop might seem to be musical worlds apart. One grew out of the Italian tradition of beautiful, florid singing, while the other originated in smoky New York jazz clubs. And yet tenor Lawrence Brownlee is identified with both. As one of today’s leading opera singers, Brownlee specializes in the music of Gioachino Rossini, which requires an unusually high voice of exceptional beauty and flexibility. The tenor made his professional stage debut – at the Virginia Opera! – as Count Almaviva in Rossini’s The Barber of Seville, which has now become his signature role.
Linda Fairtile is the University of Richmond's liaison librarian for music, theatre, dance, and Italian studies, as well as a musicologist who specializes in Italian opera. She is the co-director of the American Institute for Verdi Studies at New York University and has appeared as a panelist on the Texaco Metropolitan Opera Quiz radio broadcasts.