Friday, November 30, 2012

Gratuitous Friday – Pavol Breslik is Lensky

Pavol Breslik has an absolutely beautiful voice and sings with artistry. He’s making his career primarily in Mozart and bel canto roles. True, he may not have a wide tonal range, and his vibrato is rather fast, but his intonation is true, he's easy on the ear and the eye, and he is a charming Lensky in Eugene Onegin.

This Tchaikovsky sounds like it's almost too much for him. Then again, it seems to be a mobile phone video; it's not bad for a phone video, but I don't trust the vocal/orchestral balances. It's clearly not Full Frequency Stereophonic Sound! 

I just found a recording of Mr. Breslik as Nemorino in L’elisir. He appeared as Edita Gruberova’s son in Lucrezia Borgia (directed by Christof Loy) not long ago, and he's also in the infamous Munich “Brokeback” Onegin with Simon Keenlyside. Keep an ear and an eye out for more Pavol Breslik!

Here is Lensky's aria, Kuda kuda vi udalilis, from Act 2 of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin – Recorded in Vienna, September 28, 2011.

Lensky regrets challenging his friend to a duel.


  1. I would rank his performance of this aria along with Lemshev and Kozlosky, although these latter named singers had careers that were devoted exclusively to the Soviet Union and their "Russianess" is now very idiosycratic. This is the price we have to pay for vocal globalization, but in this case I am delighted to hear a Russian tenor with this artistry. Obviously the production has been updated and the wrinkled sheet he is standing is, I suppose, snow! Whatever, with singing as gorgeous as this I couldn't care less. Wasn't Keenlyside the Onegin in this production?

    1. Thanks for your reply! Keenlyside was not in this production, but he and Breslik have appeared together in more than one version of Onegin, including the Munich "brokeback" production. I am going to try to post a few clips from that one. My impression of it so far is it was interesting and even thoughtful and somewhat convincing, but visually...ummm...ugly.

  2. Saint-Guillain MichèleJanuary 30, 2013 at 5:20 AM

    The next Onegin begining in a few days, at the ROH! With both Breslik and Keenlyside... Streaming on february the 20th!

    1. Thanks for the tip! I am trying to figure out if it will be streamed online at the same time. Meanwhile, Emerging Pictures’ Opera Series will be screening the performance in the U.S. in April 2013.

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