Plácido Domingo (born January 21, 1941) is a famous Spanish opera singer. Though he started off his career as a baritone, he quickly retrained as a tenor and became well-known for a voice that was versatile, strong and possesed of a ringing and clear tone throughout its range; his repertoire includes roles in French (Faust, Werther), German (Lohengrin, Parsifal) and Italian (Il Trovatore, Don Carlo, Otello). In recent years, Domingo has also turned his hand to conducting opera. He also been appointed artistic director of two opera companies, first the Washington Opera and later the Los Angeles Opera.
Domingo was born in Madrid, Spain, but moved to Mexico as a child with his family, who ran a zarzuela company . In Mexico City he studied music at the National Conservatory. He learned piano and conducting, but made his stage debut as a tenor in 1959 as Alfredo in La Traviata. In 1962 he joined the Israeli National Opera, and first performed at the Met in New York in 1965. He made his debut at La Scala in 1969 and at Covent Garden in 1971. He received Kennedy Center Honors in 2000.
In 1981 Domingo gained considerable recognition outside of the opera world when he recorded the song "Perhaps Love" as a duet with the late American folk/pop music singer John Denver. He became a household name in 1990 when, with Luciano Pavarotti and José Carreras, he participated in the The Three Tenors concert at the opening of the 1990 World Cup in Rome. The event was originally conceived to raise money for Carreras's foundation and was later repeated a number of times to mixed critical response.
Domingo has appeared in at least three opera videos of note: Carmen, Otello, and "La Traviata". He has appeared on television, both in "Zarzuela" evenings, and "Live at the Met" broadcasts. Among his many recordings is a boxed set of every tenor aria Verdi wrote, including several rarely-performed versions, in different languages from the original operas, which Verdi wrote for specific performances.
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Last updated: 05-13-2005 07:56:04