JOSEPH CALLEJA RETURNS WITH NEW DECCA ALBUM ‘VERDI’ BRINGING TO LIFE THE HEROES AND VILLAINS OF VERDI’S OPERATIC WORLD
Release date: 2 February 2018
Joseph Calleja, one of the world’s leading tenors, returns with his new album ‘Verdi’ – due for release on Decca Classics on 2nd February 2018. The album sees Calleja explore the light and dark in Verdi’s heroic tenor roles and features guest appearances from soprano Angela Gheorghiu and baritone Vittorio Vitelli.
Verdi has a special place in Calleja’s heart, having made his debut as Macduff in Verdi’s Macbeth when he was just 19. It is his first new album in six years – his last solo album ‘Amore’ was released in September 2013 and he was also part of a 2013 recording of Verdi’s Simon Boccanegra. However, this new album marks a significant step into Verdi repertoire for Calleja, as he tackles new roles which he has yet to play on stage.
Among the arias on the new album are ‘Di quella pira’ and ‘Ah! Si, ben mio…’ from Il Trovatore, ‘Già nella notte densa’ from Otello, and ‘Celeste Aida’ from the opening scene of Verdi’s Egyptian opera. Each of the roles on this album celebrate the tenore robusto as the voice-type of an operatic hero and showcase Calleja’s powerful yet lyrical voice.
Calleja’s new album also reflects his flourishing live career – he is a regular performer at the world’s leading opera houses and will be in London from January to sing Puccini’s Tosca at the Royal Opera House (15 January – 7 February 2018) before heading to Berlin, Monte Carlo and Munich.
Born in Malta in 1978, Joseph Calleja began singing at the age of 16, first in his church choir and then in formal training with Maltese tenor Paul Asciak. One of his native land’s biggest celebrities, Calleja was selected to serve as Malta’s first cultural ambassador in 2012, and earlier this year he was named a brand ambassador for Air Malta. Calleja recently teamed up with Malta’s Bank of Valletta to form the BOV Joseph Calleja Foundation, which will serve to help children and families in need. Calleja is the recipient of the 2014 International Opera Awards’ Readers’ Award.