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Eugene Brancoveanu, baritone

We have just moved into the sixth month of Opera San José under coronavirus conditions. The initial shock has subsided, and its place has been taken by a sense of pioneering enthusiasm.

My fellow Resident Artists and myself consider ourselves very lucky, to be given tasks, projects, and like you may have seen last Sunday, the ability to connect with you, our audience. For the Resident Artist Showcase, I decided to present Iago’s aria from Verdi’s Othello for the very first time in my singing life. I enjoyed every second of the thrill of knowing that there was a live audience sharing this experience with me.

A clear highlight of this year for me was Il Trovatore. Count di Luna presents such an all-consuming challenge to any baritone, that I felt especially satisfied and proud to have gotten this role under my belt, surrounded by people that I admire and respect enormously. On a similar scale, albeit in an extremely intimate setting, was the Dichterliebe by Schumann. Keeping one’s spirits high and artistic juices flowing must be the number one priority for any creative person in these times, and these assignments have been a gift from the music heavens. I found myself having to learn how to trust the cameras and invite everyone into my most hidden chambers of my singing-soul. Without an orchestra or scenery. It’s truly terrifying at times but also liberating.

Last but not least I must tell you how touched and deeply proud I am of your support, both personally and how you’ve stayed strong and steadfast in our artistic endeavors here at Opera San José. I know that, once these trying times are behind us, we’ll be able to look back with pride and say: “we took the road less traveled by, and that made all the difference” (Robert Frost)

Eugene Brancoveanu, Resident Artist at Opera San José

Biography

Eugene Brancoveanu, returns this fall to bring to life some exciting projects with Opera San José. As a 2019-20 member of OSJ’s resident company, Eugene appeared as Eisenstein (Strauss’s Die Fledermaus), the Father (Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel), and Count De Luna (Verdi’s Il trovatore). Other roles performed for OSJ include Stubb (Heggie and Scheer’s Moby-Dick), Leporello (Mozart’s Don Giovanni), Stanley Kowalski (Previn’s A Streetcar Named Desire), and Escamillo (Bizet’s Carmen.)

Other recent engagements for Mr. Brancoveanu include Older Brother in Jabri’s Cities of Salt with Opera Movie NY, and serving as Director and performing the role of Pasha Selim in Mozart’s The Abduction from the Seraglio with Livermore Opera. In Freiburg, Germany, he appeared as Falke in J. Strauss’s Die Fledermaus, Darcy in Mechem’s Pride and Prejudice, and Escamillo in Carmen, and performed the title role in Don Giovanni in Warsaw, Poland. Other international performances include appearances at Heidelberg Opera, Stuttgart Opera, Salzburg Music Festival, Munich State Opera, Berlin Opera, Pesaro Teatro Rossini, Piccola Scala di Milano, Macerata teatro di opera, Romanian National Theater, Tokyo Opera House, Matsumoto Opera, Montreal Opera and Opera Theater of Tel Aviv.

After his successful apprenticeship with San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program, he was awarded the position of Adler Fellow, where roles performed included Tomski in Tchaikovsky’s Pique Dame, Riccardo in Rossini’s The Italian in Algiers, the title role in Don Giovanni, the Pilot in Portman’s The Little Prince, Belcore in Donizetti’s The Elixir of Love, Enrico in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor and Tarquinius in Britten’s Rape of Lucretia.

Other career highlights include receiving the Tony Award for his role of Marcello in Puccini’s La bohème, and his performance in the title role of Shostakovich’s Orango with the Los Angeles Symphony under the direction of Esa-Pekka Salonen and Peter Sellers, which was recorded for Deutsche Grammophone.

Mr. Brancoveanu graduated both the Academy of Music in Transylvania, Romania and the Mozarteum in Salzburg Austria.