Biography of Franco Fagioli
Franco Fagioli one of the leading countertenors worldwide today. His performances of Handel's heroes such as Giulio Cesare, Ariodante, Teseo, Bertarido or Rossini's Arsace in Aureliano in Palmira have been unanimously acclaimed. His breathtaking vocal technique and the beauty of his voice on all registers have set new standards.
In 2011 Franco Fagioli was awarded the Premio Abbiati, the most prestigious musical award in Italy. For the first time in its 30-years old history, the Premio Abbiati is granted to a countertenor. At the same time, Franco Fagioli was also awarded "best countertenor of the year" by the major Italian opera magazine L'Opera for his performances of Bertarido in Rodelinda at the Festival della Valle d'Itria. Some years before, in 2003, Franco Fagioli won the prestigious Bertelsmann singing competition "Neue Stimmen" in Germany. This was the start of his international career. He performed at the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, at the Handel Festival in Halle, at the Handel Festival in Karlsruhe, at the Bonn Opera, at the Essen Opera, at the Ludwigsburg Festival, at the Zurich Opera, at the Innsbruck Festival, at the Teatro Carlo Felice in Genua, at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées. With the title role in Handel's Giulio Cesare he has made sensation in Zurich, Oslo and Karlsruhe.
The last few seasons were highlighted by Handel's Teseo (title role) at the Staatsoper Stuttgart, Ariodante (title role) at the Handel Festival in Karlsruhe, Rodelinda (Bertarido) at the Festival della Valle d'Itria in Martina Franca, by the Argentinian Premiere of Monteverdi's Il ritorno d'Ulisse in Patria (Telemaco), Orfeo ed Euridice (Orfeo) at the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires as well as by Cavalli's Giasone (title role) for his US debut at the Chicago Opera Theatre. He took part in the world premiere of Ainadamar by Osvaldo Golijov at the Teatro Argentino in La Plata for the 200th Anniversary of Argentina's independence.
In 2010/11 he performed Nerone in two new productions of L'incoronazione di Poppea (Nerone) at the Cologne Opera and at the Staatsoper Dresden as well as Arsace in Aureliano in Palmira at the Festival della Valle d'Itria, the only role Rossini ever composed for a castrato. His plans for 2011/12 include revivals of L'inconorazione di Poppea in Dresden and Cologne, a new production of Giulio Cesare in Helsinki as well as Artaserse by Hasse (Arbace) at Martina Franca (this role was premiered by famous castrato Farinelli, who was born in the region of Puglia).
His first solo recital in Europe took place in November 2009 at the sold out Staatsoper Stuttgart and finished with a standing ovation. Meanwhile he appeared in recital with Cecilia Bartoli in London and Brussels as a special guest of the Primadonna. Further concert appearances are planned in Froville (France), Schwetzingen, Dortmund, Halle and Budapest.
Franco Fagioli has collaborated with conductors such as Rinaldo Alessandrini, Alan Curtis, Diego Fasolis, Gabriel Garrido, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Michael Hofstetter, René Jacobs, Konrad Junghänel, Jose Manuel Quintana, Marc Minkowski, Riccardo Muti and Christophe Rousset.
His discography includes Ezio by Gluck (SWR/Oehms Classics), Teseo by Handel (Carus Verlag/SWR) and Berenice by Handel (EMI/Virgin Classics) and a solo recording "Canzone e cantate" released in November 2010 (Carus Verlag/SWR).
Franco Fagioli was born in 1981 at San Miguel de Tucumán (Argentina) and has both nationalities, Argentinian and Spanish. He studied first piano at the Music Institute of the Tucuman University and, later on, singing at the Institute of Art of the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires. In 1997 he founded the choir of San Martin de Porres. This was an attempt to open the door towards music for adolescents of his region. Following the advice of his singing teacher, Annelise Skovmand, as well as that of Celina Lis and Maestro Ricardo Yost, he has specialised as a countertenor.