Villazon pulls out of Met Opera gala

Villazon pulls out of Met Opera gala


norman lebrecht

May 04, 2017

The transitioning tenor Rolando Villazon – more director these days than singer – has pulled out of this weekend’s Metropolitan Opera gala, effectively  signing off as one of the company’s frontline artists.

Villazon, 45, won’t be terribly missed.

Here’s the current list of participants in Sunday’s $950+ per ticket show:

Marco Armiliato
Piotr Beczała
Ben Bliss
Stephanie Blythe
Joseph Calleja
Javier Camarena
Dwayne Croft
Diana Damrau
David Daniels
Joyce DiDonato
Plácido Domingo
Yusif Eyvazov
Michael Fabiano
Renée Fleming
Juan Diego Flórez
Elīna Garanča
Susan Graham
Vittorio Grigolo
Günther Groissböck

Christopher Job
Mariusz Kwiecien
Isabel Leonard
James Levine
Željko Lučić
Angela Meade
Latonia Moore
James Morris
Anna Netrebko
Kristine Opolais
Eric Owens
René Pape
Matthew Polenzani
Yannick Nézet-Séguin
Rolando Villazón
Michael Volle
Yunpeng Wang
Pretty Yende
Sonya Yoncheva
Dolora Zajick
Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus



  • Olassus says:

    His Tito with the Met’s YNS is due in a few short weeks. That is more important, and will be wonderful if he is in voice.

    • Olassus says:

      Also with YNS in Mozart for DG’s cycle, his participation in Die Zauberflöte is as a baritone, Papageno, and not Tamino, and the Idomeneo has been put back to 2019 at the earliest.

  • Mr. opera says:

    Wonder why they didn’t invite Aprile Millo or Amber Wagner?

    Mr. Opera

  • Ronald Lee says:

    Why aren’t Leontyne Price and Justino Diaz invited as honored guests? They were the first to sing at the new Met 50 years ago

  • Respect says:

    One assumes they were invited, but Miss Price is 90 and in a retirement home.

  • M2N2K says:

    For me, considering the way he was performing operatically for most of this century’s first decade, Rolando Villazon has been missed quite strongly indeed for a while already.

    • Terrie Tackett says:

      His voice has brought me so much joy….I think he jumped back into the game a bit quickly after his surgery. He is a man, not a machine. And the voice is a fragile instrument. I will, miss him, and wish him all the best.

  • Sue says:

    A much over-rated tenor, IMO.

  • Kristina Pax says:

    Rolando Villazon is the greatest tenor of our times.I have always considered Mario Lanza to be the tenor-supremo. That is until I have heard Rolando Villazon sing “Che gelida manina” in act 1 of Puccini’s “La Boheme”. Never before have I heard an artist sign this aria with such an unbelievable tenderness, feelings and melody. It is an Oscar performance by a true artist-Rolando Villazon. Since then, I have heard thousands of recordings by this dynamic artist. In my humble opinion, he is the greatest tenor. Just like the magnificent baritone-Dmitri Hvorostovsky, the most beautiful and phenomenal soprano-Anna Netrebko as well as greatest bass-Bernard Ladysz, Rolando Villazon is the greatest tenor of our times.

  • Gabriel Tunco says:

    His voice is very fine – or was – unfortunately. Let’s hope he can recover that voice he had at least enough to again be a factor at houses like the Met and Covent Garden.