Biz news: London agencies grab big singers

Biz news: London agencies grab big singers


norman lebrecht

January 24, 2018

Intermusica have signed the rising Mexican tenor Luis Chapa.

Previously with Lombardo Associates in New York, Chapa cut his singing teeth at the Royal Northern College in Manchester.

And Askonas Holt have snapped up the Deutsche Oper coloratura soprano, Siobhan Stagg.

Siobhan, an Australian, has been extolled by the likes of Christa Ludwig.


  • Luigi Nonono says:

    With the talk about parity that’s going on, why is it only conductors, singers, pianists and violinists make the big money and get the big management? Very few concert harpists can get management (or afford it), and there are only a handful on other instruments. Shutting out other musicians, or ensembles other than string quartets, not only deprives musical artists of their living, but it deprives audiences of music they want and need to hear.

  • ¡Bravo Chapa! says:

    TENOR LUIS CHAPA’S recent jungle Tannhäuser drew lively debate on the respected vocal blog I Hear Voices. The blog’s diction-obsessed author, deserving commendation simply for traveling to Manaus, was a tough judge of Wagner performance standards a thousand miles up the Amazon –

    The only non-Brazilian singer in the cast, Mexican tenor Luis Chapa in the title role was a step further in nonsensical pronunciation and lack of acquaintance with Wagnerian style. Although his voice is a couple of sizes lighter than the role, he could by way of distorting his singing line (beefing up the middle register and alarmingly opening his high notes) make it happen, intonation being the collateral victim. His emotional and overblown phrasing made it dangerously close to the Latino version of what one hears in that video from Munich in which René Kollo is 100 years old. In Mr. Chapa’s defense, one must acknowledge his amazing stamina and the fact that he made a point of singing every little note even in the most complex ensembles where most tenors just cheat. In any case, he seemed to be having great fun. And that’s a first for me in what regards this particular role.

    CHAPA’S LONE DEFENDER took I Hear Voices to task for “chiding Luis Chapa, Tannhauser’s Mexican tenor schooled in Italian verismo singing German for Brazil’s Portuguese speakers, about his ‘nonsensical pronunciation'” –

    Above the equator Chapa is a fledgling, type-cast Verdi/Puccini tenor readying for his March shot as the Met’s Pinkerton (his house debut), probably wondering when another Tannhauser might ever come his way. So in Saturday’s end-of-run performance, Chapa tore through Wartburg valley the rip-roaring way he wanted – like he’d just heard Napoleon turned the tide at Marengo. There’s real debate whether the violent, audible “zschwick!” when Chapa rended his tunic was velcro that zips right back or the tenor’s “don’t need this dress no more!” final-night conviction.

    Chapa’s favorite collaborator was the sign-language guy, in the most amusing, improbable simultaneous translation since Barack Obama’s eulogy at Nelson Mandela’s memorial – This helper for the hard of hearing, inexplicably redundant on a monitor just above the supertitles, descended into, or even aspired to, a remarkable artistic mimicry where Chapa’s hand might twist and rise in fury followed by the same, exaggerated upward swirl on the flat-screen – less sign-language interpretation, more enhancement of stage mannerisms (and the tenor offered plenty). Hands up, arms out, grasped heart – the lag between onstage and onscreen visual gestures grew so short and similar that, in the end, no one was sure which artist was stealing from the other.

    I HEAR VOICES’ ENTIRE REIVEW is available at