Sicklist: Villazon disappoints Vienna

Sicklist: Villazon disappoints Vienna


norman lebrecht

February 21, 2018

Rolando Villazon has pulled out of Vienna’s Eugene Onegin ‘for health reasons’.

He seems to spend more time directing these days than singing.

His role will be taken over by the Czech tenor  Pavel Černoch.


  • Sue says:

    I never liked him or his voice, so it doesn’t bother me what he does. But some folks might feel let down. Refunds anyone?

  • Olassus says:

    Pavel Černoch is excellent.

  • Sharon says:

    Don’t put down health excuses. He could be suffering from something, either mental or physical, that is chronic or at least slow healing, and the details are really none of our business. In addition, in the US, and I believe Europe too, we are having the most serious flu outbreak since the Spanish flu of 1918.
    It is very difficult, and indeed painful, for a person having legitimate health concerns to be accused of shirking.

    • Yes Addison says:

      I don’t think he’s a shirker at all. He obviously loves to perform, but the writing is on the wall. It’s a similar trajectory to the soprano Elena Souliotis’s: a few early years of excitement, followed by vocal problems that could not be resolved. When he does appear for an opera or (more often) a concert, he usually gets an announcement of indisposition and a plea for understanding, makes distressing sounds, and tries to salvage things with an engaging personality.

      So, with respect to cancellations, he’s in a special category. Anyone surprised or disappointed cannot have been paying much attention to him in the last ten years. He has begun to focus on directing and administration, and it’s good that he has other avenues that will allow him to stay involved in music.

    • UNA says:

      Yes, we too in Britain and Ireland have had the most appalling flu crisis this winter and serious to impact our hospitals, and our singers and instrumentalist have not escsped. But with the advent of the ‘armchair singers’ we get these day who profess to know more about singing and instrumental playing than those of us doing the job every say,, more and more singers cancel than ever before. But you’re damned by them if you do and damned if you don’t. Not liking a particular singer is just got nothing to do with being ill and shows total ungraciousness. A singer is the most fragile of performers – a real violinist would say that too. We are not circus acts.

  • Allex says:

    Pavel Černoch In not a debutant at all.

  • Petros Linardos says:

    When I read the headline I thought he sang poorly. Why does Villazon “disappoint” while Kaufmann “cancels”?

    • Tiredofitall says:


    • Sue says:

      You could extrapolate that out to the entire Left wing media; the use of emotional language which is all commentary with few facts. Emotion betrays ideology; it becomes the message. Example:

      The American military …… the ‘Iraqi (or select country of choice) war machine’

      etc. etc. etc. That kind of thing. On and on it goes.

      • Anon says:

        But how is that limited to your object of hate, the ‘left wing’, when it is in fact a propaganda tool used by all sides, particularly the right? Inconsistent.

      • Tiredofitall says:

        My analysis is out of knowing both men professionally. Politics do not play into my view. You’re more than a little paranoid, no?

      • Petros Linardos says:

        I don’t see any connection between Lebrecht’s reporting style(s) and the left wing media.