The last the Met will hear of Placido Domingo

The last the Met will hear of Placido Domingo


norman lebrecht

September 28, 2019

A recording of the Macbeth general rehearsal has surfaced on Youtube.


  • The View from America says:

    Oh, joy.

  • Caravaggio says:

    A travesty and an insult to veritable baritones everywhere. I mean, this is a tenor, and hardly that according to some, long past his expiry date.

    • George says:

      Can we for once stop thinking in categories only?
      I don’t give a shit if he sounds tenor or baritone, as long as Plácido Domingo‘s voice moves me. And it does.
      I sometimes think the world of classical music is caring much more about who does what than about emotions.

      • Yes Addison says:

        Well…Verdi thought in categories when he wrote the parts. He had particular kinds of voices in mind for arias, duets and large ensembles. When a darker-toned tenor who no longer has the notes for his old roles (even with transposition) is singing baritone roles at whatever age Domingo is, it isn’t ideal. It may be especially bothersome to the listener who has heard baritones sing Macbeth…even if that person is/was a Domingo fan.

        Having said that, I do think Domingo sounds good within his current means on the recording of the dress rehearsal (especially considering the unhappiness of the circumstances). He’s more musical, stylish and expressive than the Serbian sleepwalker who replaced him for the opening night.

        • M2N2K says:

          True – “it isn’t ideal”. But it is very good. And “considering the unhappiness of the circumstances”, it is almost phenomenal.

      • Tamino says:

        well, the mind is a funny illusion creation device. You like it, because you think it‘s PD while you hear it.
        I‘m not questioning the sincerity of your emotions, but it‘s a completely amusical emotion.
        If you heard it without knowing the artist, you would find it mediocre at best.
        It‘s showbiz.
        Deeply amusical.
        And the audiences do get what they deserve.

    • Nick2 says:

      For once I am in agreement with Caravaggio. Macbeth has to be sung by a baritone – not by an artist without the baritone richness in the lower register.

    • Leddy says:

      Shame on you! You are just jealous. You are the only travesty.

    • Mariclar says:

      And you’re a travesty of a human being. Only a true loser, which you clearly are, could be so hate-filled. How much you must envy Domingo to revile him so deeply!

  • Cantantelirico says:

    Clearly not the last we will hear “of” him from slippedisc

  • Edgar says:

    Per finire una grande vita artistica come quella…

  • david hilton says:

    It really is getting tiresome reading all the comments from people whose only contribution is to complain that Domingo sounds like a tenor to them and not a baritone and so should retire. Do we all forget — or may be unaware — that Domingo began his professional career as a baritone? And only later switched to being a tenor. You might as well complain — as many did over the years — that he never sounded like a proper baritone during all the years that he was, with difficulty, undertaking tenor roles. While he excelled without doubt in the lower roles like Otello, to many of us he never sounded like a genuine tenor. Try listening to him attempting to sing the Duke in Rigoletto, for example. Well, now he’s down back where he started, as a baritone again, and people are still finding fault.

    • Yes Addison says:

      Re: “Do we all forget — or may be unaware — Domingo began his professional career as a baritone? And only later switched to being a tenor. ”

      Then it should be easy to list baritone roles he sang as a young opera singer. There weren’t any. He auditioned as a baritone, and the result was his being given comprimario tenor roles, among them the Simpleton, Emperor Altoum, and Cassio. By 1961-62 (when he claims the ages of 20-21), he was up to Alfredo Germont, Cavaradossi, Rodolfo, Edgardo. So what does “began” even mean in this context?

      However, arguments about his early career aren’t really relevant. Even if he had been like Bergonzi, singing major baritone roles for years in his early career, it wouldn’t follow that people should embrace his casting in them 60 years later.