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Opera without the boring bits June 25, 2006

Posted by grhomeboy in Arts Events Cyprus.

Ten tenors from Australia have included Cyprus in their current world tour and will present classical and contemporary numbers (as well as an impressive stage presence).

Formed in Australia in 1995, The Ten Tenors have come to characterised as the ‘musical chameleons’ of the 21st century. They have captured the hearts of audiences across the globe, with their combination of classical, opera and international popular music.

Last May, local crowds were wowed by the Ten Tenors and following its huge success, the group have decided to include Cyprus in their world tour, this time with two performances in Nicosia.

The Ten Tenors all met at university in their hometown of Brisbane while studying opera. In 1995, they joined forces as the headline act for the birthday celebration gala of a major Australian television network. With requests for repeat performances, the group soon became popular throughout the country. They appeared together in operas, recitals and concerts as they developed a close and lasting friendship. The Tenors created and performed their first full-length show in 1998, while still full-time students, even undertaking an intensive touring schedule in Australia.

It was in the venues of Australian outback towns that the group’s unique mix of music and comedy was born. After taking part in various performances throughout their student life, they decided to finally take the plunge and do exactly what they had always dreamed and joked about – they created a show full of laughter, fun, entertainment and great music. “We always made jokes and continually teased one another. We made up funny scenes while rehearsing for our formal appearance,” said Stewart Morris, one of the members of the team. “We used to joke that we should have brought the audience into our dressing rooms where we always gave the very best show!”.

“In the beginning we had a relatively conservative repertoire,” remembers band member Tod Strike. “Any group with classic voice training could sing operettas but we wanted something more…” They certainly managed to achieve something different as they put their own personal edge into their work. They took a huge risk, but have not looked back since. Striding through the classical tenor repertoire, swaying through pop ballads and rock classics, their unmistakable Australian charm has captured countless fans worldwide.

2001 saw The Ten Tenors venture overseas, undertaking two tours of New Zealand, and successful concerts in Berlin and Hamburg. In February 2002, The Ten Tenors leapt to international attention as guest artists at the Eurovision Grand Prix, where their medley of the finalists’ songs was hailed by the press as being the highlight of the evening.

The Ten Tenors have been a committed musical tour de force ever since, taking the world by storm. Extensive and completely sold-out touring of Germany, Austria and Switzerland followed, with equally successful tours throughout Asia, Europe and America. In Germany they have broken the record of the fastest selling tickets, and have appeared at 48 ‘sold-out’ performances during their last tour throughout the country. They have appeared alongside great names of the international music scene including Rod Stewart, Andrea Boccelli and Alanis Morissette and have since seen their songs reach the ‘Top Ten’ in Europe, Australia and America. The Tenors discography includes albums Tenorissimo, Untied, Not so Silent Night, One is Not Enough, Larger than Life, and Tenology.

Their programme on tour consists of great hits from renowned international artists including ABBA, the Bee Gees, Beetles and Queen, combining these songs with some of the most beautiful opera in the world. The group themselves characterise their choice of pieces as ‘opera without the boring bits’. ‘Staying Alive’, ‘Dancing Queen’, ‘Love is in the Air’, ‘Night Fever’, ‘Surfin’ USA’ and ‘You Should be Dancing’, is just a small sample of what will be awaiting the audience on the nights of the upcoming concerts. Friends of the opera can expect to hear some of the greatest works from La Boheme, Rigoletto, The Barber of Seville, and Turandot.

It’s certainly not often that Cypriot audiences are given the chance to hear a mix of opera, jazz, rock and pop sung by classically trained singers, world acclaimed for the youthful exuberance they bring to their material. Their vocal skills, sense of fun, and eclectic repertoire are guaranteed to impress.

The Ten Tenors

Australian group of tenors live in concert. Skali Aglangia, Nicosia. July 3 and 4. 8pm. £10/£20. Tickets available from Strovolos Municipal Theatre.

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