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Cinema Junkie Field Trip: Tenor René Barbera Sings For San Diego

San Diego Opera presents Barbera in solo recital Saturday at Balboa Theater

Tenor Rene Barbera in

Credit: Ken Howard

Above: Tenor Rene Barbera in "L’elisir D’amore" at Opera Theatre St. Louis in 2014. He will be performing selections from that opera at his recital this Saturday at the Balboa Theater for San Diego Opera.

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Tenor Rene Barbera talks about opera, breathing, and heavy metal as we take a field trip outside the world of film.

Aired: September 18, 2015 | Transcript

San Diego Opera brings back rising star René Barbera for a solo recital this Saturday at the Balboa Theater.

René Barbera is one of the most exciting tenors on the opera scene today. At Placido Domingo’s Operalia 2011, he was awarded First Prize for Opera, First Prize for Zarzuela, and the Audience Prize — making him the first artist to be the sole recipient of all three awards since the competition began.

Barbera said that he did not so much choose a career in opera as "it was chosen for me." He confessed that growing up in Texas he was completely unaware of opera and as a teenager his music choices were hip hop, R&B, rap, and heavy metal. He didn't actually see an opera until after he had performed in a few.

San Diego Opera is bringing Barbera back to the city after he enthralled audiences at the 50th Anniversary Celebration Concert. This will be the singer's North American recital debut singing opera, zarzuela, and art songs.

There will be a post-recital reception with Barbera at the Westin San Diego Gaslamp Quarter (post-recital reception tickets are $50 per person).

René Barbera in Recital takes place Saturday at 7pm at the Balboa Theater. San Diego Opera has just opened up $15 balcony seats for the performance. You can download Beth’s full interview with Barbera on her KPBS Cinema Junkie podcast. And special thanks to Kurt Kohnen for his expertise in the recording of the interviews and performance.

Rene Barbera, tenor
Nicolas Reveles, San Diego Opera's Director of Education and Community Engagement
Beth Accomando, KPBS Arts Reporter


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