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Jonas Kaufmann
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Biography

Jonas Kaufmann is now the world’s most successful tenor. He is internationally acclaimed for his roles in Italian, German and French repertoire and he appears at all the leading international opera houses, including the Metropolitan Opera in New York, La Scala in Milan, the Vienna State Opera, the Paris Opéra and London’s Covent Garden. He also performs regularly at the Salzburg Festival and reaches an audience of millions through his regular cinema and television broadcasts. Last year he was watched by millions worldwide when making his celebrated debut singing at the Last Night of the Proms from London’s Royal Albert Hall and in a special international cinema-cast of his La Scala concert “An Evening with Puccini”. As well as in opera, Jonas Kaufmann also enthralls audiences and critics alike as a lieder recitalist with his accompanist Helmut Deutsch and recently enjoyed great success with his sold-out European concert tours of Puccini arias & Du bist die Welt für mich. Jonas Kaufmann has received numerous awards, most recently the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (Bundesverdienstkreuz), an Opera News Award in New York, and the International Opera Award in London, and was appointed a Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in France. Specialist journals such as Opernwelt, Diapason and Musical America, together with the jury of the ECHO Klassik Awards, have all voted him Singer of the Year. In 2015 his album Nessun dorma – The Puccini Album obtained his best ever general-album chart success in many countries including in Germany, UK, France & Spain. In 2014 he received the German Bambi Award for his album, Du bist die Welt für mich. Both this album and his Verdi Album from 2013 had outstanding success in the German and Austrian general-album charts and were bestsellers in the classical charts – both reaching gold status in Austria. His recording of Schubert’s Winterreise succeeded as the first Lieder album ever to enter the German and Austrian general-album charts.

 

Current album

It's Christmas!

Artists Jonas Kaufmann

Release Date: 11/20/2020

In a Christmas album that is a gift itself, Jonas Kaufmann – the most acclaimed operatic tenor of the age – echoes his own holiday memories and joys with It’s Christmas!, celebrating the most festive time of the year with a unique selection of beloved songs and carols. This uniquely rich and diverse holiday album features 40 favorites that reflect the many facets of Christmas, from ancient Christian hymns to contemporary pop classics. It’s Christmas! will be released worldwide November 20 on Sony Classical.

“When I think of Christmas, many memories spring to mind,” Kaufmann writes, in his liner note for It’s Christmas! “In this I’m probably like everyone else. Christmas is the festival of contemplation and remembrance, of joy and light.”

Christmas has had a special meaning for Kaufmann ever since he landed on the front page of a Munich newspaper – at the age of eight – after describing his family’s lively, musical Christmas Eve so vividly that he won a school prize. The songs he has chosen for It’s Christmas! reflect that happy experience and the many moods and pleasures of the Christmas holidays, from grateful worship to the exhilaration of celebrating with family and friends.

The most versatile and exciting tenor on the world’s operatic and concert stages today, Jonas Kaufmann brings his all-encompassing style to this one-of-a-kind Christmas collection.

His choices include a rich selection of traditional German holiday songs (“O du fröhliche,” “O Tannenbaum,” “Still, still, still”) the young Kaufmann sang around the Christmas tree with his family every Christmas Eve. Also included are haunting English carols (“What Child is This”, “In the Bleak Midwinter”) and such beloved worldwide favorites as “O Holy Night” and “Silent Night.”

The album’s breadth of variety is also illustrated by the inclusion of rare intimate German-Alpine Christmas songs for voice and harp accompaniment. Then, a highly personal selection of American pop holiday favorites – “Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!,” “Winter Wonderland,” “The Christmas Song,” “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and “White Christmas.” For Jonas Kaufmann, these casual, intimate holiday classics bring back a special memory.

“The moment when everyone sat around the tree surrounded by gifts and mountains of wrapping paper, completely exhausted yet overjoyed,” he recalls, “and my father brought out his record collection to indulge his not-so-secret passion for the swinging American Christmas of Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and the rest.”

To provide the perfect settings for the songs that comprise It’s Christmas!, Kaufmann collaborates with the Mozarteumorchester Salzburg, the Bachchor Salzburg and the St. Florianer Sängerknaben, all conducted by Jochen Rieder, as well as harpist Florian Pedarnig and the Cologne Studio Big Band, conducted by Wieland Reissmann with guest artist Till Brönner playing Trumpet and Flugelhorn on two songs.