Wednesday, 22 November 2017


It was just last December that UNRAVELING MUSICAL MYTHS revealed the news of a newly formed fantastic trio making a 2017 appearance in my hometown of Toronto, Canada.

It would be a once-in-a-lifetime affair (quite literally) for almost everybody involved in planning the production. World renowned reigning diva, the Russian soprano Anna Netrebko, her tenor husband Yusif Eyazov, and the equally renowned baritone – beloved across the globe - Siberian born Dmitri Hvorostovsky would make their anxiously awaited worldwide debut with their aptly named Trio Magnifico – right here on the stage of the country’s Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts.

It would also mark Netrebko’s Canadian debut. This "once in a lifetime affair," we opera fans knew, would be especially true for Hvorostovsky – the one-time rapscallion (binging on booze, drugs, and brawls) – turned media sensation following his 1989 win at the Cardiff Singer of the World vocal competition (he beat out the effervescent and immensely talented Bryn Terfel) had only recently revealed to the world a grim diagnosis of brain cancer. After several pullouts from non-related performances, Torontonians were left wondering if the bassy Russian could survive the trip to the bustling metropolis, much less get through what promised to be a demanding and lengthy performance. Speaking honestly, many of us wondered if he would have survived into Spring of 2017 at all.

Hvorostovsky in a separate performance, expertly singing Avant de quitter ces lieux from Charles Gounod’s
adaptation of Faust, Moscow, 2008.

Although officially retiring from the opera stage one year shy of his public announcement of terminal illness, Hvorostovsky promised his fans he would, come rain or shine, undoubtedly be at the premiere in Toronto – and it seemed the former bad boy who once almost gave up on life – embraced his final moments with all of his might.

The April 25th performance went off without a hitch, and we Torontonians, and the Operatic world at large – salute you, Mr. Hvorostovsky – for your bravery and outstanding contribution to the arts; for your talent, and most sincerely, for your dedication to your fans. Your story of triumph overcoming trial and tribulation is truly inspiring, and we thank you for your endurance, fighting that good fight until the very end. Your life story is truly a story worth telling.

View a performance from the historic evening below, with an unrecognizable Hvorostovsky (resembling a young/middle aged Liszt) singing solo: Anton Rubenstein’s The Demon’s aria:

Mr. Hvorostovsky, you will be missed.

May you Rest In Peace.



  1. Classical_Music_Fan25 November 2017 at 07:46

    Guten Morgen meine Freundin.

    Das sind traurige Neuigkeiten. Er war mein Lieblingsbariton!

    1. Guten Abend! Du bist ein hübscher Frühaufsteher!

      Ich habe auch Bariton Dmitri genossen. Dein Verlust tut mir Leid.

      Wir haben das Glück, noch immer Thomas Quastoff (mein absoluter Lieblingsbariton), Bryn Terfel (auch ein persönlicher Favorit) und den großartigen Simon Keenlyside zu haben.

      Haben Sie seinen "Don Giovanni" oder seinen "Il barbiere di Siviglia" gesehen?