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Today’s Memory – Ludovic Spiess

Ludovic Spiess

13 May 1938, Cluj – 29 January 2006, Drăgănești-Vlașca


Ludovic Spiess was a Romanian lyric tenor with an impressive career as a tenor with a weighty voice and appreciable artistry for 14 years. He later became minister of culture in the post-Communist government in the early 1990s and was director of the Romanian Opera from 2001 until last year.

Born in a family of humble people without musical education, young Spiess discovered great music in 18 years, in a concert hall in Brasov. He made his stage debut as the Duke of Mantua in Rigoletto at the Romanian city of Galati in 1962, and won a singing competition in Toulouse and made his first appearance as Cavaradossi in Tosca at the Bucharest Opera two years later.

In 1967 Herbert von Karajan discovered his talents and invited him to the the Salzburg Festival to appear as Dmitri, the False Pretender, in Mussorsgsky’s Boris Godunov, a performance recorded by Decca. The following year Spiess joined the Zurich Opera, where he remained as principal tenor for some years. He had a big success at the Vienna Opera in Smetana’s Dalibor and then as Radames in Aida, taking the role to the Met in New York in 1971 and Covent Garden two years later.

Giuseppe Verdi – Otello The Act 1 duet Marina Krilovici & Ludovic Spiess

He had an extensive career, singing on the most famous stages in the country and in the world and winning numerous international awards, playing with great names like: Brigit Nilsson, Martina Arroyo, Nicolai Ghiaurov, Christa Ludwig, Gwyneth Jones, Katia Ricciarelli, Virginia Zeani, Peter Schreier, Mario Serena, Cesare Siepi, Sena Juriac, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau… collaborating with conductors such as Leonard Bernstein, Herbert von Karajan, Karl Bohm, Roberto Band,  Otto Klemperer, Kurt Adler, Nello Santi, Wolfgang Sawalisch, Francesco Molinari-Pradella, Josef Krips, Rafael Kubelik, Gianandrea Gavazzeni, Boris Haitink, Michel Plasson and Ricardo Muti.

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Giacomo Puccini – Turandot Concert With: Maria Slătinaru-Nistor, Ludovic Spiess, Nicolae Florei, Teodora Lucaciu, Octav Enigărescu, Valentin Teodorian, Corneliu Fânăţeanu…

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