New York Times "rich voiced" opera singer Gustavo Feulien
Gustavo Feulien is one of the many good surprises of the last few months in New York.
I photograph people everyday, it's part of my profession. I meet a lot of people of every shape and kind. Sometimes I'm extra lucky and I meet some truly amazing New Yorker. Some are amazing on the outside, some are amazing on the inside, some are amazing inside and out. Don't get me wrong, I get my fair share of pushy, rude, and crazy ones too. But the number of great and inspiring New Yorkers I meet is always far bigger than its unpleasant counterpart.
When I meet a sincerely inspiring person, I immediately want to know more about them. I just can't resist it. I never believed that curiosity killed the cat. Boredom killed the cat. And that's why you get to know more about Gustavo Feulien today. Cause it would be a shame for you to miss him.
Gustavo Feulien is an fantastic opera singer, with a voice and a face that are hard to forget. The face has all the range of emotion of the accomplished actor. The voice, powerful and rich, will just give you goosebumps as it makes your lungs vibrate.
I sat down with Gustavo Feulien for a photo shoot and, as we went along shooting, I asked him a million questions. Here you have some.
How does one become an opera singer?
I studied classical guitar at the Conservatory School. The choir director used to tell me I had the voice of an opera singer. I gave it a try and after two years studying I performed in my first show. It is a difficult career in the sense that your instrument, being your voice, is always changing so you have to keep studying your technique to stay in shape and manage a longer career.
I am inspired by the legendary Italian baritones, like Bastianini, Cappuccilli, Taddei. I couldn't name all of them. I admire the Americans too, Macneil, Merrill, Warren. I am actually proud to say that this season I have sung with my favorite American bass, Samuel Ramey. He has been an inspiration for a long time.
One thing that makes me happy about my career, is singing in different countries. Doing what you love, singing, is a wonderful opportunity. I started in Argentina and in the past seven years, I have sung in Canada, Puerto Rico, Guatemala, Israel, Germany and around the USA. I'd love to sing in Italy.
How did you ended up in New York?
A few years ago, I was invited to a singing program in Florida where I met a director who encouraged me to go to New York to audition. I did that and everything changed. I auditioned for many people in the city. I found a manager, met new teachers, and conductors. Finally doors started opening thanks to these amazing people. Most importantly, while I was working in a production of Carmen in New York I met my wife. We decided we would live here and we still love it!
What is your favorite spot in the city?
Its difficult to choose only one spot in NYC. I love places where music and jamming is heard, like Williamsburg, Brooklyn or any live Rock & Roll concert. Also, I enjoy that you can find any kind of cuisine. The variety that exists in NY, in every aspect of life, n to just food, is the really cool essence of the city. You never get bored here!
A bit more about GUSTAVO FEULIEN
Hailed by the New York Times as “rich voiced” and by Opera News for his “interesting and convincing portrayal of Scarpia, most impressive in the Act I Te Deum” in Tosca, Argentinean-Amer-ican baritone, Gustavo Feulien, continues his career with great success.
For his New York City Opera debut as Silvio in Pagliacci, critics hailed his performance for his "sharp, powerful gestures in both his acting and singing, was both ardent and tender" and "“the love scene with Silvio, rakishly sung by Gustavo Feulien, drew bravos from many in the audience”. This season, Gustavo made his role debuts as Marcello in La Bohème with Wichita Grand Opera and as Scarpia in Tosca with Loft Opera.
Gustavo Feulien made a successful European opera debut in 22 performances of Belcore in L’Elisir d’amore and 15 performances of Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro as a regular guest artist with Theater Bremen in Germany.
His American career was launched with his Carnegie Hall debut in Faure’s Requiem and with DiCapo Opera Gustavo Feulien was part of a United Stated tour singing Silvio in Pagliacci.
With Opera in Williamsburg he performed Di Luna in Il Trovatore. One of his signature roles is Escamillo in Carmen which he performed in New York, Virginia and Montreal, Canada.
Over the last seasons, Gustavo Feulien has extended his repertoire to include some new Russian signature roles such as the title role in Eugene Onegin, performed in Brooklyn, New York and in Tel Aviv, Israel where he received the IVAI Price for International Singer and Robert in Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta performed with Di Capo Opera in NYC.
His debut with Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires was as the baritone soloist in Carmina Burana. Feulien was part of the international cast of Verdi’s La forza del destino. He returned to Teatro Colón as the Herald in Lohengrin and this season participated in the production of Don Giovanni. He also took part in the world premiere of Mario Peruso’s modern opera Fedra as Teramenes and performed at the 100th Anniversary of Teatro Colon’s Celebration Gala. Additionally, in Argentina, Feulien sang Di Luna in Il Trovatore and Don Giovanni with the Opera de San Juan.
With Opera de Puerto Rico Feulien has performed as Malatesta in Don Pasquale, Belcore in L’elisir d’amore, and the Conde in the Zarzuela La leyenda del beso. Honors and awards for Gustavo Feulien include the Argentinian Music Critics Association Award for his performances in Lohengrin and Fedra and was Finalist at the Hans Gabor Belvedere and Monserrat Caballe’s Competition.