For Portuguese Singers, Opera Is Elsewhere

The tenor Luis Gomes grew up in Sarilhos Grandes, a small Portuguese town across the Tagus River from Lisbon. There was only one bridge at the time, so studying at the conservatory in the city was not simple. The only opera theater in Portugal, Teatro Nacional de São Carlos, seemed like a world away.

Like other young singers from his country, Mr. Gomes, 31, found it hard to make a career as an opera singer at home. After attending the Lisbon Music Conservatory, he felt it was necessary to move abroad to continue his vocal training. “You need to challenge yourself, and there arrives a moment when you feel like you have to go somewhere else to grow,” Mr. Gomes said in a telephone interview.

But this month he returns to his homeland as one of two Portuguese contenders among the 40 competitors in Operalia, Plácido Domingo’s nomadic opera competition, which has chosen the Teatro Nacional as its 2018 location. The event takes place until Sept. 2. Read More via NYTimes.

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