V0382. RAMÓN VARGAS, w.Marcello Viotti Cond. English Chamber Orch.: Rossini & Donizetti Arias. (Switzerland) Claves 50-9202, recorded 1991, incl. 39pp Booklet w.texts. Long out-of-print, Final Copy! - 7619931920221
"I can state my opinion that the successor to [Caruso, Schipa, Gigli and di Stefano] and the finest contemporary tenor is Ramón Vargas. His live recital on Laserlight [above] has been justly praised in this periodical by both Henry Fogel and George Jellinek, and I heartily agree with them. Vargas’ artistry is not to be missed.”
- Bob Rose, FANFARE, Nov. / Dec., 1999
"Vargas, one of today’s finest lyric tenors, explores this repertoire confidently. His voice is evenly produced from top to bottom at any dynamic level – how easily he slips into and out of head register….He is a gentlemanly singer, somewhat reserved for a tenor. In this, he resembles his mentor Alfredo Kraus.”
- Desmond Arthur, AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE, Jan. / Feb., 2000
“Ramón Vargas is one of the leading tenors of our time and one of the most sought-after worldwide.
After winning the Carlo Morelli National Vocal Competition in 1982, he made his debut in Haydn's LO SPEZIALE, in Monterrey, Mexico. In 1983, mexican conductor Eduardo Mata gave him his first important role as Fenton in Verdi's FALSTAFF, and in 1984 as Don Ottavio in Mozart's DON GIOVANNI. In 1990, he decided to become a freelancer and went on to play increasingly important roles in major opera houses and festivals worldwide. It was then when he met renowned musicologist and teacher Rodolfo Celletti, in Milan, under whose guidance he has studied for his new roles.
In 1992, the Metropolitan Opera invited Vargas to play Edgardo in LUCIA, opposite June Anderson, substituting Luciano Pavarotti; this was his first appearance in the United States. He took part in several productions there, particularly in the creation of Ronnefeld's DIE NACHTAUSGABE. In 1988, he signed his first contract as member of the Lucerne Opera company, in Switzerland. In the following two seasons he performed many leading roles. Another decisive debut took place in 1993, at La Scala where he portrayed Fenton in Strehler's new production celebrating the centenary of FALSTAFF, under Riccardo Muti. Vargas returned to the MET for the opening of the 1994-1995 season, as the Duke of Mantua in RIGOLETTO.
In addition to his operatic appearances, he is an accomplished concert singer, with an extensive repertoire ranging from Italian classical songs to romantic German Lieder and by French, Spanish and Mexican composers from the 19th and 20th centuries. In 1998, he offered a memorable recital at La Scala, and his rendition of Mexican popular songs has been acclaimed at massive concerts in Mexico and Europe .”