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Jonathan Tetelman
Jonathan Tetelman


Chilean-American tenor Jonathan Tetelman has earned rave reviews and prestigious invitations from the world’s leading opera companies and orchestras for his vocal artistry and wholehearted performances. “The guy’s a total star,” declared the New York Times. The newspaper’s verdict, part of a growing critical consensus, reflects the all-round attributes of a singer whose voice is rich and powerful across its entire range and who owns the charisma and emotional intelligence required to hold an audience spellbound.

Jonathan Tetelman signed an exclusive agreement with Deutsche Grammophon in October 2021, after which he began work on his debut album for the Yellow Label in company with the Orquesta Filarmónica de Gran Canaria and its Chief Conductor, Karel Mark Chichon. Released in August 2022, Arias featured excerpts from Verdi and verismo operas, French lyric repertoire, and duets with Lithuanian soprano Vida Miknevičiûtė. It received rave reviews, as summed up by Gramophone: “This is a fabulous debut disc … Tetelman is the real deal.”

His second album is a tribute to Puccini, set for release in time for the centenary celebrations in 2024. The Great Puccini presents a selection of both well-known and less familiar numbers from nine operas, including La bohème, La fanciulla del West, Manon Lescaut, Tosca and Turandot. The album was recorded in Prague with the PKF – Prague Philharmonia and Carlo Rizzi, and features notable guest appearances by Miknevičiûtė and fellow soprano Federica Lombardi. The Great Puccini comes out on 29 September 2023.

Among the highlights of recent seasons are Tetelman’s debut at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Alfredo in La traviata, followed by appearances as Rodolfo in La bohème; Paolo in Zandonai’s Francesca da Rimini for his debut at the Deutsche Oper Berlin; a house and role debut as Verdi’s Stiffelio for Opéra national du Rhin; Cavaradossi in Tosca for his debut at the Theater an der Wien; and debuts as Loris Ipanow in Oper Frankfurt’s first ever staging of Giordano’s Fedora and as Jacopo Foscari – alongside Plácido Domingo – in the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino’s new production of Verdi’s I due Foscari.

Standout moments of the 2022–23 season include the Verdi Requiem with the Houston Symphony and gala concerts with Angela Gheorghiu; his house debuts at San Francisco Opera (Alfredo) and Houston Grand Opera (Cavaradossi); and his role and house debut as Macduff in Macbeth at the Salzburg Festival.

Tetelman’s forthcoming engagements include a gala concert at the Konzerthaus Berlin (30 November 2023); Madama Butterfly and Il trittico (role debut as Luigi) at the Deutsche Oper Berlin (September/October); the title-role in Robert Carsen’s new production of Werther at the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden (November) and a one-night-only appearance as Rodolfo in La bohème at Theater Dortmund (December). He starts 2024 by performing in New Year’s concerts with the Gulbenkian Orchestra in Lisbon and the Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra in Istanbul (January), before going on to make his house and role debut at the Metropolitan Opera, New York as Ruggero in La rondine (March/April), followed by further appearances as Pinkerton (April/May).

Jonathan Tetelman was born in 1988 in Castro, Chile. He was adopted at seven months by American parents and raised in Princeton, New Jersey. His vocal talents were spotted during childhood by a local music teacher and cultivated at Princeton’s American Boychoir School. Having completed his undergraduate degree at the Manhattan School of Music – as a baritone – Tetelman went on to pursue graduate studies at Mannes School of Music, which is where he began to make the gradual transition to tenor. He later studied with Mark Schnaible, who was instrumental in finalising the process of transition, and remains a mentor today.

While waiting for his voice to evolve, Tetelman earned his living as a DJ in a Manhattan club. “This was my quarter-life crisis,” he recalls with humour. When the job lost its appeal, he made up his mind to focus fully on singing, a decision that ultimately led to competition success – including a place in the final of the Mildred Miller International Voice Competition (2016) and first prize in the New York Lyric Opera Theatre Competition (2017) – and his first professional engagements. Explaining how he went about it, Tetelman says: “I practically locked myself in for six months, and worked as a waiter, as well as having the support of my family, to pay for several lessons a week. I listened to old recordings and YouTube videos of great performers – while learning excellent technique and the mastery of my own voice, along with the knowledge of how to maintain voice health. And it’s worked! I am able to pursue my passion and love for singing every day!”

September 2023

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