In June 2012 I went back to the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées on Avenue Montaigne in Paris, this time to attend a benefit concert with the Ensemble Matheus, conducted by Jean-Christophe Spinosi, featuring six prominent singers who often perform in French opera houses.
The ladies in this photo are, from left to right, the mezzo-sopranos Stephanie d’Oustrac and Karine Deshayes and the soprano Cassandre Berthon.
Actually, my main reason for going to this particular concert was to hear Cassandre Berthon, with whom I was slightly acquainted when she sang in Frankfurt am Main in the 1990s.
The man bowing with the three ladies in this photo is Cassandre Berthon’s husband, the baritone Ludovic Tézier, whom I once saw in Brussels in the title role of the Massenet’s Werther. This was a surprise to me at the time because Werther is usually sung by a tenor, but it turns out that Massenet composed two versions, one for tenor and one for baritone. In Brussels they did the two versions on alternate evenings, and I went to both. The tenor was Andrew Richards, who came across as a tortured soul, whereas Ludovic Tézier was more of a brooding romantic hero, but I don’t know if the difference arose from the voice types or from the personalities of the two singers. (See also: Massenet’s Werther in Brussels.)
Here I finally managed to get all six singers in the same photo. The two men on the right are the Canadian baritone Nigel Smith and the French bass-baritone Nicolas Cavallier.
Location, aerial view and photo on monumentum.fr.
My photos in this post are from 2012. I revised the test in 2018.
See also: Ten days, eight operas, seven venues