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Interview with tenor George Vīrban

Thursday, 17 February 2022 , ora 9.00

The Bucharest National Opera presents on Friday, February 18th, 2022, at 6.30 pm, the performance "Evgheni Oneghin" by Piotr Ilici Tchaikovsky. Tenor George Vīrban, invited to play the character Lenski, will also be part of the cast.

We find out more details about the performance from the interview with tenor George Vīrban:

The performance "Evgheni Oneghin" on Friday gives you the opportunity to resume the collaboration with the Bucharest Opera, after a few years of absence. You will play Lenski, a role in which you debuted in Russia in 2016. A year later, you played the role in Romania, in a performance of the Romanian National Opera in Cluj-Napoca, and now you have the opportunity to play in Bucharest. Basically, this is the third time you've played Lenski. What is it like to return to the stage of the Bucharest National Opera and what do you think about this role now?

It is a great joy to return to the stage of the National Opera in Bucharest after an absence of almost three years, during which time I was a member of the Munich Opera Studio. As you said, this is the third time I will play this role - for the first time in Bucharest. There was a time when I wanted to forget a little bit about this role because when I started it, I think, I was too young for the role. And now I am very, very excited to return to this role with the experience I have gained all these years.

The pandemic surprised you when you were a soloist in the first year of your internship at the studio you mentioned, the Munich Opera. How has your international career evolved in the meantime and what do you have in mind now?

I only caught a few months in the studio, being on stage next to the great artists and working with very good conductors and vocal-coaches. But instead, I learned a lot. The opera studio gave me the chance to master my vocal technique, to mature with my colleagues, with very good teachers and that was a gain for me. I had time for myself and this was probably the case, to take a break these two years to improve.

And what is next?

There is a very busy period of auditions. Basically, every month until the summer, I will keep flying around to prepare for the next season. I'm preparing the role of Alfredo; let's hope that by the end of the season I will make my debut. And in the summer I will be a member of the International Academy of Music in Neumark, led by the famous teacher Edith Wiens, during which I will be, for a month, under the guidance of the best teachers in Munich.

Apart from Alfredo, what else do you have in mind to prepare for the near future?

For now, I'm focused on Alfredo. Of course, Nemorino is not missing from my repertoire, which I will sing in March, also at the National Opera in Bucharest. And, at the same time, being a soloist of the "Ion Dacian" Operetta Theater, we are preparing very beautiful performances there.

Interview by Florica Jalbć
Translated by Elena Patricia Mćroiu,
University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I
Corrected by Silvia Petrescu