Friday 23rd April 2021, London – British-Italian opera singer Freddie De Tommaso today becomes the first solo tenor to debut at No.1 in the Official Classical Artist Albums Chart in 20 years, beating Andrea Bocelli and Max Richter in his album Passione’s first week. He also lands the No.1 spot in the Official Specialist Classical Chart.
With a journey that began with a loving childhood in Tunbridge Wells, a young Freddie was first introduced to the great tenors Pavarotti and Caruso in his family’s popular Italian restaurant. Now named alongside his heroes in the Classical Chart, Freddie’s career is set to reach new heights on the back of his outstanding debut – a feat Freddie was sadly unable to share with his father, Franco.
Freddie says, “My father, who loved opera and classical music, died when I was 18, and even at that age I had no idea that I would go on to have a career as an opera singer. The car stereo would always be playing the music of Maria Callas, Franco Corelli, Luciano Pavarotti and so many more names who have gone on to influence me as I progressed in my career.”
The 28-year-old lyrico spinto tenor has also enjoyed ‘Album of the Week’ airplay with classical stations Classic FM and Scala, amid an encore of support from friends and supporters. With a desire to encourage new audiences to engage with opera, Freddie is keen to remind people of the art form’s populist roots. With flights to the continent remaining limited, Freddie’s voice is evocative of dreamy summer days enjoying Italy’s sun-drenched hills and golden beaches.
2021 marks four milestone centenaries in the ‘Year of the Tenor’: the births of Mario Lanza (31st January), Franco Corelli (8th April), Giuseppe Di Stefano (24th July) and of the death of the father of all modern tenors, Enrico Caruso (2nd August). Freddie’s album celebrates the songs they made famous and explores the musical landscape of his father’s family from Italy’s deep south: Casamassima, near Bari, in Puglia – once part of the Kingdom of Naples.
Decca has mined its archive of unique arrangements made for its star tenors of the past including Mario Del Monaco and Luciano Pavarotti, and the album also features three world premiere recordings. Venetian-born Renato Balsadonna, former chorus director at the Royal Opera House, conducts the London Philharmonic Orchestra for this release.
Freddie’s 2021/22 performance calendar takes him to the Wiener Staatsoper with Anna Netrebko (June), the Bayerische Staatsoper (July), and to Oslo Opera House with his label mate, soprano Lise Davidsen (September). Freddie returns to Covent Garden’s Royal Opera House in December, with further dates in spring 2022 to be announced soon.
Freddie De Tommaso’s debut album Passione is out now on Decca Classics