Between 30th August and 9th September I was involved in five performances of the Verdi Requiem. It was an honour to sing in this work on 30th and 31st August at the Teatro del Maggio, with the Orchestra and Chorus of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino conducted by Zubin Mehta. It was also significant for me to be back singing under Maestro Mehta, with whom I sang several years ago in a splendid Mozart Requiem. The two solemn concerts were dedicated to the victims of the pandemic in Tuscany and to all healthcare workers in the Region of Tuscany. With me were Krassimira Stoyanova, Elina Garanča and Michele Pertusi.
Immediately afterwards I immersed myself once again in the dramatic depths and infinite tenderness of Verdi’s masterpiece, singing with the Orchestra and Chorus of Teatro alla Scala conducted by Riccardo Chailly: on 4th September in the Duomo of Milan, on 7th September in the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore in Bergamo and on 9th September in the Duomo of Brescia, alongside Krassimira Stoyanova, Elina Garanča and René Pape.
President Mattarella attended the concert in the Duomo of Milan and, although there were only a few hundred people in church, we had a nationwide and worldwide audience because the concert was broadcast live on television in Italy on Rai 5 and RaiPlay, live on radio Radio 3 and the Euroradio Circuit and on giant screens in the churches of the Lombardy towns and cities which were most badly hit by the first wave of the pandemic. This Requiem was also later broadcast on the Arte and the Live Viewing Japan platforms.
No words are sufficient to explain why this was the most moving tour I have experienced as an artist and as an Italian.