Pierre Charbonneau

Pierre Charbonneau. Bass, b Montreal 14 Jun 1944. He studied singing at the CMM 1959-61 and later privately with Dina Maria Narici. In 1968 he won the first prize for interpretation at the Munich International Competition.

Charbonneau, Pierre

Pierre Charbonneau. Bass, b Montreal 14 Jun 1944. He studied singing at the CMM 1959-61 and later privately with Dina Maria Narici. In 1968 he won the first prize for interpretation at the Munich International Competition. He made his operatic debut in 1968 singing the Khan Kontchak in Borodin's Prince Igor. With the Opéra de Montréal he has sung several roles, including Rocco in Fidelio (1983, 1988), Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia (1984, 1986), Bartolo in Le Nozze di Figaro (1984), the title role in Don Pasquale (1985), Ramfis in Aïda (1986), Don Magnifico in La Cenerentola (1987), and the Governor in Le Comte Ory (1989). He made his European debut at Lille, France, in 1985 in Rossini's La Cambiale di Matrimonio. He returned to that city for a revival of that work, adding more roles such as Crespel, Luther and Schlemil in Les Contes d'Hoffmann. In Lyons, he was heard in Chabrier's L'Étoile in 1986 and in La Chauve-Souris, Le Comte Ory, and Orphée aux enfers in 1987. It was in the role of Jupiter in Orphée aux enfers that he made his Paris Opera debut in 1987. The work was revived in 1989 and Charbonneau appeared in other roles, namely as Cimourdain in the Lyons premiere of Antoine Duhamel's Quatre-vingt-treize selon Victor Hugo.

Charbonneau has sung the bass part in Verdi's Requiem more than 100 times and has been a frequent soloist in Beethoven's Missa solemnis and the Ninth Symphony. He has sung under such noted conductors as Mario Bernardi, Franz-Paul Decker, Charles Dutoit and Zubin Mehta. He has been the guest of several opera companies, in Ottawa, Vancouver, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, and Edmonton. He has also appeared in Europe, in France and in Brazil. After a presentation of Il Barbiere di Siviglia by the Opéra de Montréal, Gilles Potvin wrote: 'With his most resounding voice and his imposing stature, Pierre Charbonneau often dominates the stage and the way he handles amusing situations could only be done with such effect by a seasoned singing actor' (Montreal Le Devoir, 20 Sep 1984).


Further Reading

  • Angrignon Sirois, Maryse. 'Pierre Charbonneau, une basse qui aime "bien" chanter,' Aria, vol 7, Spring 1984

    Kaptainis, Arthur. 'Powerful Pierre's a bass to reckon with,' Montreal Gazette, 19 Apr 1986

    Gingras, Claude. 'Débuts de Pierre Charbonneau à l'Opéra de Paris dans Orphée aux enfers,' Montreal La Presse, 10 Dec 1987

    Lehel, François. 'Pierre Charbonneau à l'Opéra de Paris,' Aria, vol 11, Spring 1988