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Placido Domingo performs in Cuba for the first time

Friday, November 25, 2016 - 01:11

The Spanish-born singer will be in concert at the Great Theatre of Havana. Rough cut (no reporter narration)

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BROADCAST AND DIGITAL RESTRICTIONS~**Broadcasters ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Placido Domingo is in Cuba for his first concert on the Caribbean island. He spoke to the media Thursday (November 24) about his plans and feelings for the concert, which will take place Saturday (November 26) in the Cuban capitol. The biggest names in Cuban music came out to welcome Domingo. Alicia Alonso, the legendary ballerina, welcomed Domingo, for one. Domingo's arrival in Cuba comes at a time of course of transition for Cuba, as it reshapes its relations with the United States. In speaking to reporters, he maintained geopolitics played no role in his trip. It was the siren of Cuba, for him, he said. "No it's got nothing to do with relations being more open. I have always wanted to come and the only issue was that there was no possibility. The only thing I wanted was to push it ahead a bit, because it had taken so long," he told reporters. The Spanish-born Domingo has a large footprint in Latin America. He is especially well known in Mexico, for instance, due to his efforts to raise money for relief efforts after a devastating 1985 earthquake. He also raised money for disaster relief in the Mexican states of Guerrero and Yucatan and in El Salvador after Hurricane Pauline in 1997. Domingo is one of the best-known opera singers in the world and has sung more than 120 different roles. The 75-year old artist is mindful the twilight of his careers lies ahead of him. So it was time to finally make his Cuban trip, he told reporters "We were getting to the point where it became essential for me to come because I don't know for how much longer I will be singing. My idea is that if the concert on the day after tomorrow leaves the audience happy, I will want to come back again, because I wanted to sing for all of Havana." Over the course of his career, Domingo has taken over the direction of the Washington National Opera and the young Los Angeles company. Domingo has made over 100 opera recordings in music spanning the centuries from Mozart to Verdi and Puccini to Wagner to Ginastera. His big break came in 1968, when he was called in at 40 minutes' notice to substitute for Italian tenor Franco Corelli opposite soprano Renata Tebaldi in Cilea's "Adriana Lecouvreur" at New York's Metropolitan Opera House. He made his debut at London's Covent Garden as Cavaradossi in a production of Puccini's "Tosca" in 1971. Domingo's Saturday show will take place at the Great Theatre of Havana. He will be accompanied by Cuban National Symphony Orchestra. Screens outside the theatre will project the performance as well.

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Placido Domingo performs in Cuba for the first time

Friday, November 25, 2016 - 01:11