by Daniel Hathaway
Nicholas Phan will certainly be no stranger to Northeast Ohio when he arrives to guest direct and perform in Apollo’s Fire’s next production. The versatile tenor has appeared with The Cleveland Orchestra in Orff’s Carmina Burana in 2013, and in Bach’s B-minor Mass in 2014. In his previous engagements with Apollo’s Fire in 2016, he covered both the Evangelist and the tenor solos in Bach’s St. John Passion. He got off a bit easier in the Cleveland Orchestra’s St. John last March, only singing the role of the Evangelist. And in between those gigs, Phan stepped in for John Relyea on Oberlin’s Artist Recital Series in February, 2016.
This time around, Phan will be performing a program adapted from A Painted Tale, a 2015 recording of Elizabethan lute songs in which he collaborated with lutenist Michael Leopold and gambist Ann Marie Morgan. The album takes its name from the Thomas Morley piece that introduces it, and Phan wrote in a preview that “The songs are structured so that when one listens to them in order, they tell the story of a young man who falls passionately in love for a woman and who is ultimately destroyed by the fire of that passion.” [Read more…]