But don't expect this
"The high C note sometimes gets overrated," Gonzalez said in a telephone interview from
The operatic tenor and
"For me, it's about honoring the integrity of the music," Gonzalez continued. "If it's just about the high Cs, you've missed so much of the music -- the story and the heart."
Cook views scaling those aerial notes with equanimity.
"I've done it a couple of times," she said. "Sometimes they sparkle and others... We love them and we love to do them and we hope it's a good day. I've never crashed and burned so far."
Gonzalez and Cook will sing "O soave fanciulla," the famous duet from "La boheme," a piece as celebrated for its high Cs as it is for its beauty. The duo also will perform the "Nocturne" from Donizetti's "
"I've heard it described as a love duet that doesn't require music," Cook said of the latter. "The music is in thirds and we basically mimic each other. A waltz is probably the best way to describe it."
A Spanish zarzuela will follow the classic duets. Zarzuela is a Spanish lyric-dramatic genre alternating between spoken and sung scenes.
"I don't think there's any other nationalistic music that is as distinctive as Spanish music," Cook said. "It's very, very passionate. It's (about) a tumultuous relationship. He's bringing me back in, but I'm saying, 'No, it's not worth the pain.'"
Gonzalez earned his master's degree in music at the University of
The tenor began singing while taking piano lessons at age 5. But it was a
"I was the first one to win that came from that high school ever," he said. "That was the 'aha' moment in terms of knowing music was a career path for me."
Gonzalez auditioned and won a scholarship to
"She told me she thought I had kind of a one-of-a-kind voice and she thought I could go all the way," Cook said. "I was an accidental opera singer. I got to college and they handed me an aria and I said, 'What's an aria?'"
Cook would go on to sing in "Madame Butterfly," "Gianni Schicchi" and "A Way Home" at Opera Southwest and in the chorus of this summer's
St. John's has maintained its concert program for nearly 10 years, offering from five to six events annually, Music Director
If you go
WHAT: "Music at St. John's Concert" with
WHEN: 2 today
HOW MUCH: Free-will donation. Call 833-9717 or visit musicatstjohns.org
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