Tuesday, January 6, 2009

LA Times: Beefcake goes baritone and tenor too

[Photo of Gunn and Kaiser from LA Times; photo of Gunther Groissboeck from http://www.guenther-groissboeck.com]

The LA Times has run a piece on the pretty boys performing in the Magic Flute at the LA Opera. Although they focus on Nathan Gunn and Joseph Kaiser, Barihunks readers will be thrilled to know that Gunther Groissboeck plays Sarastro and barihunk Markus Werba takes over for Gunn in four performances. Amazingly, the LA Times fails to mention both Werba and Groissboeck (who arguably is the hottest guy in the cast - see photo!).

It's nice to see how unapologetically Gunn relishes being a barihunk. Here's part of what he says:

Gunn has become an expert when it comes to visual distractions: “Every opera where there’s a love scene or where I am semi-dressed, like the bathing scene in ‘Billy Budd,’ there’s this attention about ‘Is Nathan Gunn getting naked again?’”

It all started with a 1997 production of Gluck’s “IphigĂ©nie en Tauride” at Glimmerglass Opera in upstate New York. Gunn and tenor William Burden were told to hit the gym for the production envisioned by director Francesca Zambello. “It worked,” he says with a laugh. “The theater was selling out opera glasses.”

More important, as the New York Times noted of Gunn and Burden: “When they are thrown into the temple, bruised, stripped down to loincloths and chained together, they create a kind of intensity rare in the opera house. Their physicality might have been distracting had their singing not been so ardent and intelligent.”

If buzz about his shirtless scenes attracts newcomers, that’s fine, says Gunn, as long as they — as well as worried purists — realize that opera’s traditional reverence for the voice isn’t diminished just because “you make it believable for an audience by having characters who can sing and act and look the way they should.”

To read the entire article, click here:

To buy tickets or to get more information, click here: www.laopera.com.

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  1. The LA Time is either blind or stupid for not hailing Gunther Groissboeck as the hottest dude in Zauberflote. Kaiser and Gunn are good looking, but Gunther is total beefcake!!!!!

  2. The photos say it all. Gunther is rock hard hot.

  3. Clearly, the Los Angeles Times wrote this before they saw the opera. Gunther Groissboeck is the hottest guy in opera. Period.

  4. He's not only hot, he has some pipes. Can you post the video of him singing the Beethoven 9th?

  5. Nathan Gunn is for PG-13 tastes, but Gunther is for us with R-rated sensibilities. Looking forward to more posts of him.

  6. I disagree with Nathan Gunn, I have yet to hear an opera performance done as well by a half naked beefcake than by someone traditionally suited for the role. Opera has switched from great singing to "acting" with the emphasis being on whether or not some one looks like they could be half naked for half the opera. Soft core opera porn prevails when it should not! People were excited by two men in loincloths, shackled together because of the homo erotic nature of the scene, not because of a thrilling and stirring performance!

  7. How have you not blogged about THE HOTTEST TENOR TODAY? Michael Morrow http://michaelmorrowtenor.com