Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Childhood internet sensation now a barihunk

Régis Mengus as a baritone and boy soprano
32-year-old Régis Mengus was a childhood internet sensation long before he became known in the world opera. A few years ago, a video of him with fellow boy soprano Hyacinthe de Moulins singing Rossini's Cat Duet began appearing on blogs and websites drawing millions of views. The performance was with the famed boys choir Les Petits Chanteurs à la Croix de Bois, who were presenting a concert in Seoul, Korea in 1996.  

Mengus, who came from a blue collar family with little exposure to the arts, was drawn to music as a young boy. He started piano lesson at the age of six, but joined the choir two years later after realizing that singing was his true passion. Shortly after joining the group, he rose to the coveted role of soloist with the boys choir (and the video shows why). 

Later, he joined the Conservatoire à rayonnement régional de Metz Métropole Gabriel-Pierné in Metz, France. After being granted First Prize by the jury, he made his stage debut at the Opéra de Metz at the age of nineteen. He subsequently performed Malatesta in Donizetti's Don Pasquale and Figaro in Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro.

In 2008, he made debut outside of France at the National Opera of Athens is Christian in Cyrano et Roxane, before returning to Metz to sing Thomas' Hamlet. 

Régis Mengus as Danilo in The Merry Widow in Lausanne
Other performances throughout France have included  Pas sur la bouche (Not on the Lips) at the Opéra de Tours, Moralès in Carmen at the Opera Caen, Yamadori in Madama Butterfly at Opera of St Etienne, Wagner in Faust Opéra de Metz, Danilo in Die lustige Witwe (The Merry Widow) at the Théâtre de Reimsand Robert Perceval in Andre Messager's Passionnement at the Opéra de Tours.

In October 2013, he won both the First Prize for me and the Audience Award at the International Competition of Singing in Vivonne. In March 2014, he won First Prize, the Audience Award, and a Special Award at the International Competition of Bordeaux.

He is currently singing Danilo in The Merry Widow through December 31st at l'Opéra de Lausanne.Tickets and additional cast information are available online.

Doug Carpenter and Richard Alexandre Rittelmann in the Barihunks calendar
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