It's time for our annual year-end wrap up with our "Best of 2015"
feature where we highlight our favorite posts. Many of these were
actually chosen by our readers, as we closely followed how much traffic
each of our posts were receiving.
BEST NEWCOMERS: Jason Duika
was new to our site this year and his beach photos proved so popular that we invited him to appear in our 2016 Barihunks Charity Calendar, where he proved just as popular. He was a finalist last year in the James Toland Vocal Competition and is currently a young artist with the Palm Beach Opera where he will sing Dancairo, cover Escamillo in Bizet's Carmen
, sing the family performance and cover Dr. Malatesta in Donizettis Don Pasquale
, sing Paquiro in Granados' Goyescas
, and sing the Wigmaker in Strauss' Ariadne auf Naxos
These are some photos of Iosu Yeregui
that didn't make it into the calendar, as they were not of high enough resolution, so we thought we'd share them now. The singer was born in San Sebastian, where he studied contemporary dance, flute and humanities for business. On stage, he's performed Sarastro in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte
, Masetto in Mozart's Don Giovanni
, Colas in Mozart's Bastien und Bastienne
and, most recently, Lodovico in Verdi's Otello
with Opera de la ABAO in Bilbao, Spain.
BEST READER SUBMISSION: Brandon Coleman
was suggested to us by more than one reader and these pictures we haven't previously posted. Upcoming performances include Bartolo in Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro
with Kentucky Opera from May 20-24, 2016 and Ferrando in Verdi's Il Trovatore
with the Hawaii Opera Theatre.
BEST COMEBACK: Dmitri Hvorostovsky
|Dmitri Hvorostovsky at The Met|
made a triumphant return to the stage on September 25th in the Met's Il Trovatore
after being treated for brain cancer in London. The New York audience greeting him with rollicking applause. He was joined by Anna
Netrebko as the heroine Leonora, Dolora Zajick as the gypsy Azucena,
Yonghoon Lee as Manrico and Štefan Kocán as Ferrando. Unfortunately, we recently learned that he's returning to London for additional treatments.
Russian President Vladimir Putin also bestowed the Order of Alexander
Nevsky on Hvorostovsky, which is given for
exceptional artistry over a period of 20 years or more.
BEST NEW SONG PERFORMANCE:
|Clint Borzoni & Michael Weyandt|
We can't imagine a better new song in the lieder repertory than one about our favorite topic. Michael Weyandt
premiered Clint Borzoni's "The Barihunk Song" at the
National Opera Center in New York in March. The composer and blond barihunk also teamed up at operamission
for "When Adonis Calls" with a libretto by John De Los Santos based on erotic poetry by Gavin Geoffrey Dillard. Borzoni will premiering two new songs On January 22 and 24 with barihunk Marco Vassalli and Musica Marin
written for String Quartet and Baritone.
HOTTEST PORTRAYAL OF A REAL PERSON:
These pictures of bass-barihunk Soloman Howard
's portrayal of boxing legend Muhammad Ali proved extremely popular with our readers. He performed DJ Sparr's Approaching Ali
with bothe the North Carolina Opera and at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. He'll be performing Prince Gremin in Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin in January with the North Carolina Opera and Fafner in Wagner's Das Rheingold with the Wshington National Opera in April/May 2016.
BEST TWITTER DISCOVERY:
We'd been following bass-barihunk Brad Baron
on Twitter for some time, but when he hit the gym we realized it was time to add him to the site. He's currently pursuing his Masters of Music at LSU and is one of the most entertaining singers on Twitter. You can follow him @BaronAsInRed
|Dan Kempson in Streetcar Named Desire (with honorary barihunk Carrie Hennessey)|
Dan Kempson created a sensation with his performance of Stanley in André Previn's A Streetcar Named Desir
e, which was done in collaboration between the Fresno Grand Opera and Townsend Opera in Modesto. The opera played to enthusiastic crowds and his photos were the second most viewed on the site this year. Sadly, Kempson has announced his premature retirement from opera to pursue an advanced degree in opera/music administration. We wish him the best of luck. (Barihunks Liam Bonner and Jason Hardy have also announced their early retirements).
BEST SINGER BIO:
One of our most popular posts of the entire year was Pennsylvania native Zachary Luchetti's
spoof of singer biographies. His biography was not only the
funniest singer bios that we'd ever read, but it perfectly lampooned the
beefed up biographies that many performers post on their websites. A sample: "While he isn’t exactly sought after, he has amassed an impressive resume of over 70 roles in his short career."
|Philipp Hochmair in "Der Ring: Siegfried/Götterdämmerung" |
|Christopher Maltman in Iphigénie en Tauride|
HOTTEST NUDE SCENES: Philipp Hochmair
performance in "Der Ring: Siegfried/Götterdämmerung"isn't technically opera, as it was a theater piece based on The Ring with music by Wagner. But who could argue with Hochmair's full frontal assault in the role of Siegfried as the innocent forest child, which is true to the original
story as the hero bathes in the blood of the freshly slain dragon to
For a performance in an actual opera, one couldn't beat Christopher Maltman
's full monty in Gluck's Iphigénie en Tauride
the Whitsun Festival at Salzburg. The British singer is no stranger to nudity, having appeared in the buff in the Kasper Holten's movie Juan
and in Mozart's Don Giovanni
|Marco Vassalli & Malte Roesner|
BEST CALENDAR MODELS: Marco Vassalli and Malte Roesner
|Marco Vassalli & Malte Roesner|
joined us in Montreuil-Bellay in the heart of France's Loire Valley for this year's Barihunk Calendar shoot and did the camera ever love these two German singers!
Roesner is the most featured calendar model this year, appearing on our cover, as well as in January, June and December. The singer has modeled in the past and was featured in an ad campaign for the opera company in Braunschweig. He's also one of the most intelligent singers who we've ever encountered and has translated librettos into German, including Jake Heggie's For a Look or a Touch
and Jonathan Dove's Mansfield Park
Vassalli took so many sexy photos that we helped him put together a separate calendar, where $10 of each purchase will go to fund his upcoming US debut with Musica Marin on January 22 and 24. You can purchase your own copy HERE
or buy tickets to his concert HERE
. Vassalli is also well read and chose the poems for his upcoming program, which were set to music by composer Clint Borzoni. He selected Hilde Domin's Margere Kost
and Hermann Hesse's Stufen
BEST NEW WEBSITE:
|Photos from Hadleigh Adams' new website.|
Few singers have had more enduring popularity on Barihunks than Hadleigh Adams
and this year was no exception. Photos from his performances in the title role of Vivaldi's Bajazet
with Pinchguy Opera, Orlando in RB Schlather provocative production at Whitebox in NYC and his biographical cabaret in San Francisco proved to be particularly popular. His website is available at http://www.hadleighadams.com
He will be Falke in Cincinnati Opera's upcoming production of Johann Strauss' Die Fledermaus
BEST COMPETITION WINNERS:
Low male voices swept the 2015 Wigmore/Kohn International Song Competition as Milan Siljanov
took 1st Prize, Samuel Hasselhorn
took 2nd Prize and James Newby
took 3rd Prize. Newby added to the sweep by also winning the Richard Tauber Prize given for the best interpretation of Schubert. His program included Finzi's Let us garlands bring
and Schubert's An Sylvia?
BEST REALITY TV PERFORMANCE:
Finnish barihunk Waltteri Torikka
won MTV's singing competition Tähdet, Tähdet
(Stars, Stars) garnering 58% of the vote and bringing the audience to
its feet with his own hip swinging rendition of Ricky Martin's Livin' La Vida Loca
. His victory culminated a two month journey that included performances of Whitesnake's Still of Nigh
a country version of "Ring of Fire," the punk rock song "Hei hei mitä
kuuluu," a Finnish tango, and even an Ozzy Osbourne-esque version of
Scarpia from Tosca!
Torikka was subsequently voted as the "Sexiest Man in Finland" by the readers of the women's magazine Eeva (Eve).
BEST GROUP PHOTO:
|The cast of La Fanciulla del West in Des Moines|
Michael Yeshion, who has photographed many of our calendar models, took these group photos at the Des Moines Metro Opera, during a break in rehearsals for their production of Puccini's La Fanciulla del West (The Girl of the Golden West)
. The barihunk rich cast included Alex Soare, Andrew Potter, Cesar Mendez Silvagnoli, Christopher Job, Geoffrey Penar, Joshua Jeremiah, Harry Greenleaf, Jonathan Harris, Trevor Martin, Tyler Alessi and Zach Owen
BEST PHOTO IN DRAG:
|Thomas Tatzl as Papageno|
Even with regietheater all the rage in European, it's tough to top Austrian barihunk Thomas Tatzl
performing Papageno topless in a dress with a chorus of transsexual nuns! He's currently singing the role in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte
at the Theater Basel.
BEST BLUE BARIHUNK: Keith Miller'
|Keith Miller in Florencia en al Amazonas|
s shirtless picture covered in blue body paint as Riolobo in Daniel Catán's Florencia en al Amazonas
with the Nashville Opera was pretty hot. Director John Hoomes said the costume was "...inspired by
the male costumes from Trinidad Carnival."
If you want to keep Barihunks up and running in 2016, you can support us by purchasing our Charity Calendar! It features 18 of the sexiest men in opera and all of the proceeds go to supporting young artists. ORDER TODAY by clicking HERE
(you won't regret it!).