“It is a great honour to me” is the dedication that American singer Gregory Kunde wrote on one of the González Byass casks. On the eve of his recital –the opening event of the 4th Tío Pepe Festival– the prestigious tenor visited the wineries along with Mauricio González-Gordon, president of González Byass and member of the family’s fifth generation
After touring the most representative and historic nooks of the winery, Gregory Kunde –accompanied by his wife, soprano Linda Wojciechowski, and pianist José Ramón Martín– seemed excited about the tour and eager to open a festival that has become one of the benchmark summer events in Spain. “I was able to walk around the city and I am delighted. It is a great honour to me to open the Tío Pepe Festival this year. I am very happy about it and for being able to share some duets on stage with my wife” –Kunde told reporters.
The Rochester-born tenor of has prepared a stimulating musical journey for the recital that will open the 4th Tío Pepe Festival on August 10th at the Villa Victorina Gardens, in the premises of Bodegas González Byass in Jerez. In one of his only two concerts this summer in Spain, the American tenor will devout the first part of his show to bel canto, with a series of well-known arias by Verdi, Puccini and Leoncavallo; for the second half he will sing popular pieces that were once sung by the likes of Frank Sinatra and Barbra Streisand –most of them belonging to some of the most acclaimed Broadway musicals, such as West Side Story or The Phantom of the Opera.
With Gregory Kunde’s exclusive show, the 4th Tío Pepe Festival will officially be inaugurated: an event meant to be a multiple sensorial experience, combining culture, wine, gastronomy and tradition in the privileged setting of the Bodegas González Byass in Jerez. Coinciding with the concert, the 4th Tío Pepe Festival will open an important solidarity line that will be continued and reinforced in the following editions. On this occasion, the Festival will donate a part of the benefits from Gregory Kunde’s show to the Spanish Association against Cancer.
At age 63, Kunde is one of the greatest voices in the international bell canto scene and a habitual figure in the opera seasons of the best theatres of the world, where he constantly reaps success and ovations. The musical selection for the inauguration of the 4th Tío Pepe Festival –an event promoted by González Byass and awarded “Best Wine Tourism Experience 2016” with a special mention by Acevin– will also include arias from operas like “Tosca”, “I Pagliacci” and “Otello”, a libretto that Gregory Kunde currently interprets at London’s Royal Opera House, one of the greatest world opera temples.