After performing this season at the Paris National Opera as Maddalena in Rigoletto, now he comes to Madrid, the Teatro de la Zarzuela, with his recital "Gypsy".
With the same serenity that shows on stage and sensuality of an enveloping voice, Canarian mezzosoprano Nancy Fabiola Herrera receives us in Madrid newcomer Brazil, after giving two successful concerts there.
CLASSIC ELAN: He continued his studies in the USA and developed most of his professional career in the American Continent.. Does America Offer More Artistic Opportunities Than Europe?
NANCY FABIOLA HERRERA: NYC is a nerve center for the arts, the most important in the whole continent. European record companies are also represented and carry out their casting and auditions. For all this, and more if you have done your studies there, it is very comfortable to live and work there. Professionally it is the best place for me and it is where my pianist is also, my preparers, my teacher and I don't have to go to other places to audition. Above all it offers comfort.
B.C: Spoken of "Gypsies", which is the production that brings you to the Teatro de la Zarzuela in Madrid, What's different?
N.F.H.: This concert is a recital to use. It differs from the initial show in that we have dispensed with the corps de ballet and part of the stage representation. The main idea is to use works in which the protagonist is the Spanish gypsy woman within the world of lyric, symphonic, opera and zarzuela. This role of woman is the protagonist of the show.
B.C: The characters she plays are usually very temperamental women with an important dramatic demand. At some point there is a clash between both techniques, the vowel and the artistic?
N.F.H.: To avoid this you must have great versatility and mastery. Each character has a different vocal requirement, apart from the dramatic requirement. The vocality of a zarzuela is not the same as, if it is complete, you have to combine the spoken part with the sung part, with an opera that has no dialogue. The requirement is different.
This recital is about women, all of them temperamental, and that offers the opportunity to show a very diverse color palette.. These works represent different aspects of that gypsy woman. Represents the passionate part, the superstition part, of magic, the gypsy who emigrates, the one who dies of love. So you have to have a great chameleon capacity to be able to go from one character to another in a single night and give each one its specific characteristics..
This is not easy but it is a very nice challenge. It means that you can take the audience on a journey of emotions under the same common thread, which is the gypsy woman seen through the eyes of different composers. They are characters that touch me deeply and that have a part that I really like, which is their spiritual component..
B.C: And is there in the representation a certain margin of improvisation or do we have to abide by the dictatorship of the stage direction?
N.F.H.: When we talk about a staging we always start from an initial concept, but there is nothing unforgiving. You can have a director with a very specific concept, see a character in a certain way and make a scenic proposal, but the artist also has to agree with that proposal. If the agreement is not complete, dialogue must be sought until it is achieved to be convincing in the interpretation. If you do not believe in the scenic proposal it is very difficult to reach the public. One has to be convinced of what it does, but there is usually no dictatorship except in very extreme cases. Forever, in the interest of the director, as in the artist's, a dialogue is established and a joint creation is reached. Ideas are shared and the result is the result of the idea of both.
B.C: It has a very versatile and forceful instrument and we see how it grows and matures. With its characteristics and regarding the repertoire, Where do you think your voice is evolving?
N.F.H.: The voice is a changing entity. Attending to that change, there are two main issues: one is the repertoire that by nature is most comfortable with your voice and another, is the one that you adapt as the voice matures.
Within what is most appropriate for me to sing, I like to be versatile, play different characters with different vocal tessituras. Always within my characteristics. I'm interested in characters who have something to say, who have wealth and different styles. I don't like to say that I am a specialist in a specific repertoire and stick to it, although this is also very beautiful and a real art. But in my case I think there is such a varied palette of works and styles that I can't resist making inroads into each of them..
The voice is something that one observes how it changes, as it acquires solidity and its characteristics change. Then a repertoire is defined that, maybe, It was not the most suitable at first but the one that is reached after an evolution of the voice.
Soon I see myself making incursions into works by Verdi, an early Verdi, more lyrical. Roles perhaps more appropriate to the current maturity of my voice. For example a Delilah or a Gioconda. They are roles that are of great weight and maturity. I am absorbing and testing, when I see that something is mature enough and is suitable and comfortable for my characteristics, I'm going forward with it.
B.C: Regarding the acquisition of new audiences, both spectators and artists, how do you see the future of opera?
N.F.H.: I believe that theaters are making a great effort to present proposals that are closer to all types of audiences. For several years, shows have been offered that make the lyric more popular.
I believe that the concert of the three Tenors marked a before and after in this type of event. It was no longer just an exclusive group that could have access to the lyrics. There was hardly anyone left in the world who did not know that this concert had taken place, and its protagonists became popular and were recognized by all audiences. It is important to join different proposals to reach more people, but always respecting the essence of the works to be represented.
I am optimistic about the future, It is a world in constant transformation. Regarding the artists, there are a lot of wonderful voices and I think that now the singers have more opportunities to train, to really prepare for this race. The handicap may be that we live in the world of speed and immediacy. It seems that there is not enough time to mature, that there is no time, we want it all now and the voice is an internal physical process.
Nowadays it seems that what prevails in a singer when interpreting a character is the physical component, it seems that the voice has gone into the background, and we are talking about opera, where the most important thing is the voice, the instrument. That the role played is the right one. But it doesn't always happen that way. The danger is that a young artist is required roles that are not suitable. If these aspects are not taken care of, the career of an artist can be shortened. You must be patient, very difficult thing when you are young, Y, especially, in these moments in which the immediate is so important. Looks like we missed the train.
The need to mature, to have a long-term projection, allows better career development. Sometimes even the agents or theaters themselves also fall into that error. It seems that it is about offering something in the short term without caring too much about what may happen later. Young artists must be aware and not give in to immediacy. They must be observant of their voice and its characteristics and choose very well what is convenient at all times.. The opposite can take its toll.
While, we have to be imaginative to attract the public, make him attend theaters to see any artistic expression. That they are not satisfied with watching a video or television. Let them come to enjoy it live and appreciate the difference. be surprised.
B.C: Ud. He has a great ability to transmit on stage, How do you channel all that energy that reaches the public?
N.F.H.: I believe that above all we are communicators. The actor, the singer, the painter… we try to communicate with our art. At that moment you become a channel of energy in which, through music, you stimulate the senses and feelings of those who listen to us.Cr
I think it is very important to be honest with yourself and not ignore your inner self.. You have to be able to dare to show joy, the suffering, the passion… and all very honestly.
When I have to play a character, at that moment i become him, in this way I observe that I reach the public with more intensity. If I adopt the character, yes i believe it, whoever listens to me will believe it too. If that is not the case, it's hard to convince anyone. energy doesn't lie, it arrives or it does not arrive.
There are people who interpret with such honesty, with a capacity for heart-to-heart communication that moves you inside, that does not leave you indifferent and that is what the public is looking for. They don't want to leave the theater the same way they entered. For that you have to let the energy flow and the magic of communication occurs.
For this to happen, you have to work a lot with your own body., to respond to those vocal demands and when you get on stage, not have to think or calculate, but let everything flow.