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Two singers stick out especially: Dimitri Kharitonov makes a fascinating Renato: tall and graceful in appearance, with a beautiful timbre and a rich baritone voice, there is no trace of even an occasional diction problem anymore, as a Covent Garden reviewer of the same part suggested. His credentials, as his voice suggests, are impressive: after graduating with honors from the Odessa conservatory, he was only twenty one when he became the main baritone at the Odessa opera house, then, at the age of twenty four, went to Moscow where over the next five years, he sang many of the important leading parts. He was invited to La Scala, Milan, where he won four different competitions, eventually ended up in London, Italy and finally in Germany, where he now lives.

Dimitri Kharitonov (Renato, right) with Enrique Ambrosio (Ricardo) in Verdi's 'Un Ballo in Maschera' at Gut Immling. Photo © 2007 Philip Crebbin
Dimitri Kharitonov (Renato, right) with Enrique Ambrosio (Ricardo) in Verdi's 'Un Ballo in Maschera' at Gut Immling. Photo © 2007 Philip Crebbin

In England, he has sung, among others, at Covent Garden and the Royal National Opera. In France, his credentials include the Bastille, and in the US the Chicago Lyric Opera. He has stood on stage alongside Placido Domingo, and performed under many famous batons, including that of Sir Andrew Davis. Additionally, Kharitinov is a multi-talented musician who does not 'only' sing: whenever his busy schedule leaves him time, he also composes, and cites Mahler as one of his influences for his own compositions.

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Copyright © 16 August 2007 Tess Crebbin, Munich, Germany

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