Bruno de Sa, a soprano of another kind


Bruno de Sa, in Paris, on May 17, 2021.

Bruno de Sa combines two evidences: a woman’s voice and a man’s body. Jet hair, beard and mustache, sparkling eyes and dancing allure, the Brazilian soprano stunned the lyrical world when a video appeared on the Internet. He sings there Bellini, the famous cavatina “Se Romeo t’uccise un figlio”, taken fromI Capuleti and Montecchi, excerpt from a television recital broadcast on the Cultura channel, in 2018, in Sao Paulo. Impossible to know, eyes closed, that this voice of liquid gold, these beautifully vibrated and projected stratospheric high notes, this agility and this expressiveness are not those of a coloratura, but of a man in his early thirties.

“Singing has always been part of my life”notes the musician, whose family, practicing, regularly attends the pews and choirs of the church in Santo André, in the suburbs of Sao Paulo, where he was born, on November 29, 1989. “I was 2 years old, and I remember asking to sing, too. Not in the choirs, but as a soloist. My mother put me on a chair to reach the microphone. It was one of those songs from the Protestant tradition, something like I Would Be Faithful, but in Portuguese. Since then, I have never stopped singing, at church, at home. »

Becoming a musician didn’t happen for all that. The piano, started at 7 years old, immediately hated, is quickly abandoned – “I learned pretty well, but cried going to music school” – in favor of the flute (which he practiced for four years in a university orchestra) and the clarinet. In children’s choirs, little Bruno climbs higher than the girls, sings his first solo at the age of 9 and treats his family to Queen of the Night counterfeits. in The Magic Flute, by Mozart. But it is at puberty that the unheard of becomes clearer. The adolescent does not molt. At most, he feels the need for greater muscle support in the treble.

“A special voice”

“It was much later, when I was already at university, that my parents realized that I had a special voice., does he sum up. They wondered if I should continue. Probably to protect me. A lot of people wondered about the fact that I didn’t sing like a man. » The question of gender was immediately invited in Bruno de Sa’s career. The Brazilian indeed has a natural soprano, not the wide-ranging countertenor voice that Philippe Jaroussky or one Max Emanuel Cencicsopranists in their infancy, gradually passing to a range of mezzo, then alto.

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