Biography of Miguel B. Fleta (1897-1938)

Spanish tenor, born in Albalate de Cinca (Huesca) on December 1, 1897 and died in La Coruña on May 28, 1938.

A member of a large and humble family, Fleta had to work in agriculture since age eight. Its first teacher of music theory was Lázaro Uriol. Later he moved to Zaragoza, where lived her sister Ines, and there devoted to Aragonese jotas sing. In 1917 he acted in the Jota Festival of Villanueva de Gallego and the contest official of Jota, Zaragoza, where did not obtain any prize. In November of that same year, he decided to settle in Barcelona, he enrolled at the Conservatory. He studied for two years with the soprano Luisa Pierrick, which he later married and had two sons, Miguel and Alfonso. Despite the training received, their knowledge of music theory and vocal technique was always scarce and this caused him problems throughout his operatic career. In 1919 came his debut in Trieste (Italy), where he sang the role of Paolo in Francesca da Rimini Riccardo Zandonai.

At the age of twenty-two he joined the opera of Mattia Battistini company and on one of his tours had to know to Puccini, who showed her some disagreement with his interpretation of Tosca. But in 1922, Zandonai trusted again in him to sing the lead role in his last opera Giulietta e Romeo in Rome. Shortly afterwards arose at the Teatro Real in Madrid singing Carmen by Bizet, opera that led to the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, as well as other theaters in Latin America including the city of Mexico and Havana.

His American debut at the Metropolitan in New York with the opera Tosca, in the company of the singer Maria Jeritza occurred in 1923. Later, she sang the role of the Duke of Mantua in a Rigoletto represented in the Scala in Milan under the direction of Arturo Toscanini, who admonished him for his way of interpreting the vocal embellishments. Despite this, Toscanini continued trusting Fleta and entrusted the role of Calaf in the world premiere of Turandot, Puccini's last opera.

In April 1924 he acquired the mansion Villa Fleta and acted in Monovar (Alicante), which claimed 25,000 pesetas, an astronomical figure for the time. That same year came his third trip to America. There he was received in praise of multitude, and such was its popularity in cities such as Buenos Aires and Santiago de Chile, that his name was on brands of shoes, shirts and hats. It was also required by the Metropolitan New York to participate in a tribute to Puccini with many other singers of renown.

On January 26, 1926 was held the christening of her second child, which was sponsored by the King Alfonso XIII. That same day he sang Tosca at a charity function in favour of the victims of the first world war. The following year separated from Luisa Pierrick and married Carmen Mirat, whom she had met at Salamanca while he recreated the role of Lohengrin by Wagner. After her second marriage she continued singing way exacerbated by Europe and America until in 1928 his vocal cords began to fail and had to retire from the scene for a year. In 1929, some recovered from his condition, sang in the far East and America, and was at that time when he publicly showed their sympathies towards the second Spanish Republic.

He continued to give recitals, but due to her vocal problem had started to sing in places like cafes and Bullrings. When the quality of their treble had diminished considerably and their tremolos were too patent, he decided to focus on zarzuela and make tours in the company of the master Moreno Torroba. In 1935 he returned to Spain, where he became interested in the political ideas of José Antonio Primo de Rivera and even appeared publicly dress Falangist, though years ago he made recordings of the Marseillaise and the anthem of irrigation. In February of the following year premiered opera Christus of the composer Juan Álvarez García at the Calderón Theatre in Madrid, and in 1937 he sang Carmen at the Coliseum dos Recreios in Lisbon. In May 1938 he died a uremia in La Coruña.

Their repertoire was primarily Verismo (see realism), and included operas as Lucia di Lamermoor of Donizetti, I Pagliacci Leoncavallo, and others such as Manon by Jules Massenet. The word from Fleta possessed great expressiveness and color, even though their lack of taste and some technical problems caused his early professional decline.

Selected bibliography

Gomez, C.: Images of a voice: Zaragoza, Miguel Fleta (1897-1938): Department of education and culture, 1997.

SAIZ VALDIVIESO, A. C.: Miguel Fleta: a voice memo, Bilbao: Laga, 1997.

SOLSONA, f.: Life, work and person of Miguel Fleta, Zaragoza: Government of Aragon, Department of education and culture, 1998.

Selected discography

Great Singers At La Scala Milan. Several composers. Cast: Miguel Fleta and others. 7858 NIMBUS Miguel Fleta: Arias 1.Several composers. Main performers: Miguel Fleta, Florence Austral, Lucrezia Bori, Edna Thornton. PREISER 89002. Miguel Fleta: Prima Voce. Several composers. 7889 NIMBUS. Miguel Fleta Vol. III-Lebendige Vergangenheit. Several composers. PREISER 89149