Paolo Fanale | Opera singer
“I live through art”
The Italian tenor Paolo Fanale climbs down from the stage of the Munich Opera House to accompany us on a journey through the art and culture of the German city.
Text: Guadalupe Rodríguez | Photos: Carlos Luján | Video: Juan Rayos
“This city has so much to offer. The first time I visited I thought: Mama mia! This is an incredible city. When I’m here and have the chance, I go to a concert or a ballet performance. Every day there’s art on offer. Classical music lovers should also visit the Ludwig Beck shopping centre, in Marienplatz. It’s a divine place”.
“Munich is full of history and art”, repeats Paolo Fanale. Although he can’t resist joking with his press agent, also Sicilian, about the rivalry between the two football teams on the Italian island, he acknowledges that he’s no expert. Cars, on the other hand, are another thing altogether.
“Hypertechonological and gleaming” is how he describes the BMW Museum, which tells the story of the brand from its origins manufacturing engines and airplanes to the cars that are on the market today. Faithful to the dichotomy between modernity and classicism, a second later he doesn’t hesitate to praise the Residenz royal palace and museum as “one of the most beautiful palaces in Europe”. And he is enchanted by the decorative details of the opera house where Richard Strauss used to conduct and where Richard Wagner’s operas were premiered. “One place that fascinates me is Lenbachhaus, a painter’s residence and art gallery showing works from the 19th century up to contemporary art”, he adds.
“Another place that you have to visit is the incredibly beautiful cathedral, where they say you can see the footprint of the devil”, he recommends. Legend has it that the devil became angry after being tricked by the architect, who had promised him that he would build a church without windows if he did not interfere in the works. “Perhaps it’s true”, he jokes.
Paolo Fanale ends his tour around the attractions of Munich with a culinary recommendation: “Everyone who visits should eat a pretzel and drink a beer. They are the best in the world”. He acknowledges that maintaining physical discipline is very important for his work. But he can’t say no to a good beer. Another deal with the devil?