(Born February 22, 1972)
Rolando Villazon is a Mexican-born tenor who came to international attention in 1999 after he won two first prizes in the international Operalia competition - for opera and for zarzuela.
He sang des Grieux in Manon for the first time in Italy and at the Teatro Carlo Felice in Genoa.
In 2000 he debuted at the Berlin State Opera as Macduff in Verdi's Macbeth. Over the years he has sung at the Berlin State Opera many times presenting some of his best roles there, including Don José in Carmen.
In 2000 in Munich he sang Rodolfo in La Bohème and in 2002 in Los Angeles Rinuccio in Gianni Schicchi.
In 2003 he sang Rodolfo at the Glyndebourne Festival Opera and he had an enormous success in the title role of Les Contes d'Hoffmann at The Royal Opera in Covent Garden.
The following year he sang the role of Alfredo in La Traviata at the Metropolitan Opera, then in 2005 he sang it with noteble success at both at St. Petersburg and the Salzburg Festival.
In addition to the opera stage Rolando Villazon has an active recording career recording Il Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda by Claudio Monteverdi.
In August 2005 he sang a highly acclaimed Alfredo in Verdi's La Traviata at the Salzburg Festival with Anna Netrebko and directed by Willy Decker. It was filmed and is available on DVD.
They have also appeared together in a filmed version of Donizetti's L'Elisir d'Amore.
In 2007 he was forced to cancel his scheduled performances to undergo surgery to correct a congenital cyst on one of his vocal chords.
After a period of reccuperation he returned to the opera stage to sing Nemorino in L'Elisir d'Amore at the Vienna State Opera.
In 2011 he made his directorial debut directing Werther at the Opéra de Lyon.