It’s not every day that a classical guitarist is asked to perform in front 60,000 spectators in sports stadium. Yet that is precisely where Pablo Villegas found himself on June 29 when he was part of a all-star tribute to the legendary Spanish tenor Plácido Domingo, celebrating his 75th birthday with a benefit concert (dubbed “Placido en el Alma”/”Placido in the Soul”) at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in Madrid. The extraordinary evening, which raised funds for the Real Madrid Foundation (run by the nearly unbeatable Real Madrid football team) and its program to finance more than three-dozen sports schools, also included appearances by more than two-dozen other performers from different genres of music, including Alejandro Fernández, Juanes, Andrea Bocelli, India Martinez, Arturo Sandoval, Il Volo, and Diana Navarro, to name just a few.
Here, Villegas and Domingo pour themselves into a stunning version of the zarzuela aria “Adiós Granada,” from a 1905 opera called The Emigrants, by Tomás Barrera (1870-1938). Beautiful!
In other Pablo Villegas news, he made his debut at Amsterdam’s renowned Concertgebouw on July 11, and July 19 he starts an extensive tour of Japan, where he’ll be playing Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez with the National Symphony of Spain.