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    Gardar Thor Cortes

    Described as ‘the James Bond of Classical Music’, Gardar Thor Cortes, who hails from Iceland, had phenomenal success with a British number one album called Cortes, sell-out tours and a Classical Brit Award nomination in 2008. Having taken 4 years out to focus on his then new-born son and family, he is now ready to take the recording and performing world by storm again with two albums in development – one crossover and the other classical.

    Gardar Thor Cortes studies began at an early age at the Reykjavik School of Singing. Furthering his career, he attended the Hochschule für Darstellende Kunst and Musik in Vienna, had private lessons in New York and Copenhagen and took the two year opera course at the Royal Academy of Music in London. His teachers have included David Maxwell Anderson, Stuart Burrows, Paul Farrington, Paul Wynne Griffiths, David Jones, Kiri Te Kanawa, Andre Orlowitz, Robin Stapleton and Michael Rhodes and his versatile voice has enabled him to sing and have success in a wide variety of music – opera, oratorio, lieder, musicals, contemporary music and jazz.

    Gardar has sung the major opera roles of Ferrando (Cosi fan tutte), Fenton (Falstaff), Afredo (La Traviata), Rinucchio (Gianna Schicchi), Italian singer (Der Rosenkavalier), Vakula (Cherevichki), Chanfalla (Das Wundertheater, Il duca (Rigoletto), Don Ramiro (La Cenerentola) and Nemorino (L’elisir d’amore) with his latest two roles being Tamino (Die Zauberflöte) and Rodolfo (La Boheme) at the Icelandic Opera. Future engagements include Don Jose (Carmen) for the Icelandic Opera in 2013.

    Having been nominated for the Icelandic Music Awards and the Icelandic Performing Arts Awards for his opera roles numerous times as well as being voted sexiest man in Iceland not once but twice, his singing engagements have taken him to Scandinavia, Europe, USA and Asia and the prestigious venues of the Barbican, Royal Albert Hall and Royal Festival Hall in London and Carnegie Hall in New York. He sang at one of the BBC’s top featured events; the Proms in the Park in front of 40,000 people, broadcast live to millions of people, and has taken part in a number of their other entertainment programmes. He has toured with Katherine Jenkins, Kiri Te Kanawa and Lesley Garrett.

    Gardar has released albums, classical and crossover in both in his native Iceland and the UK, Germany, Austria, and Switzerland reaching number 1 in the charts in South Africa and Taiwan. In 2011 he recorded an album of duets with his father Gardar Cortes Snr. Entitled ‘Island’ which has received great critical acclaim.

    His appearances in musicals have included Curly (Oklahoma), Tony (West Side Story), and Raoul in Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty’s Theatre in the West End of London. In 2011 Gardar took part in 25th Anniversary of the Phantom of the Opera at Royal Albert Hall, a production that was broadcast live to cinemas across the globe and released on DVD. Leaving 2012 behind with an unusual sell-out performance of Mozart’s Requiem at Langholtskirkja in Iceland with symphony orchestra and choir on the 4th/5th December at the exact time of Mozart’s passing and a New Years Eve concert at the beautiful Icelandic Church Grafarvogskirkja which produced come magic moments, 2013 looks to be the year Thor Cortes’s second and true coming.