The Canadian Tenors boast an impressive history of performances, gracing television screens at prestigious events like the Emmys, the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, and even enchanting the Queen at Windsor Castle. In 2010, however, the seasoned group faced a surprise orchestrated by none other than Oprah Winfrey.
Aware of the band’s admiration for Celine Dion, Oprah orchestrated a jaw-dropping moment during their performance of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” on her show. The iconic Canadian singer, Celine Dion, made a surprise appearance, leaving the Tenors visibly shocked. The initial surprise transformed into pure delight as they seamlessly continued the song, creating a once-in-a-lifetime performance marked by exquisite harmonies and Celine’s effortless professionalism, sliding into the collaboration without prior rehearsal.
The magical collaboration became an internet sensation, garnering over 20 million views on YouTube. Viewers expressed their admiration for the unexpected reactions of the Canadian Tenors, appreciating the genuine shock and mutual respect displayed during the memorable encounter.
But who exactly are the Canadian Tenors? Formed in 2004 by Jill Ann Siemens, the group initially started as a trio and underwent several changes before finalizing its long-term lineup through a nationwide search. The quartet, consisting of Victor Micallef, Fraser Walters, Remigio Pereira, and Clifton Murray, signed with Verve Records in 2012 and received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee medal in 2013. Their journey includes appearances on Strictly Come Dancing and successful album releases, with surprising chart success in the US classical charts.
However, in 2016, the band faced controversy during an MLB All-Star Game performance of the Canadian national anthem. Remigio Pereira deviated from the lyrics, delivering a message seemingly in opposition to the Black Lives Matter movement, leading to social media backlash. The band swiftly distanced themselves from his actions, and he left shortly after.
Despite this setback, the Canadian Tenors continue to thrive as a trio, gaining popularity with 134,000 YouTube subscribers and 45,000 monthly listens on Spotify. Their impressive resume includes performances at renowned venues like Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Centre, and the Israeli Opera House. If you haven’t experienced their enchanting melodies, now is the perfect time to explore their musical journey.