José Cura was born in Rosario, Argentina on 5 December 1962. At the age of 16, he began studying composition with Carlos Castro and the piano with Zulma Cabrera and in 1982 began studying at the School of Arts at the National University of Rosario. A year later, he became assistant conductor for the University choir. After winning a grant, he moved to the School of Arts of the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires where he studied composition and conducting. For several years, he also sang in the theatre chorus. In 1988 he met Horacio Amauri who taught him his singing technique and started him off on the road to success. To further his operatic career, he moved to Europe in 1991 with his wife Silvia and young son José Ben, settling in Verona, Italy. They now have three children (José Ben, Yazmine and Nicolás). From there, the family moved to France, near Paris. For the past few years, the family has been based in Madrid. In 1992, he met tenor Vittorio Terranova who helped him to master Italian operatic style. The following year, he made his debut in Verona playing the role of the father in Pollicino. His first big break came in March 1993 in Trieste when he sang the role of Jan in Bibalo's Miss Julie. Since then his career has flourished not only in Italy (Turin, Genoa, Palermo, Rome, Ravenna, Milan, Bologna, Torre del Largo, Martina Franca and Verona) but also in America (Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington DC), France (Paris and Marseille), London, Ireland (Cork, Limerick and Dublin), Australia (Sydney and Melbourne), Vienna, Amsterdam, Zürich, Germany (Munich, Stuttgart, Mannheim, Bielefeld, Köln, Hanover and Frankfurt) and Tokyo. The critics heralded him as one of the tenors of the nineties. His London debut was in 1995 in Verdi's Stiffelio after which one critic wrote, "...Cura is a real find, an Othello in waiting". In May 1997 he fulfilled that prophecy at the Teatro Regio Torino when he sang his first Otello with Claudio Abbado and the Berliner Philharmoniker. A performance greatly acclaimed by the critics and loved by the audience. Since then, he has sung the role at many world famous venues. In April 1999 he made his opera debut at the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires as Otello. Since then he has added Sweden, Spain and the Lebanon to the list. In 1999 José was awarded the distinction of Professor honoris cause at the CAECE University in Buenos Aires and was also made Citizen of Honour by the city of Rosario. His first two studio recordings 'Puccini Arias' and 'Anhelo' received very favourable reviews from critics around the world. His long awaited first opera recording, 'Samson et Dalila' with Olga Borodina was released in 1998 and was very favourably received. 'Manon Lescaut' was released in March 2000 and is a live recording from the Teatro alla Scala and also features Maria Guleghina. In July 2000, he sang in the extremely successful performance of La Traviata from Paris which was televised and broadcast in over 100 countries In 2000, José was also knighted "Chevalier de l'Ordre du Cedre" - equivalent to the British title of Lord - by the Lebanese Government As well as singing, José has continued his career as a conductor and has been appointed Principal Guest Conductor of Sinfonia Varsovia in Warsaw. During 2001, José has performed the role of Otello in Vienna, Paris, London, Athens Nice and Zürich. As well as a series of concerts in Germany, Italy, and Hungary, he has also given much acclaimed performances of Don Carlo and Cavaradossi in Tosca. He will continue his concert tour in the coming months in Japan before returning to Europe where his opera appearances over the coming months will include Pagliacci and Il Trovatore. In November 2001, José conducted the Sinfonia Varsovia at a Gala concert in Warsaw. In 2002, José performed in 'I Pagliacci' in Vienna, 'Il Trovatore' in London and 'Otello' in Zurich. He has also performed in Holland, Sweden, Italy, and Taiwan. He is also continuing his work with the Sinfonia Varsovia. In 2004 he returned to The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, for a revival of 'Samson et Dalila'.