How a dental technician changed the singing technique of star tenor Jose Carreras.

Precise technical knowledge is much more important for your instrumental and musical development than famous teachers. Star tenor Jose Carreras experienced this at a young age. Below is a short excerpt from his biography:

Maestro Puig’s lessons were good for the young Carreras, but after three years he found that if he wanted to get ahead, he needed more than Puig had to offer. During this period of uncertainty, fluctuation and doubt, he met a dental technician named Joan Ruax, who became a key figure in his singing career.

Ruax had a deep musical education and recognized from day one what was good about his voice and what was not. The two had had their first contact a few years earlier at a celebration in a house on Calle Verdi in the Gracia district, in which Carreras’ parents and some members of the Liceu opera choir had taken part.

After Carreras had sung some songs, a man with a great tenor voice introduced himself to him. Although he had no academic training as a singing teacher, he was convinced that he could contribute to the promotion of Carreras’ talent. At another celebration the two met again, but it was not until he was in an artistic crisis that Carreras decided to ask Ruax for help. At that time he considered going to Italy to study singing, the Mecca of all young singers, but wanted to talk to the man who could always give him advice about his voice. “I went to Joan Roax because I had difficulties with the intonation. He told me he could not guarantee anything, but would give me some advice that might help me solve my problems. This man with a remarkable personality had an incredibly positive influence on my career.”