Bryn Terfel's Faenol Festival 2007
OPERA GALA ARTISTS
FABIO ARMILIATO – Tenor
Fabio Armiliato is one of the most important Italian tenors of the last decade. Born in Genoa he graduated from the Conservatorio di Musica "N. Paganini" in his home town, where he also studied composition. Winner of the "Tito Schipa" competition in Lecce and of the Concorso Internazionale "Pavia Lirica" he gave his opera debut in November 1986 at Jesi with the role of Licinio in La Vestale by Spontini.
After this big success his international career developed really rapidly and led him to the following opera houses: Teatro dell’Opera di Roma: Ernani (title role), Tosca (Cavaradossi); Teatro Massimo di Palermo: Cavalleria Rusticana (Turiddu); Teatro Carlo Felice di Genova: Norma (Pollione); Opernhaus Zürich: Un Ballo di Maschera (Riccardo); Oper Frankfurt: La Bohème (Rodolfo); Opéra de Montpellier: Don Carlo (title role), Simon Boccanegra (Gabriele Adorno). In 1993 he made his debut at the MET in New York in Verdi‘s Il Trovatore (Manrico). He has since appeared at the Met for more than eight seasons and has also been on tour in Japan: Aida (Radames), Cavalleria Rusticana (Turiddu), Simon Boccanegra (Gabriele Adorno), Don Carlo (Don Carlo), Fedora (Loris) with Mirella Freni. Other milestones in the past years of Fabio Armilito‘s career were his debut as Faust in Boito‘s Mefistofele conducted by M° Riccardo Muti at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan; Adriana Leucouvreur (Maurizio) and Tosca (Cavaradossi) at the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires; Aida (Radames) and Il Trovatore (Manrico) at the San Francisco Opera; Tosca (Cavaradossi) with Daniela Dessì at the Lyric Opera Chicago, La Bohème (Rodolfo) with Mirella Freni at the Teatro Regio di Parma; Un Ballo di Maschera (Riccardo) and Carmen (Don José) at the Wiener Staatsoper, his concert debut at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden and his triumphal debut at Carnegie Hall in New York, in the title role of Donizetti's Poliuto conducted by M° Eve Queler. In 1999-2000 he returned to Buenos Aires in unforgettable performances of Mefistofele with Samuel Ramey and then he had another notable success at the MET in Aida and Cavalleria rusticana; followed by another important debut: La Fanciulla del West (Dick Johnsson), in Nizza and Montpellier, in a beautiful production by Giancarlo Del Monaco. After he was Ernani in Genoa and Vienna, the season ended with one of the most incredible success in Armiliato's career: Andrea Chenier in Nizza with Daniela Dessì. Critics crowned him as "The best Chenier of our days" (G.C. Landini - L'Opera).
In summer 2000 he sang Aida at the Arena di Verona and the following season starred with a standing ovation for his debut at the Washington Opera in Il Trovatore conducted by Placido Domingo. After that, Un ballo in maschera in Munich, Aida in Berlin and Bologna, and Don Carlo, Tosca and Aida at the Wiener Staatsoper were following.
Armiliato began the 2000-01 season with another role debut as Luigi in Puccini's Il Tabarro, followed again with Andrea Chenier in Sevilla, acclaimed by audience and critics. Then he sang Tosca in Hamburg, Paris and Lecce before returning to the MET as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly with Daniela Dessì and the direction of his brother Marco. After a triumphal Carmen with Jennifer Larmore and the direction of Placido Domingo Armiliato returned to La Scala as Pinkerton in a successful series of performances in Madama Butterfly and with Tosca at Arena di Verona (summer 2002) he consolidated his artistic collaboration with Daniela Dessì, his wife also in real life, which continued in the 2002-03 season with Tosca in Moscow in a tournèe with the Teatro dell'Opera di Roma, Madama Butterfly in Palermo and Ancona (for the re-opening of the theatre), Andrea Chenier in Venice and Turin, Manon Lescaut in Sevilla and Adriana Lecouvereur in Naples.
Among his last engagements, he had particular success with Cavalleria rusticana and Pagliacci at the same evening (Trieste 2003), Aida at Barcelona (which is also available in DVD), Francesca da Rimini with Daniela Dessì at Rome and Macerata, Tosca at Madrid, Barcelona and Berlin, Andrea Chenier with Daniela Dessì and Renato Palumbo at Bologna, Simon Boccanegra (new production by Lamberto Puggelli) at Parma, Madama Butterfly under the baton of Placido Domingo at Torre del Lago and Don Carlo at Munich (5 acts, with Zubin Mehta), Dresden and Florence under the baton of Maestro Zubin Mehta, Madama Butterfly in Japan, Andrea Chenier at the Wiener Staatsoper, at Teatro Massimo in Palermo and in Bilbao, Cavalleria rusticana at the MET of New York, La Fanciulla del West at Puccini’s Festival in Torre del Lago.
In 1999 he won two important acknowledgements for his international career: The "Galliano Masini" Prize by the city of Livorno and the prestigious "GIGLI D'ORO" by the "Accademia Beniamino Gigli" of Recanati (MC). In December 2002 he received the 1° “Aureliano Pertile” Prize.
The discography of Fabio Armiliato includes a live recital for the “10 anni di Carriera” (“10 years of carrier”) (Kicco), “Tribute to Verdi” with Marcello Panni, Messa di Gloria with Piero Cappuccilli and Amica by Mascagni (Kicco), Cena delle beffe by Giordano (Bongiovanni), Nabucco with Renato Bruson, Maria Guleghina and Daniel Oren (Valois) and, with Daniela Dessì, the romances by Toselli and Manon Lescaut (Real Sound) and Aida and Tosca in DVD.
In the 2005/06 season he triumphed in Don Carlo at the Théâtre du Capitole in Toulouse and at the Wiener Staatsoper, Manon Lescaut at the Teatro Regio di Parma and at the Deutsche Oper, Tosca at the Palm Beach Lyric Opera, at the Teatro alla Scala of Milan and at the Covent Garden in London and in Madama Butterfly in Verona and Barcelona.
In the 2006/07 season he performed, with a huge success, Tosca in Rome, in Japan (a tour with Teatro dell’Opera di Roma) and at the at the Bayerische Staatsoper, Don Carlo at the Bayerische Staatsoper and at the Opernhaus in Zürich, Manon Lescaut at the Liceu of Barcelona and at the Wiener Staatsoper, Turandot in Baden-Baden under V. Gergiev’s baton, Adriana Lecouvreur at the Teatro alla Scala of Milan and Ernani at the Teatro Regio in Torino.
Armiliato’s upcoming schedule includes, among others, Carmen with Teatro San Carlo di Napoli, La Bohème in Oslo, Andrea Chènier at the Gran Teatre de Liceu di Barcellona, Manon Lescaut at the Wiener Staatsoper, Norma at the Teatro Comunale di Bologna and a serious of concerts at the Fundacion Festival de Opera in Oviedo and at the Opera Festival in Savonlinna.
CARLOS ALVAREZ - Baritone
Carlos Alvarez was born in Malaga. He studied singing and music at the Conservatory of his home city while also studying Medicine. In 1990 he began studying singing with Alfonso García Leoz.
His career has flourished since his debut, and nowadays he is a familiar face at the world’s most renowned theatres including Vienna’s Staatsoper, where he has been a guest for the last nine consecutive seasons under Mutti, Ozawa, Viotti, Fabio Luisi, among others, and at New York’s Met where he has sung six seasons already, and will sing for the next five seasons.
Alvarez has received a number of important awards, including: “Cultural Work Award” (Government of Andalusia,); “Grammy Award”; Canne’s “Classical Award”, Spain’s National Gold Medal; Gold Medal for Artistic Achievements awarded by the Government of Andalusia, Spain; “Award 2003” to the best 2002 Season baritone, chosen by Milan’s Opera magazine; “National Musical Award 2002” by the Spanish Ministry of Culture.
Forthcoming engagements include seasons in Milan, Madrid, Vienna, Chicago, Tokyo and Barcelona
REBECCA EVANS - Soprano
Rebecca Evans was born in South Wales and studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
At the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, she has sung Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), Zerlina (Don Giovanni), Nannetta (Falstaff) and Johanna (Sweeney Todd). A regular guest at the Bayerische Staatsoper, Munich, her roles there have included Nannetta conducted by Zubin Mehta, Sophie (Der Rosenkavalier), Zdenka (Arabella), Servilia (La clemenza di Tito), Ilia (Idomeneo) and, most recently, Susanna (Le nozze di Figaro) again with Mehta. Elsewhere she has sung Ilia for the Netherlands Opera and Opera de Lausanne; the title role of ‘The Cunning Little Vixen’ for Scottish Opera; Pamina, Susanna, Ilia, Marzelline (Fidelio), Norina (Don Pasquale) and Hero (Béatrice and Bénédict) for Welsh National Opera and Romilda (Xerxes) for ENO.
She has also established a major operatic career in America where she has sung Susanna and Zerlina for the Metropolitan Opera, New York; Susanna for the Santa Fe Opera; Adèle (Die Fledermaus) for the Lyric Opera of Chicago; and Zerlina, Anne Trulove (The Rake’s Progress) and Adina (L’Elisir d’Amore) for San Francisco Opera.
Last season she had a terrific success as Pamina in Chicago with Sir Andrew Davis and she made her debut at the Deutsche Staatsoper, Berlin, as Despina (Così fan tutte) with Daniel Barenboim. In London, her performances as Ginevra (Ariodante) at English National Opera were hailed as ‘outstanding’. She began the 2006/07 season with a tremendous role debut as Mimi (La bohème) for Welsh National Opera. Future engagements include Despina at Covent Garden, her role debut as Governess (The Turn of the Screw) for ENO, Ginevra in Munich and Pamina at WNO.
In the 2005/06 season she made a triumphant debut at the Salzburg Festival singing Mozart arias with the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra and Sylvain Cambreling. Her extensive concert experience includes appearances at the BBC Proms and at the Edinburgh International Festival; Gala Concerts with Andrea Bocelli and with Luciano Pavarotti; and a Gala Concert to celebrate the opening of the Welsh Assembly in the presence of Her Majesty the Queen and HRH The Prince of Wales. She has performed Mozart’s ‘Mass in C Minor’ with Mehta in Munich, Bach’s ‘Magnificat’ with the San Francisco Symphony conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas; Brahms’ ‘Requiem’ with the Boston Symphony Orchestra conducted by Jeffrey Tate at the Tanglewood Festival; Mahler’s Fourth Symphony on tour with the Sapporo Symphony Orchestra and Tadaaki Otaka and Schumann’s ‘Faust Szenen’ and Brahms’ ‘Requiem’ at the Ravinia Festival. In Australia she has appeared at the Melbourne International Festival and on tour with the Australian Chamber Orchestra. In recital, she has sung at the Wigmore Hall, London; and the Barcelona, Ravinia, Buxton, Belfast and Beaulieu-sur-Mer Festivals.
She has recorded prolifically including Marzelline and Pamina both with Sir Charles Mackerras, and Ilia with David Parry, for Chandos; Nanetta with Sir John Eliot Gardiner for Decca; a series of Gilbert and Sullivan recordings with Sir Charles Mackerras and a solo recording of Italian songs for EMI. She sang Belinda in the BBC film of ‘Dido and Aeneas’ (later released on CD and Video) and hosted her own BBC television series ‘A Touch of Classics’ with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales.
CHRISTINE RICE – Mezzo Soprano
Christine Rice was born and educated in Manchester and read physics at Balliol College, Oxford before entering the Royal Northern College of Music to study with Robert Alderson.
At The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden her operatic roles have included Emilia (‘Otello’), Suzuki (‘Madama Butterfly’), Miranda (Ades’ ‘The Tempest’) the title role in ‘The Rape of Lucretia’, Siebel (‘Faust’), Sonyetka (‘Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk’) and Judith (‘Duke Bluebeard’s Castle’). For the English National Opera she has sung Nero (‘Agrippina’), Hermia (‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’), Olga (‘Eugene Onegin’), Bradamante (‘Alcina’) under Sir Charles Mackerras and Rosina (‘Il Barbiere di Siviglia’); for La Monnaie Brussels, Varvara (‘Kát’a Kabanová’); for De Vlaamse Opera the title roles in ‘Ariodante’ and ‘Rinaldo’; for Glyndebourne Festival Opera, Mercedes (‘Carmen’); and for Glyndebourne Touring Opera, the title roles in ‘Carmen’, ‘Cenerentola’ and Irene in ‘Theodora’. She has appeared at the Bayerische Staatsoper, Munich as Ariodante and Rinaldo; for the Teatro Real Madrid as Hermia (‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’) and for Seattle Opera as Dorabella (‘Cosi Fan Tutte’).
Christine's concert appearances include Elgar’s ‘Sea Pictures’ and Debussy’s ‘La Damouiselle Elue’ with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Wagner’s ‘Das Rheingold’ with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment under Sir Simon Rattle, ‘The Dream of Gerontius’ with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Mozart’s ‘Kronungsmesse’ with the English Chamber Orchestra under Paul Goodwin and Vivaldi’s ‘Gloria’ with the London Mozart Players. Last year she sang Annio in ‘La Clemenza di Tito’ at the Edinburgh Festival under Sir Charles Mackerras, which was also recorded for Deutsche Grammophon.
For the BBC she has recorded De Falla ‘El Amor Brujo’, Elgar ‘Sea Pictures’, Berlioz ‘Les Nuits D’Ete’ and a series of English song recitals with Iain Burnside including Wolf’s ‘Spanisches Liederbuch’. Opera recordings include Annio (‘La Clemenza di Tito’ for Deutsche Grammophon). Christine has also recorded an EMI debut recital disc with Roger Vignoles.
Current engagements include Concepcion in a new production of ‘L’Heure Espagnol’ directed by Richard Jones and conducted by Antonio Pappano for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden; Nero in ‘Coronation of Poppea’ for English National Opera; Dorabella in Munich and Penelope in ‘Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria’ for Frankfurt Opera.
GARETH JONES – Conductor
Gareth Jones, born in South Wales, joined the Music Staff at Welsh National Opera in 1990 and to date he has conducted performances of Un Ballo in Maschera, Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Turandot, Nabucco, La Traviata, Ernani, Die Fledermaus, Eugene Onegin, The Yeomen of the Guard, Faust, La Boheme, Fidelio, Billy Budd, The Carmelites, Carmen, Katya Kabanova, The Cunning Little Vixen, Jenufa, Le Nozze di Figaro and Der Fliegende Hollander for WNO and The Mikado for the Vancouver Opera. Gareth was Associate Music Director of the New D’Oyly Carte Opera Company from 1988 - 1990 where he conducted The Yeomen of the Guard, Iolanthe, The Mikado and The Pirates of Penzance. In 2004, Gareth made his debut with English National Opera conducting The Mikado.
Concert work in the United Kingdom has included appearances with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Orchestra of Welsh National Opera, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra and the Manchester Camerata.
Between 1992 and 1994, Gareth worked closely with the American choreographer, Mark Morris, conducting performances with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra at the Edinburgh International Festival and with the Australian Chamber Orchestra at the Adelaide Festival.
In 1996, Gareth formed Sinfonia Cymru, which in its brief history has established itself as a major orchestral force in Wales. Many established artists have worked with Gareth and the orchestra including Dennis O’Neill, Rebecca Evans, Gwyn Hughes Jones, Peter Donohoe, David Pyatt, Jean Philippe-Collard, Michael Collins, Chloe Hanslip, Catrin Finch and Guy Johnston.
As a result of a highly acclaimed concert given by Sinfonia Cymru in April 2000 with Bryn Terfel, which included a performance of “Wotan’s Farewell”, a special bond has developed between Bryn, Gareth and the orchestra. Gareth has worked with Bryn Terfel on numerous projects including the disc “We’ll Keep a Welcome”, opera galas at Faenol, Henley and Hampton Court Festivals in addition to concerts in Dublin, Stockholm, Sydney and Melbourne and a television recording of Handel’s Messiah for S4C. Gareth also made his BBC Prom debut in September 2002 with Bryn Terfel and Renée Fleming in works by Wagner and Richard Strauss.
Highlights in 2006 included gala concerts at Henley Festival with Sinfonia Cymru, Llangollen Festival with the Halle Orchestra and the Opera Gala at Bryn Terfel’s Faenol Festival with guest soloists Angela Gheorghiu and Rolando Villazón. Future engagements include concerts with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra and the Ulster Orchestra and Carmen, Madam Butterfly, La Cenerentola and The Magic Flute for WNO.
THE ORCHESTRA OF WNO
The Orchestra of Welsh National Opera was formed in 1970. Since then it has become internationally recognised as a world-class ensemble by both critics and audiences. The Orchestra of WNO performs the full traditional operatic repertoire on tour in England and Wales. The Orchestra also performs regularly at key festivals and concert venues throughout the UK, including appearances at St David’s Hall Orchestral Concert Series, the Welsh Proms, the National Eisteddfod and Llangollen International. In 2007, the Orchestra appears at Symphony Hall, Birmingham, with Angela Gheorghui.
The Orchestra of WNO is one of the two resident orchestras for the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition. In smaller ensembles and as individual players, members of the Orchestra fulful a wide programme of events through WNO MAX, the initiative that takes opera beyond the main stage.
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