Vladimir Jurowski: Die Nacht vor Weihnachten
“Die Nacht vor Weihnachten” –
Oper in vier Akten (konzertante Aufführung)
Vladimir Jurowski - Conductor
Vladimir Jurowski has been Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin since 2017. He has meanwhile extended his contract until 2027. In parallel, he has been General Music Director of the Bavarian State Opera in Munich since 2021.
After receiving training at the Moscow Conservatory The conductor, pianist and musicologist Vladimir Jurowski emigrated to Germany in 1990. Here he continued his studies at the music conservatories in Dresden and Berlin. In 1995 he made his international debut at the British Wexford Festival with Rimski-Korsakov’s Mainacht and in the same year at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden with Nabucco. Subsequently he was, among other things, First Kapellmeister of the Komische Oper Berlin (1997- 2001) and Music Director of the Glyndebourne Festival Opera (2001-2013). In 2003 Vladimir Jurowski was appointed Principal Guest Conductor of the London Philharmonic Orchestra and has been its Principal Conductor since 2007 until 2021. He was also Artistic Director of the State Academic Symphony Orchestra Yevgeny Svetlanov of the Russian Federation until 2021, Artistic Director of the International George Enescu Festival in Bucharest and Principal Artist of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in Great Britain. He works regularly with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and the ensemble unitedberlin.
Vladimir Jurowski has conducted the major orchestras of Europe and North America, including the Berlin, Vienna and New York Philharmonic Orchestras, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, the Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras, the Boston and Chicago Symphony Orchestras, the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, the Staatskapelle Dresden and the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra.
He is a recurring guest conductor in in London, Berlin, Dresden, Luzern, Schleswig-Holstein und Grafenegg as well as at the Rostopowitsch-Festival. Although Vladimir Jurowski is invited as a guest conductor by top orchestras from all over the world, in future he would like to concentrate his activities on that geographical area which is acceptable to him from an ecological point of view.
In 2022/2023 he performed with the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin in concerts in various cities in Germany, Italy and Antwerp in the Netherlands. The joint CD recordings of Vladimir Jurowski and the RSB began in 2015 with Alfred Schnittke’s Symphony No. 3, followed by works by Britten, Hindemith, Strauss, Mahler and soon again Schnittke.
Vladimir Jurowski has been the recipient of numerous awards for his achievements, including various international record prizes. In 2016, he was bestowed an honorary doctorate from Prince Charles at the Royal College of Music in London. In 2018, the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards named him Conductor of the Year. In summer 2020, Jurowski was awarded the Order of Cultural Merit by the Romanian President in recognition of his work as Artistic Director of the George Enescu Festival.
Mikhail Vekua - Tenor (Wakula)
After graduating from the Moscow State Conservatory in 2004, Mikhail Vekua quickly emerged as one of the most important heroic tenors of our time.
He has been a soloist with the Stanislavsky Theater in Moscow since 2002 and has toured with them extensively in Korea, Estonia, Latvia and Cyprus, singing numerous leading roles in Lucia di Lammermoor, Carmen, Werther, Madama Butterfly, Tosca, Demon, The Tale of Tsar Saltan and many more.
In 2012, he made his stage debut as Loge in Das Rheingold at the Mariinsky Theatre under the baton of Valery Gergiev. Since 2013 he has been a member of the Mariinsky Opera Company at this theater.
His repertoire as a concert soloist includes tenor roles in Verdi’s Requiem, in Rachmaninov’s The Bells, “The Creation” by J. Haydn, “Messa di Gloria” by G. Puccini, Symphony No. 9 by Beethoven. He also performed Janácek’s “Glagolitic Mass” at the BBC Proms in London and the world premiere of the revised version of Gubaidulina’s “Cantata on Love and Hate” in Rotterdam in 2018 under Valery Gergiev.
Past highlights include a concert performance of Die Walküre as Siegmund under the baton of Kent Nagano in Moscow, as Loge in Das Rheingold at the Edinburgh Festival, the title role in Tristan und Isolde and The Gambler in Barcelona, Erik in Der Fliegende Holländer and Pollione in Norma in Dortmund, Herman in Pique Dame on tour in China. Just before his MET debut in a new production of Prince Igor by Dmitry Chernyakov, he appeared in the American premiere of Taneyev’s Orestaia, which was recorded and televised. His performances as Loge, Siegmund and Siegfried in Siegfried and Die Götterdämmerung on tour with the Mariinsky in Britain and France and, of course, at the Mariinsky Theatre have earned him high acclaim in the Wagner repertoire. His brilliant debut as Parsifal at the Mariinsky Theatre in 2018, as well as the marathon performance of Die RING, in which he sang Loge, Siegmund and both Siegfrieds on four consecutive days, proved that he is an incredibly stable performer.
Upcoming engagements include a concert performance of Turandot conducted by Kazushi Ono in Barcelona, performances of Die Götterdämmerung in Oviedo, a tour of China with the Mariinsky Theatre, the title role in Tristan und Isolde in a new production at the Teatro Petruzzelli di Bari, and a debut at the Konzerthaus Berlin with Christoph Eschenbach. Further appearances as Parsifal, Radames, Faust, Samson, Don Jose and Herman at the Mariinsky Theatre.
Dimitry Ulyanov - Bass (Tschubb)
Dmitry Ulyanov joined the Ekaterinburg Opera and Ballet Theater as a soloist in 1997. The following year he started as a soloist at the Moscow Novaya Opera Theater where he sang such roles as Loredano (Two Foskari by J. Verdi), Varlaam (Boris Godunov by MP Mussorgsky), Stromminger (Walli A. Catalani).
In 2000 he graduated from the Ural State Conservatory under Professor V.Yu. Pisarev and in the same year he received the Grand Prize at the I International Singing Competition under the auspices of UNESCO in Kazakhstan.
Since 2000, he has also been a soloist at the Moscow Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko Academic Musical Theater, where he has performed numerous roles, including Herman from “Tannhauser” Kutuzov from “War and Peace”, Don Juan from “Don Juan”, Lindorf-Koppelius-Dapertutto-Miracle from “Tales”, Head from ” May Night “, Don Basilio from ” The Barber of Seville “, Don Alfonso from “All Women Do This”, Gremin from “Eugene Onegin”, Ramfis from “Aida”, Colleen from “Bohemia”, Goodal from “Demon” and Prince Ivan Khovansky from ” Khovanshchina”.
With the theater company he toured the USA (2002, 2004), South Korea (2003), Germany (2006), Italy (2009), Cyprus, Latvia and Estonia, as well as many cities of Russia (St. Petersburg, Ekaterinburg, Samara, Saratov, Kirov, Rostov-on-Don, Cheboksary, etc.).
Since November 2009 he has been a guest soloist of the Bolshoi Theater in Russia. He made his debut in the role of the Doctor in the world premiere of A. Berg’s opera “Wozzeck” (director – D. Chernyakov, conductor – T. Currentzis). Among the roles played are Philip II (Don Carlos J. Verdi), Boris Timofeevich (Katerina Izmailova D. Shostakovich, conductor Rimas Tuminas), Escamillo (Carmen J. Bizet). Dmitry opened the 2017/18 season on the historic stage of the Bolshoi Theater with his debut in the role of Boris Godunov (“Boris Godunov” by M. Mussorgsky).
In December 2008 he performed the role of Banco in a joint project of the Novosibirsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater and Opera Bastille (directed by D. Chernyakov, conducted by T. Currentzis). In May 2009 he appeared in this production on the stage of Opera Bastille (Paris).
In April 2010 Dmitry Ulyanov performed the role of Cardinal De Brony in the opera “Judea” by F. Galevi on the stage of the Israeli Opera in Tel Aviv (director – D. Pountney, conductor – D. Oren). He participated in productions of the Municipal Opera of Marseille, the Opera of Monte Carlo, the National Rhine Opera (Strasbourg), the Capitol Theater (Toulouse) – all France – and the Theater of Cagliari (Italy). After his debut in February 2011 on the stage of the Royal Opera of Madrid (Spain) as Marseille in a concert production of J. Meyerbe’s Huguenots directed by Renato Palumbo, Dmitry Ulyanov began a close collaboration with the Real Theater and other Spanish theaters, such as the Maestranza Theater in Seville (The Grand Inquisitor in J. Verdi’s opera Don Carlos, Hunding in the Valkyrie by R. Wagner), Festival in La Coruña (Sparafucile in Verdi’s opera Rigoletto with Leo Nucci in the title role). In January 2012, Dmitry Ulyanov sang the role of King Rene (“Iolanthe” by P. Tchaikovsky) in the new production of director P. Sellars and conductor T. Currentzis. The performance was broadcast on the MEZZO channel and released on DVD. On the stage of the theater Real also sang the roles of Pimen (Boris Godunov by M. Mussorgsky) and Banco (Macbeth by J. Verdi). In 2013, the singer made his debut on the stage of Opera Bilbao in the role of Procida in Verdi’s opera Sicilian Vespers. He also sang the role of Sparafucile at the Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville (conductor: Pedro Halfter, in the title role: Leo Nucci). On the stage of the theater, Real also sang the roles of Pimen (Boris Godunov by M. Mussorgsky) and Banco (Macbeth by J. Verdi). In 2013, the singer made his debut on the stage of Opera Bilbao in the role of Procida in Verdi’s opera Sicilian Vespers. He also sang the role of Sparafucile at the Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville (conductor: Pedro Halfter, in the title role: Leo Nucci). On the stage of the theater, Real also sang the roles of Pimen (Boris Godunov by M. Mussorgsky) and Banco (Macbeth by J. Verdi). In 2013, the singer made his debut on the stage of Opera Bilbao in the role of Procida in Verdi’s opera Sicilian Vespers. He also sang the role of Sparafucile at the Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville (conductor: Pedro Halfter, in the title role: Leo Nucci).
In the 2013/14 season, active cooperation with Spanish theaters continued. On the stage of the theater Real sang the role of Basilio in the Barber of Seville by J. Rossini (conductor – Tomasz Hanus, director – Emilio Sagi) and participated in the performance of J. Rossini’s Stabat Mater. He played the role of Ramfi in Aida by J. Verdi (Teatro de la Maestranza, Seville, conductor Pedro Halfter, director José Antonio Gutierrez). At the New National Theater of Tokyo (conductor A. Rubikis) and at the Bolshoi Theater of Russia (conductor Laurent Campellone, director D. Pountney) he sang Escamillo (J. Bizet’s “Carmen”).
In the 2014/15 season he made his debut at the famous opera house Liceu Barcelona, where he performed the role of Don Basilio in Joacchino Rossini’s “Barber of Seville” (conductor Giuseppe Finzi, director Juan Font) and also the role of Philip II in the play “Don Carlos” of the Bolshoi Theater of Russia (Sagripanti, director E. Noble). On the tour of the Moscow Academic Musical Theater in Tianjin (China) he sang the role of Kutuzov in the opera “War and Peace” by S. S. Prokofiev (conductor – F. Korobov, director – A. Titel). He also sang the roles of Landgrave in “Tannhäuser” by R. Wagner (Novosibirsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater, conductor A. Rubikis), de Bronny in “Judea” by F. Halevi (Flemish Opera, Antwerp, Ghent, Belgium, conductors – Tomasz Netopil , Yannis Pospourikas, director – Peter Convichny), King Rene in “Iolanta” P.I.
In the 2015/16 season Dosifey at the Basel Opera House (conductor – Kirill Karabits, director – Vasily Barkhatov), Don Basilio at the Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville (conductor – Giuseppe Finzi, director – Jose Luis Castro), King Rene in “Iolanta” P. I. Tchaikovsky (Lyon Opera House, conductor – Martin Brabbins, director – Peter Sellars), General in “Gambler” S. Prokofiev (Monte Carlo Opera House, conductor – Mikhail Tatarnikov, director – Jean-Louis Grinda). In the 2016/17 season led the roles of Daland in The Flying Dutchman (Flemish Opera, conductor Cornelius Meister, director Tatyana Gyurbacha), Khan Konchak and Vladimir Galitsky in Prince Igor (National Opera of the Netherlands, conductor Stanislav Kochanovsky, director Dmitry Chernyakov), Tsar Dodona in The Golden Cockerel (Real Madrid Theater, conductor – Ivor Bolton, director – Laurent Pelly).
In the 2017/18 season he made his debut at the Salzburg Festival in the role of Boris Timofeyevich (“Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk County” by D. D. Shostakovich, conductor – Maris Jansons, director – Andreas Krigenburg) and at the Vienna State Opera in the role of the General (“Player” S. S. Prokofiev, conductor – Simone Young, director – Carolina Gruber). In September 2017, the long-awaited debut in the role of Tsar Boris in the opera M.P. Mussorgsky “Boris Godunov” on the Historical Stage of the Bolshoi Theater. He also appeared on the stage of the Bolshoi Theatre in the 2017/2018 season in the roles of Boris Timofeyevich (Katerina Izmaylova D.D. Shostakovich, conductor Tugan Sokhiev) and Philip II (Don Carlos J. Verdi, conductor Keri-Lynn Wilson). As part of the IV Music Festival of Vasily Ladyuk, “Live Opera” he performed the main role of Attila in the concert performance of the opera “Attila” by J. Verdi for the first time in his career. In February 2018, he sang the same role on the stage of the Auditorium de Lyon concert hall (Lyon, France) as part of the Verdi Festival. In April 2018 he sang the role of Boris Izmailov in the opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk and successfully debuted on the stage of the Neapolitan Theater San Carlo (director – Martin Tabernacle, conductor – Juraj Valchuja), played the role of the General on the stage of the Basel Opera House in the new opera by S. Prokofiev “The Player”, directed by Vasily Barkhatov.
May 23, 2018 on the stage of the Moscow Academic Musical Theater. K. S. Stanislavsky and Vl. I. Nemirovich – Danchenko a recital of songs by Dmitry Ulyanov, dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the artistic activity of the opera. The concert is also part of the cycle of symphonic concerts of the theater orchestra. The program included scenes from the opera Boris Godunov by M. P. Musorgsky in the orchestra of D. Shostakovich, as well as Symphony No. 1 and “Execution of Stepan Razin”, a vocal and symphonic poem based on words of Yevgeny Yevtushenko for bass, choir and orchestra D. Shostakovich. (Conductor – Felix Korobov, Symphony Orchestra of the Musical Theater to K. S. Stanislavsky and Vl. I. Nemirovich – Danchenko, Choir of the Academy of Choral Arts after V. S. Popov).
For the roles of Kutuzov (War and Peace by S. Prokofiev, 2013) and Ivan Khovansky (Khovanshchina by M. Mussorgsky, 2016) he was twice nominated for the National Theater Golden Mask Award in the category “Best Performer in Opera”. For the role of Ivan Khovansky in the opera Khovanshchina, he was also awarded the title of laureate of the Russian opera award Casta Diva in the category “Best singer of the year”.
Conducts a busy concert schedule, collaborates with the State Academic Choir Chapel them. A. Yurlova, State Academic Symphony Orchestra at hand. V. Polyansky. Cooperates with several Russian opera houses (St. Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Perm, Cheboksary).
Sofia Fomina - Sopran (Oksana)
Sofia Fomina first burst onto the international operatic scene in 2012 when she made a sensational debut at the Royal Opera House as Isabelle in Meyerbeer’s “Robert le Diable”. A previous member of the Saarländisches Staatstheater and Frankfurt Opera she has since appeared at Paris Opera, Glyndebourne Festival, Bayerische Staatsoper, Hungarian National Opera, Royal Opera House, Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse, Baden-Baden Festspielhaus, Seattle Opera, Theater an der Wien, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Wigmore Hall and the BBC Proms.
Recent highlights include Zerbinetta (“Ariadne auf Naxos”) at Staatsoper Hamburg; Adele (“Die Fledermaus”), Gilda (“Rigoletto”), Fiakiermili (“Arabella”) and Oscar (“Un ballo in maschera”) at Bayersiche Staatsoper and Pamina (“Die Zauberflöte”) at Glyndebourne Festival and the BBC Proms.
On the concert platform she performed Mahler’s 2nd Symphony with Vladimir Jurowski and the London Philharmonic Orchestra and with Hugh Wolff and the Belgian National Orchestra; Haydn’s Harmoniemesse in Eisenstadt with Fabio Biondi; her Wigmore Hall debut together with pianist Iain Burnside and appeared at Middle Temple Hall with Julius Drake and Roderick Williams. Fomina also performed La Comtesse (“Le comte Ory”) with Teatro Nacional de São Carlos and a recital with Roger Vignoles at deSingel International Arts Campus in Antwerp.
Recent operatic successes include her appearances as Rosina (“Il Barbiere di Siviglia”) at Seattle Opera, Musetta (“La bohème”) at the Festspiele Baden-Baden with Teodor Currentzis and Gilda Rigoletto, Olympia (“Tales of Hoffmann”) and Jemmy (“Guillaume Tell”) at Royal Opera House; her debut at Opéra de Paris as Blondchen (“Die Entführung aus dem Serail”); Berthe (“Le Prophète”) at Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse; Oscar in a new production of “Un Ballo in Maschera”, Blondchen and Adele (“Die Fledermaus”) at Bayerische Staatsoper; and Aquillo in a concert performance of “Adriano in Siria” at Theater an der Wien.
Other recent engagements include concerts with the Danish National Symphony, with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, with the Czech Philharmonic, with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, with the Orchestra dell’ Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia; with Orchestra of Teatro Real.
Born in Russia, Fomina studied at the Orlovsky Music College and the Gnesin Academy of Music, Moscow. Her career began at the Novosibirsk Opera Theatre. She later joined the ensemble of the State Theatre of Saarbrucken. From 2013 to 2015 she was a member of Frankfurt Oper. In 2010 she was awarded a grant by the Wagner Association in Bayreuth.
Ksenia Dudnikova - Mezzosopran (Solocha)
Since bursting onto the international scene in 2016 with her Royal Opera House debut as Principessa di Boullion opposite Angela Gheorghiu in Adriana Lecouvreur, mezzo soprano Ksenia Dudnikova has made a series of debuts that have quickly found her a place among the most dynamic talents of her generation. The leading mezzo-soprano of the Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko Opera in Moscow, where she debuted in 2011, Dudnikova has won high praise in roles including Marfa in Khovanschina, Amneris in Aida, Pauline in The Queen of Spades, Olga in Eugene Onegin and the title role in Carmen. Her performance in Aida, staged by famed director Peter Stein, led to her nomination for Best Leading Female Role in opera at the 2015 Russian National Theatrical Gold Mask Awards. She has also appeared with the Stanislavsky Theater on several international tours, which have included visits to the Netherlands and China.
This summer 2022, Ms. Dudnikova returns to the Bolshoi as Marfa in Khovanschina. Last season, Ms. Dudnikova returned to the Opéra national de Paris as Amneris in a new production of Aida. In April of 2021, she made her debut at the Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino as the Principessa di Bouillon in Adriana Lecouvreur. In the 2019/20, the mezzo soprano made her role and house debut as Princess Eboli in Don Carlos with Oper Stuttgart and appeared in the Bolshoi’s new production Sadko. In the 2018/19 season, she made both her role and house debut as Carmen at Semperoper Dresden, after which she reprised the role for her debuts at Opéra national de Paris and Arena di Verona. She also appeared in Verdi’s Requiem with the Montreal Symphony. Dudnikova began the 2017/18 season with her debut at Opernhaus Zürich as Olga in the new production of Eugene Onegin, and she subsequently debuted at the Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville as the Principessa di Bouillon.
In the 2016/17 season, after her momentous Royal Opera House debut as Principessa di Bouillon, Dudnikova appeared for the first time at the Grand Théâtre de Genève as the title role in concert performances of Tchaikovsky’s The Maid of Orleans and starred as Amneris with the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels. In the summer of 2017, Dudnikova debuted at the Salzburg Festival as Sonyetka in Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk. In the winter of 2016, she made her debut with the Bolshoi Opera as Maddalena in Rigoletto, subsequently starring there as Marguerite in Peter Stein’s new production of Berlioz’s Damnation de Faust, under Tughan Sokiev.
Born in Andijan, Uzbekistan, Ksenia Dudnikova has resided in Russia since childhood, pursuing her musical and vocal studies at the Moscow State Conservatory under the tutelage of Klara Kadinskaya. Other roles in her developing repertoire include Dalila in Samson et Dalila, Léonor in La Favorite and Marina in Boris Godunov.
Alexander Fedorov - Tenor (Teufel)
Alexander Fedorov was born in Moscow. Studied piano and singing at the Ludwig van Beethoven Children’s School of Music (Moscow). In 2020 he completed a master’s degree at the Universität der Künste Berlin.
In 2015 Alexander performed the role of Orphée in Offenbach’s operetta Orphée aux enfers with the Berliner Symphoniker. In April 2017 he sang the solo role in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Orquesta Filarmónica de Santa Cruz de la Sierra (Bolivia). In September 2017 he became a participant in the Jeunes Chanteurs Russes programme of the Académie de l’Opéra de Monte-Carlo; performed at the 2017–18 season’s opening gala concert. Has been a guest soloist at the Staatstheater Braunschweig and the Oper Graz.
From 2019 to 2021 Alexander took part in the youth opera programme of the Komische Oper Berlin, appearing in that theatre’s productions. In 2021 he appeared under the baton of Vladimir Jurowski, performing the solo tenor role in Les Noces and the first tenor role in Stravinsky’s Renard at the Berliner Philharmonie and at the George Enescu Festival in Bucharest.
In the autumn of 2021 Alexander made his debut with the Bayerische Staatsoper in a production of Shostakovich’s The Nose conducted by Vladimir Jurowski, appearing in three roles.
Has performed the roles of Monostatos (Die Zauberflöte), Cavalier Belfiore (Il viaggio a Reims), Roméo (Roméo et Juliette), Giuseppe (La traviata), Camille de Rosillon (Die lustige Witwe), Ottokar (Der Zigeunerbaron) and Prince Paul (Offenbach’s La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolstein).
Since September 2021 he has been a soloist of the Mariinsky Academy of Young Opera Singers. In January 2022 he made his debut at the Mariinsky Theatre (Republic of North Ossetia–Alania Branch (Vladikavkaz)) in the role of Kai in Banevich’s opera for children The Story of Kai and Gerda. In February 2022 Alexander made his debut at St Petersburg’s Mariinsky Theatre, appearing as Lensky in Eugene Onegin.
Mezzosopran (Die Zarin)
Marina Prudenskaya - Mezzosopran (Die Zarin)
Following her studies at the conservatory in her native St. Petersburg, Marina Prudenskaya was engaged by the Stanislavsky Theatre in Moscow. In 2000, she changed to the Staatstheater Nuremberg, where she went on to acquire numerous roles of her repertoire. In addition to several other awards, she won the German ARD music competition in 2003.
From 2005 until 2007, she was a member of the ensemble at Deutsche Oper Berlin, followed by a period as an ensemble member at the Stuttgart State Opera. Since 2013, Marina Prudenskaya is a member of the ensemble at Staatsoper Unter den Linden Berlin, performing roles including Herodias/Salome, Venus/Tannhäuser, Komponist/Ariadne auf Naxos, Gertrud/Hansel and Gretel,
Eboli/Don Carlos, Azucena/Il trovatore, Lady Macbeth/Macbeth, Néris/Medea, as well as The Euphrat in Widmann’s Babylon.
Marina Prudenskaya is a welcome guest at the most renowned houses and festivals worldwide, including the Royal Opera House Covent Garden (Azucena/Il trovatore), Teatro Real de Madrid, Palau de les Arts in Valencia, Zurich Opera (Gertrud u. Witch/Hansel and Gretel), Teatro Municipal de Santiago de Chile, Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden (Preziosilla/La forza del destino), Bavarian State Opera Munich (Octavian/Der Rosenkavalier), State Opera Hamburg (Amneris/Aida),
Nationaltheater Mannheim (Eboli/Don Carlos), Opera Vlaanderen Antwerpen (Lady Macbeth/Macbeth), and Washington National Opera, as well as the Bayreuth Festival (Fricka/Walküre, Waltraute/Götterdämmerung), and the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence.
She collaborated with conductors, such as, Daniel Barenboim, Philippe Jordan, Christian Thielemann, Mariss Jansons, Hartmut Haenchen, Marek Janowski, Simone Young, Fabio Luisi, Daniel Harding, Sebastian Weigle, Plácido Domingo, Paolo Carignani, and Markus Poschner. In addition, Marina Prudenskaya is very sought after after as a concert artist. Highlights include Verdi’s Messa da Requiem with the Berlin Philharmonic and under the baton of Mariff Jansons at the Salzburg Easter Festival, Janacek’s Glagolitic Mass with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra and Philippe Jordan at Wiener Konzerthaus, Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde with Vladimir Jurowski Bolshoi Theater Moscow, Berlioz’ Les nuits d’été at Philharmonie Dresden, as well as Verdi’s Requiem with the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, each under the baton of Marek Janowski. Furthermore, she sang concerts i.a. at the Philharmonie am Gasteig Munich, Philharmonie Cologne, Musikverein Vienna, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, as well as at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées.
Amneris in the new production of Aida at the Grand-Théâtre de Genève, Azucena in the new productions of Il Trovatore at the Cologne Opera (Dmitri Tcherniakov) and Leipzig Opera, Komponist/Ariadne Auf Naxos, Lady Macbeth/Macbeth, and Kundry/Parsifal (under Daniel Barenboim) at Staatsoper Unter den Linden, as well as her debut at the Vienna State Opera as Herodias/Salome were among her projects in the 19/20 and 20/21 seasons. In addition, she sang concerts with the Nederlands Philharmonisch Orkest under Hartmut Haenchen, Mahler’s Symphony no 8 in Paris with Daniel Harding, and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in Nuremberg and in Dresden with Marek Janowski.
Latest engagements of Marina Prudenskaya include Erda and Waltraute in Wagner’s Ring der Nibelungen at Leipzig Opera and Deutsche Oper Berlin as well as Kundry in Parsifal at Opéra de Paris. She will appear in concerts with Accademia Santa Cecilia in Rome, Dresden Philharmonic and Houston Symphony.
Bariton (Golowa, der Bürgermeister)
Sergei Leiferkus - Bariton (Golowa, der Bürgermeister)
Sergei Leiferkus is considered one of the world’s most renowned performing artists. His ability to convey both nobility and evil makes him most noted for roles such as Scarpia in Tosca, Iago in Otello, Rangoni in Boris Godunov, Telramund in Lohengrin and Alberich in Der Ring des Nibelungen.
He has appeared at most renowned opera houses throughout the world including the Royal Opera House Covent Garden; the Vienna State Opera; the Opéra Bastille, Paris; La Scala, Milan; the Metropolitan Opera, New York; Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires; working with famous conductors such as Claudio Abbado, Valery Gergiev, Lorin Maazel, James Levine, Bernard Haitink, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Muti, Seiji Ozawa, Kent Nagano, Leonard Slatkin, Vladimir Jurowski, Kurt Masur and Sir Georg Solti.
The singer’s repertoire includes almost fifty opera roles, among them Eugene Onegin, Mazeppa, Prince Igor, Ruprecht (The Fiery Angel), Nabucco, Macbeth, Simone Boccanegra, Amonasro, Iago, Don Giovanni, Telramund, Alberich and Klingsor. He keeps extending his already vast repertoire: his role debuts in recent years include Schigolch in Lulu, the title role in Rossini‘s Guillaume Tell and L’uomo in the German premiere of Peter Eötvös’ Senza Sangue in Hamburg; Professor Preobrazhensky in the world premiere of Alexander Raskatov’s A Dog’s Heart in Amsterdam; the Forester in The Cunning Little Vixen in Glyndebourne and in Dresden; Simone in Zemlinsky‘s Florentine Tragedy in Tokyo. He also appeared in the „Troika“-production of Rachmaninov‘s three operas at La Monnaie in Brussels, in Shostakovich‘s The Nose at the Bavarian State Opera in Munich and in Tchaikovsky‘s Tsarina‘s Slippers at the Royal Opera House in London.
Sergei Leiferkus has recorded almost forty CDs. His first CD recording of songs by Mussorgsky received a Grammy nomination, while another recording of all of Mussorgsky’s songs (on four CDs) was awarded the Cannes Classical Award and the Diapason d’Or Prize in 1997.
Besides his frequent appearances in opera, concert and recital, Sergei Leiferkus also gives master classes and teaches in Berlin, Toronto, Moscow and Boston, as well as at the renowned Britten-Pears School, Aldeburgh.
Bassbariton (Panas und Pazjuk)
Milan Siljanov - Bassbariton (Panas und Pazjuk)
Hailed for his “fiery and persuasive vocal presence” (Bachtrack) and “a heartbreakingly intense singing that took one`s breath away” (Süddeutsche Zeitung), the 34-year-old Milan Siljanov returns to the Ensemble of the Bavarian State Opera in the 2021-22 season for productions of Der Freischütz, The Nose, Die Zauberflöte, Tosca, and The Cunning Little Vixen working with such distinguished conductors and directors as Vladimir Jurowski, Ivor Bolton, Daniel Oren, Mirga Grazinyte-Tyla, Barrie Kosky and Dimitri Tcherniakov. This season also marks the Irish National Opera debut of the Swiss-Macedonian bass-baritone in a production of Carmen led by Kenneth Montgomerry and directed by Paul Curran.
In the coming season 2022-23, he will debut in the role of the Forrester in The Cunning Little Vixen with Theater an der Wien led by Giedre Slekyte and directed by Stefan Herheim. He will come back to the Bavarian State Opera to sing in Hänsel und Gretel, La Traviata, Die Zauberflöte, and La Calisto.
Performance highlights during his tenure in the Munich ensemble thus far include Leporello in Don Giovanni, Dulcamara in L’elisir d’amore, Schaunard in La bohème, Donner in Das Rheingold, Peter Besenbinder in Hänsel und Gretel, Montano in Otello, Harashta in The Cunning Little Vixen, and Kilian in Der Freischütz working with Kirill Petrenko, Antonello Manacorda, Bertrand de Billy, Hans Kupfer, Lotte de Beer, and many more.
Equally in demand on the concert platfrom, his recent engagement incule Bach’s Mass in B minor with Klaus Mäkelä (Oslo Filharmonien); Verdi’s Messa da Requiem (Residentie Orkest Den Haag); Bach’s St Mattew Passion at KKL Lucerne (Orchstra La Scintilla); Puccini’s Messa da Gloria (MDR Radio Symphony Orchestra); Mozart’s Requiem with Constantinos Carydis (Mozarteumorchester Salzburg); and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with Erik Nielsen (Bilbao Symphony Orchestra).
Passionate about Art Song, Milan and collaborative pianist Nino Chokhonelidze have been regular guests at international venues such as the Wigmore Hall in London, Tonhalle Zurich, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, and Oxford Lieder Festival.
Milan Siljanov is a member of the Verbier Academy 2016 where he has been awarded the Prix Yves Paternot, the festival’s highest honour for young musicians. He is the winner of the prestigious Wigmore Hall Song Competition 2015. He won both the Audience Prize and the Second Prize at the ARD International Vocal Competition in 2018 and was a finalist at the Moniuzsko Competition in Warsaw in 2019.
Milan Siljanov was graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama where he studied under the tutelage of Rudolf Piernay. A Samling alumnus, his studies at GSMD where generously sponsored by the Worshipful Company of Wax Chandlers and Independent Opera. Previously, he had studied at the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste under Scot Weir, where he finished his Master Pedagogy Diploma cum laude.
Tenor (Küster Ossip)
Vsevolod Grivnov - Tenor (Küster Ossip)
“… One of the finest and most moving tenor voices today, his top notes have the golden glow of a strange fellow and his voice sounds as solid as Gedda” wrote, for example, the Irish Times.
Vsevolod graduated in voice and choral conducting from the Russian Gnessin Academy of Music in Moscow. Shortly thereafter, he became a soloist at the Bolshoi Theatre and began his international career, which has taken him to many prestigious opera houses in Europe and America, including La Scala Milan, Covent Garden London, Opéra Bastille Paris, Grand Théatre de Genève, Teatro Real Madrid, Deutsche Oper Berlin, as well as the Staatsoper Berlin, Los Angeles Opera and San Francisco Opera. He sang under the baton of famous conductors such as G. Rozhdestvensky, D. Runnicles, M. Tilson-Thomas, J. Conlon, K. Järvi, J. Temirkanov and very often under the three Jurovskys: Mikhail, Vladimir and Dmitri.
His wide repertoire includes Leicester in Donizetti’s Anna Bolena, Don Ottavio in Mozart’s Don Giovanni several tenor heroes in Verdi’s operas (Riccardo/Un Ballo in Maschera, Rodolfo/ Luisa Miller, Don Carlo, Radames/Aida, Alvaro/Forza del Destino). He sings Maurizio in Adriana Lecouvreur, Don José in Carmen as well as almost all tenor roles of the Russian repertoire.
In addition, Vsevolod is an active concert singer and is invited to major concert halls to sing various works such as Verdi’s Requiem, Rossini’s Stabat Mater, Rachmaninoff’s and Tchaikovsky’s Romeo and Juliet, and Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex and Les Noces. There is also a series of CDs with the collaboration of Vsevolod Grivnov.
In 2015 he sang his first Loge (Das Rheingold) in a concert in Odense and returned there for a new production of the opera in spring 2018. He also sang this role with the London Philharmonic Orchestra under Maestro Jurowski in January, and appeared again with the orchestra in November 2018. That same fall, he made his debut in the tenor role in Mahler’s 8th Symphony. In Moscow, he enjoyed a major success with Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde, and in 2019 he made his Tokyo debut in Zemlinsky’s Die florentinische Tragödie, adding another German role to his repertoire. He also sang Loge/RHEINGOLD and a concert under Maestro Jurowski in Moscow.
In 2022 he will sing Prokofiev’s The Joyful Angel at the Teatro Real Madrid.
Alt (Frau mit violetter Nase)
Nadine Weissmann - Alt (Frau mit violetter Nase)
Nadine Weissmann’s current and future plans include Erda in Das Rehingold/Siegfried, Waltraute in Götterdämmerung with MüPa Budapest, Wesendoncklieder with Zug Sinfonietta, Missa solemnis with Katowice, Leocadaja Begbick in Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny with Komische Oper Berlin, Cupidon in Orphée aux enfers at the Salzburg Festival and Komische Oper Berlin, Schwertleite in Die Walküre, Mary in Der fliegende Holländer at the Bayreuth Festival (Kirill Petrenko, Marek Janowski), Amneris in Aida with the Chemnitz Opera, Erda in Siegfried concertante with the Bregenz Festival, Erda in Das Rheingold with the Seoul Arts Center, the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden,as well as the Konzerthaus Dortmund and Gora in Medea and Geneviève in Pelléas at Mélisande with the Komische Oper Berlin.
Important engagements in the past were Schwertleite at the Semperoper Dresden under Christian Thielemann, Third Lady in Die Zauberflöte at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, the Opéra Bastille and on tour with the Komische Oper Berlin at the Liceu Barcelona, the Edinburgh Festival, the Opéra Comique Paris, the Teatro Real Madrid and in Tokyo, Hiroshima, Osaka, Perth, Adelaide, Auckland. Furthermore, Ulrica in Un Ballo in Maschera at the Deutsches Nationaltheater Weimar, Dalila in Samson et Dalila with the Staatskapelle Weimar, Laura in La Gioconda at the Musiktheater im Revier, Gelsenkirchen, Quickly in Falstaff at the Opéra National de Paris Bastille and the Opéra Marseille, as well as concerts with the Concertgebouw Orchestra and the NDR Symphony Orchestra. She also embodied Jezibabain Rusalka at the Komische Oper Berlin.
Other past highlights include Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with the Düsseldorf Symphony Orchestra under Adam Fischer and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra under Kirill Karabits. Schwertleite at the Palau de les Arts, Valencia, Erda / Flosshilde in Das Rheingold at the Liceu Barcelona, BRIGITTA in Die tote Stadt at the Frankfurt Opera, Opéra national de Lorraine Nancy and the Teatro Real Madrid. She played Baba the Turk from The Rake’s Progress at the Opéra Théâtre de Saint-Étienne, Theater Hagen and Theater Lübeck, Mary from Der fliegende Holländer at the Teatro Real Madrid. She embodied Emilia in Otello at Opéra de Monte-Carlo, the title role of Carmen at Mecklenburgisches Staatstheater Schwerin, Theater Osnabrück and Landestheater Bregenz. As well as Quickly at the Finnish National Opera, Marthe from Faust and Filipyevna from Eugene Onegin in Bilbao, Mathis der Maler in Paris Bastille, Herodias in Salome with the Gulbenkian Orchestra and DNT Weimar, and Florence Pike in Albert Herring with Theater Lübeck.
Nadine has performed at the Konzerthaus Berlin, the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, and the Auditori Barcelona with the Berlin Philharmonic, the DSO Berlin, the NDR Elbphilharmonieorchester, and the Staatskapelle Weimar, among others. She studied at the Royal Academy of Music in London and at the Indiana University School of Music in Bloomington.
Sopran (Frau mit gewöhnlicher Nase)
George Enescu Philharmonic Choir
George Enescu Philharmonic Choir - Choir
The “George Enescu” Philharmonic Choir was established in 1950. Up to that point, great vocal-symphonic works had been only sporadically performed on Romanian stages, mostly by private and semi-professional choirs which didn’t always correspond to the level of the Philharmonic Orchestra.
The New State Choir brought about a true change of the general public perception concerning the classical music. In its tireless and rich activity – oratorios, masses, motets, A Cappella concerts – the vocal ensemble performed all masterpieces from Monteverdi to Bach, Haydn to Brahms, to the most avant-gardist works of contemporary music. The careful selection of the choir members, as well as the collaboration with notorious conductors contribute both to maintaining the professional level next to the standards of the Philharmonic Orchestra.
Since 1990, the “George Enescu” Philharmonic Choir took part in extraordinary events of the Romanian musical life. In 1995 it had the chance to work with the great Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki and in 1998 it performed a concert version of the opera “Oedipe” by George Enescu together with the Orchestre National de France and Lawrence Foster, during the “George Enescu” International Festival.
The conductor and pianist Iosif Ion Prunner, member of a well-known family of musicians and intellectuals in Romania, took over the leadership of the “George Enescu” Philharmonic Choir in 1997. During his tenure which already spans over two decades, the conductor of the Choir has encouraged the expansion of the choir repertory and supported as well the solo appearances of the choir members. In this case, he often plays the role of the accompanist on the piano in chamber music evenings.
As part of the European musical circuit, the “George Enescu” Philharmonic Choir goes regularly on international tours, having already performed in Spain, France, Italy, Bulgaria, Greece. Among the most important recent achievements are worth mentioning the collaborations with first calibre orchestras and conductors at the “George Enescu” Festival: Daniel Barenboim and Staatskapelle Berlin (2013, in Verdi’s Four Sacred Pieces), Vladimir Jurowski and The London Philharmonic Orchestra (2017, in Enescu’s opera “Oedipe”, which was repeated shortly after in the season opening of the same British orchestra).
Ion Iosif Prunner
Ion Iosif Prunner - Choirmaster
Congratulated by the famous pianist and conductor Daniel Barenboim, who expressed his “admiration and affection” for the conductor and the ensemble he led during the “George Enescu” Festival, awarded the Cultural Order Merit in rank of Knight (2003), conductor Iosif Ion Prunner was born in Bucharest, part of a family fond of music and with deep cultural roots.
“The heritage of a family of musicians, but also that of a well-established family whose members founded churches and monasteries, one of intellectuals with fine preoccupations in philosophy, law, theater or writing: the Pîrîianu family, on my mother’s side”, said Iosif Prunner in an interview for the magazine Observator cultural.
He made his debut when he was 6 years old and he played on the scene of the Romanian Athenaeum at 14. He studied at “Dinu Lipatti” Music College and at the Music University in Bucharest. He took piano and conducting classes with Zoe Popescu, Ana Pitiş, Maria Fotino, Constantin Bugeanu and Sergiu Comissiona.
After graduation he became part of the orchestra at the “George Enescu” Philharmonic. In 1991 he founded the Foundation and Chamber Music Orchestra “Constantin Silvestri” and in 1996 he was the director of the eponymous International Conducting Competition. In 1997, maestro Cristian Mandeal assigned him with conducting the Philharmonic Choir, while also being asked to conduct the concerts of the Symphonic and Chamber Music Orchestra of the Philharmonic. Also, in 1997 he conducted the semi-professional doctors’ orchestra in Bucharest, following a long tradition of the “George Enescu” Philharmonic. In December 2007 he was invited, together with the Capitole Toulouse Orchestra and the Orfeu – San Sebastian Choir, to present a production of the Requiem by Verdi in San Sebastian, Toulouse and Paris – Salle Pleyel.
In Romania he collaborated with the most important orchestras in the country, the National Radio Orchestra and the Chamber Radio Orchestra and he was also invited to give concerts at the National Romanian Opera.
He gave concerts in important music centres in Europe and Asia (Germany, Spain, France, Italy, Japan, Russia, Greece, Hungary, Switzerland, Bulgaria, Korea etc.) and he took part in important festivals in Romania, Czechoslovakia, Italy etc. He collaborated with prestigious music personalities such as Cristian Mandeal, Sergiu Comissiona, Lawrence Craig, Valentin Gheorghiu, Ludovic Spiess, Eugenia Moldoveanu, Michel Plasson, Krzysztof Penderecki, Ion Marin, Adrian Eröd, Neil Stuart, Tatiana Serjan, Dolora Zajick, Carlo Colombara and with distinguished orchestras such as Orchestre national de France, Münchner Philharmoniker, “Arturo Toscanini” Philharmonic, the Orchestra of Warsaw’s Festival, Philharmonia Orchestra in London, Catalonia National Orchestra, Ostrava’s Janacek Philharmonic, Capitole Toulouse Orchestra.
Anisha Bondy - Szenische Einrichtung/Choreographie
Anisha Bondy, born in 1981 in London, lives with her husband and three children in Berlin. She studied musical theatre direction at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna, where she graduated in 2005 with a production of “Die Kluge” by Carl Orff. Her path led her via the opera houses in Basel and Cologne to the Komische Oper Berlin. Since 2007 she has assisted many directors including Katharina Thalbach, Michael Thalheimer, Claus Guth, Andreas Homoki, Hans Neuenfels, Peter Konwitschny, Sebastian Baumgarten, Benedict Andrews and Barrie Kosky.
From 2009 – 2011 she held a scholarship in the directing category at the Deutsche Bank Foundation’s Akademie Musiktheater Heute. Since then, as an alumna, she has been conducting workshops at the Komische Oper Berlin for young people from immigrant backgrounds to introduce them to the world of opera.
In 2010 she directed the world premiere of “The Snow Queen” by Pierangelo Valtinoni at the Komische Oper Berlin. In the summers of 2011 – 2014 she was assistant director on Sebastian Baumgarten’s production of “Tannhäuser” at the Bayreuth Festival.
Since 2015, she has intensified her work in the outreach field as scenic director of “Selam Opera!”, the intercultural project of the Komische Oper Berlin. Together with her team, she developed formats such as the ‘Pop-Up Opera’ or the opera bus ‘Operndolmus’. In 2016, the team retraced the migrant worker route from Berlin to Istanbul with a 45-minute musical theatre review that was performed at various places along the journey. “Selam Opera!” was awarded the BKM Prize for Cultural Education.
Anisha Bondy worked together with conductor Vladimir Jurowski on the projects “Claude Vivier – 70/35 – a sacred act” (2018) and “Les espaces acoustiques” (2019) by Gérard Grisey at the Konzerthaus Berlin.
Benjamin Spencer Weiß
Walpurgis Night before Christmas
As seductively romantic as the title sounds, the opera by Rimsky-Korsakov is pagan and archaic. It is not set on Christmas night, but the night before. A devil who no longer feels he is being taken seriously, a witch who has a brave, righteous blacksmith for a stepson, a tsarina who gives away her golden shoes. Rimsky-Korsakov takes Ukrainian, melodically simple “kolyadki” and “shchedriwki” chants, layers them into harmonically tangled choral passages or has them sing against each other as rapid dialogues. In this way he is able to assert completely contradictory things at the same time and in the most beautiful musical harmony, “fired” in the literal sense of the word by the orchestra, which in turn leads a highly seductive sound life of its own. Great listening theatre. Merry Christmas!
Ukrainian Christmas carols form the basis for Rimsky-Korsakow’s opera “The Night Before Christmas”.
In 2022, millions of Ukrainians will have to spend Christmas without electricity, heating, water and with limited medical care. We would like to bring your attention to the work of Ukraine-Hilfe Berlin e.V. in the context of the RSB concert. The orchestra and its chief conductor have already helped this voluntary association to provide people in Ukraine with urgently needed relief supplies. With a direct donation to the Ukraine-Hilfe Berlin e.V. association, you too can give hope and strength to those affected by the war.
If you would like to support the work of the association, you can make your donation via the website Ukraine-Hilfe-Berlin.de.