Les contes d’Hoffmann – Jacques Offenbach
From : Sep 2007, Tue 11th – To : Dec 2007, Thu 13th
|Rosario La Spina, the outstanding Australian-born tenor, trained at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music continuing his studies at RNCM, Manchester under the tutelage of Joseph Ward OBE. During this period, he made guest appearances as Arturo in Lucia di Lammermoor at the Bern Stadttheater and as a soloist in operatic galas with the Ulster Orchestra, Belfast and the Cairo Symphony Orchestra, Egypt.
|Having gained first prize in the tenor competition held by L’Accademia di La Scala in 2000, Rosario embarked on the two-year Young Singers” Course at La Scala, Milan, where he studied with Luciana Serra and Leyla Gencer. This culminated in his La Scala debut as the Messenger in Samson and Delilah, where he appeared with Placido Domingo and Olga Borodina. In 2002, Rosario won first prize in the « Mario Del Monaco International Opera Competition » and made his principal role debut at La Scala as Riccardo in Verdi’s Oberto, reprising the role in Genova.
2003 saw his debut at the Verdi Festival at the Teatro Regio di Parma as Arvino in I Lombardi — he also covered the role of Manrico (Il Trovatore) for Welsh National Opera and performed Alfredo (La Traviata) in Modena and Luigi (Il Tabarro) in Osaka, Japan.
Rosario has worked with many leading conductors including Richard Hickox, Renato Palumbo, Bruno Bartoletti, Gary Bertini and Daniele Callegari and directors such as Pier Luigi Pizzi, Graham Vick, Lamberto Pugelli, Hugo De Ana and Jonathan Miller.
In 2004, Rosario sang The Duke in Rigoletto for New Zealand Opera, Cavaradossi (Tosca) under Richard Hickox at the Endellion Festival, Canio (Pagliacci) with the Taipei Symphony Orchestra, Taiwan and toured Spain in concert with the Parma Ensemble.
In 2005, he sang Cavaradossi, Rodolfo and The Prince (Love for Three Oranges) for Opera Australia, Alfredo for West Australian Opera, performed the tenor solos in Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy and Mass in C (Gloria and Benedictus) with the Sydney Symphony and appeared as tenor soloist with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in their Classical Spectacular series. In 2006, he portrayed Pinkerton (Madama Butterfly) for Opera Australia and West Australian Opera, The Duke for Opera Australia as well as appearing as soloist in the Classical Spectacular concerts with the Melbourne and Sydney Symphony Orchestras and The Queensland Orchestra. In 2007, Rosario will sing Alfredo, The Prince in Rusalka and the title role in The Tales of Hoffmann for Opera Australia and will make his debut at Seattle Opera as Rodolfo.
|Emma Matthews is one of Australia’s finest young performers. She is currently a principal artist with Opera Australia for whom she made her debut as Damigella in Monteverdi’s L’Incoronazione di Poppea in 1993.
In 2001, Emma has performed as Ismene in Graham Vick’s production of Mitridate, re di Ponto for the Sydney Festival and for Opera Australia, Stasi in Gypsy Princess, Genovieffa in Suor Angelica, Zwaantie in Richard Mills” new opera Batavia and, currently, Olympia in Tales of Hoffmann.
|Roles for Opera Australia in recent years have included Almirena (Rinaldo), Servilia (La Clemenza di Tito), Ilia (Idomeneo), Blonde (The Abduction from the Seraglio), Pamina (The Magic Flute), Cherubino (The Marriage of Figaro), Hero (Béatrice et Bénédict), Marie (La Fille du régiment) Nanetta (Falstaff), Sophie (Werther), Adele (Die Fledermaus) and Morgana (Alcina),
Emma is highly regarded as a concert artist and performs regularly with the Symphony Australia Orchestras and the Sydney Philharmonia Choir. Recent concert highlights include Mahler’s 4th Symphony, Faure’s Requiem, Poulenc’s Gloria, Mozart’s Coronation Mass, Exultate Jubilate and Requiem, Haydn’s Nelson Mass, Handel’s Messiah, Grieg’s Peer Gynt, Bach’s St John Passion and St Matthew Passion and Villa-Lobos” Bachinaras No. 5.
Other significant performances include Dido and Aeneas with the Mark Morris Dance Company, the Australia premiere of Minoru Miki’s Paraphrase of Ancient Japanese Music with the Pro Musica Nipponia Ensemble and the role of Anna in a concert performance of Andrew Schultz’s Black River with Music Theatre Sydney. Emma has also performed at the International Fashion Awards in Paris and is a regular soloist at the Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Huntington Festivals.
Awards include the 1996 Remy Martin Australian Opera Award and the Green Room Award for best female singer in a supporting role for her work in La Clemenza di Tito and Rinaldo in 1999 and The Marriage of Figaro in 2000.
|John Wegner was born in Germany but grew up in Australia. He completed an Associate Diploma in Opera and Music Theatre at the Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne, Australia. He performed with the Australian Opera as a Bass for eleven years (1981–1992), before returning to Europe to move into the Helden Baritone repertoire at the Badisches Staatstheater, Karlsruhe where he made his European debut as Jochanaan in Salome.
|John Wegner is renowned for his acting talent and the psychological insights he brings to his roles. During his time in Australia in 1997 he was awarded the Green Room Award for Best Male Performer in Opera for the role of Holländer in Der Fliegende Holländer. In June 1999 he won the Australian Entertainment Industry “Moâ€ Award as Opera Performer of the Year.
John Wegner’s impressive Helden Baritone voice continues to make an impact in the opera houses of Europe with performances in major cities including Prague, Milan, Dà¼sseldorf, Stuttgart, Berlin, Brussels, Oslo and across the globe in Australia.
John Wegner’s recordings include Wotan/Wanderer in the Wagner Ring Cycle on the Bella Musica label. Villains – Sinister Songs and Arias by ABC Classics Australia and Arbogast in the World Premiere performances of Siegfried Wagner’s “Die Heilige Lindeâ€.
|Pamela Helen Stephen is a mezzo-soprano who by 2000 had established a national career in opera houses of her native Britain.
She attended college at Aberdeen, Scotland, and then earned her bachelor’s degree in musical performance in 1986 from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. She pursued post-graduate studies, obtaining certificates in opera and in the field of Lieder and oratorio singing.
|At the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama she appeared in the roles of Ziti in Gianni Schicchi, Cherubino in The Marriage of Figaro, Madam Knorr and Mrs. Fischer in the world premiere of Tom Stoppard’s On the Razzle, and the Duchess in The Dinner Engagement.
She has sung leading parts at opera workshop festivals : Lucretia in The Rape of Lucretia by Benjamin Britten at the Aspen Opera Theatre Center and the title role of Bizet’s Carmen at Clonter Farm.
Her debut at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden was as Mrs. Bubble in Vaughan Williams” The Pilgrim’s Progress. There she has also sung the parts of Moppett and the Goose in Britten’s Paul Bunyan. At the Barbican Centre in London she sang in Cavalleria Rusticana, Fatima in Oberon, and Mrs. Jenks in Copland’s The Tender Land. She has appeared in the BBC Proms Concerts as Tessa in The Gondoliers, and as a Squire and a Flower Maiden in Wagner’s Parsifal.
Overseas, Stephen appeared at the Los Angeles Opera as Herodias” Page in Strauss” Salome (1998), returning as Maddalena in Verdi’s Rigoletto (2000). She has appeared in the Spoleto Festival as the Male Fox in Janà¡cek’s Cunning Little Vixen (1998), in Rossini’s Stabat Matter and as Sonya in Prokofiev’s War and Peace (1999), and in her own solo recital (2000). She has recorded the part of Sonya in Chandos Records” recording of the Prokofiev opera.