Tuesday 21 March 2023

Opera Vision's Next Generation podcast

Tchaikovsky: Eugene Onegin - Oper Frankfurt (Photo Barbara Aumuller)
Tchaikovsky: Eugene Onegin - Oper Frankfurt (Photo Barbara Aumuller)

I have (rather belatedly) been catching up with Nina Brazier's podcast for OperaVision. Brazier is a staff director at Oper Frankfurt and her podcast, which has been running monthly since September, explores the experiences of young singers taking part in young artist programmes across Europe, at Opera for Peace, the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro, Oper Frankfurt and the Palau de les Arts in Valencia. 

The latest episode, from 1 March 2023, entitled Oper Frankfurt: just three days talks to soprano Nombulelo Yende as she stepped onto the stage at Oper Frankfurt for her role debut as Tatiana in Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin with just a few rehearsals and Brazier also talks to distinguished mezzo-soprano Paula Murrihy about her time as a member of the Oper Frankfurt studio. The result illuminates the process, challenges and rewards of such high intensity demands, in this case Yende singing Tatiana with Brazier talking to her both during preparations and just after the performance, with Yende being candid about the challenge (and rewards) of making a role debut at such speed. The episode also helps to explain the German system of fest contracts, with Murrihy talking about how such a contract provided you with variety and the ability to take risks, to try things out. And we hear from Yende performing Tatiana's Letter Scene.

February's episode, Opera for Peace: great expectations focuses on tenor Leonardo Sanchez as he takes part in an Opera for Peace academy with coaching from tenor Lawrence Brownlee and Julia Lagahuzère director of Opera for Peace, bringing alive the rewards and challenges of this high intensity training. And there is a chance to hear Sanchez in Gounod and Puccini.

Brazier has a way of creating clear and direct conversations, and the podcasts not only entertain but they help illuminate aspects of the opera business that can often remain hidden. We enjoy hearing young singers from young artist programmes performing, but this series provides a look at the what goes on underneath and helps explain why these young singers give themselves so many personal challenges.

Explore more at OperaVision's Next Generation podcast - https://podfollow.com/1644379633

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