Jacques Imbrailo

“Few things move us as music does, and to be part of that is a gift,” says Jacques Imbrailo, Minnesota Opera’s next Count Almaviva

Baritone Jacques Imbrailo will soon be playing Count Almaviva in Minnesota Opera’s production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro). Imbrailo, a renowned interpreter of Benjamin Britten’s Billy Budd, took some time out of his busy schedule to discuss his background, The Marriage of Figaro, and his Read more…

Dawn Upshaw

Diva of the Day: Dawn Upshaw

Diva Dawn Upshaw has a light and sparkly soprano sound, ideally suited to soubrette roles. It was in just such a role that I first heard her – as Susanna in a Metropolitan Opera recording of Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro.
Diva Dawn Upshaw

Diva Dawn Upshaw – Biography

Upshaw was born in 1960 in Nashville, Tennessee. She studied at the Manhattan School of Music, after which she won numerous awards, including the Young Concert Artists International Auditions in 1984 and the Walter M. Naumburg Competition in 1985. She made her Met debut in 1984. Upshaw was diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer in 2006, for which she received treatment.

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Kiri Te Kanawa

Kiri Te Kanawa

I first noticed Kiri Te Kanawa because she kept appearing on opera CD box sets I bought – Le Nozze di Figaro, Rigoletto, Don Giovanni, Così fan tutte, etc. She had a gorgeous, warm, unmistakable lyric soprano voice that seemed especially suited to Mozart. She has gone on to become one of my favorite divas.

Kiri Te Kanawa

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Where to begin…

Many people (shall we say most?) find opera somewhat inaccessible. I get that – it’s old, boring, and sung in foreign languages. It’s also not easy to break free from the “it ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings” vibe; how often is opera depicted in shows, movies, or cartoons as some fat lady with brass chest plates belting out god-knows-what over an 80 member orchestra? My goal: (more…)