Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Six Generations Of Sopranos Preserve Grand Tradition Of Singing

Previously this blog discussed the importance of musical lineage and the art of carrying on operatic traditions. This transfer occurs with the passing of experience from conductors and composers on to singers through working relationships. But perhaps the most intimate form of sharing comes directly from a voice teacher. Throughout history singers have traditionally worked with teachers who had a good career themselves on the opera stage. The many upsides to such a relationship include a direct connection to the previous generation's style and musical
Pauline Viardot-García
Natalia Iretskaya
Lydia Lipkowska
knowledge that often times could be linked directly to a composer. A current example of this linked artistry begins over 100 years ago with a leading nineteenth-century French mezzo-soprano, pedagogue, and composer of Spanish descent named Pauline Viardot-García. After a long career on stage, she began teaching young singers. One of those pupils was the Russian soprano Natalia Iretskaya, who would in turn passed her vocal pedagogy down to a fellow country woman named Lydia Lipkowska. This Russian soprano had a career that spanned several decades beginning at the Mariinsky Theatre and eventually crossing the ocean to perform quite often in the United States (Boston, Chicago, New York). At the end of her career she began to teach voice lessons in Romania. It was here that she convinced a young singer named Virginia Zeani that she was not a mezzo-soprano, but rather a soprano. Madame Lipkowska coached her in the roles of Violetta, Mimi, Marguerite and Massenet’s Manon. Romanian dramatic-soprano
Virginia Zeani
Marilyn Mims
Virginia Mims
Virginia Zeani is legendary for a career rivaling Maria Callas and is still connected to the spotlight thanks to a close friendship with current diva Angela Gheorghiu. But it was her engagement at Indiana University's music school in 1980 that allowed her to pass on her talents to another generation of sopranos including Sylvia McNair, Angela Brown, Elizabeth Futral, and Ailyn Pérez. One particular student stands out in the history of her teaching: Marilyn Mims. As fifth generation in this line of skilled singing technique, Ms. Mims went on to win the 1986 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. Soon after she made her professional opera debut and began a career filled with roles in La Traviata, Robert le Diable, Die FledermausDie Entführung aus dem SerailDon Giovanni, Così fan tutteRigoletto, Lucia di Lammermoor, Pagliacci and more. Her singing career was cut short after being diagnosed with endometriosis in 1995. She now teaches on the voice faculty at Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida. And now the world will soon have another soprano to sing the "Viardot-García technique": Virginia Mims. Yes, daughter to Marilyn, this young lady is emerging as a strong talent in several singing competitions. She will be carrying an artistic torch that is steeped in excellence. With more than a century's worth of technique and musical knowledge being passed down from one stupendous soprano after another, this 18-year old is inheritor to a true treasure. Read about all these extraordinary divas, as well as sample audio and video clips, after the jump.

Watch Anja Harteros Record "O Patria Mia" For Warner Classics

"This magnificent recording of Aida, made in Rome, rises to all the musical and dramatic challenges presented by Verdi’s richly-coloured Egyptian epic. Antonio Pappano, once again proving his mastery of Italian opera, moves between sumptuous grandeur and touching intimacy. The responses of the Orchestra e Coro dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia are both immediate and vibrant, while the singers – Anja Harteros, Jonas Kaufmann, Ekaterina Semenchuk, Ludovic Tézier and Erwin Schrott – do justice to every facet of their roles." [Source] Watch Anja Harteros sing "O Patria Mia" from Aida, as well as more excerpts from the recording session along with interviews with the artists, after the jump.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Former IMG Executive Bill Palant Launches Étude Arts LLC

Agent Man: Bill Palant launches venture
with exciting roster of opera singers
Now at the pinnacle of his career, artist manager Bill Palant has launched a new boutique company called Étude Arts LLC. We sat down with him to discuss his thoughts on the opera world and what it means to be independent in the opera industry: "Founder and Managing Director of Étude Arts, Bill Palant manages some of the world’s most acclaimed classical artists. His clients appear at the world’s greatest performing arts institutions and many have been recorded by the most distinguished media labels in the industry. Before establishing Étude Arts in 2015, Bill Palant was Senior Vice President at IMG Artists, where he served for nearly nineteen years. He also has worked for the Metropolitan Opera’s Rehearsal Department and for the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood. He was graduated from Oberlin College with a degree in psychology."
"Étude Arts is an independent management agency built on experience, fuelled by integrity, and emboldened by the possibilities open to artists and the arts in the twenty-first century. Étude Arts offers flexible, personalized service underpinned by the authority, expertise, and vision of its founder, Bill Palant. Having guided the careers of some of the world’s most accomplished classical musicians, Bill Palant approaches the culture and industry of classical performance with skill and discernment, combining – like any great artist – distinguished technique with creative flair. Étude Arts embodies a commitment to the development of exceptional artistry at every level of the profession. Bill Palant is dedicated to the holistic success of both performer and presenter: to health and well-being, to dynamic growth and career longevity, to progressive business practice, and to outstanding performance on a global stage." For more information and a complete roster of artists, visit the official website by clicking here.

How did you come up with the name of the new company? I was inspired to name the company Étude Arts after attending a transformative performance of Philip Glass’ piano etudes at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Not only was it a magnificent concert but also the experience prompted me to consider the meaning of an etude and its function as well as its practice. That the etude promotes the exploration and expression of a particular skill and the strengthening of technique resonated with me greatly and served as the perfect metaphor of what I am doing in this evolution of my professional career.

What got you interested in managing opera singers? After working for five years at the Metropolitan Opera, I wanted to spread my wings beyond the responsibilities of the Rehearsal Department. At the time, there weren’t positions available in New York City with other performing arts organizations of the same (or even near the same) caliber of the one I had at Met, so I looked beyond the stages of great artistic institutions like Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, etc. My introduction to the world of artist management, during my Met years, was less than

Monday, August 31, 2015

Tenor Plácido Domingo Thrills Chinese Audiences In Macau

A Tenor For All Time: Plácido Domingo performing in Macau, China, at age 74.
"Music keeps a man’s soul passionate and ageless, as evinced by tenor-baritone Placido Domingo, now well into his seventies. At an age where others are retiring, the opera Renaissance man continues to take to the stage around the globe, showing no signs of slowing down. Coming to Macau for the first time, the opera master was in admiration of the city’s 'phenomenal” growth and its early tradition of Western opera. In turn, he surprised a fully packed auditorium at the Macau Cultural Centre with a Chinese poem-song paying tribute to the city’s colonial history at the end of the concert staged Saturday evening. 'Certainly opera is our life, wherever I go, I enjoy very much to do [perform] concerts,' he told media before a rehearsal for Saturday’s concert. 'After singing for so, so, so many years, I think probably nobody in this hall was born before I started singing. You can imagine how many years I have been singing, but for me, it’s very important and exciting, really, to sing in a place for the first time.' 'I think the public has the

Fernando Bustos Helps Early Music Festival End On High Note

Look Away: Fernando Bustos as Orfeo in the Twin Cities.
"The second annual Twin Cities Early Music Festival — three weeks of period instrument and early vocal style performances — presented its finale Friday night, an ambitious and largely successful semi-staging of Gluck’s classic 18th-century opera, Orfeo ed Euridice.....A feisty little 10-piece orchestra offered playing that was both lively and consistently in tune — no small accomplishment in the period-instrument world. Even so, under the circumstances, it was probably wise that conductor Donald Livingston cut at least a half-hour out of the score. Two of the singers came from Panama for this production (which was repeated Saturday). These were a young countertenor, Fernando Bustos, who sang Orfeo, and soprano Graciela Saavedra, who portrayed Amore, the Goddess of Love. Bustos brought a sincerity and an emotional vulnerability to the role that more or less carried the evening, and his high tenor, with its poignant naturalness, had none of the steely sound that mars the singing of so many countertenors. As far as variety of vocal expression and coloring, Bustos is probably not yet in the league of David Daniels, the current champ of countertenors who sang Orfeo for Minnesota Opera, but he is clearly on his way. He sang the great lament, 'Che faro senza Euridice?' with such sweetness and tragic dignity that it seemed fresh and new. Saavedra was a saucy Amore with an agile voice, though a couple of her coloratura flights sounded tentative. Linh Kauffman was a warmly human Euridice exquisitely sung. Both Bustos and Kauffman embodied the 'noble simplicity' that Gluck sought in his works for the stage." Read the entire review here and learn more about the festival here. Additional information on Fernando Bustos, after the jump.

Kyle Ketelsen Keeps Low Profile Home Life In Sun Prairie, Wisconsin

Introverted-Extrovert: Kyle Ketelsen as Méphistophélès 
in a 2013 production of Faust at Opernhaus Zürich is a
 far cry from his quiet life in Wisconsin. 
(Photo: Tanja Dorendorf)
"He’s performed on stages across the world singing in iconic roles in Carmen and Don Giovanni but if you're a neighbor of Sun Prairie resident Kyle Ketelsen, you would never know. While living the life a suburban dad of two, he’s pretty low key. On a warm summer day when he needs to practice, the house windows remain shut and Ketelsen jokes that he sings into a pillow or into a clenched fist rather than disturb the peace of the suburbs. 'I mean who wants to hear my voice blaring through their windows, they might be taking a nap,' Ketelsen says. And yes, Ketelsen is an opera star. The American bass-baritone has hit some of the most famous stages in the world-the Metropolitan Opera, Carnegie Hall, and the Royal Opera House Covent Garden in London, among others. He’s flexed his vocal cord around roles as varied as Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro and Escamillio in Carmen. So imagine Ketelsen’s 'work day'— the glamorous toreador, Escamillio, woos the gypsy temptress Carmen away from her naive soldier love, José. Unable to bring her back to his heart, Jose kills Carmen in a jealous rage. So for Ketelsen, work is not just another boring day at the office. For 16 years,
Ketelsen has been forging a path in the operatic world but it came to him as an unlikely profession. The Clinton, Iowa native grew up in a home where his mother found creative ways to expose her children to music—they all played instruments and the record player was often spinning the Beatles, Beach Boys and Neil Diamond. The young man had aspirations of flying

Anna Netrebko And Yusif Eyvasov In Lebanon: The Full Concert

Diva Adorned: Kaftan and turban-clad (also covered in
Chopard jewels),  Anna Netrebko makes first appearance
in Lebanon. (Photo: Facebook)
On August 27, 2015, Anna Netrebko and Yusif Eyvasov took to the stage at the Beiteddine Art Festival in Lebanon to perform a concert full of arias and duets including works from Adriana Lecouvreur, Aida, Mefistofele, Otello, Madama Butterfly, La Traviata, Rusalka, La Bohème and more. Hear the full concert and see photos from the evening, after the jump. "The Beiteddine Festival is one of the leading festivals in the Middle East. It takes place in a large and magnificent 200-year old Palace in the Chouf Mountains, in Lebanon. The Palace is a jewel of Lebanese architecture with its many courtyards, monumental gates, elegant arcades and leveled galleries. Each year, in the months of July and August, the Festival presents outstanding performances by world famous stars and Lebanese artists. Concurrent with the performances, the Palace houses one or more international art exhibits. The Festival's first edition was launched in the summer of 1985 amidst the war. It came as an act of faith in Lebanon's cultural role and power of creativity, a call for normality amidst the chaos and madness of war. It was born and has grown in very difficult times and made it against all odds. As of 1987, when Nora Joumblat and an Executive Committee took over the organization of the Festival, it gradually gained regional and international recognition. Since 1997, a new step forward is recorded: the external courtyard of the Palace is fitted to host 5,000 persons. On the creative level, the Festival started producing its own performances, particularly Lebanese plays. The variety and the quality of the Festival's activities attract an ever-increasing audience (51,000 persons in 2003) in which the young generation is worthily represented The Festival is a non-profit organization." [Source]

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Katia Ricciarelli Claims Gambling Keeps Her Calm & Serene

Opera Zenith: Katia Ricciarelli with Plácido Domingo in 1972 when they recorded duets together for RCA.
In a recent telephone interview, soprano Katia Ricciarelli admitted that going to the casino keeps her in a wonderful state, unless she gets asked for an autograph: "'Spero ancora nell'amore e non chiedetemi autografi mentre sono al video poker.' La cantante, ospite del programma radiofonico I Radioattivi, rinnega di avere il vizio del gioco e specifica che è solo un divertimento, perché 'mi dà adrenalina come il gioco ai bambini ma non sono malata, non lo pratico per mesi. Tra tutti i giochi mi diverto solo con il video poker, mi dà calma e serenità ma purtroppo ti vengono a chiedere gli autografi e in quel caso guardo tutti con occhi cerulei.'" [Source] Listen to the full interview, and hear a recording of the soprano's professional debut from 1969, after the jump. 

Learn more about the diva's journey from poverty
to performing on the great opera stages of the
world by purchasing her book here.
"Born at Rovigo, Veneto, to a very poor family; she struggled during her younger years when she studied music. She studied at the Benedetto Marcello Conservatory in Venice, won several vocal competitions in 1968, and made her professional debut as Mimì in La bohème in Mantua in 1969, followed by a 1970 appearance in Il trovatore in Parma. In the following year, she won RAI's 'Voci Verdiane' award. Between 1972 and 1975, engagements followed in the major European and American opera houses, including Lyric Opera of Chicago (1972); Teatro alla Scala (1973); Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (1974); and the Metropolitan Opera in 1975. In 1981, she began a decade-long association with the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro, thus broadening her repertoire of Rossini's operas. Beside her many opera performances, she also appeared as Desdemona in Franco Zeffirelli's film version of Verdi's Otello in 1986, alongside Plácido Domingo. In 2005 she won the best actress prize Nastro d'Argento, awarded by the Italian film journalists, for her role in Pupi Avati's La seconda notte di nozze. In 1991 she founded Accademia Lirica di Katia Ricciarelli, and, since 2003, she has been Artistic Director of the annual summer Macerata Opera Festival. In 2006 she participated in the reality show La fattoria (Italian version of The Farm) on Canale 5. In 1986 on her 40th birthday, she married Pippo Baudo, a television personality, and filed for divorce in the summer of 2004." [Source]

DG Will Release Rufus Wainwright Opera "Prima Donna"

The 2-CD set will be available September 11, 2015.
Pre-order your copy here.
"Prima Donna is an opera composed by Canadian-American singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright to a French language libretto which he co-authored with Bernadette Colomine. It is about 'a day in the life of an aging opera singer,' anxiously preparing for her comeback in 1970s Paris, who falls in love with a journalist. It premiered at the Palace Theatre, Manchester on July 10, 2009 during the Manchester International Festival. The U.S. premiere was presented by New York City Opera at the Brooklyn Academy of Music on February 19, 2012. In March 2014, Wainwright began raising funds via PledgeMusic to record a two-disc album recording of the opera."...."It is vitally important to me that Prima Donna be properly recorded and released so that I can tour a concert version of it in the coming year, and I have decided to do this with the help of both PledgeMusic and the incredible BBC Symphony Orchestra which in turn requires your generous support. Quality studio opera recordings are extremely expensive and too time consuming to pull off these days, and it seems that a once vibrant recording industry is no longer what it was and new methods are needed to get the music out. Though sad, the upside is that everyone in the field agrees that this is a great time to bring the audience into the wonders of the creative process and the myriad of stages the recording of an opera requires. Exciting rehearsals, deep conversations, strange and colorful characters, not to mention many a silly moment, all of this I’m truly excited to experience with you until that glorious moment when the conductor, myself the composer, the orchestra, the singers and the recording crew turn on the red light and put down for posterity my first magnum opus, Prima Donna." [SourceSource] Watch a video interview with Rufus Wainwright discussing how he came up with the concept, as well as footage from the BAM performances, after the jump.
Composer Rufus Wainwright's Prima Donna was inspired by an interview he saw of Maria Callas. 

Wallis Giunta Profile: More Than A Queen Of The Night In Opera

Glamorama: Wallis Giunta captures a styling moment before a high-style photo shoot. (Photo: Facebook)
"This month, the mezzo sings Tiffany in Adams’s I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky for her Rome debut. Wallis Giunta’s mezzo boasts a silvery top and a hearty midrange, both deployed with crisp diction in an ever-growing repertoire of modern and classic roles. In November, she makes her German debut as Cherubino at Oper Leipzig, where her other assignments through June are Rossini’s Angelina, Siébel in Faust and even a Valkyrie. A July debut in Frankfurt, as Mercédès in Carmen, follows. An alum of the Met’s Lindemann Program, which she completed in 2013, the Canadian began her studies in Ottawa and Toronto, where her first undergrad assignments were quintessential soprano roles — Mozart’s Queen of the Night and Susanna. Now, she says, 'I have high notes, but I can’t live there. It’s not that I have a bad technique and I’m actually a soprano in hiding. The most colorful part of my voice is the middle. So if anyone ever says to me, ‘I think you’re a soprano,’ I say, ‘Well, yes, I am. A mezzo-soprano is just a different kind of soprano, and that’s the kind I am.'" [Source] Watch a video of Wallis Giunta singing "Parto, parto," from Mozart's La Clemenza di Tito, after the jump.

Sydney Opera House Architect Reminisces About Construction

Australia's most famous building now is popular for architectural projection mapping on the iconic rooftop.
Famous Builder: Architect John Zaat
"'I JUST got lucky, I suppose ... but it was absolutely mind blowing, being involved in the design of one of the great buildings of the world.' Rosebank man John Zaat was one of the architects who worked on the iconic Sydney Opera House. As a young graduate in 1966, it was a life-changing opportunity for him, and it's a story he loves to share with fellow members of U3A Northern Rivers (Lismore). Mr Zaat is the current president of the group. Although he doesn't run any of his own classes, he regularly speaks about his time working on the opera house and what it meant for his career in architecture. 'Eleven years of my career were spent on that building,' he said. 'I first started work on the initial design in 1966 ... it was my job to design the ceiling in the concert hall. Then in the 1990s I worked on the upgrade program, which was a $120 million program.'" [Source]

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Röschmann And Uchida Follow Up Carnegie Concert With Recording

In April 2014, Carnegie Hall presented a recital of two legendary interpreters: "The superstar team of soprano Dorothea Röschmann and pianist Mitsuko Uchida performs love songs by Schumann and Berg. Schumann’s great love for Clara Wieck is at the heart of this Liederkreis, songs he described in a letter to her as his 'most romantic music ever, with much of you in it.' His marriage to Clara might have inspired his song cycle Frauenliebe und -leben, a celebration of a woman’s devotion to her husband. Schumann’s piano mastery is evident throughout, as the instrument is given a more prominent role than ever before heard in the song literature. Berg offers a fevered view of love in his impassioned Seven Early Songs." [Source] Following the high praise for the performance in New York, Decca releases a full recording of the repertoire. International release date is set for October 2, 2015. See a complete track list for the recording, and watch a video of Dorothea Röschmann discuss working with Mitsuko Uchida, after the jump.

Julia Lezhneva Dominates Händel In Fall 2015 Release From Decca

As a follow-up to her Decca debut in 2013, Julia Lezhneva's next release will be an all-Händel disc that drops in October. Similar to the first disc, which featured motets of Händel, Mozart, Porpora, and Vivaldi, this new recording keeps the young Russian star focusing on Baroque. During 2014, the soprano toured with Il Giardino under the direction of Giovanni Antonini in a concert titled "Händel's Italy" that featured works written by the composer between 1706-1710 while in the country, including the operas Rodrigo and Agrippina as well as the oratorio Il Trionfo del Tempo e del Disinganno, all of which are featured on the new release. Adding other works written during that time such as the sacred oratorio La Resurrezione, the psalm Dixit Dominus, the antiphon Salve Regina, and the secular cantata Apollo e Dafne, completes the experience of Händel's time in Italy. Like the first disc and the international tour, she is accompanied by one of the world’s leading early music ensembles, Il Giardino Armonico, conducted by Giovanni Antonini. See the full track list, as well as videos of Julia Lezhneva singing Händel, after the jump.


Five-Hour Porpora Opera Staged At Innsbruck Festival Of Early Music

Lengthy Drama: Rosmonda (Klara Ek), Arminio (David 
Hansen), and Segeste (Carlo Vincenzo Allemano)
in Porpora's Il Germanico.
"Le chef italien Alessandro De Marchi exhume un ouvrage ambitieux au Festival de musique ancienne d’Innsbruck. Il Germanico fut créé en 1732 à Rome, et c’est la première fois qu’il est rejoué. Cinq heures de musique, et deux entractes. Vous pensez à Wagner, bien sûr, mais non! L’opéra Il Germanico de Nicola Porpora n’avait jamais été joué depuis sa création, à Rome, en 1732. Sa renaissance fait l’événement au Festival de musique ancienne d’Innsbruck, où le public a réservé une standing ovation au chef Alessandro De Marchi et aux six chanteurs réunis pour cet opera seria sur fond de lutte politique....La mezzo irlandaise Patricia Bardon chante le rôle-titre. Sa voix homogène et très expressive sert magnifiquement le général romain. Le contre-ténor australien David Hansen campe Arminio. Il se montre très engagé scéniquement, prêt à prendre des risques, mais la voix n’est pas idéale. L’émission est serrée, d’où des acidités dans l’aigu. Sa diction en italien mériterait d’être travaillée. Il gagne pourtant en aisance au fil du spectacle. Son grand air de lamentation, au cœur de l’opéra («Parto, ti lascio»), est digne des plus beaux moments chez
Powder His Wig: David Hansen (second from left) as Arminio 
at the Innsbrucker Festwochen der Alten Musik.
Haendel. Le ténor italien Carlo Vincenzo Allemano (qui n’a peut-être pas le plus beau timbre) incarne un Segeste très alerte. La soprano suédoise Klara Ek présente un timbre gracieux et souple en Rosmonda. La jeune mezzo Emilie Renard (Ersinda) est aussi bonne comédienne qu’excellente cantatrice. Le contre-ténor Hagen Matzeit (Cecina) se montre un peu imprécis dans certains ornements, maniéré par moments, mais il chante avec une belle musicalité. Le duo qu’il forme avec Emilie Renard est attendrissant. Entre grâce mélodique et élan solaire, cet opéra méritait une renaissance. Il donne une image plus complète de Porpora que l’on résume trop facilement à un compositeur purement intéressé par la pyrotechnie vocale. Alessandro De Marchi creuse les nuances et façonne des couleurs à la tête de l’Academia Montis Regalis. On est loin d’un ouvrage mineur d’un petit maître, même si on n’y atteint pas l’inspiration d’un Haendel dans ses plus grands opéras." [Source] And if you're wondering what team David Hansen might play on, the answer is after the jump.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Opera News Cover Revamp Resembles Vanity Fair Magazine

Opera News magazine has revealed a new cover layout with its September 2015 issue featuring soprano Diana Damrau. In an attempt to make the magazine more relevant to the popular masses, they may have taken a page out of Vanity Fair's typography handbook. Most notably is putting Ms. Damrau's given name in larger print while putting her surname in italics, which just inverts the concept VF uses. It's easy to compare with several other recent issues of VF and
almost feels like ON has lost its own unique identity. Even going back as far as 1990 when Madonna graced the VF cover with her pearls and plunging neckline like Ms. Damrau in the current ON issue. The Metropolitan Opera Guild publication has typically debuted a new wordmark every decade since its inception in 1936. The latest may be coming a bit early, but it might have something to do with the recent addition of publisher Diane Silberstein in May 2014. Perhaps the new look will help the magazine to gain attention on newstands for as long as it continues to remain in print before going strictly digital. Below are some of the most recent wordmarks over the last 20 years. Take an historical look back at the Opera News cover changes from the last 79 years, after the jump.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Canadian Rock Singer Peaches Secretly Likes To Sing Opera

Rock Opera: Merrill Beth Nisker, aka Peaches, can bring operatic flair to the rock world.
Controversial electronic artist Peaches, from Canada, releases her sixth album, Rub, in September. She has a new single, "Light In Places," out now, and will tour later this year:

IT'S BEEN SIX YEARS SINCE YOUR LAST RECORD, I FEEL CREAM. WHY THE BREAK? 
I was tired of that cycle of making an album and touring for two years, and then doing it again. There's no life in between, and no chance to do anything else.

YOU SANG AN ITALIAN OPERA IN THE MEANTIME? 
Yes, and did my own version of Jesus Christ Superstar, called Peaches Christ Superstar. I was really pushing myself as a singer, and I didn't really want to have to change my attitude to music, just to pacify my guilty pleasure of singing opera. I had to find another way to do it.  [Source]

"Merrill Beth Nisker (born 11 November 1968), better known by her stage name Peaches, is a Canadian electronic musician and performance artist who lives in Berlin, Germany. Her songs are noted for disregarding traditional gender norms, and for their use of sexually explicit lyrics. She plays her own instruments for her songs, programs her own electronic beats, and produces her own albums. Her songs have been featured in movies such as Mean Girls, Waiting..., Jackass Number Two, My Little Eye, Drive Angry, and Lost in Translation. Her music has also been featured on television shows such as Lost Girl, The L Word, Ugly Betty, South Park, 30 Rock, True Blood and has been used for the promotion of Dirt. Peaches performed guest vocals on Pink's album Try This, on the song "Oh My God", on the Chicks on Speed album 99 Cents, on the song "We Don't Play Guitars", on Christina Aguilera's 2010 album Bionic, on the song "My Girls" (which was produced and co-written with Le Tigre), and recently on Major Lazer's 2013 album Free the Universe on the song "Scare Me" featuring Timberlee." [Source]

Watch a live performance of the most famous song from Peaches, after the jump.