Monday, April 18, 2011

Happy Birthday: Catherine Malfitano

"Give Me My Robe"
Antony and Cleopatra (Barber)

Catherine Malfitano was born April 18, 1948, in New York City, the daughter of a ballet dancer mother, Maria Maslova, and a violinist father, Joseph Malfitano. She attended the High School of Music and Art and studied at the Frank Corsaro Studio and the Manhattan School of Music, graduating in 1971. Malfitano made her professional singing debut in 1972 at the Central City Opera playing the role of Nannetta in Verdi's Falstaff. She soon appeared with Minnesota Opera, where she sang in the world premiere of Conrad Susa's Transformations and, in 1974 at New York City Opera, in La bohème, as Mimi. She then appeared with the Lyric Opera of Chicago (1975) and at the Royal Opera House (1976) and in other major European opera houses. In 1978, Malfitano achieved wider recognition in a telecast of Gian Carlo Menotti's The Saint of Bleecker Street from NYCO, playing Annina. Since then, Malfitano has sung at the major opera houses throughout the world, including

"Gavotte" Manon (Massenet)
the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, Teatro alla Scala in Milan, Royal Opera House in London, Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris, Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels, Grand Théâtre de Genève in Geneva, Teatro Comunale in Florence, Gran Teatre del Liceu, Berlin State Opera, Wiener Staatsoper in Vienna, Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, Paris Opéra, Hamburgische Staatsoper in Hamburg, De Nederlandse Opera in Amsterdam as well as the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the San Francisco Opera, the Los Angeles Opera, the Houston Grand Opera and the Salzburg Festival. Catherine Malfitano's stage repertoire of more than seventy roles spans the entirety of operatic history. Her interpretations extend from Monteverdi's Poppea and
Erisbe in Cavalli's L'Ormindo to Annina in Menotti's Saint of Bleecker Street; from

"Les Oiseaux Dans la Charmille"
Les Contes d'Hoffmann (Offenbach)
Gluck's Euridice to Polly Peachum in Weill's Three Penny Opera; from Donizetti's Lucia di Lammermoor to Humperdinck's Gretel; from Marzelline and Leonore in Beethoven's Fidelio to Poulenc's Thérèse in Les Mamelles de Tirésias; from Konstanze in Mozart's Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro and both Zerlina and Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni to Cleopatra in Samuel Barber's Antony and Cleopatra; from Fiorilla in Rossini's Il Turco in Italia to Emilia Marty in Janácek's Makropulos Case; from the three heroines in Offenbach's Les Contes d'Hoffmann to the three heroines in Puccini's Il Trittico; from Violetta in Verdi's La Traviata and Lady Macbeth to Rose and Anna Maurrant in Weill's Street Scene; from the title roles in Massenet's Manon and Thais to Puccini's Tosca, Cio-Cio-San, Mimi and Liu. One of Malfitano's best-known roles is the title role in the opera Tosca, for which she won an Emmy Award in 1992, performing opposite Plácido Domingo as Mario Cavaradossi and

"Vissi d'arte, vissi d'amore" Tosca (Puccini)
Ruggero Raimondi as Scarpia. The opera was broadcast live from the actual Roman settings of the opera and viewed by one billion viewers worldwide. She is also associated with the title role in Richard Strauss's Salome, notably for performing the "Dance of the Seven Veils" ending the dance completely nude, a rarity in opera. She was also fully naked as Jenny in Kurt Weill's Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny (Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny). A champion of twentieth century music, she has sung in the world premieres of Carlisle Floyd's Bilby's

"Ah, perdona al primo affetto" La Clemenza di Tito (Mozart)
with Anne Howells
Doll, Conrad Susa's Transformations, Thomas Pasatieri's Washington Square and The Seagull and William Bolcom's A View from the Bridge, McTeague, and Medusa. She has also sung Berg's Lulu and Marie in Wozzeck, Schreker's Der Ferne Klang, Shostakovich’s Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Poulenc’s La Voix Humaine and Weill's Mahagonny and Seven Deadly Sins. Throughout her career, Ms. Malfitano has worked with the world’s leading conductors including Daniel Barenboim, James Levine, Zubin Mehta, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Sir Colin Davis, Riccardo Muti, Sir Charles Mackerras, Riccardo Chailly, Giuseppe Sinopoli, Valery Gergiev,

"Nuit d'hyménée"
Roméo et Juliette (Gounod)
with Alfredo Kraus
Christoph Eschenbach, James Conlon, Neeme Järvi, Sir Andrew Davis, Daniele Gatti, Dennis Russell Davies, Carlo Rizzi, Semyon Bychkov, Donald Runnicles, Simone Young, Michel Plasson and Bruno Bartoletti. Her collaborations with directors Robert Altman, Jean-Pierre Ponnelle, Luc Bondy, Nikolaus Lehnhoff, Patrice Chéreau, Elijah Moshinsky, Sir Peter Hall, Peter Zadek, David Pountney, Giuseppe Patroni Griffi, Graham Vick, Götz Friedrich, David and Christopher Alden, John Dexter, Giancarlo del Monaco, Jürgen Flimm, Stein Winge and others have produced many of the most memorable operatic events of our time. In the summer of 2005, Catherine Malfitano added another facet to her artistic profile with her debut as a stage director. This critically acclaimed new production of Madama Butterfly took place at Central City Opera and marked her return to that theater where she made her professional singing debut in 1972. She returned to the same theater in the summer of 2007 for a new production of Menotti’s Saint of the Bleecker Street. She is currently a member of the voice faculty at Manhattan School of Music. [Source, Source]

"O Cielo! Dove son io?"
Stiffelio (Verdi)

"Es ist kein Laut zu vernehmen"
Salome (Strauss)

"Oh, moon over Alabama" The Rise and Fall
of the City of Mahagonny (Weill)

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