Thursday, June 9, 2011

Happy Birthday: Ileana Cotrubaş

"Mir ist die Ehre widerfahren" Der Rosenkavalier (R. Strauss) w/Brigitte Fassbaender
Ileana Cotrubaş (born June 9, 1939) is a Romanian opera soprano whose career spanned from the 1960s to the 1980s. She was much admired for her acting skills and facility for singing opera in many different languages. Cotrubaş was born in

"Caro nome" Rigoletto (Verdi)
Galaţi. She grew up in a musical family; her father, Vasile, was a tenor in an amateur chorus. Cotrubaş' musical career began at the age of nine when she became a member of a children's radio chorus. By the age of eleven, she was one of its leading soloists. Her voice teachers included Eugenie Elinescu, Ciprian Porumbescu and Constantin Stroescu. In 1952 she moved to Bucharest to study at the Şcoala Specială de Muzică school for the musically gifted. Cotrubaş made her stage debut with the Bucharest Opera as Yniold in Debussy's Pelléas et Mélisande in 1964. She subsequently expanded her repertory to include roles such as Oscar in Un ballo in maschera, Gilda in Rigoletto, and Blondchen in The Abduction from the Seraglio and began appearing in productions throughout Europe. In 1965, Cotrubaş won an important competition in 's-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands where she

"Si, mi chiamano Mimi"
La Bohème (Puccini)
won first prize in opera, lieder, and oratorio. The following year, she won a radio-television competition in Munich. Those awards, together with her great success in the role of Pamina at Brussels, led to appearances in the Vienna State Opera, Hamburg State Opera, Berlin State Opera and Salzburg Festival, and to a contract with the Frankfurt Opera. In 1969, She also made her British debut at the Glyndebourne Festival as Mélisande, and sang two succeeding seasons there in the title role of Cavalli's La Calisto. She made her début at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in 1971 as Tatyana in Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin. Cotrubaş signed a three-year contract with the Vienna State Opera in 1970. During her time there, she learned the roles of Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, Zerlina in Don Giovanni, Violetta in La traviata, Mimi in La bohème, and Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier. In

"È strano!..Ah, for's è lui...Sempre libera"
La Traviata (Verdi)
1973, she made her American operatic debut at the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Mimi. Cotrubaş made her international breakthrough when on January 7, 1975, when she replaced Mirella Freni at La Scala as Mimi. She had to fly from her home in Kent and arrived 15 minutes before curtain time. Her interpretation was acclaimed by critics and audiences alike. Cotrubaş made her Metropolitan Opera debut on March 23, 1977, as Mimi in a production with José Carreras and Renata Scotto. While with the Met, she appeared as Gilda, opposite Plácido Domingo and Cornell MacNeil, in a televised performance of Rigoletto on November 7, 1977, and as Violetta, again opposite Domingo and MacNeil, in a televised performance of La traviata on March 28, 1981. She sang a total of three

"Elle a fui, la tourterelle"
Les Contes d'Hoffmann (Offenbach)
other roles at the Met: Ilia in Mozart's Idomeneo (in its Metropolitan Opera premiere), Tatiana in Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin, and Micaëla in Bizet's Carmen, the role of her final performance with the company on March 26, 1987. Cotrubaş is also well-known for being very demanding of directors and colleagues. On several occasions — Eugene Onegin in Vienna in 1973 and Don Pasquale at the Met in 1980 — she walked out of productions when she disagreed with the stage director. Cotrubaş retired from public singing in 1990, but she continues to teach, giving master classes and coaching promising young singers, such as Angela Gheorghiu. [Source]

"Dieu! Quel frisson court dans mes veines!" Roméo et Juliette (Gounod)

"Depuis le jour" Louise (Charpentier)

"L'année en vain cahsse l'année...Azaël! Azaël!" L'Enfant prodigue (Debussy)

"Pleurez mes yeux" Le Cid (Massenet)

"Je dis que rien ne m'épouvante" Carmen (Bizet)

"Je vais le voir" Béatrice et Bénédict (Berlioz)

"Chiedi all'aura lusinghiera" L'Elisir d'Amore (Donizetti)

"Quel guardo il cavalier...son anch'io la virtù magica" Don Paquale (Donizetti)

"Ah, non credea...Ah, non giunge" La Sonnambula (Bellini)

"Tu che le vanita" Don Carlo (Verdi)

"Da Gusman sul fragil barca" Alzira (Verdi)

"Salce, salce...Ave Maria" Otello (Verdi)

"Libera me" excerpt Requiem (Verdi)

"Zeffiretti lusinghieri" Idomeneo (Mozart)

"Sull'aria" Le Nozze di Figaro (Mozart) w/Kiri te Kanawa

"Et incarnatus est" Mass in C minor (Mozart)

"Martern aller Arten" Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Mozart)

"Una donna quindici anni" Così fan tutte (Mozart

"Introitus" Requiem (Mozart)

"Ach ich fühls" Die Zauberflöte (Mozart)

"Chi'il bel sogno di Doretta" La Rondine (Puccini)

"Dolcissimi baci" La Calisto (Cavalli) w/Janet Baker

"Stabat mater dolorosa" Stabat Mater (Pergolesi) w/Lucia Valentini Terrani

"Combatti da forte" Rinaldo (Händel)

"Beim schlafengehen" & "Im Abendrot" Vier letzte lieder (R. Strauss)

"Musica prohibita" Gastaldon

"E amore di natura" La Fedelta Premiata (Haydn)

"Welche Labung für die Sinne!" Die Jahreszeiten (Haydn)
"Der Vollmond Strahlt..." Rosamunde Schubert

"C'era una volta un principe" Il Guarany (Gomes)

Qual fiamma avea nel guardo...Stridono lassù" I Pagliacci (Leoncavallo)

"Lippen sie küssen so heiss" Giuditta (Léhar)

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