From 2001 Mrs. Stille is a principle at the Royal Opera Copenhagen. Her repertoire includes: Agathe (Der Freischütz), Lucia (Lucia di Lammermoor), Lulu (Lulu), Mimi (La Bohème), Donna Anna (Don Giovanni), Alice (Falstaff), Violetta (La Traviata), and so on!
Gisela Stille has performed with various orchestras in various countries: The Dew Fairy (Hänsel und Gretel) with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Mark Elder. Grieg Songs with I Pomeriggi Musicali in Mayland. Symfony nr 9 by Beethoven in Palermo, Italy. Schubert´s mass in A major in Brussels conducted by Walter Weller, and a tour in Great Brittain with Elvis Costello, performing his Secret Songs written specially for Gisela. She has sung Judas Maccabäus with the Danish National Radio Orchestra under Robert King, and Händel´s Messiah with the Swedish Radio Symfony Orchestra. She sang Vier Letzte Lieder by R. Strauss in Oslo cunducted by Thomas Sondergård, and the sopranosolo in Brahm´s Requiem in Cardiff also conducted by Thomas Sondergård.
In the summer 2013 and 2014 she sang Pamina at the opening of the spectacular Zauberflöte at the Bregenzer Festspiele, staged by David Pountny, conducted by Patrick Summers.
Recently she sang Lucia in the successful staging of The Exterminating Angel, written by Thomas Ades, and performed in Salzburg, London, and at the Met as well as Alban Berg´s Lulu in a very successful production by Stefan Herheim in Oslo and Copenhagen, conducted by Michael Boder, then at the Semperoper Dresden, conducted by Cornelius Meister. She also sang Matilde in Wilhelm Tell at the Welsh National Opera, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni at the Savonlinna Opera Festival, had her debut as Salome, and Helene in Les Vepres Siciliennes at the Royal Danish Opera, and sang Agathe in Der Freishützat the Semperoper Dresden.
Upcoming highlights will be her debut as Desdemona in Otello at the Royal Opera in Copenhagen. She will sing Matilde in Wilhelm Tell in a new production at the Victorian Opera in Melbourne Australia and perform a concert version of Weber`s Oberon at Oper Graz. Gisela Stille will also perform in Haydn’s Die Schöpfung with Copenhagen Royal Chapel Choir.
Gisela Stille has been a finalist in the Queen Sonja´s International singing competition, as well as the Belvedere Competition in Vienna where she got the price from the international press.
She has recieved the Leonine Sonning music prise, and in 2001 she was the recipient of the Birgit Nilsson personal Award. She has also become Ridder af Dannebrogordnen (Night of Dannebrog) by HM The Queen of Denmark.
Susanna Andersson has already established herself among the top of Sweden s younger singers. Equally at home on the concert and opera stage, her flexible and lyric coloratura voice has received considerable praise.
Susanna’s engagement in 2013 included INTO THE LITTLE HILL by George Benjamin with the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, Blondchen DIE ENTFÜHRUNG AUS DEM SERAIL at Garsington, England, Oscar UN BALLO IN MASCHERA at Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires, Susanna LE NOZZE DI FIGARO at New Turku Opera in Finland, and a world premiere of Animal Songs by Swedish composer Albert Schnelzer, composed especially for Susanna and the Helsingborg Symphony Orchestra. 2014/15 season sees Susanna singing Musetta LA BOHEME at the Danish National Opera, Queen of the Night DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE at Nationaltheater Weimar, participation in Wolfgang Rihm’s new opera “Die Eroberung von Mexico” to be premiered at the Salzburg Summer Festival 2015. Future opera engagements include Violetta LA TRAVIATA in Stockholm and Pamina DIE ZAUBERLÖTE in Turku, Finland.
Susanna made her professional debut as DON GIOVANNI/Zerlina at Grange Park and soon after her German debut as L’ ELISIR D’ AMORE/Adina at Nürnberg Opera. Debuts at Opera North, Covent Garden s Lindbury Theatre and English National Opera followed. From 2007-2009 Susanna was on contract at Oper Leipzig where her roles included DIE ENTFÜHRUNG AUS DEM SERAIL Blondchen, MERRY WIDOW Valencienne, LA CLEMENZA DI TITO Servilia, ARIADNE AUF NAXOS Zerbinetta, LA RONDINE Lisette and HANSEL UND GRETEL Gretel. Susanna has also appeared as Venus and Gepopo in Ligeti s LE GRAND MACABRE in the Fura del Baus production at English National Opera, the Adelaide Festival and at Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, Higglety Pigglety Pop! by Oliver Knussen at the Aldeburgh Festival and at the Barbican in London.
In concert Susanna has appeared with the Copenhagen and Stockholm Royal Philharmonic Orchestras, Malmö and Helsingborg Symphony Orchestras, Stockholm Sinfonietta, Nordic Chamber Orchestra, Helsinki Philharmonic, Turku Philharmonic, Grazer Philharmonisches Orchester, English Chamber Orchestra, and the BBC Scottish and BBC Symphony Orchestras. In 2008 she made her BBC Proms debut singing the world premiere of Stuart Macrae s Gaudete written especially for her. She has worked with conductors such as Christopher Hogwood, Lawrence Foster, Roy Goodman, Tecwyn Evans, Andrew Manze, Ingo Metzmacher, Edward Gardner, Baldur Brönnimann, George Benjamin, Alberto Hold-Garrido, John Storgårds, Sian Edwards and Leo Hussain.
Born in the Swedish city of Östersund her musical education began at Ljungskile College Institute before she began studies at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. While at the Guildhall Susanna won the prestigious Gold Medal Competition, graduated with a First Class Honours degree and went on to win the coveted Song Prize at the annual Kathleen Ferrier Awards. Susanna was guest artist at the 2004 Nobel Prize Ceremony in Stockholm and the 2008 highly prestigious Polar Music Prize Ceremony. In the 2006/2007 season Susanna gave recitals with pianist Eugene Asti in London, New York, Athens, Amsterdam, Birmingham, Brussels, Stockholm, Cologne and Vienna as part of the ECHO Rising Stars series.
The greatly admired black American soprano, Barbara Hendricks, received her musical training and her Bachelor of Music at the Juilliard School of Music in New York where she studied with mezzo-soprano Jennie Tourel. Earlier, she had completed her studies at the University of Nebraska receiving the degree of Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Chemistry at the age of 20.
Barbara Hendricks made her American and European operatic debuts in 1974 at the San Francisco Opera and at the Glyndebourne Festival and went on to appear at all major opera houses throughout the world, including the Paris Opera, the Metropolitan Opera, Covent Garden and La Scala. Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro was her debut role in Berlin, Vienna, Hamburg and Munich, as well as the role she sang in the last performances that the late Karl Böhm conducted of this opera.
Barbara Hendricks has more than 20 roles in her active opera repertoire, 12 of which she has already recorded. They range from Mozart (Pamina in Die Zauberflöte and Ilia in Idomeneo) to French classics (Antonia in Les Contes d’Hoffman, Micaela in Georges Bizet‘s Carmen, Massenet’s Manon and Charles Gounod‘s Juliette, Debussy’s Mélisande), and the Italian masterpieces (Liù in Turandot and Gilda in Rigoletto). She sang ‘Liu’ in the historical premiere performance of Turandot, given in the Forbidden City in Beijing in 1998, conducted by Zubin Mehta and directed by Zhang Yimou. In March 2000 she added Tatiana in Eugene Onegin at the Nice Opera with Vladimir Chernov.
Barbara Hendricks made her film debut as Mimi in La Bohème, directed by Luigi Comencini. In 1994 she participated in an international prize-winning film production of The Rake’s Progress singing Anne Truelove, conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen. She was a member of the jury at the International Film Festival in Cannes 1999, presided by David Cronenberg.
Since her 1974 New York Town Hall debut, Barbara Hendricks has been acclaimed as one of the leading and most active recitalists of her generation and in addition to her vast repertoire of German Lieder she is also known as a leading interpreter and staunch promoter of French, American and Scandanavian music. The pianists with whom she has performed and recorded include Dmitri Alexeev, Michel Béroff, Yefim Bronfman, Michel D’Alberto, Youri Egorov, Ralf Gothoni, Radu Lupu, Maria-João Pires, Roland Pöntinen, Staffan Scheja, András Schiff and Peter Serkin. Because of her love for chamber music, she regularly participates and also organises chamber music festivals with friends who share her passion. Barbara Hendricks has performed her extensive orchestral repertoire with all of the leading conductors and orchestras of our time. She is one of today’s best-selling recording artists and has made nearly 80 recordings with conductors such as Daniel Barenboim, Leonard Bernstein, Colin Davis, Antal Doráti, Carlo Maria Giulini, Haitink, Herbert von Karajan, Lorin Maazel, Zubin Mehta, Wolfgang Sawallisch and Georg Solti. For nearly twenty years her solo recordings have been made exclusively for EMI Classics.
Barbara Hendricks made her jazz debut at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1994 and has since then performed regularly in renowned jazz festivals throughout the world. Barbara Hendricks has toured Japan with Herbert von Karajan (1977), Leonard Bernstein (1985), with the Vienna State Opera (1986) and the Hamburg Opera (1996). In addition to her busy concert and opera schedule in Europe and in the USA, she alternates every other year with extensive tours to the Far East or Latin America and performs regularly at international music festivals worldwide.
In 1974, Barbara Hendricks sang the American premiere of Gilbert Amy’s Un Espace Déployé with the Chicago Symphony and Sir Georg Solti, who invited her back for the world premiere of the American Bicentennial Commission of David Del Tredici‘s Final Alice, which she subsequently performed with the Boston, Philadelphia and Cleveland Symphonies, and the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.
Barbara Hendricks sang the American premiere of the Dies Irae of Penderecki in 1976 with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and Zubin Mehta. She gave the world premiere of Tobias Picker’s The Rain in the Trees with Lorin Maazel and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 1996; as a special guest of Lord Menuhin, she premiered works by five internationally known composers, dedicated to Lord Yehudi Menuhin for his 80th Birthday Celebration at the closing concert of the Lincoln Center Music Festival; and in 1997, the world premiere in Japan, of songs by young Japanese composer Mari Takano. In 2000 she performed Sven-David Sandström‘s Mölna Elegy commissioned for her by the Gotland Chamber Festival.
Since 1987, Barbara Hendricks has worked actively with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) as its Goodwill Ambassador, visiting refugee camps throughout the world. At the end of 1991 and 1993, she gave two solidarity concerts in war-ridden former Yugoslavia (Dubrovnik and Sarajevo). In 1998 she founded the Barbara Hendricks Foundation for Peace and Reconciliation to personalise her struggle for the prevention of conflicts in the world and to facilitate reconciliation and enduring peace where conflicts have already occurred.
Barbara Hendricks has received numerous awards for her artistic achievements and humanitarian work: Doctorat Honoris Causa from the University of Louvain in Belgium (1990), Doctor in Law from the University of Dundee in Scotland (1992), Doctor of Music from the Nebraska Wesleyan University (1988), and Doctorat Honoris Causa from the University of Grenoble in France (1996). Honorary Doctor of Music from the Juilliard School of Music in New York (2000). Since 1990, she has been a Member of the Swedish Academy of Music. In 1986, the French government made Barbara Hendricks a Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres, and in 1992, she was awarded the rank of Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur by President François Mitterrand. The Prince of Asturias Foundation Award for the Arts 2000 (Spain) for her advocacy for human rights and for the contribution of her artistic work to Mankind’s cultural heritage.
Barbara Hendricks has lived in Europe since 1977, is a Swedish citizen and the proud mother of a teenage son and daughter.
Gitta-Maria’s exceptional soprano has made her a much appreciated guest performer around the world. Extraordinarily versatile, she masters lyric as well as highly dramatic parts, imbuing all with complexity and inner life. Her impressive repertoire includes the parts of Aida, Tosca, Desdemona Alice, Arabella, Tatjana, Jenufa, Eva, Sieglinde, Rusalka, Hanna Glavari, Octavian, Brangaene and Emilia Marty. For that part, performed in Copenhagen, Stockholm and Dusseldorf, Gitta was voted ‘Singer of the year 2000’ by leading German Newspapers. She is currently performing ”Giorgetta” in Il Tabarro at the Royal Opera in Copenhagen and preparing Sieglinde and Gutrune in a shortened version by Graham Vick, directed by Stig Fogh Andersen.
She was educated at the Copenhagen Opera Academy under the tutelage of the Great Kim Borg. Now she, in turn, gives Master Classes for budding young singers.
Gitta-Maria is also a highly gifted lieder singer, having recently given solo recitals in London and Paris. She works with the same enthusiasm whether a Schubert lied, a folksong or a jazz-balled.
Amongst her several recordings is the critically acclaimed ‘Verdi Puccini Arias (Danacord 2007) which was voted ‘CD of the Month’ by “the MusicWeb International” on the internet. She also got superb credit as Sieglinde in ”The Ring” – The Royal Opera in Copenhagen – which got the Gramophone Award as ”DVD of the year” in October 2009.