Pretty Yende is now ambassador for Maria Grazia Chiuri’s collections. The soprano henceforth embodies the audacity, grace and elegance of Dior style, a femininity continually reinvented. More than ever, this alliance celebrates the privileged ties that have always united the House with the magic of art and music, as illustrated by the Mozart, Verdi and Debussy models designed by the founding-couturier for the Dior spring-summer 1950 line. An exaltation of dreams, joy and creative beauty.
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This summer, Pretty Yende returns to Opéra Bastille in Paris to star in a fresh rendition of Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette with direction by the innovative mind of Thomas Jolly. Ms. Yende’s previous portrayal of the young lover at The Metropolitan Opera during the 2016-17 season earned her high praise from Operawire, describing her as “the perfect Juliette” with “incredible coloratura roulades.”
Francesco Demuro takes on the role of Roméo acting alongside Yende. Stéphano will be performed by Lea Desandre (June 27) and Marina Viotti, while the role of Mercutio will be sung by Huw Montague Rendall (June 27) and Florian Sempey. Additional members of the cast include Sylvie Brunet-Grupposo as Gertrude, Maciej Kwasnikowski as Tybalt, Thomas Ricart as Benvolio, Sergio Villegas Galvain as Pâris, Yiorgo Ioannou as Gregorio, Laurent Naouri as Capulet, Jean Teitgen as Frère Laurent, and Jérôme Boutillier. Carlo Rizzi conducts.
This spring, Pretty Yende stars as the four heroines in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann at Staatsoper Hamburg. Daniele Finzi Pasca’s production, which opened Hamburg’s 2021-22 season, was lauded by Gramophone as “as handsomely staged a Hoffmann as you’re likely to see, painted in rich shadows and glowing golds, and adorned with period costumes (broadly belle époque in style) and countless touches of gracefully handled stage magic.”
Ms. Yende will be joined on stage by Matthew Polenzani as Hoffmann, Jana Kurucová as Niklausse / La Muse, Erwin Schrott as Lindorf / Coppélius / Dr. Miracle / Dapertutto, Andrew Dickinson as Andrès / Cochenille / Frantz / Pitichinaccio, Ida Aldrian as La Mère, Hubert Kowalczyk as Maître Luther / Crespel, Dongwon Kang as Nathanaël, François Piolino as Spalanzani, Daniel Schliewa as Wilhelm / Wolfram, Han Kim as Le Capitaine des Sbirres, and Nicholas Mogg as Schlémil / Hermann. Kent Nagano conducts.
Pretty Yende has the esteemed honor of performing at the coronation of King Charles III at Westminster Abbey on May 6, 2023. Ms. Yende will sing Sacred Fire, a new piece written by British composer Sarah Class for the occasion.
Ms. Yende is the first African to sing solo at a British coronation. Having grown up in a small town in eastern South Africa, 8,000 miles from where she will sing at the coronation, Ms. Yende said to The Guardian:
“Generations from now they will read about the British monarchs … and they’ll see the name of a girl from the tip of Africa written in there.”
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This spring, Pretty Yende returns to the Wiener Staatsoper for performances of Manon as well as a thoughtfully curated recital of art song. Ms. Yende has recently appeared with the company in leading roles that include Marie in La Fille du Régiment, Elvira in I Puritani, and Violetta in La Traviata.
On April 30, May 4, 7, 10, and 13, Yende stars as Jules Massenet’s Manon under the baton of Bertrand de Billy. Performing alongside Ms. Yende in Andrei Serban’s film-noir-inspired production includes Charles Castronovo as Chevalier des Grieux, Dan Paul Dumitrescu as Count des Grieux, Michael Arivony as Lescaut, Thomas Ebenstein as Guillot de Morfontaine, Martin Häßler as Brétigny, Miriam Kutrowatz as Poussette, Stephanie Houtzeel as Javotte, and Daria Sushkova as Rosette.
On May 3, Ms. Yende will collaborate with pianist Vanessa Garcia Diepa for an intimate recital featuring celebrated song repertoire by Gaetano Donizetti, Franz Lizst, and Claude Debussy.
On March 28, Pretty Yende will join L’Orchestre de chambre de Genève in celebrated arias by Mozart and Handel. Taking place at the Bâtiment des Forces Motrices in Geneva, this special performance will also feature Serbian violinist Gordan Nikolić, the former concertmaster of the London Symphony Orchestra.
See below for the full program:
JOSEPH HAYDN Symphonie concertante pour hautbois, basson, violon et violoncelle en si bémol majeur HOB. I :105 Solistes: Gilles Vanssons (hautbois), Catherine Pépin-Westphal (basson), Girolamo Bottiglieri (violon), Pascal Michel (violoncelle)
WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART Exsultate jubilate KV 165
IGOR STRAVINSKI Pulcinella Suite
GEORG FRIEDRICH HAENDEL Atalanta, Care selve HWV 35
Samson, Let The Bright Seraphim HWV 57
WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART Le Nozze di Figaro, Dove sono i bei momenti