Giuseppe Giacomini Gala on April 4th will have several honored guests….

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On April 4th, at Carnegie (Zankel) Hall, the Giuseppe Giacomini Gala will have several honored guests including Sherrill Milnes who will present Beppi with a Lifetime Achievement Award, Neil Shicoff, Lucine Amara and Barry Tucker and one or two others who are still trying to organize schedules to be there!  These honored guests performed during the time that Beppi performed in New York, and Barry Tucker was responsible for Beppi’s Carnegie Hall debut at the Tucker Gala in those great years in the 80s!

We are all very excited to have Beppi and his family back in New York now and look forward to this great evening.

Dramatic Mezzo soprano Natasha Novitskaia will perform Amneris (act 4) at the Giacomini Gala in 2 weeks

Russian-born Natasha Novitskaia is a mezzo-soprano on her way to an important career as a true dramatic Verdi mezzo, excelling in repertoire such as Dalila, Santuzza, Azucena, Amneris, some Wagner and many of the important Russian roles for mezzo.  She is an exceptionally exciting recent addition to the Laifer Artists Roster..Receiving early training in singing and classical piano, she holds Bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance from Marylhurst University and a Master’s degree in Russian Literature from St. Petersburg University.  Her first teacher in the United States was Ellen Faull, former Professor of Voice at the Juilliard School in NYC.  She presently works with Bill Schuman.

Natasha is a prizewinner of the 2011 Barry Alexander International Vocal Competition. Though she began her career as a liricospinto soprano, her true voice was mezzo and she began singing mezzo roles about four years ago.

She has performed Amneris, Fricka and Carmen with New York Opera Forum.  In 2015 she sang the Principessa in Suor Angelica in the Tuscia Opera Festival in Cordona, Italy.  She also sang in a gala concert in New York City, “Opera Night”, where she performed arias and duets from Aida, Trovatore, and Carmen.

In 2015 she made her European solo recital debut singing Rimsky-Korsakov, Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninoff, and Sviridov with pianist Sergey Neller, and in 2016 she sang a solo recital at the Russian Embassy in Berlin, performing arias from Samson et Dalila, Carmen, and Kashchie the Immortal by Rachmaninoff in addition to songs by Rachmaninoff.

She has worked with Martina Arroyo, Jonathan Kelly, Grace Bumbry, Sherrill Milnes, Marcello Giordani.

This past summer she performed with the Mercury Orchestra as the vocal soloist in Prokofiev’s cantata Alexander Nevsky, composed for mezzo-soprano, chorus, and orchestra (“in the heart wrenching ΄The Field of the Dead΄… her oboe-like voice reached out“).  In October, Natasha sang Azucena in a concert performance of Il Trovatore at the Liederkranz Society in New York.  Most recently this winter she sang in a duo recital with soprano Olga Zhuravel Maselli at Scorca Hall at Opera America in NYC.

After her performing the Amneris/Radames duet from Act 4 in the Giacomini Gala concert at Carnegie Hall Natasha is then is off to Italia coaching and presenting a masterclass in Russian at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Firenze in conjunction with the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino.  Next season she will be making her Tokyo concert debut with orchestra in an all-Russian program and she will also debut with the Russian Chamber Arts Society in Washington at the Maison Francais.

We are very much looking forward to Natasha’s performing at the Giacomini gala and welcome her to Carnegie Hall.  An exciting performer on her way!!

Bass-baritone Grigory Soloviov, my newest artist, will sing at the Giacomini Gala at Carnegie Hall on April 4th.

Russian-American bass-baritone Grigory Soloviov attended the prestigious Moscow State Conservatory and in 2009, was a member of the Washington Opera Youg Artists Program. Mr. Soloviov has won or been placed as a finalist in many prestigious vocal competitions globally, including the XIII International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, the Palm Beach Opera Vocal Competition, and the Giulio Gari Foundation Competition.

Mr. Soloviov has performed on numerous stages across the world, among which are the Metropolitan Opera, Gran Teatro La Fenice, the Washington National Opera, Bolshoi Opera, Moscow, Helikon-Opera, the Dallas Opera, Opéra de Monte-Carlo, Opéra National de Lyon, Opéra de Tours, Opéra De Montréal, the Palm Beach Opera, Connecticut Grand Opera,  and Festival d’Aix-en-Provence.

His concert work includes appearances with such orchestras as the Philadelphia Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra, Princeton Symphony Orchestra, and Orquesta Filarmónica de Jalisco.

I had met him again this past winter in NY in a concert after hearing him in Palm Beach as Lodovico in Otello about 7 years ago  and realized that he had “grown up” from the 28 year old that I heard back then.  He came to Berlin to sing and consult with me this past January and I decided then that he was a bass-baritone rather than bass and that I wanted to guide his career…and such are the fates!!!  :))   Enjoy his appearance at the gala!!!

Herrera, Mezzo-Soprano

Nancy Fabiola Herrera will sing at our Giacomini Gala on April 4th

Nancy Fabiola Herrera, one of the premiere Carmen‘s in the world for the past 15 years, having performed this role throughout the world’s major houses including the Metropolitan, Tokyo, Covent Garden, München, Dresden, the Bolshoi, Opera Australia, Malaga, Las Palmas, Deutsche Opera Berlin, Arena di Verona, Rome Opera and Los Angeles Opera to name just some, will be performing  Mon coeur at this gala concert conducted by Eve Queler.

Nancy had great successes at the Metropolitan Opera this past fall as Herodias in their Salome where “she stole the show with her full voice that cut the orchestra” and as Fenena in their Nabucco. Last spring she was Sara in Roberto Devereux in her debut at the Tchaikovsky concert Hall in Moscow. She had begun the current season with performances of Carmen at the Teatro del Estado de Mexico in October. This had been after concerts at the Teatro Real in Madrid in September, and Scheherazade in Las Palmas just after.   La Vida Breve has become a concert staple for Nancy these past 5 years having performed the role of Salud with orchestras around the world.

Just before coming to NY for the gala, she takes her Leonore in La Favorite to Las Palmas, and her La Vida Breve to the San Carlo, Napoli.  She is back at the Met for Maddalena later this April.

In addition to her opera engagements, Nancy has a full schedule of orchestral concerts and has performed in the Canary Islands, Oviedo, and Montevideo, Sao Paolo and throughout South America and Spain.   She also performed in a gala concert in Costa Rica with Plácido Domingo.  She has several recordings of recitals and is the title character in Luisa Fernanda on a DVD recording from Madrid.

A very special person and artist indeed, I welcome one of my truly favorite artists to this Giacomini gala!!!

 

March 3rd Concert with Olga Maselli and Natasha Novitskaia at American Opera Center NYC

Last Friday’s concert with my artists Olga Zhuravel Maselli and Natasha Novitskaia was quite interesting and beautifully sung.  I was very proud of these two new artists of mine.  I say interesting because of the variety of what was sung and beautiful because of how their voices blended so beautifully!  I look forward to many more wonderful performances from these two committed and profound artists!

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Giacomini Gala Tickets

Book your tickets HERE – the Giacomini Opera Gala is taking place at Carnegie Hall (Zankel Hall) on April 4th, 7:30 PM.

I would like to mention that the Giacomini family will be at the gala, including Beppi in person, – to watch, listen, and enjoy the beautiful music and tribute to him. So please come to salute this great tenor in his first visit to NYC since 1988.

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Honored Guests at the Giacomini Gala

On April 4th, there will be a number of Honored Guests at the Giacomini Gala.  Sherrill Milnes, Neil Shicoff, Marilyn Zschau, Marilyn Horne, and Renata Scotto.  I also invited James Levine and Placido Domingo. Unfortunately Placido will not be in the country but he will send a video greeting.  I am very honored to have all these wonderful artists around me.

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Sherrill Milnes and Matthew Laifer

Kallen Esperian is an Honored Guest at the Giacomini Gala

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The wonderful Kallen Esperian! A soprano whose career began when she was very young, in 1985 when she was a winner of the Pavarotti competition.

I had managed her for several years between 1998-2002. Kallen recently contacted me. She heard that I was presenting the Giacomini Gala. We had a nice talk full of memories. She is delighted that I was planning the Gala – she felt that Beppi was truly one of the most wonderful colleagues that she had ever worked with and that she felt indeed one of the greatest tenors EVER.

I can use some of the wording from her letter, but suffice it to say that Kallen was laudatory in her love and respect for Beppi. Her La Scala debut in 1994 was as Lusia Miller with Beppi as her tenor.

I have invited her to be one of the honored guests at the Giacomini Gala and look forward to her seeing and hugging Beppi for the first time in many years. Thrilling is not sufficient to describe the feelings that will show on this evening.

Kallen was truly one of the most beautiful sopranos of the 90s and earl 2000s with a voice that moved me to tears in her Desdemona that I saw in Bologna in 1996 and in many other performances around the world. A wonderful and special voice, and beautiful person. Brava Kallen!

Conducting with Daniel Oren

matthew-laifer_daniel-oren…And though I have been identified and have been friends with many of the great tenors in the world for more than the past 54 years, I also loved to conduct in my apartment growing up, and sing the tenor role while doing that! So here I am backstage before a performance in Italia with Daniel Oren at age 28, early in HIS career as well as early in Mine, and we remained together for the next 11 years as he could accept my advice knowing that I did NOT conduct as well as he did      

 

Giuseppe Giacomini at the Arena di Verona

November 27, 2016 is the 40th Anniversary of the debut at the Metropolitan Opera of the iconic dramatic tenor, Giuseppe Giacomini.
This is the live video that I made at the Arena di Verona. I will never forget this for the rest of my life; and when I saw this tonight, the tears would not stop flowing… And now, as it is indeed NOV 27th, I can post it as my tribute to the greatest Italian dramatic tenor of the 2nd half of the 20th century.
Come honor him in NY at the gala that I’m presenting for him at Carnegie Hall on April 4, 2017.