Deborah Voigt Comes to Bing Concert Hall Tonight
This month, Deborah Voigt embarks on a spring recital tour that will place the superstar soprano on both coasts for a program of songs by Amy Beach, Leonard Bernstein, William Bolcom, Ben Moore, Richard Strauss and Tchaikovsky. She said of the recital repertoire: "It gives me a chance to show a side of my personality that doesn't come out when I'm singing all these very serious heroines" (South Florida Classical Review). Joined by her long-time collaborative pianist, Brian Zeger, artistic director of the vocal arts department at Juilliard, Voigt launches her new tour at the McCallum Theater in Palm Desert, California, on April 8. She makes her debut at Stanford University's Bing Concert Hall tonight April 11, and on April 13 she sings at the new Green Music Center on the Sonoma State University campus. Voigt continues the tour on the East Coast with a return engagement in the 75th anniversary season of Boston's popular Celebrity Series, and on May 10 she returns to the Met to host the "Live in HD" broadcast of Rossini's La Cenerentola.
Stanford Live, which offers nearly 40 music, dance, and multimedia events between September 22 and May 16 on the Stanford University campus, presents Voigt in recital in her Bing Concert Hall debut on April 11. As the New York Times observed, "The first thing to be said about Deborah Voigt...is that she knows how to put together a compelling recital program." In a review of last year's recital tour, Theater Jones raved that Voigt "presented a huge helping of charm and wonderful musical sensibilities. There were still plenty of glorious high notes, but this concert was not about those. It was all about directly communicating, to the audience, the texts of the widely differing songs, as though they were little mini-operas, without overstepping the reserve that the recital format requires."
Voigt continues her recital tour on the East Coast for her second performance in the 75th anniversary season of Boston's Celebrity Series at Symphony Hall (April 27). Said Celebrity Series Artistic Programmer Amy Lam, "It is a privilege to present a singer with the stunning voice and rare communicative gifts of Deborah Voigt. Ever since her last appearance with us we have anticipated her return." At her first engagement in the series in November, Voigt performed her one-woman show, Voigt Lessons, developed with playwright Terrence McNally and director Francesca Zambello. Boston Classical Review called Voigt Lessons, "a charming, candid, and emotional rollercoaster ride detailing the singer's rise from a strict Baptist upbringing in the western United States to international operatic fame." The work, which "breathed spontaneity, wit, and vulnerability" (Boston Performing Arts Examiner), is something of a preview of the material Voigt discusses at greater length - and with equal candor and charisma - in a memoir due for publication by HarperCollins in early 2015.
Voigt's recital tour follows a successful run at New York's Metropolitan Opera, where she made her triumphant role debut as Marie in Alban Berg's opera Wozzeck. The New York Times marveled: "Ms. Voigt daringly conveys Marie's emotional volatility," giving "a vulnerable, intense portrayal of a role that suits her well." "Deborah Voigt was at the top of her game as Marie," agreed the Latinos Post, while the New York Classical Review found her to be "fully inside the character, vital in every moment." Also a sought-after host, Voigt returns to the Met to host the "Live in HD" broadcast of Rossini's La Cenerentola, which stars Joyce DiDonato and Juan Diego Flórez under Met Principal Conductor Fabio Luisi's leadership (May 10).
Voigt also continues her role as Artist-in-Residence in Washington National Opera's Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program where she leads individual coaching sessions, group classes, and career roundtable discussions. On April 23, director Francesca Zambello, who worked with Voigt on Voigt Lessons, joins the soprano for "A diva and a director dish" at the 92nd Street Y in Manhattan. Friends for over 25 years, they will talk about opera, inspiration, artistry, and friendship.