Cincinnati Symphony to Present Verdi's REQUIEM, 2/28-3/1

Cincinnati Symphony to Present Verdi's REQUIEM, 2/28-3/1Cincinnati, OH -- The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra welcomes back revered conductor, and former CSO Creative Director, Rafael Fru?hbeck de Burgos for his second engagement of the 2013- 14 season. On February 28 and March 1 at historic Music Hall, Maestro Fru?hbeck de Burgos will conduct one of the most epic works in orchestral and choral repertoire-Verdi's Requiem. The piece pulls together massive forces of orchestra, chorus and soloists for an impassioned and dramatic blockbuster of human emotion. Perhaps best known for the famous "Dies irae" movement, prevalent in pop culture in movies, advertisements and television, Verdi's masterpiece depicts a journey from terror and darkness to joy and light.

The mighty May Festival Chorus brings both power and tranquility to these performances, while an international cast of renowned vocal soloists bring their talents to the CSO for the first time: soprano Angel Blue, mezzo-soprano Julia Gertseva, tenor Aquiles Machado, and bass Riccardo Zanellato.

Tickets for this concert start at just $12 and are available by calling the CSO Box Office at (513) 381-3300 or visiting

Angel Blue, soprano

Californian soprano Angel Blue's voice has been recognized for its shining and agile upper register, "smoky" middle register, and beautiful timbre. She has performed internationally and won numerous awards.

In the 2008/2009 season, Angel made her debut with the San Francisco Opera Company as Clara in Porgy and Bess, she was the featured soloist with the Valdosta Symphony in Valdosta, Georgia where she sang the soprano role in Arthur Honegger's King David and also performed scenes from La Traviata (Violetta) with the combined Korean & German Symphony Orchestra in Seoul and Busan, Korea. In the 2009/2010 season she was a featured soloist with the Riverside Philharmonic, the Adrian Symphony in Adrian, Michigan, Giro Italia tour with Rossini specialist Alberto Zedda throughout Italy, Madrilenos por Haiti concert with La Orquesta

Clasica de Espana in Madrid, Spain, A Gala Evening with Thomas Hampson in Budapest, Hungary and made her debut at the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia as Micaela in Carmen opposite Marcelo Alvarez and Elina Garanca conducted by Zubin Mehta. In the 2010/2011 season she sang with the Palau de les Arts in Valencia, Spain, the American Youth Symphony, the Redlands Symphony, and Theatre an der Wien in Wien, Austria.

Miss Blue was a finalist in Operalia 2009, receiving 1st place in the Zarzuela competition, and 2nd place in the Opera competition. Angel was honored to be a part of the 17th Annual Verbier Festival in Verbier, Switzerland where she sang in an "Operalia Tribute" Concert sponsored by Rolex in July 2010. She has also received awards from the Metropolitan Opera National Council Regional Auditions, A.E.I.O.U Italian Educators Vocal Competition, the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion's Emerging Young Entertainers Award, and the Redlands Bowl Competition. In 2011 she was on tour with Placido Domingo opening the Kaufmann Center in Kansas City, Missouri, the Royal Opera House in Muscat, Oman, and concerts in Beijing, China as well as Zagreb, Croatia. In 2012 Angel sang die Dritte Norn in Oper Frankfurt's production of Go?tterda?mmerung with Sebastian Weigle conducting, Giulietta in Hoffmann Erza?hlungen in Wien, Austria, Clara in Porgy and Bess in Concert with the Berlin Philharmonic conducted by Sir Simon Rattle.

Upcoming engagements for Angel in 2013/14 include; Musetta in La Boheme with the English National Opera, American Lulu (Lulu) at the Bregenz and Edinburgh Festivals and the Young Vic, London with the Opera Group and Scottish Opera, a recital with the Rosenblatt Series at Wigmore Hall, 100Years of Verdi Concert Santa Barbara Symphony, the Verdi Requiem with the Cincinnati Symphony, AIDS-Gala Du?sseldorf, and a debut at the Chicago Lyric Opera.

Blue received a Masters of Music degree in Opera Performance from UCLA, a Bachelors of Music from the University of Redlands in Redlands, California, and is alumni to the Los Angeles County High school for the Arts where she studied opera, gospel singing, theatrical acting, and classical piano. Blue is a former member of the Domingo-Thornton Young Artist Program at Los Angeles Opera and the Artistas de la Academia "Placido Domingo" del Palau de les Arts, which is an opera training program led by Rossini specialist Maestro Alberto Zedda.

Her vast talent has allowed her to not only perform in opera, but also in the pop world. She has shared the stage with artists such as Brian McKnight, the late Donna Summer, Ruben Studdard, Charice, Chaka Khan, Jewel, and Grammy Award winning "Hit-man" David Foster.

Rafael Fru?hbeck de Burgos, conductor

A regular guest with North America's top orchestras, Rafael Fru?hbeck de Burgos will conduct the New York, Boston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, National, Detroit, St. Louis, Houston, New World, and Seattle Symphony Orchestras in the 2013-14 season. In addition he appears annually at the Tanglewood Music Festival.

Born in Burgos, Spain in 1933, Rafael Fru?hbeck de Burgos studied violin, piano, music theory and composition at the conservatories in Bilbao and Madrid, and conducting at Munich's Hochschule fu?r Musik, where he graduated summa cum laude and was awarded the Richard Strauss Prize. From 2004-2011, he was Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Dresden Philharmonic, and in the 2012-13 season began his post as Chief Conductor of the Danish National Orchestra.

Maestro Fru?hbeck has made extensive tours with such ensembles as the Philharmonia of London, the London Symphony Orchestra, the National Orchestra of Madrid, and the Swedish Radio Orchestra. He has toured North America with the Vienna Symphony, the Spanish National Orchestra, Dresden Philharmonic, and Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra.

Named Conductor of the Year by Musical America in 2011, other numerous honours and distinctions he has been awarded include the Gold Medal of the City of Vienna, the Bundesverdienstkreutz of the Republic of Austria and Germany, the Gold Medal from the Gustav Mahler International Society, and the Jacinto Guerrero Prize, Spain's most important musical award, conferred in 1997 by the Queen of Spain. In 1998 Rafael Fru?hbeck de Burgos received the appointment of "Emeritus Conductor" by the Spanish National Orchestra. He has received an honorary doctorate from the University of Navarra in Spain. Since 1975 he has been a member of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando.

Rafael Fru?hbeck de Burgos has recorded extensively for EMI, Decca, Deutsche Gramophone, Spanish Columbia, and Orfeo. Several of his recordings are considered to be classics, including his interpretations of Mendelssohn's Elijah and St. Paul, Mozart's Requiem, Orff's Carmina Burana, Bizet's Carmen, and the complete works of Manual de Falla.

Julia Gertseva, mezzo-soprano

Born in Leningrad, mezzo soprano Julia Gertseva studied singing, piano and choral conducting at the Conservatory in her hometown. She was engaged by the Mussorgsky Theatre in St.Petersburg, a Company she left in 2003 to follow an international career.

In 2002 she made her Italian debut at the Teatro La Fenice in Venice as Vavara in Katja Kabanova. She sang Ulrica at Deutsche Oper

Berlin, Santuzza in Cape Town and Joan in Tchaikovsky's Maid of Orleans in Palermo. She took part in the Berlin AIDS Gala conducted by Christian Thielemann.

The following seasons she had her Paris debut with the Orchestre National de France with the role of Cecri in Alaleona ?s Mirra conducted by Juraj Valcuha.

She sang in Prokofiev's Alexander Newsky in Catania, Charlotte in Werther at the Teatro Comunale Bologna, Carmen at La Scala, Milan and at the Hamburg Staatsoper, Berlioz' Romeo et Juliette at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam conducted by Sir Colin Davis, Beethoven ?s 9th symphony conducted by Myung Whun Chung in Rome and on tour, Fenena in Nabucco at the Vienna Staatsoper, as well as Polina in Tchaikovsky's Pique Dame at La Scala, Milan.

In 2006 she sang the title role in Carmen conducted by Georges Pre?tre at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome and at the Semperoper in Dresden, Laura in La Gioconda in Catania, Carmen at the Teatro Regio in Turin, Fenena at the Teatro Comunale Bologna.

Her engagements throughout the 2007/8 season included Suzuki at the Chore?gies Festival in Orange, Carmen in Valencia conducted by Lorin Maazel, Preziosilla in La Forza del destino and Carmen at the Teatro Communale in Florence, as well as Eboli in Don Carlo in Tel-Aviv, three productions under the direction of Zubin Mehta, Dalila at the Teatro Comunale Bologna and Santander with the Comunale conducted by Eliahu Inbal, Tigrana in Puccini's Edgar at the Teatro Regio in Turin and Verdi's Requiem with the Oslo Philharmonic conducted by Fruhbeck de Burgos.

In 2009/10/11 she sang Marina in Boris Godunov in Venice ?s La Fenice and at Teatro Comunale Firenze, cond. Semyon Bychkov, Carmen in Tokyo as well as in Modena, Piacenza, Ferrara and Ravenna, Polina in Pique Dame at the Teatro Regio Turin, and took part in Opera galas with the Teatro la Fenice conducted by John Fiore in the first two seasons of Abu Dhabi Classics.

She also sang Dalila in Samson et Dalila in Lie?ge, Carmen at Bayerische Staatsoper, Venus in Tannha?user at Teatro La Scala, conducted by Zubin Mehta.

2011/12 : Herodiade in Massenet ?s opera in Antwerpen as well as Verdi Requiem with Fru?hbeck de Burgos in Copenhague, Amneris, Carmen and Santuzza in St Petersburg as well as Carmen at the Royal Opera in Oman (prod Gianni Quaranta).

2012/2013 : Marina in Boris Godunov at Teatro Real Madrid and Ulrica (Ballo in Maschera) at Teatro Regio Parma; Verdi Requiem with Oslo Philharmonic, Amneris in Aida in St-Petersburg.

Her concert repertoire includes oratorios and cycles by Beethoven, Berg, Dvorak, Mussorgsky, Prokofiev, Mahler, Mozart, Verdi.

Aquiles Machado, tenor

Born in Barquisimeto (Venezuela), Aquiles Machado studied at the Simo?n Bolivar Music Conservatory with William Alvarado. He was awarded with a scholarship by the Banco de Espan?a and the Istituto Mozarteum de Venezuela, which allowed him to move to Madrid to study at the Escuela Superior de Musica "Reina Sofia" under the guidance of Alfredo Kraus, Suso Marja?tegui and Eldemiro Arnaltes. He was chosen to perform at the final concert at the Royal Palace at the presence of Queen Sofia.