Monday, September 29, 2008

Canadian Arts and Culture Week: Celebrating Soprano Adrianne Pieczonka

In honour of our current Canadian election campaign issue of CULTURE, I thought it appropriate to focus on Canadian singers. I could go on about how Mr. Harper of the Conservative party has dismissed culture as not something ordinary working people are into and discuss who and what we are as Canadians but I won't since I’m sure I'm preaching to the choir.

Instead, lets celebrate the greatness of our national and international opera stars starting with soprano Adrianne Pieczonka.

Originally from Brampton, ON Pieczonka studied with noted teacher Mary Morrison. It was Mary who told me while I was her student that Pieczonka was originally a member of the Canadian Opera Company Chorus but decided that she wanted to be a soloist so she went to Germany to work. It was there that she developed her remarkable technique and dramatic stage presences and learned the major roles. In typical Canadian fashion, she only returned to sing in Canada after she had been a European success. Her Mimi with the COC in 1994 was some of the most stunning singing I have heard (I went back twice to hear her!).

Today, Pieczonka makes Toronto her home but as you can read on her web page, she is singing all over the world including the Met, Covent Garden, and Munich to name a few.

Check out this clip of her singing Donna Anna's "Or sai chi l'onore" from Don Giovanni. Also note that Canadian tenor Michael Shade is her Don Ottavio!

Next up, tenor Micheal Shade!


eusebius said...

She's from Burlington, actually ... but no disagreement with your comments here -- one of our finest singers today if not of all time, and a completely lovely person. Great blog by the way! Thank you for it!

Elizabeth McDonald said...

Thank you eusebius for the correction. Glad you like the blog and thanks for reading!

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