On April 1, 5, and 9, Elza van den Heever reprises the role of the Empress in Die Frau ohne Schatten at the 2023 Baden-Baden Easter Festival. She has previously sung the role in Paris and Rotterdam under Yannick Nézet-Séguin, and was set to perform it at The Metropolitan Opera in the 2020/21 season (which was unfortunately canceled due to COVID-19). Of her performance at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Diapason Magazine declared:
“Tout change quand paraît l’Impératrice. Timbre d’argent cousu d’or, avec un aigu agile comme le vol de l’hirondelle, un galbe de la phrase aux souplesses félines, Elza van den Heever est la grande triomphatrice de la soirée. L’incarnation aura besoin de se libérer, mais pour une première fois, c’est déjà un accomplissement, qui impose l’artiste parmi les grands sopranos Strauss d’aujourd’hui.”
[“Everything changes when the Empress appears. A silver timbre sewn with gold, with a high note as agile as the flight of a swallow, a curve of the phrase with feline suppleness, Elza van den Heever is the great triumph of the evening. The embodiment will need to be released, but for a first time, it is already an accomplishment, which imposes the artist among the great Strauss sopranos of today.”]
Mr. van den Heever shares the stage with a brilliant cast of dramatic voices, including Wolfgang Koch as Barak the Dyer, Miina-Liisa Värelä as the Dyer’s Wife, Clay Hilley as the Emperor, and Michaela Schuster as the Nurse. Kirill Petrenko conducts the incredible Berliner Philharmoniker in Lydia Steier’s striking new production of Strauss’ enigmatic fairytale.
The opera will also be presented in concert at Philharmonie Berlin on April 14. This performance will be live-streamed at 18:00 CET on Digital Concert Hall.
Photo: Jiyang Chen