Wedneday 9 September and Thursday 10 September 2015
Helsinki Music Centre at 7.00 pm
John Storgårds, conductor
Cyndia Sieden, soprano soloist
Bo Skovhus, baritone soloist
Works on the program:
Symphony No. 4 – Jean Sibelius
Symphony No. 2 "The Earth Anew" – Sunleif Rasmussen
The premiere of Symphony No. 2 by Sunleif Rasmussen, winner of the prestigious Nordic Council Music Prize, opens the autumn season of the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra. Similarly to Sibelius's Kullervo, this major work has been composed for orchestra, male choir and soprano and baritone soloists. The premiere performance features world renowned soloists Cyndia Sieden and Bo Skovhus.
"Soprano soloist Cyndia Sieden emerged as the star of the evening, clad in a rustling red skirt (beautifully apropos to the aria "Stetit Puella," ) and delivering her role [as soprano soloist in the Fort Worth Symphony's production of Carmina Burana] with breathtaking emotional insight and vocal clarity." Read more...
"[Cyndia] Sieden was equally as thrilling, performing with a silky, sweet tone that reinforced the delicacy of Orff's writing for the soprano; ultimately she added poignant counterpoint to the more dramatic performers that balance out Orff's work as a whole, keeping it from sliding into the melodramatic [in the Fort Worth Symphony's production of Carmina Burana]." Read more...
"On Saturday, October 29th, local concertgoers were treated to an evening of fireworks as coloratura soprano Cyndia Sieden sang a varied program from traditional composers (including Schubert) to modern composers (including Ades with Strauss and Schoenberg thrown in for good measure). The concert was sponsored by the S.T.A.R. Foundation of Monterey County as the second in a series of three vocal recitals by world-class opera singers to help raise awareness of its goals to help fund the arts throughout Monterey County.
"Ms. Sieden and pianist Judith Cohen were in exceptional form and precision in the intimate Hidden Valley Theater..." Read more...
"NEW YORK The New York City Opera has kicked off its spring season with a one-two punch that shows the scrappy company staying true to its historic dual mission...
"The company assembled a strong group of sopranos to present these daunting works. Anu Komsi poured great feeling into the cryptic utterances of Zorn; Kara Shay Thompson was a strikingly haunted figure in Erwartung; and Cyndia Sieden carried off the Feldman work with charismatic presence and considerable vocal allure." Read more...
"There was encouraging evidence on Friday night that the struggling New York City Opera is making smart moves and continuing to rebound. It was the premiere of "Monodramas," a triple bill of one-act works that are not operas in any traditional sense. Before the performance so many ticket buyers, including noticeable numbers of young people, were lined up in the lobby of the David H. Koch Theater waiting to get inside that the curtain had to be delayed more than 20 minutes to accommodate them...
"The second line of the Neither libretto "from impenetrable self to impenetrable unself by way of neither" conveys the mix of what seems to be acute observation and complete uncertainty in Beckett's phrases. Yet Feldman savors every word of this text in his elemental and obsessively repetitive music. The soprano must deliver the words in syllabic utterances, often on high sustained notes that hover above the staff, making it almost impossible for the text to be clear. The soprano Cyndia Sieden was dazzling here, singing with uncanny focus, impressive stamina and ethereal beauty...Ms. Sieden was a wonder." Read more...
"On Friday, New York City Opera, a company that was all but left for dead a couple of years ago after shutting down for a season for renovations and flirting with a general director it couldn't afford, offered what in the opera world qualifies as breathtaking artistic daring: a triple bill of one-person works, called "Monodramas," the most traditional of which was Arnold Schoenberg's Erwartung. This was less an opera than a Happening, and the audience was less an opera audience than the new and different crowd (Jim Jarmusch!) that classical-music institutions are always saying they want...
"City Opera saved the best for last. Kudos to the company for staging Morton Feldman's Neither, a 1976-77 setting of the only opera libretto Samuel Beckett ever wrote. "Neither" is remarkable: abstract and evocative, with words and notes coalescing around half-understood meanings, the sentences lying so high in the soprano's voice that they are almost impossible to understand, then yielding to simple "ah" vowels in wordless vocalese.
"And kudos to the soprano Cyndia Sieden for an outstanding performance of a challenging piece. Singing beautifully is one thing: The soprano Kara Shay Thomson managed that in Erwartung, the second work of the evening. But Sieden went the next step into artistry by imbuing every phrase with significance not self-consciously, but with genuine urgency. " Read more...
Rasmussen: Symphony No. 2 "The Earth Anew"
Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra
Helsinki Music Centre
September 9, 10
Mozart: Recitativo: "Mia speranza adorata!", Aria "Ah non sai qual pena sia," K.416, and, from The Magic Flute, "Der Hölle Rache"
University of Washington Chamber Orchestra
Nordheim: Wirklicher Wald
Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra
"Carmina Burana Discovered"
Costa Mesa, CA
Orff: Carmina Burana
Costa Mesa, CA
Adès: The Tempest
Frankfurt Opera House
January 11, 18, 24, February 2, 7
Orff: Carmina Burana
Fort Worth Symphony
Fort Worth, TX
May 17, 18, 19
Handel: Ode for St Cecilia's Day
San Francisco Symphony
San Francisco, CA
April 5, 6, 2013
Schoenberg: Pierrot Lunaire
Orff: Carmina Burana
Kansas City Symphony
Kansas City, MO
November 12-18 (two performances on the 18th)
The New World Center
with Nicholas McGegan and the New World Symphony
Miami Beach, FL
October 24-28, 2012
Mozart: Die Zauberflöte
Queen of the Night
Teatro dell'Opera di Roma
March 28, 30 and April 1
with Stephen Stubbs and Maxine Eilander
February 18, 2012
Mozart: The Impresario
The Viennese Opera Ball
Waldorf-Astoria Grand Ballroom
New York, NY
February 3, 2012