Verdi’s Requiem has been described as “enthralling,” “monumental,” “eerily beautiful” and above all, “operatic.” It is — in the sense of being as tuneful and dramatic as the composer’s most famous operas: Aïda, La Traviata and Rigoletto. On May 6, the Peterborough Singers, led by Syd Birrell, perform the Requiem with four soloists, a double choir, and the ‘orchestra’ of Ian Sadler at the pipe organ, joined by 12 brass players.
This performance offers a wonderful opportunity to hear the following four renowned soloists in an intimate setting — make sure to get your tickets!
Verdi’s Requiem Soloists:
Leslie Fagan (soprano) has delighted audiences and critics alike at Royal Albert Hall, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Bordeaux Opera House and Roy Thomson Hall. She has performed under the batons of such noted conductors as Sir David Willcocks, Hans Graf, Jukke Pekke Saraste, Kent Tritle, Heinz Ferlisch, Victor Borge and Elmer Isler. Highlights of Fagan’s past engagements include a solo concert of music of Stravinsky and Debussy with the Bordeaux Aquitaine Symphonie Nationale, France; Bach’s Weinachts Oratorium in Stuttgart, Germany; Handel’s Messiah at the Royal Albert Hall in London, England; Tafelmusik Orchestra and Choir in Toronto, Ontario; and engagement as guest soloist at the International Choral Festival in Gouda, Netherlands.
Grammy-nominated Laura Pudwell’s (mezzo-soprano) reputation as a superb vocalist has been well-established as a result of her performances in London, Paris, Salzburg, Houston, Vienna and Boston. Her vast repertoire ranges from early music to contemporary works. She is equally at home on the opera, oratorio or recital stage, and has received international acclaim for her recordings. A frequent guest of many national and international presenters, she has had the privilege of working with many outstanding conductors, including Hans Graf, Hervé Niquet, Andrew Parott, Ivars Taurens, David Fallis, Brian Jackson, John Sinclair, Bernard Labadie, Lydia Adams, Howard Dyck and Robert Cooper.
Mexican tenor Ernesto Ramírez (tenor) is garnering rave reviews for his distinctive Italianate sound, “wonderfully fluid line and brilliant high notes,” combined with his “suave, nuanced lyricism.” Ernesto recently debuted as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly with Mexico’s Opera de Leon, Rodolfo in La bohème with Pacific Northwest Opera, and sang his first Don Jose with Opera Kelowna’s Carmen and in concert with Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony. Ernesto has performed to great acclaim for audiences in France, Germany, Switzerland, Canada and the United States. His “resplendent tenor” has been heard in performances of Verdi’s Requiem with Brott Music Festival, and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, Niagara Symphony and Kingston Symphony. Opera companies in Zurich, Quebec, Montreal, Tel-Aviv and Mexico City have welcomed him as a guest artist in their Opera Galas.
Jonathan Liebich is known for a rich and expressive voice and has enjoyed performing in Canada and Europe. Most recently he has appeared in performances of Messiah with the Uxbridge Messiah Singers and Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with Cantorei Sine Nomine. Jonathan is particularly passionate about the oratorio repertoire and audiences have been riveted by his commanding performances of repertoire including Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis, Mass in C, Ninth Symphony, numerous of Bach’s Cantatas as well as St. John’s Passion, Brahms’ German Requiem, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Haydn’s Creation and Lord Nelson Mass, Vaughan Williams’ Five Mystical Songs and the Requiems of Mozart, Fauré and Duruflé. He has performed with numerous orchestras and choirs including the Elmer Iseler Singers, Stuttgart Music Festival under the baton of Helmuth Rilling, the Vancouver Bach Choir, Vancouver Symphony and Kingston Symphony.
Verdi’s Requiem is generously sponsored by TD Bank
Saturday, May 6, 7 p.m.
Emmanuel United Church, 534 George St. North, Peterborough
Tickets $35 adult, $10 students
Tickets are available online and at the following local businesses: Pammett’s Flower Shop, Ashburnham Foot & Ankle Centre, and Happenstance Books & Yarns (Lakefield).
Please note that at this time masks are required in order to attend Peterborough Singers’ performances.
This performance of the Requiem will be performed in memory of Monica Hale, Moni for many years a dedicated patron of the Peterborough Singers.
We are grateful to our season sponsors Fran Allen and David Tomlinson, Royal LePage