One of the best kept secrets of the classical music season is the high number of top Québec talents who are performing on New York City’s stages. Starting March 1st, Québec is bringing to the City an exceptional group of artists with world class credentials.
• From March 1st, Robert Lepage’s production of the opera The Nightingale and other short fables, based on the music of Igor Stravinsky, is presented at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.
• On March 2 & 5, mezzo-soprano Julie Boulianne sings the role of Diane alongside Placido Domingo and Susan Graham in Iphigénie en Tauride. Also in March, she will sing the role of Stephano in Gounod’s Romeo and Juliet at the Met.
• On March 10, pianist Louis Lortie will play the complete version of Liszt’s Les années de pèlerinage in a 3-hour tour de force at Alice Tully Hall. The same night, Angèle Dubeau and her all-female string ensemble La Pietà will make their New York debut at the French Institute/ Alliance française for an evening of twentieth-century classical music.
• At the Metropolitan Opera, Robert Lepage will direct Die Walküre, the second opera in Wagner’s Ring cycle, which premieres on April 22. Mr. Lepage is the artistic director and creative force behind the Met’s first new Ring cycle in over 20 years.
• May will witness a « Québec week » at Carnegie Hall with baroque music ensemble Les Violons du Roy (May 8), pianist Marc-André Hamelin (May 11) performing at Zankel Hall and the Montréal Symphony Orchestra (May 14) performing at the Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage.
Québec’s Delegate General in New York John Parisella emphasizes that “the presence of so much Québec talent in a short period of time is unprecedented.”
According to Québec Culture Minister Christine St-Pierre, “Québec’s cultural output is remarkable given the size of its population, less than 8 million people. It is proof positive that investing in culture not only fosters creativity but makes sense from an economic point of view.”
This remarkable lineup follows an outstanding fall season: Wagner’s Das Rheingold, directed by Robert Lepage, launched the Metropolitan Opera’s 2010-2011 season. Conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin led the Met Orchestra in a new production of Verdi’s Don Carlo. Bernard Labadie conducted the New York Philharmonic in an interpretation of Handel’s Messiah, and across the Hudson, Jacques Lacombe made an acclaimed debut as the musical director of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra.