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Nicole Cabell, the 2005 Winner of the BBC Singer of the World Competition in Cardiff and Decca recording artist, is one of the most sought-after lyric sopranos of today. Her solo debut album, “Soprano” was named “Editor’s Choice” by Gramophone and has received an incredible amount of critical acclaim and several prestigious awards, including the 2007 Georg Solti Orphée d’Or from the French Académie du Disque Lyrique.
Nicole Cabell opens the new season with her first stage performances of Bess in Porgy and Bess with the English National Opera. She will also make her Pittsburgh Opera debut as Mimi in La Bohème before returning to the Minnesota Opera for Violetta in La Traviata and to the Cincinnati Opera for Juliette in Roméo et Juliette. In concert, Ms. Cabell will perform a set of songs on texts by Langston Hughes at the Metropolitan Museum, will sing the Mozart Requiem with the Cincinnati Symphony and David Robertson before joining Master Voices and Ted Sperling at New York’s Alice Tully Hall. Future engagements include returns to Atlanta, Japan, Montreal and Detroit.
Ms. Cabell’s last season included performances of the Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Grand Théâtre de Genève, Flavia in Eliogabalo with the Dutch National Opera, the Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro with Michigan Opera Theatre, and Micaela in Carmen with the Atlanta Opera. Ms. Cabell was also heard in recital at the Frankfurt Opera, Carnegie Hall, the Harris Theater for Music in Dance in Chicago, the University Musical Society in Ann Arbor, and in Louisville, Kentucky. In concert, Nicole Cabell performed with the Lake Forest Symphony (Sisters in Song, a joint program with Alyson Cambridge, which was just commercially released by Cedille Records), the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, and in Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra.
Ms. Cabell’s 2016-2017 season featured her debut as Bess in Porgy in Bess with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, as well as performances of Mimi in La Bohème with the Minnesota Opera and the Cincinnati Opera and of the Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro with Angers Nantes Opera in France. In concert, she sang Shéhérazade with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with the Nashville Symphony and Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with the Oregon Bach Festival.
The 2015-2016 season included Ms. Cabell’s debut at the Grand Théâtre de Genève in the title role of Handel’s Alcina and returns to the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Violetta in La Traviata, to the Atlanta Opera as Juliette in Roméo et Juliette, to the Michigan Opera Theatre as Mimi in La Bohème and to the Cincinnati Opera in a new role: Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus. On the concert stage, Ms. Cabell performed Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in Hiroshima and Nagasaki and a solo recital in Baltimore.
Nicole Cabell’s 2014-2015 season included semi-staged concerts of Don Giovanni with Edo de Waart and the Milwaukee Symphony, her Opéra National de Paris debut (and role debut) as Mimi in La Bohème and Adina in L’Elisir d’Amore with the Minnesota Opera as well as a return to Washington Concert Opera as Giulietta in I Capuleti ed i Montecchi. In concert, she was heard with the Boston Symphony Orchestra in Villa-Lobos’ Bachianas Brasileiras no. 5, with the Orchestre National de Lille in Poulenc’s Stabat Mater, with the San Diego Symphony in Strauss’ Four Last Songs, with the London Symphony Orchestra in Debussy’s La Damoiselle Elue, in a Puccini-Strauss gala concert in Hong-Kong, as Bess in an abridged version of Porgy and Bess at Ravinia with Bobby McFerrin, at the Oregon Bach Festival in Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, at Bard’s Music Festival in Villa-Lobos’ Forest of the Amazon and at SUNY Potsdam in Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem.
In the previous season Nicole Cabell made some exciting role debuts: first as Violetta in La Traviata with Michigan Opera Theatre (seen again later in the season at the San Francisco Opera), then as Medora in Il Corsaro with Washington Concert Opera. She reprised the role of her triumphant San Francisco Opera debut: Giulietta in I Capuleti e i Montecchi with the Lyric Opera of Kansas City. In concert, Ms. Cabell made her Paris debut in Poulenc’s Stabat Mater, appeared several times in Spain, first with the Orquesta de Galicia in a Barber/Mahler program, then on tour with the RPO and Charles Dutoit in Poulenc’s Gloria. In London, she was heard with the RPO in the same Poulenc piece as well as with the BBC Orchestra, first in Barber’s Knoxville, Summer of 1915 with Keith Lockhart and later in Elgar’s The Apostles with Sir Andrew Davis. Further concert appearances included duke Ellington’s Sacred Music at Carnegie Hall, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Boston Symphony and Charles Dutoit at Tanglewood, and finally in a Barber/Brahms program in Nashville with GianCarlo Guerrero. Nicole Cabell also appeared in recital in Chicago.
Awards include first place in both the Palm Beach Opera Vocal Competition and the Women's Board of Chicago Vocal Competition. Nicole Cabell was a semi-finalist in the 2005 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and earned first place in the American Opera Society competition in Chicago. She is the 2002 winner of the Union League's Rose M. Grundman Scholarship, and the 2002 Farwell Award with the Woman's Board of Chicago. Nicole Cabell holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Vocal Performance from the Eastman School of Music.
Nicole Cabell, host
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Grammy Award winning Russian pianist Daniil Trifonov – winner of Musical America’s 2019 Artist of the Year award – has made a spectacular ascent of the classical music world as a solo artist, champion of the concerto repertoire, chamber and vocal collaborator, and composer. Combining consummate technique with rare sensitivity and depth, his performances are a perpetual source of awe. “He has everything and more ... tenderness and also the demonic element. I never heard anything like that,” marveled pianist Martha Argerich. Trifonov recently added a first Grammy Award to his already considerable string of honors, winning Best Instrumental Solo Album of 2018 with Transcendental, a Liszt collection that marked his third title as an exclusive Deutsche Grammophon artist. As The Times of London notes, he is “without question the most astounding pianist of our age.”
This fall brings the release of Destination Rachmaninov: Arrival. Featuring the composer’s First and Third Concertos, this is the third volume of the Deutsche Grammophon series Trifonov recorded with the Philadelphia Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, following Destination Rachmaninov: Departure, named BBC Music’s 2019 Concerto Recording of the Year, and Rachmaninov: Variations, a 2015 Grammy nominee. Later this fall, Trifonov inaugurates his multi-faceted, season-long tenure as 2019-20 Artist-in-Residence of the New York Philharmonic with accounts of Scriabin’s Piano Concerto under Jaap van Zweden. The residency also sees him take part in the New York premiere of his own Piano Quintet, and rejoin the music director and orchestra for Mozart’s 25th Piano Concerto, first in New York and then on a European tour that includes a stop at London’s Barbican.
The Scriabin concerto is the vehicle for the pianist’s return to the New World Symphony under Michael Tilson Thomas, with whom he reunites for Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and for Rachmaninov’s Fourth with the San Francisco Symphony, both at the orchestra’s home and on tour in Europe. Other upcoming orchestral highlights include Alexander Mosolov’s First Piano Concerto with the Nashville Symphony and Beethoven’s First and Fifth Piano Concertos with the Philadelphia Orchestra and Nézet-Séguin, as heard on the pianist’s DG Rachmaninov series. In recital this season, Trifonov tours a solo program of Bach transcriptions and The Art of Fugue to New York’s Lincoln Center, Chicago’s Orchestra Hall, Boston’s Celebrity Series, and destinations in Europe, besides partnering his mentor and fellow pianist Sergei Babayan at Carnegie Hall, Cornell University, Eastman School of Music, and in Dortmund, Germany.
Trifonov launched the New York Philharmonic’s 2018-19 season with back-to back performances, playing Ravel’s G-major Concerto at the opening-night gala and Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto the following night. He revisited the Ravel on tour with the London Symphony and Sir Simon Rattle, and during a residency at Vienna’s Musikverein, where he appeared with the Vienna Philharmonic and gave the Austrian premiere of his own Piano Concerto. The “Emperor” also took him to the London Symphony, National Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, and Cleveland Orchestra, with which he toured Asia. Other orchestral highlights included performances of Scriabin’s concerto during a season-long residency with the Berlin Philharmonic, Prokofiev’s Third with the Chicago Symphony, Rachmaninov’s Third with the Boston Symphony, and Schumann’s concerto with longtime collaborator Valery Gergiev and the Met Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. Trifonov gave solo recitals of Beethoven, Schumann, and Prokofiev on Carnegie’s mainstage and in Berlin, where his Berlin Philharmonic residency featured multiple solo and chamber performances. These included accounts of his own Piano Quintet, of which he also gave the Cincinnati premiere with the Ariel Quartet, and a duo recital with German baritone Matthias Goerne, with whom he also appeared at New York’s 92nd Street Y.
Other highlights of recent seasons include a seven-concert, season-long Carnegie Hall “Perspectives” series, crowned by a performance of Trifonov’s own piano concerto with Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra; curating similar series at the Vienna Konzerthaus and in San Francisco, where the pianist gave a season-closing performance with the San Francisco Symphony; playing Tchaikovsky’s First under Riccardo Muti in the historic gala finale of the Chicago Symphony’s 125th anniversary celebrations; headlining complete Rachmaninoff concerto cycles at the New York Philharmonic’s Rachmaninoff Festival, with London’s Philharmonia Orchestra, and on tour with the Munich Philharmonic; undertaking Asian tours with the Czech Philharmonic and Rome’s Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia and European tours with the London Philharmonic, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, and La Scala Orchestra; and making debuts at London’s BBC Proms and with the Chicago Symphony, Boston Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Montreal Symphony, Rome’s Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, London’s Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, the Berlin Staatskapelle, and the Berlin Philharmonic, where he headlined the orchestra’s famous New Year’s Eve concert under Sir Simon Rattle. Since making solo recital debuts at Carnegie Hall, London’s Wigmore Hall, Vienna’s Musikverein, Japan’s Suntory Hall, and Paris’s Salle Pleyel in 2012-13, Trifonov has given solo recitals at venues including the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., Boston’s Celebrity Series, London’s Barbican and Royal Festival and Queen Elizabeth halls, Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw (Master Piano Series), Berlin’s Philharmonie, Munich’s Herkulessaal, Bavaria’s Schloss Elmau, Zurich’s Tonhalle, the Lucerne Piano Festival, the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels, the Théâtre des Champs Élysées and Auditorium du Louvre in Paris, Barcelona’s Palau de la Musica, Tokyo’s Opera City, the Seoul Arts Center, and Melbourne’s Recital Centre.
The 2013-14 season saw the release of Trifonov: The Carnegie Recital, the pianist’s first recording as an exclusive Deutsche Grammophon artist; captured live at his sold-out 2013 Carnegie Hall recital debut, the album scored a Grammy nomination. Besides the Grammy Award-winning Transcendental, Destination Rachmaninov: Departure, and the Grammy-nominated Rachmaninov Variations, Deutsche Grammophon has also issued Chopin Evocations, which pairs the composer’s works with those by the 20th-century composers he influenced. Trifonov’s discography also features a Chopin album for Decca and a recording of Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto with Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra on the ensemble’s own label.
It was during the 2010-11 season that Trifonov won medals at three of the music world’s most prestigious competitions, taking Third Prize in Warsaw’s Chopin Competition, First Prize in Tel Aviv’s Rubinstein Competition, and both First Prize and Grand Prix – an additional honor bestowed on the best overall competitor in any category – in Moscow’s Tchaikovsky Competition. In 2013 he was awarded the prestigious Franco Abbiati Prize for Best Instrumental Soloist by Italy’s foremost music critics, and in 2016 he was named Gramophone’s Artist of the Year.
Born in Nizhny Novgorod in 1991, Trifonov began his musical training at the age of five, and went on to attend Moscow’s Gnessin School of Music as a student of Tatiana Zelikman, before pursuing his piano studies with Sergei Babayan at the Cleveland Institute of Music. He has also studied composition, and continues to write for piano, chamber ensemble, and orchestra. When he premiered his own Piano Concerto in 2013, the Cleveland Plain Dealer marveled: “Even having seen it, one cannot quite believe it. Such is the artistry of pianist-composer Daniil Trifonov.”
Daniil Trifonov, piano