Canada’s superstar soprano Karina Gauvin has impressed audiences and critics the world over with her luscious timbre, profound musicality and wide vocal range. The Globe and Mail calls her "one of the dream sopranos of our time," who in turn is "distinctive, sophisticated, deeply intuitive, a questioning and fearless artist." Her repertoire ranges from the music of Johann Sebastian Bach to Luciano Berio and she has sung with many major orchestras including the Chicago Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Toronto Symphony, as well as period instrument groups like Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Musica Antiqua Köln, Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, Les Violons du Roy, and Accademia Bizantina. On the operatic or concert stage, she has performed with conductors as diverse as Charles Dutoit, Kent Nagano, Semyon Bichkov, Roger Norrington, Christopher Hogwood, Alan Curtis, Helmuth Rilling, Bernard Labadie and Christophe Rousset. Also active as a recitalist, she has collaborated with several chamber music ensembles and with pianists Marc-André Hamelin, Michael McMahon and Roger Vignoles.
The current season puts focus on Mahler’s 2nd Symphony, which Gauvin will perform with the San Francisco Symphony under Michael Tilson Thomas, at the Grant Park Festival, and with the Orchestre Metropolitain in Montreal. She will make her long-awaited debut with the New York Philharmonic in Messiah, a work to be repeated with the Calgary Philharmonic. In addition, she will appear with the St. Louis Symphony, Winnipeg Symphony and Columbus Symphony
During 2009/10 Gauvin returned to the Chicago Symphony in Bach’s St. John Passion, Montreal Symphony in an evening titled "Eternal Vienna", Les Violons du Roy under Bernard Labadie on two separate occasions (Messiah and Christmas Oratorio), Colorado Symphony in the Brahms Requiem, Indianapolis Symphony (Mahler’s Second Symphony) and a concert version of Orphée et Euridice with Orchestre Symphonique de Québec. She also joined the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra with arias from Alcina. Furthermore, Gauvin sang Pamina in a Montreal Opera production of Die Zauberflöte. She also gave a solo recital at Toronto’s Roy Thomson Hall. Overseas, and appeared in Rinaldo with Accademia Bizantina in Paris and Cologne. Performances of Tolomeo and Giove in Argo by Handel were scheduled in 2010 as well as three recordings with Alan Curtis and Complesso Barocco. Among these, a special project with American murder mystery novelist Donna Leon.
The 08/09 season continued the steady stream of re-engagements by North American orchestras, among them the Montreal Symphony, Toronto Symphony, Calgary Philharmonic, and the Colorado and Oregon symphonies. On the opera stage she portrayed Leila in Les pêcheurs de perles with Montreal Opera which resulted in an immediate re-invitation. Across the Atlantic, she was heard in Handel’sTolomeo with Complesso Barocco (Alan Curtis) in Spain, Handel’s Ariodante with Modo Antiquo in France and Spain, a Vivaldi concert tour in France with Les Boréades de Montréal, as well as a major European tour with the Venice Baroque Orchestra under Andrea Marcon in Vivaldi’s Juditha Triumphans.
2007/08 offered an American tour with Les Violons du Roy, performances with the Toronto and Québec symphonies and a recital for the Toronto Women’s Musical Club. Overseas, she sang the role of Teutile in Vivaldi’s opera Montezuma under Alan Curtis at the Théâtre Champs Elysées as well as Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater with Ottavio Dantone, and was a guest with the Norddeutsche Rundfunk in Hannover. She also portrayed Manlio in Vivaldi’s Tito Manlio at the Barbican in London and Seleuce in Handel's Tolomeo at the Théâtre des Champs Élysées in Paris.
Among her many career highlights figure Mozart’s Requiem and Bach’s Magnificat with the Chicago Symphony under Helmuth Rilling, and her Carnegie Hall debut in Bach’s B minor Mass under the baton of Peter Schreier. She also was Iole in Handel’s Hercules with Akademie für alte Musik Berlin, Euridice in Gluck’s Orphée with Les Violons du Roy and Alcina in Handel’s eponymous opera with the Gabrieli Consort and Paul McCreesh at the Beaune Festival in France. In the spring of 2003 she sang the title role in Georg Conradi’s opera Ariadne for the Boston Early Music Festival which was later released on the CPO label and nominated for a Grammy Award in 2006. On New Year’s Day 2006, Gauvin’s performance in Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with the WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln was broadcast on Eurovision throughout Europe.
A prolific recording artist with more than twenty releases to her credit, Karina Gauvin has been nominated consistently for the Juno Award, and twice for the Grammy, over the past decade. She won the Juno in 2001 and 2003 with Handel’s Silete Venti / Apollo e Daphne and Mozart’s Requiem with Les Violons du Roy, respectively. Her collection of French art songs with pianist Marc-André Hamelin, titled Fête galante,received the 2000 Opus award for Best Vocal Recording and was selected as Chamber Music America’s Recording of the Year. More recently, her characterization of Manlio in Vivaldi's opera Tito Manlio on the Naïve label with the Accademia Bizantina and Ottavio Dantone was called "riveting" by Opera News. She also completed several well-received recordings for Deutsche Grammophon of Handel’s operas Tolomeo, Alcina and Ezio with Alan Curtis and Complesso Barocco. In 2009 she was again nominated for a Grammy for her recording of Jean-Baptiste Lully's Psyché on the cpo label. Her most recent solo album consists of arias from Nicola Porpora’s operas and was released in August 2009 on Atma, her sixth recording for that label, and following the recent "Handel Arias" and "Purcell" CDs. In 2010 she is scheduled to record Ariodante with Alan Curtis and Complesso Barocco for Virgin Classics.
Gauvin’s outstanding performances have been recognized in prestigious competitions worldwide. She won First Prize at the CBC Young Performers Competition and received the Lieder and Public’s prize at the s’Hertogenbosch International Vocal Competition in the Netherlands. In 2000 she was honored with the Opus Award as "Performer of the Year". Other awards include the Virginia Parker Prize and the Maggie Teyte Memorial Prize in London. A graduate of the Montreal Conservatory of Music, Karina Gauvin studied with Ms. Marie Daveluy and persued her postgraduate study with Pamela Bowden at the Royal Scottish Academy in Glasgow.Karina Gauvin
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