Internationally acclaimed for her interpretations of Wagner, Strauss, Verdi and Puccini, Canadian soprano Adrianne Pieczonka has brought to life such powerful women as Senta, Chrysothemis, Sieglinde, the Marschallin, the Kaiserin, Tosca, Elisabetta, and Amelia on leading opera and concert stages in Europe, North America and Asia.
Performances have taken her to New York’s Metropolitan Opera, the Vienna Staatsoper, ROH Covent Garden, Paris, Berlin, Madrid, Munich Frankfurt, Los Angeles, and La Scala, as well as at some of Europe’s finest summer festivals including Salzburg, Bayreuth, Glyndebourne and Aix-en-Provence under the direction of such conductors as James Levine, Riccardo Muti, Zubin Mehta, Sir Neville Marriner, Claudio Abbado, the late Richard Bradshaw, Lorin Maazel, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Anthony Pappano and the late Sir Georg Solti.
Opera figures prominently on Adrianne’s 2015-2016 calendar with performances as Mme. Lidoine in Dialogues des Carmélites with the Nederlandse Oper in Amsterdam, and Countess Madeleine in Strauss’s Capriccio at the Opéra national de Paris, directed by Robert Carsen. She appears twice at the Deutsche Oper in Berlin, first in the title role of Puccini’s Tosca and later as Chrysothemis in Strauss’s Elektra. Highly acclaimed in the original production at the Aix-en-Provence Festival directed by the late Patrice Chéreau, Adrianne reprises the role Chrysothemis at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. As well, she appears in concert at Koerner Hall in Toronto in a program of contemporary music by George Crumb and in recital in Madrid.
Adrianne’s 2014-2015 season featured performances in the title role of Tosca, as Senta in Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Leonora in a new production of Beethoven’s Fidelio in Madrid, a role she reprised in another new production, this one at the Salzburg Festival. She also appeared as Chrysothemis in Strauss’s Elektra in Munich, with the Bavarian State Orchestra in Zemlinsky’s Lyric Symphonie and participated as a jury member for the Hildegar Zadek International Voice Competition.
Adrianne’s portrayals of Senta in Der Fliegende Höllander andSieglinde in Die Walküre have taken her to some of the world’s most famed houses – the Bayreuth Festspiele, Metropolitan Opera, the Canadian Opera Company, Opéra de Paris. Both characters have become signature roles earning her the title as “the Sieglinde of our time” (Die Zeit) and widespread praise for her “masterful and touchingly expressive” Senta (Opernglas). Strauss has also featured on Adrianne’s recent calendar including performances as Chrysthemis in Elektra at the Aix-en-Provence Festival, the ROH Covent Garden, a role she reprised at Milan’s La Scala, as Die Kaiserin in Frau Ohne Schatten in at the Bavarian Staatsoper, Florence and Vienna, the title roles of Arabella in Vienna and Ariadne auf Naxos in Vienna, Toronto, Tokyo, Valencia, Bilbao, and Munich, and as the Marschallin in Der Rosenkavalier in Salzburg, Vienna, and Munich.
Concerts and Recitals
A consummate concert and recital artist, Adrianne has performed on stages in Europe and North America. Her recent recital at Toronto’s Koerner Hall garnered no less praise: “The soprano combines a beautiful voice with a sincerity and simplicity that touches the heart – an artist without artifice.” (La Scena Musicale) than her debut recital in Toronto at Roy Thomson Hall “Adrianne Pieczonka’s pearly soprano is as lustrous a sound as anyone could imagine…” (Globe & Mail).
Adrianne’s newly released CD “Adrianne Pieczonka Sings Strauss and Wagner” (Delos) has already received critical praise – ‘the focused sweetness of her soprano sounds as radiant as ever’ The Guardian) and ‘Ravishing lieder, ravishing performances!’ (Gapplegate Classical Music Review). In addition to this new recording, her discography includes the JUNO-Award winning recording of some of Puccini most well-loved arias (Orfeo), Lohengrin (Hänssler Classics), named 2010 BBC Magazine DISC OF THE YEAR/OPERA AWARD, the Juno-Award winning Beethoven: Ideals of The French Revolution (Analekta) featuring Paul Griffiths’s tribute to Lieutenant-General Roméo Dallaire The General with l’Orchestre symphonique de Montréal and Kent Nagano, her first solo CD of arias by Wagner and Strauss (Orfeo), Falstaff with Bryn Terfel and Claudio Abbado (DG), Don Giovanni (Naxos), The Complete Orchestra Songs of Richard Strauss (Nightingale), and Die Fledermaus (Nightingale).
Adrianne can be seen on DVD as Chrysothemis in Strauss’s Elektra from Aix-en-Provence (BelAir Classiques), as Amelia in the Metropolitan Opera’s production of Simon Boccanegra, as the Marschallin in Der Rosenkavalier (TDK)and as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni (TDK).
Adrianne began her career at the Canadian Opera Company in Lady MacBeth of Mzensk in 1988, returning to that company in 1994 to sing the role of Mimi in La Bohème. In 1989 she joined the Vienna Volksoper and established her home and career in Europe. In 1991 she became a member of the Vienna Staatsoper where she continues to enjoy great success. After living in London for some time, Adrianne returned to live in Toronto in 2005, where she continues to make her home.
Adrianne is an Officer of the Order of Canada, the recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and was named a Kammersängerin by the Austrian government. In May 2013, she was named an Honourary Fellow of The Royal Conservatory of Music and in 2014 she received the Paul de Hueck and Norman Walford Career Achievement Award. Adrianne holds Honorary Doctorates from her alma mater, the University of Western Ontario, and McMaster University.