“Garanča is one of the most sought-after singers on Earth…she has few peers, vocally, musically, or dramatically” – New York Classical Review
Mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča has established herself as a major star through her highly acclaimed performances for the world’s leading opera houses, symphony orchestras and recital halls. She has captivated audiences with her exquisite voice, intelligent musicianship, and compelling stage presence.
During the 2023/24 season, Garanča’s opera performances include Amneris Aida at the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin, Princess Eboli Don Carlo and Santuzza Cavalleria Rusticana at the Teatro alla Scala Milan, Kundry Parsifal at the Wiener Staatsoper and Judith Bluebeard's Castle for the Teatro di San Carlo Naples. Her many concert performances are to include Bluebeard's Castle at Carnegie Hall and on tour to Japan and South Korea with the Metropolitan Opera, Verdi Requiem in Rome with Sir Antonio Pappano and a recital for Teatro all Scala Milan with pianist Malcolm Martineau.
Last season Garanča made her Bayreuth Festival debut as Kundry. Other recent appearances include: Dalila Samson et Dalila, Carmen, and role debuts as Kundry, Princess de Bouillon Adriana Lecouvreur and Amneris at the Wiener Staatsoper; Princess Eboli at the Opéra national de Paris; Santuzza at the Opernhaus Zürich; Octavian in a new production of Der Rosenkavalier at the Metropolitan Opera; and return appearances with the Royal Opera House as Dalila and Amneris. Recent concert performances include Mahler Rückert-Lieder in her debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under Riccardo Muti, the 2023 “Summer Nights” open-air gala at Schönbrunn Palace with the Vienna Philharmonic conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin, and the Berliner Philharmoniker "Europakonzert" conducted by Kirill Petrenko, which was performed in support of Ukraine and broadcast worldwide from the Great Amber Concert Hall in Liepāja.
Garanča was born into a musical family in Riga, Latvia, and studied at the Latvian Academy of Music with her mother. She began her professional career as a resident artist with the Südthüringischer Staatstheater in Meiningen and later with Oper Frankfurt. She is particularly famed for her portrayal of Bizet’s Carmen and was described by the New York Times as “the finest Carmen in 25 years…” following her appearance at the Metropolitan Opera in a production that was one of the most viewed and successful “Live in HD”. She also performed Carmen at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Wiener Staatsoper, Bayerische Staatsoper, Teatro alla Scala Milan and Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía Valencia, all to critical acclaim.
An exclusive artist with Deutsche Grammophon (DG), Garanča has released many albums for the label and received numerous ECHO KLASSIK awards, including ‘Singer of the Year’ for her first non-core-classical album "Sol y Vida". She is also recipient of Musical America’s ‘Vocalist of the Year’, MIDEM's ‘Singer of the Year’ and a Grammy nomination. Her first solo recital album was recorded with pianist Malcolm Martineau in 2020 and her latest release on DG – “Live From Salzburg” - features Christian Thielemann conducting the Wiener Philharmoniker in a programme of Wagner Wesendonck Lieder and Mahler Rückert Lieder. A critically-acclaimed recording of Elgar Sea Pictures with Daniel Barenboim and the Staatskapelle Berlin was also recently released on Decca.
Garanča was honoured with the title of ‘Kammersängerin’ by the Wiener Staatsoper in 2013, for her devotion to the House.
For more than ten years, Elīna Garanča and Karel Mark Chichon have been sharing the stage with young, aspiring talents from the opera world as part of their Open-Air concerts in Göttweig and Kitzbühel, Austria. These appearances often started a successful international career of the young protégés.
Following this collaboration, the idea of young talent initiative ZukunftsStimmen, with the support of Raiffeisen Bank, was born. It is particularly important to Elīna Garanča that ZukunftsStimmen is not just a classical singing competition. Rather, it is about discovering, accompanying, helping at the beginning of a career – and of course about the opportunity to be on stage with Kammersängerin Elīna Garanča and Maestro Karel Mark Chichon during the classical Open-Air concerts in Göttweig Abbey and Kitzbühel.
In the forefront of today's great operatic artists, the Latvian mezzo-soprano Elina Garanca holds an indisputable place.
Opera News Awards
Garanča's talents would make her a star in any century.