Following spectacular debuts at the Paris and Metropolitan Operas and the Salzburg Festival, young Lirico-spinto soprano Elena Stikhina is making waves in the opera world.
Since the 2017/18 season she has triumphed at the Bayerische Staatsoper, the Berlin Staatsoper, Dresden Semperoper, Baden Baden Festspielhaus and in concert with the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Munich Philharmonic and at the Philharmonie Paris.
Elena has attracted press reviews describing her singing as both miraculous and luminous, her presence as magnetic and her technique as superlative.
Summer 2019 saw her make her British Debut at the BBC Proms singing Tatyana’s letter scene from Eugene Onegin. The 2018/19 season also saw her make her Dutch Opera debut singing Cio-Cio San (Madama Butterfly). Performances as Tosca and Leonora (La Forza del Destino) followed at the Paris Opera, where she returned to sing a new production of Prince Igor.
Other engagements in the 19/20 season include her debut in Geneva as Aida, her return to the Boston Lyric Opera as Norma and a solo recital at the Zaryade Hall, Moscow.
Due to the outbreak of Coronavirus, cancelled performances include returns to the Paris Opera for Adriana Lecouvreur and La Bohème and a new production of Aida, to both London and Amsterdam for a new productions of Aida and to the Bayerischer Staatsoper as Tatyana.
Her return to Salzburg to open the centenary festival has happily been reschedule to 2021 and in January she gave a live broadcast as Renata in the Mariinsky Theatre’s famed production of Prokofiev’s Fiery Angel and makes her debut at La Scala in a live broadcast as Salomé.
The 18/19 season was also marked by her singing Tosca and Leonora (Il Trovatore) in Berlin and Dresden, Senta (Der fliegende Holländer) in Baden Baden and Munich, and Suor Angelica in New York and next season we look forward to her debut in Zurich, her return to the Metropolitan, to the Berlin Staatsoper and her delayed debut at Covent Garden.
Elena appears as guest soloist at the famed Mariinsky Theatre Saint Petersburg after developing her repertoire at the New Primorsky Stage of the Mariinsky Theatre in Vladivostock. Elena completed her studies at the Moscow State Conservatory in 2012 and gained international attention when she won first prize at the Competizione dell’Opera Linz in 2014 and then in 2016 by winning the Audience and Culturarte Prizes at Placido Domingo’s Competition ‘Operalia’.
“The voice itself is extraordinarily beautiful and rather wide in what it can do. It has the creaminess of Janowitz yet that rather mezzo-like, shadowy appeal of Ludwig; in a sense it’s febrile, like a molten furnace embracing dark embers from the middle of the chest, right up to a rock-solid spiralling high register that is crystalline. The vibrato is controlled with unwavering precision. Her stage presence is such that she lives the role of Tatyana – and I imagine everything else she sings.”
“Elena Stikhina balanced passion, remorse and piety to create a complex Leonora. Stikhina moved with a natural grace and simplicity and, coupled with the focus and intensity of her singing, it pulled me immediately into her plight. Her voice is of ample size, but clarity and evenness are its most remarkable characteristics. Those attributes, coupled with the expressiveness of her singing, permitted Luisotti to craft the stunning, intimate sonorities that underpinned her touching portrayal of this tragic woman.”
”Vocally, this production is a feast of beautiful voices which also convince dramatically. Wolfgang Koch is an experienced Jochanaan, whom he portrays with a full-bodied voice and self-confident prophet, at peace with himself and convinced of his message. Elena Stikhina embodies everything one might wish for in a Salome: a wonderfully youthful, light, lyrical soprano with a glorious outpouring of notes, a high sense of drama and a beguiling timbre – a perfect match for this difficult role.”
“Stikhina, a relative newcomer to the Met’s stage, can surely be counted among the great Toscas of modern history. Her voice is rich and warm with a consistency of tone and power seldom seen in even the greatest opera stars. She extracted every ounce of drama from the score with everything from near inaudible pianissimos to thunderous fortes. “Vissi d’arte” was met with such applause that, for just a moment, I anticipated an encore. She was an explosion of virtuosity, a bolt of lightning to the heart that took the audience away from the troubled times we find ourselves in.”