Justina Gringyte

Mezzo-Soprano

Biography

2015 International Opera Awards Young Singer of the Year, Lithuanian mezzo soprano Justina Gringytė, is hailed for her “knockout technique” (The Times). She captivated the classical press in the title role of Carmen for both English National Opera and Scottish Opera. With a voice that is; “Steel clad, hotly phrased, superbly controlled” (The Guardian), she “commands the stage, alternately spitting out or sliding deliciously around in her vocal lines, imperious one minute and fragile the next.” (The Scotsman).

The 2018/19 season will see Justina Gringytė make some important role and house debuts, including her house debut at Korean National Opera in Seoul as Hänsel in Hänsel und Gretel, her role and house debut as Suzuki in Madame Butterfly at Gran Teatre del Liceu, and her role debut as Tigrana in Scottish Opera’s production of Edgar. Ms Gringytė will also return to Welsh National Opera for her role debut as Sara in Roberto Devereux, and to Lithuanian National Opera to reprise her role as Romeo in I Capuleti e i Montecchi. Other engagements will include Boulanger’s Psalm 130 at the BBC Proms with the CBSO and Ludovic Morlot, a concert at Wigmore Hall as a part of their Russian Series, and an open air concert with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony under the baton of Oroszo Estrada.

Highlights from the 2017/18 season included a return to Welsh National Opera for her role debuts as Preziosilla and Curra in a new David Poutney production of La forza del destino, and to Lithuanian National Opera as the title role in Carmen and in her role debut as Romeo in I Capuleti e i Montecchi. Ms. Gringytė also made her role debut as Dalila in Samson et Dalila for Vilnius City Opera. Other engagements included Beethoven’ Symphony No. 9 at the Royal Albert Hall with Andrew Nethsingha and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and a series of recitals with Petras Geniušas.

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Reviews

“Justina Gringyte’s mezzo voice is warm and lustrous throughout her range, such that the even the higher, louder portions of her solo work kept their silky quality.”

BBC Proms with the CBSO, August 2018

Barry Creasy

Music OMH

“In a conventional production, when she is presented as a mere fortune-teller, Preziosilla’s appearances can seem disconcertingly random, but here she becomes a presence both dynamic and ominous; a seductive urger of recruits to war, a saturnine ringmaster whipping up the action, a single Norn weaving the thread of destiny in and out of the narrative.  Justina Gringyte carried the extra burden of the role lightly.  She wore the successive costimes (by Marie-Jeanne Lecca) with flamboyantly sassy style, none more so than the tall, icon-like gold headdress and skull mask she had on as she sat astride a cannon to lead a fearsome Rataplan… Gringyte’s characterful mezzo helped bring the requisite new perspective to the ever-present Preziosilla.”

Rian Evans

Opera Magazine

“Justina Gringyte’s Preziosilla made the greatest impact on opening night. Her granite-toned mezzo was in thrilling condition, especially when imperiously sitting astride a tank’s gun to deliver the rousing Rataplan chorus, a huge blast at the end scattering her victims.”

La Forza del Destino, WNO, February 2018

Mark Pullinger

Bachtrack

“She commands the stage, alternately spitting out or sliding deliciously around in her vocal lines, imperious one minute and fragile the next.”

David Kettle

The Scotsman

“All eyes were drawn to Justina Gringyte as Carmen, the star turn of the show, whose magnetic stage presence turned sultry, spitting-angry, vulnerable and passionate as she tore into her arias with a vengeance and astonishing vocal verve.”

David Smythe

Bachtrack

More Reviews

 

“Justina Gringyte, alluring and sinister as destiny’s messenger.”

Richard Hubert Smith, The Times Feb 5th 2018

 

“Gringyte’s mezzo was so good as to make one wish she had even more to sing”

Rian Evans, Guardian 

“Justina Gringyte made more of Meg Page than one would have thought possible. “

Alexander Campbell, Classical Source 

“Her voice is steel-clad, hotly phrased, superbly controlled. “

Kate Molleson, The Guardian 

“Justina Gringyte, freshly crowned Young Singer of the Year at the International Opera Awards, is a fabulous Carmen: irresistible yet inscrutable, voluptuous yet vulnerable, with a bewitching sultriness in her full-toned mezzo… “

Whats on Stage by Mark Valencia 

“Lithuanian mezzo Justina Gringyte offers a star performance in the title role; with sexual allure to spare, she plays the amoral, tragic gypsy with complete physical command and superior vocalism, equally conveying every word of Christopher Cowell’s skilful English translation. “

The Stage by George Hall 

“Justina Gringyte was a seductive and captivating Carmen”

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“Justina Gringyte has a strong stage presence and gave a passionate performance; she has a fine voice with an acid top that fitted Bieto’s characterisation of a hard-hearted, tarty gypsy girl. The climactic scene between Carmen and Don Jose was utterly convincing and gripping. “

Plays To See by Alexandra Cooper 

“Gringyte’s Carmen has a lithe and sensual voice to match her character, believable in both her flirtations and her vulnerability. “

The Gizzle Review 

“Justina Gringyte – this year’s International Opera Awards Young Singer of the Year – as Carmen, amply justifies the title with just the right blend of innocent gaiety and depravity “

Camden Review by Sarah Dawes 

“…while Justina Gringyte showed wit, character and a knockout technique as Kaled.”

The Times 

“Justina Gringyte as Kaled, the king’s servant, was luxury casting, but Gringyte got one big solo. This was her lullaby to Sita in act two, an aria which Gringyte made one of the highlights and, like her performance in Massenet’s Don Quichotte for Chelsea Opera Group, made you long to here her in a longer role in this repertoire (she has Carmen planned with ENO and Scottish Opera).”

Planet Hugill 

“In the travesti role of Kaled, Justina Gringyte seemed to invoke the spirit of Carmen with a fine, rounded French sound in her Act 2 romance ‘Ferme les yeux’. This was a small part with only contributions in the Act 1 finale and parts of Act 2 before disappearing from the story like Lear’s fool but Gringyte made the most of the opportunities presented.”

Opera Britannia UK 

“Lithuanian Justina Gringyte strikes real sparks in her brief appearance as Sparafucile’s sister, Maddalena, in Act III. “

The Stage Reviews by David Gutman 

“Where it was good, though, this revival was very, very good. It would be hard to imagine a more black-hearted assassin than Brindley Sherratt’s baleful Sparafucile, nor a more calculating Maddalena thanJustina Gringyte. What a glorious pair of villains they are! Performed as well as this you can’t help wishing Verdi had written them an opera all their own.”

Whats on Stage by Mark Valencia 

“The Lithuanian mezzo Justina Gringyte makes an excellent Maddalena, with well focused tone…”

Classicalsource.com by Tully Potter 

“On the other side of the platform, though, Judith Howarth and Elizabeth Llewellyn soared up to soprano heights with ease, while Karen Cargill and Justina Gringyte made their mezzo moments tell; meanwhile, Lucy Crowe filtered in Mater Gloriosa’s ethereal line magically from a distance. The overall impression was convincing, with some distinguished orchestral playing underpinning the security of the conjoined choirs.”

The Guardian by George Hall – Mahler’s Eighth Symphony 

“Top of the list for commitment and artistry has to be Justina Gringyte who took on a taxing passage as Giovanna Seymour. What was special about this cameo was Miss Gringyte’s willingness to take artistic risks. What she produced was a very finely crafted interpretation of the role which pushed her to the outer edges of her musical and vocal limits. It is very exciting to see this level of commitment in a young artist and Miss Gringyte is lucky too to be blessed with natural elegance and poise which gives her portrayal dignity in the midst of suffering. This is a dramatic mezzo with a lot of power and a distinct edge to her tone which enables her to carry with relative ease over Donizetti’s orchestra.”

Opera Britannia 

“Fenena, sung by Justina Gringyte, made a good foil to the heavier voice of Abigaille.”

Bachtrack by Simon Rees – Rigoletto/ENO 2014 

“Justina Gringyte and Robyn Lyn Evans were well-matched lovers in Fenena and Ismaele”

The Independent by Stephanie Power – Nabucco, Welsh National Opera 

“Robin Lyn Evans and Justina Gringyte project vibrant tone and lucid Italian as the unfortunate lovers Ismaele and Fenena. “

The Telegraph by Rupert Christiansen – Nabucco, Welsh National Opera 

“Justina Gringyte sang a feisty Fenena, Abigaille’s love and power rival, and once she had shed her Baby Spice look in the Jerusalem panto scene she grew into the role magnificently.”

Performance Review by Mark Smith – Nabucco, Welsh National Opera 

“The vampish Maddalena of Justina Gringyte, towering over Banks at the curtain call, was fabulous, her ripe mezzo the perfect foil for Christy’s soprano in the quartet. “

Opera Britannia – Rigoletto/ENO 2014 

“But while the thrust of her tabooed relationship adds little to this opera, Justina Gringyte’s Maddalena is a joy to watch on stage. Dressed by designer Michael Levine in jewels, a corset, lacy white undershorts and structural hoop skirt, she cuts a glamorous figure of perversion. Simultaneously tempting the Duke into exposing his infidelity, and preparing him for Sparafucile’s assault, she engineers the completion of his crime and the start of what could be his punishment in one fair sweep. “

Reviews and Features by Amelia Forsbrook – Rigoletto/ENO 2014 

“There’s strong support from Peter Rose (Sparafucile), Justina Gringyte (Maddalena) and Diana Montague (Giovanna) and this is a thoroughly enjoyable evening of insightful direction and fine musicianship. “

Whats on Stage by Simon Thomas – Rigoletto/ENO 2014 

“With strong support from Peter Rose and Justina Gringyte as Sparafucile and Maddalena, Verdi’s score was honoured even if Victor Hugo’s drama was shortchanged. “

The Telegraph by Rupert Christiansen – Rigoletto/ENO 2014 

“Both Ismaele (Robyn Lyn Evans) and Fenena (Justina Gringyte) were vocally assured and a pleasure to hear.”

Birmingham Post by Norman Stinchcombe – Nabucco, Welsh National Opera 

“Lithuanian mezzo Justina Gringyte, 24, is about to join the Royal Opera’s Young Artists scheme: she has a thunderously powerful voice and sings with old-school fervour. Predictably, she was at her best in Lyubasha’s aria from Rimsky-Korsakov’s The Tsar’s Bride. “

The Telegraph by Rupert Christiansen – Kathleen Ferrier Competition, Wigmore Hall 

“Justina Gringyte, the mezzo, tinges ‘The Soldier’s Wife’ Op. 8 No. 4 with melancholy and sadness.”

MusicWeb by Stephen Greenbank – Recording of the month. Sergei RACHMANINOV Songs