Anna Stéphany

Anna Stéphany

MEZZO-SOPRANO

Representation: General Management

Overview

Anna Stéphany is emerging as one of the world’s most exciting mezzo sopranos.   In demand by both opera companies and orchestras, she is a firm favourite with conductors and directors. Her recording of Handel’s Serse for Chandos won critical acclaim, as did her performances of the repertoire of Lorraine Hunt Lieberson.     Anna was part of the ensemble at Zürich Opera, she has also sung with major opera companies throughout Europe.   Anna studied at the Guildhall and was a winner of the Gold Medal and the Kathleen Ferrier Competition.

PDF

Full Biography

Anglo-French mezzo-soprano Anna Stéphany has been praised for her stage-craft and for possessing a “a superb, glowing, impassioned mezzo” voice. Anna was born in the North East of England and studied at King’s College London and the National Opera Studio. She is a Guildhall Gold Medal recipient, represented England at BBC Cardiff Singer of the World and is a winner of the Kathleen Ferrier Award.

Anna was a member of the ensemble at Zürich Opera House from 2012-15, where she made her debut as Cherubino in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro and Dorabella in Cosi fan tutte. Further roles in Zürich include Siebel in Gounod’s Faust; Nicklausse in Offenbach’s Les contes d’Hoffmann; Minerva in Monteverdi’s Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria. Her close relationship with the house has continued with Sesto in La Clemenza di Tito, a new production of Purcell’s King Arthur, and upcoming performances as Romeo I Capuleti e i Montecchi and Charlotte Werther.

One of her most coveted roles is Octavian in Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier; she made her role debut to critical acclaim at the Bolshoi Theatre in 2011, and recently reprised the role for the Royal Swedish Opera. She made her critically acclaimed opera recording debut in 2013 in the title role of Handel’s Serse with Christian Curnyn and Early Opera Company. Anna has appeared as Rosina in Rossini’s Il barbiere di Siviglia at Théâtre du Châtelet, Paris; Annio in Mozart’s La clemenza di Tito at Aix-en-Provence; the title role in Charpentier’s Médée at Chicago Opera Theatre and in 2013 she covered Joyce di Donato in La Donna del Lago at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. She made her debut at the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich stepping in as Annio in La Clemenza di Tito and returned last season as La Musica and Speranza in Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo.

On the concert stage Anna has performed with some of the world’s finest orchestras. Recent appearances include the BBC Proms with the London Philharmonic Orchestra/Jurowsky; Cesti’s Orontea with La Nuova Musica at Wigmore Hall; Elgar’s Sea Pictures with the Bremer Philharmoniker; Bach’s St Matthew Passion with the Gabrieli Consort in Schaffhausen; St Matthew Passion with the Handel & Haydn Society/Harry Christophers; La damoiselle élue with the Philharmonia Orchestra/Esa-Pekka Salonen; a programme of Handel in New York, London and Paris with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment/William Christie in a tribute to Lorraine Hunt Lieberson; and performances with the Danish National Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra/Jakub Hrusa, Pygmalion/Raphaël Pichon, Balthasar Neumann/Thomas Hengelbrock, and La Scintilla/Laurence Cummings.

This season, Anna makes her Covent Garden debut as Octavian, and her Glyndebourne debut as Annio. She also appears as Serse with Early Opera Company at St John’s Smith Square, and in Handel’s Theodora with Rias Kammerchor. Further performances include Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and Berlioz’s Les nuits d’été with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic¸ and Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius in Southwell Cathedral, Dublin and Lisbon.

Artist Website: www.annastephany.com

Promoters please note: if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact Hazard Chase to ensure that you receive the most up to date version.

Email: Evie Parker

PDF

News

Anna Stéphany makes ROH debut

December 16th, 2016

Mezzo stars in new production of Der Rosenkavalier

Read More

‘Serse’ at St John’s Smith Square

November 18th, 2016

Critically acclaimed production features several Hazard Chase singers

Read More

HC Singers at the Oxford Lieder Festival

October 16th, 2015

Renowned Festival features seven Hazard Chase singers in a variety of programmes over two weeks

Read More

Anna Stéphany sings Octavian in Stockholm

September 24th, 2015

Mezzo soprano stars in Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier

Read More

Hazard Chase artists at the Bayerische Staatsoper

July 15th, 2015

Conductor Christopher Moulds & Mezzo-Soprano Anna Stéphany appear in Munich.

Read More

Reviews

Massenet WERTHER – Oper Zürich

“Anna Stéphany embodies the complex role of Charlotte’s as conceived by the director, with her sleek, warm mezzo”
Badische Zeitung, (April 2017)

“Stephany plays this sole with such intensity that one would almost forget that she is making her role debut as Charlotte”
Christian Wildhagen, Neue Zurcher Zeitung (April 2017)

R. Strauss DER ROSENKAVALIER – Royal Opera House, Covent Garden

“Anna Stéphany was a compelling Octavian, who on top of fielding a velvety mezzo and musically sculpted lines brought boyish charm and the body language of emerging masculinity.  Her voice was well matched to the plush-toned Rachel Willis-Sørensen [Marschallin]”
John Allison, Opera Magazine (March 2017)

Read More

Handel SERSE – Early Opera Company, St John’s Smith Square (Christian Curnyn)

“The mezzo Anna Stéphany was superb as the eponymous monarch, compellingly capturing Serse’s pomposity and capriciousness.  ‘Ombra mai fu’ confirmed Stéphany’s innate appreciation of the pulse and fluidity of Handel’s vocal lines.  Throughout she found precise emotion – and often a surprising sincerity – in Serse’s phrases, making evident the inner workings of his mind.  There were the requisite flashes of fire.  Stéphany revealed a wide range and confident control in ‘Piu che penso’ as the king anticipated Romilda’s capitulation with petulant arrogance: the fine-spun closing elaboration was a silken thread that spiralled beguilingly to a burnished bottom.  She hurled herself into Serse’s bravura aria ‘Se bramate’, making real music of the coloratura; but she showed Serse’s sensitive side too, in the poignant gentleness of ‘Il core spera’.”
Claire Seymour, Opera Magazine (February 2017)

Read More

Anna Stéphany and the Labyrinth Ensemble, Opernhaus Zurich

“Anna Stéphany graces a stage with charm and poise. Her alluring mezzo soprano voice is effortlessly produced, and her phrasing and sensitivity to text is exceptional.”
Rick Perdian, Seen and Heard International (Apr 2016)

Lorraine Hunt Lieberson Tribute Concert – OAE

“It was the Peter Sellars staging of Theodora at Glyndebourne in 1996, conducted by Christie, that gave Hunt Lieberson her most memorable UK role, as the rock-like disciple Irene. So it was little surprise that the singer here who brought Hunt Lieberson’s presence most to mind should be Anna Stéphany, with two of Irene’s arias. Her low, sonorous tones captured the character’s serenity, and she began the reprise of As With Rosy Steps the Morn so quietly that one almost thought her voice might crack; Hunt Lieberson was nothing if not a risk-taker.”
Erica Jeal, The Guardian (5 June 2013)

“Stéphany’s well-sustained line and rich timbre in two noble arias from Theodora was touching”
Richard Morrison, The Times (5 June 2013)

“Reviewing the live recording of Peter Sellars’ acclaimed production, Rupert Christiansen commented, ‘it is impossible to conceive of this character’s arias being sung with more grave beauty or emotional commitment than [Hunt Lieberson] brings to them’.

Quite a tall order, then, for Anna Stéphany, performing ‘Ah! Whither should we fly’ and ‘Lord to Thee each night and day’. Stéphany combined vocal beauty with convincing characterisation, Christie shaping the contrasting tempos and textures with style but without undue mannerism. A gentle firmness characterised the voice in ‘As with rosy steps’; Stéphany’s lower register was rich and sonorous, and she dared to adopt a whispering pianissimo to moving effect. In ‘Lord to thee’ Stéphany introduced a startling change of character in the second part of the aria, ‘Though convulsive rocks the ground’, which served to make the profound devotion of the da capo repeat yet more affecting.”
Claire Seymour, Opera Today (9 June 2013
)

Prokofiev – ALEXANDER NEVSKY, Philharmonia (May 2013)

“… so did Anna Stéphany’s chocolate brown mezzo, darkly radiant in her battlefield lament.”
Geoff Brown, The Times (7 May 2013)

Mozart – LA CLEMENZA DI TITO – Aix en Provence (July 2011

“Glorious singing from Sarah Connolly (Sesto) and Anna Stephany as Annio”
Francis Carlin, The Financial Times (8 July 2011)

Charpentier: MEDÉE – Chicago Opera Theater (April 2011)

“In the title role, the English mezzo-soprano Anna Stephany rose splendidly to hte intensely dramatic scenes of the final acts…”
John von Rhein, Opera Magazine (August 2011)

“Anna Stephany is superb in the title role.  As singer and actress, she manages to capture her character’s external anger and inner hurt.  We believe both that she loves her children and would kill them to destroy her husband Jason.”
Andrew Patner, Sun Times (25 April 2011)

Blessed Spirit: A Gluck retrospecive – WIGMORE HALL LIVE CD

“The disc is not just a musicological feast but a vocal one, above all for Anna Stephany…In the Semiramide riconosciuta opener her individual cut and thrust of phrase and tone instantly recalled for me the vibrant, electrifying impression created by the young Josephine Barstow in a similar area of 18th century repertory; later, Stephany takes the parts of Orfeo and – even more inspiringly, in excellent French – Clytemnestre in one of the peak passages from Iphighénie en Aulide”
Max Loppert, Opera Magazine (August 2010)

Read More

Discography & Repertoire

Handel – IL TRIONFO DEL TEMPO E DEL DISINGANNO

With Anna Stephany (mezzo), Lucy Crowe (soprano) and Hilary Summers (contralto) with the Early Opera Company conducted by Christian Curnyn

WIGMORE HALL, LIVE (2011)

A Gluck retrospective: BLESSED SPIRIT

Arias and ensembles from La Semiramide riconosciuta, Ezio, La clemenza di Tito, Antigono, Il re pastore, L’Ivrogne corrigé, Orfeo ed Euridice, Telemaco, Alceste, Paride ed Elena, Ihpigénie en Aulide and Armide.  Featuring Anna Stephany, Ailish Tynan and Sophie Bevan, Classical Opera Company conducted by Ian Page

WIGMORE HALL, LIVE (2010)

Mozart – REQUIEM

With Marie Arnet (soprano), Anna Stephany (mezzo), Andrew Kennedy (tenor) and Darren Jeffrey (bass) with the London Symphony Orchestra and Chorus conducted by Sir Colin Davis

LSO LIVE (2008)

Artist Manager

Sue Nicholls (Cambridge)
sue.nicholls@hazardchase.co.uk
01223 706023

Assistant Artist Manager

Evie Parker (Cambridge)
evie.parker@hazardchase.co.uk
01223 706414