Diva from the Bolshoi

28.05.2017

Endowed with the voice of a huge range and rare beauty, a talented student of famous Vera Davydova, she appeared on the Bolshoi’s stage in 1966, whilst a student. Her theatrical biography evolved into an endless series of bright and unforgettable roles. Tatiana in Onegin and Liza in The Queen of Spades, Desdemona in Othello and Natasha Rostova in War and Peace, Iolanta in the opera of the same name and Joan of Arc in The Maid of Orleans, Polina in The Gambler and Lyubka In Semyon Kotko, Voyslava in Mlada and Fevronia in The Legend of the Invisible City of Kitezh, Francesca in Francesca da Rimini and Tamar in Abduction of the Moon – this is not the complete list of the roles she created on the Bolshoi’s stage.

An ability to "find the tone to each role" (B. Pokrovsky) and her own feeling of the role surprised and delighted even her colleagues: "The heroines of Makvala Kasrashvili are women of different times and characters. For me it remains a mystery how the singer can change beyond recognition every time" (Evgeny Nesterenko).

These two resultants of talent - vocal skill and dramatic gift multiplied by diligence, created a unique phenomenon in the musical theatre, whose name is Makvala Kasrashvili. Her art has received recognition abroad, and the singer herself got the title of the Diva from the Bolshoi.

A triumphant debut as Tatiana in Eugene Onegin on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera in 1979 can be considered the starting point of Miss Kasrashvili’s international career. Then followed four seasons at Royal Opera in London, where she was specially cast for the operas Don Giovanni and La Clemenza di Tito by Mozart. The roles of Donna Anna and Vitellia in these performances earned her the fame of Mozart's singer.

Her performances on the stages of the largest opera houses were always warmly accepted, whether she sang Amelia in Un Ballo in Maschera (Metropolitan Opera), Aida in the Verdi's opera of the same name (Bayerische Staatsoper, Vienna Staatsoper, Teatro Arena di Verona, Lyric Opera of Chicago) or Santuzza in Cavalleria Rusticana by Mascagni (Finnish National Opera, Opera Seattle, Huston and Washington National Opera.). She was equally convincing in the operas of R. Strauss (Chrysothemis in Electra at the Canadian Opera Company, Herodias in Salome at the Mariinsky Theater) and Shostakovich (acrid Podtochina in The Nose or Vava in the operetta Moscow-Cheryomushki, the audience welcomed these spectacular "transformations" of the artist at the music festival in Barda / USA).

The role of Tosca in Puccini's opera of the same name became the trademark of the singer: for more than thirty years she sang Tosca on the Bolshoi's stage in the legendary production of Boris Pokrovsky. She performed in this opera on the stage of the Norwegian Opera, Polish National Opera and Florida Grand Opera...

Her name has gone down into the history of the music theatre. In the Bolshoi Theatre Makvala Kasrashvili directed the opera troupe for a decade and a half. The current Gala concert reveals other facets of her talent – the talent of a teacher, a mentor, a friend. ‘I am happy to share what I know, with young artists, says Makvala Kasrashvili, and I'm glad that the former students of the Bolshoi's Young Artists Opera Program are now performing brilliantly on this great stage.'

In the concert will sing the leading soloists of the theatre and young performers who have successfully started their career at the Bolshoi – Anna Aglatova, Dinara Alieva, Anna Bondarevskaya, Agunda Kulaeva, Olga Kulchinskaya, Yulia Mazurova, Ekaterina Morozova, Anna Nechaeva, Svetlana Shilova, Elchin Azizov, Oleg Dolgov, Andrei Jilihovschi, Aluda Todua Pavel Valuzhin, Bogdan Volkov. Makvala Kasrashvili will perform Aria of Santuzza "Voi lo sapete" from Cavalleria Rusticana and her best number – aria Vissi d'arte from Puccini's Tosca – 'I lived for my art, I lived for love...'