Artist of the Week: Irina Lungu

Lungu Makes History at the Teatro alla Scala

By Francisco Salazar

This past week the Teatro alla Scala opened a revival of Puccini’s “La Bohème.” The production stars a cast of well-known singers and is also making history with one of its stars as Irina Lungu will become the first singer to perform both Musetta and Mimì in the same season at the legendary Italian opera house.

The soprano will first sing the role of Musetta and then take over the role of Mimì, both roles that Lungu has performed to great success. In a statement regarding this historic moment, Lungu said, “It is such a great pleasure and honor to perform these two Puccini roles on this mythical stage”, says Irina Lungu. That I may do so in this fabulous Franco Zeffirelli production, where since its premiere in 1963 so many of my most admired sopranos have sung these roles is a big additional joy and responsibility. Both Musetta and Mimì are such satisfactory parts to perform. They are very contrasting of course, and while I very much enjoy having fun as Musetta, I am also happy to be able to show my beloved Milanese audience my more lyrical and melancholic side singing Mimì.”

This season will also mark her return to the Milan theater after performing at La Scala in productions of “Moïse et Pharaon,” “La Traviata,” “Falstaff,” “Faust,” “L’elisir d’amore”  as well as the title roles of “Maria Stuarda” and “Sancta Susanna.”

For those not in Milan for the performances, the Teatro alla Scala will live stream the production with Lungu as Musetta. This season, the soprano also returns to Berlin State Opera for a production of “La Traviata” and to the Teatro Colon for a production of “Il Turco in Italia.”


Lungu has numerous recordings including “Carmen” from Macerata and “Il Corsaro” from the Teatro Regio di Parma. She also has a recording of “Faust” from the Teatro Regio di Torino.

Here is a recording of the soprano as Mimi from the Teatro Regio di Torino.

Here is a look at the soprano as Violetta in “La Traviata.”



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