Artist Of The Week: Maria Agresta

Italian Soprano Brings ‘Anna Bolena’ To Life In Rome

By Francisco Salazar

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The role of Anna Bolena is known as one of the most demanding roles in the soprano repertoire and also the beginning of Donizetti’s Tudor Queen trilogy. It’s a role that has become legendary and one that the greatest divas in the history of opera have taken on. Now Maria Agresta is ready for that challenge as she makes her role debut this week in a new production.

Agresta is no stranger to the Bel canto repertoire as it was with Donizetti’s “Gemma di Vergy” in Bergamo that she broke out and that she signaled her rise. From there she went on to sing the title role in “Norma (the mount Everest of soprano roles),” Rossini’s Stabat Mater and Bellini’s “I Puritani.”

She has also dedicated a good portion of her career to early Verdi as well as Puccini and obtained acclaim.

For those not in Italy, the first performance will be broadcast on Rai Radio 3. Agresta will also be at the Teatro di Monte Carlo for her signature Desdemona in Verdi’s “Otello” and at the Opernhaus Zurich for “Norma.”


For those not familiar with the soprano’s voice, Agresta has a number of great recordings that demonstrate her talent. There is a DVD of “Gemma di Vergy” from Bergamo with Gregory Kunde, a DVD of Otello with Jonas Kaufmann, and a DVD of “I Due Foscari” with Placido Domingo.

Here is Agresta in “Gemma di Vergy…”

and here she is in “I Due Foscari.”



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