Artist Profile: Marina Poplavskaya, Notable Russian Soprano, Realtor, Teacher

By David Salazar
(Credit: Ken Howard / Met Opera)

Marina Poplavskaya is one of the notable Russian sopranos of the early 21st century.

Born on Sept. 12, 1977 in Moscow, Russia, she would perform in the children’s chorus of the Bolshoi Theatre an eventually became a soloist of the Novaya Opera Theatre in 1996.

From there she would debut at the Bolshoi Theatre in 2003 and begin a lengthy association with the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in 2005 when she joined the company’s Young Artist Programme. After success in London, she would start to appear in all the major theaters around the world, debuting at the Metropolitan Opera in 2007 and remaining a fixture with the company until 2014.

At the Met, she would appear 55 times, including three HD broadcasts in such operas as “Turandot,” “Don Carlo,” and “Faust.” She also headlined the opening of a new “Traviata” production by Willy Decker on New Year’s Eve 2010.

She also performed at the Vienna State Opera, Bayerische Staatsoper, Berlin State Opera, Netherlands Opera, LA Opera, Hamburg State Opera, and Salzburg Festival.

After 2014, she would take a break from the stage though she did continue doing concert work into late 2019 and early 2020. The soprano has since worked as a realtor in New York City, engaged with major charity work, and received certificates in Master in Voice Teaching and Performing Arts technique and Special Needs Education specialist with a badge in psychology studies.

Signature Repertory

Poplavskaya is an agile performer whose repertory included works by Verdi, Puccini, Gounod, and Tchaikovsky. Her most renowned roles were that of Violetta in “La Traviata” and Tatiana in “Eugene Onegin.”

In recent years, she has shifted her focus mainly to concert performances.

Watch and Listen 

Here she is in an excerpt from Gounod’s “Faust.”

And here is an excerpt from Verdi’s “Otello.”


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