In Less Than Five Minutes, Get To Know Soprano Anastasia Bartoli

By Alan Neilson
(Photo: Amati Bacciardi)

Soprano Anastasia Bartoli is a rising star on the Italian and European opera scene. Over the course of this year alone, she has received a string of glowing reviews including her performance as Cristina in “Eduardo e Cristina” at the Rossini Opera Festival. In October she will be performing Lucrezia in Verdi’s “I Due Foscari” at Venice’s La Fenice.

OperaWire: What was the first opera you saw? 

Anastasia Bartoli: “Aida” at the Arena di Verona. I was about six years old at the time.

OW: What was the first opera in which you performed?

AB: “Cavaliera Rusticana.” I performed the role of Lola.

OW: What was the last opera in which you performed?

AB: It was Verdi’s “Otello” in Bucharest. I played Desdemona.

OW: What role will you be performing next?

AB: Lucrezia in “I Due Foscari.”

OW: What has been your favorite role so far?

AB: Lady Macbeth in Verdi’s “Macbeth.”

OW: Who is your favorite composer?

AB: Verdi.

OW: Which opera character would you like to meet in person?

AB: Atilla.

OW: Who was the biggest influence on your singing career?

AB: Renata Tebaldi and Ghena Dimitrova. I was inspired by listening to them sing.

OW: What do you like most about your voice?

AB: Its adaptability.

OW: Which character do you most dislike?

AB: Bardo from Cilea’s opera, “Gloria.”

OW: Which character would you most like to exchange your life with?

AB: Suor Angelica.

OWName three people you would like to invite to a dinner party, of which at least one has to have a connection with opera.

AB: Maria Callas, Jesus and Napoleon

OW: Which character would you most like to play but have not yet had the opportunity?

AB: Manon Lescaut.

OW: If you could have a composer write an opera with you in the starring role, who would it be?

AB: Monteverdi.

OW: What was the last book you read?

AB: Homer’s “Iliad.”

OW: What is your favorite piece of non-classical music?

AB: “Nothing else matters” by Metallica.

OW: What is your favorite film?

AB: Ridley Scott’s “Alien.”

OW: Who is your favorite painter?

AB: Giotto.

OW: What is your cat’s name?

AB: Rémy Martin.

OW: If you hadn’t been an opera singer, what would you have liked to have done?

AB: I would have liked to own and run a ranch in Argentina

OW: What do you like most about being an opera singer?

AB: The satisfaction I get from seeing all the hard work I spent preparing for the role payIn Less off.

OW: What are the qualities you most appreciate in a stage director?

AB: The ability to change and adapt in response to the artists.

OW: You are about to perform the role of Lucrezia in Verdi’s “I Due Foscari.” Which two words would you use to describe the role. 

AB: She is a fighter and she is angry.


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