MARCO ARMILIATO studied piano at the Paganini-Conservatoire in his hometown of Genova. In the 90s, he became intensely active in the big opera houses of the world. At the New York Met, he conducted Il trovatore, La Bohème, Stiffelio, Madama Butterfly, Sly, Aida, Turandot, La Fille du Régiment and Rigoletto, and at the San Francisco Opera La Bohème, Madama Butterfly, Turandot, La traviata, Tosca, Aida and Cavalleria rusticana. At the Wiener Staatsoper, where he made his debut in 1996 with Andrea Chénier, he has conducted among others, Il barbiere di Siviglia, La Bohème, Carmen, Cavalleria rusticana, Don Carlo, L’elisir d’amore, Falstaff, La forza del destino, Lucia di Lammermoor, Manon, Manon Lescaut, Pagliacci, Simon Boccanegra, Stiffelio, Tosca, La traviata, Turandot and Werther. He received further engagements at the opera houses of Barcelona, Madrid, Zurich, Toronto, Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Turin, Rome, at the Deutsche Opera Berlin, the Bavarian State Opera, at the ROH Covent Garden, at the Théâtre du Châtelet and Opéra Bastille in Paris, at the Hamburg State Opera and Verona. He is also internationally successful as a concert conductor.
Paolo Rumetz began studying vocal arts in his hometown Trieste and perfected his skills in Munich with Josef Metternich and in Rome with Renato Guelfi. Paolo Rumetz made his debut in Cimarosa´s Il Maestro di Cappella in Spoleto. In 1988 his first appearance at the Teatro Verdi in Trieste in Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos followed. Since then, Paolo Rumetz has regularly been engaged in London, Pisa, Lucca, Prague, Macerata, Venice, Ravenna, Verona, Turin, Tokyo, at La Scala in Milan, in Barcelona, Zurich, Leipzig, Florence. Paolo Rumetz’s repertoire includes roles such as Enrico in Donizetti´s Lucia di Lammermoor, Sharpless in Puccini´s Madama Butterfly, Alberich in Wagner´s Das Rheingold, Doktor Dulcamara in Donizetti´s L’elisir d’amore, Sulpice in Donizetti´s La Fille du regiment, David in Mascagni´s L’amico Fritz, Don Geronio in Rossini´s Il turco in Italia, the title role in Verdi´s Falstaff, Don Bartolo in Rossini´s Il barbiere di Siviglia, Jago in Verdi´s Otello, Graf Gil in Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari´s Il segreto di Susanna, Fra Melitone in Verdi´s La forza del destino, Taddeo in Rossini´s L’italiana in Algeri.
Soprano AIDA GARIFULLINA was born in Russia. She studied vocal arts, for example at the Music University in Vienna and made her debut at a studio production as Despina in Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart´s Così fan tutte. In 2012 Aida Garifullina made her debut at the Arena di Verona in Italy. That same year she won Plácido Domingo´s renowned Operalia competition. This first prize initiated the singer´s great career. Aida Garifullina received her first invitations to Beijing and to the Moscow Bolschoi Theatre. She performed as Susanna in Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart´s Le nozze di Figaro, a role she also sang at the St. Petersburg Mariinski Theatre. There she also sang Adina in Gaetano Donizetti´s L´esilir d´amore. In July 2013 Aida Garifullina appeared at a gala in Kazan with the orchestra of the Mariinski Theatre under the direction of Valery Gergiev. Despite her young age, she was already awarded the title Honoured Artist of The Republic of Tatarstan. Recently she performed Nannetta in Giuseppe Verdi´s Falstaff – a role which she also interpreted in Buenos Aires. As of the season 2014/2015 she is member of the ensemble at the Wiener Staatsoper.
The bass, Jongmin Park, studied singing in his hometown of Seoul and was a member of the Milan Accademia Teatro alla Scala, where he studied with Mirella Freni, Luigi Alva and Renato Bruson. from 2010 until 2013, he was in the ensemble of the Hamburg State Opera. Here, he took over the roles, among others, of Colline, Sparafucile and Sarastro. In summer 2014, he gave his debut at the ROH Covent Garden, at the BBC Proms in London and in the City of London Festival 2014. He won the International Tschaikowski competition and received the Wagner-Prize at the Plácido Domingo Operalia competition. In 2010, he gave his first Lieder evening in Munich, and in spring 2015, he completed his first recital in the Vienna Musikverein. He is also successful as a concert singer, and has sung Beethoven's 9th Symphony with the London Symphony Orchestra, in Vesperae solennes de
Confessore at the Christmas concert in the Scala and in Verdi's Requiem in Seoul. At the Wiener Staatsoper, he gave his debut in 2011 as Colline and has continued to sing, among others, Zuniga, Mönch (Don Carlo) Basilio, Billy Jackrabbit, Quinault, Gremin and Sir Giorgio.
ELENA MAXIMOVA completed her vocal training at the Tschaikowski-Conservatoire in Moscow and became engaged as a soloist to the Moscow Stanislavski Music Theater. There, Elena Maximova was heard, among others, in the following roles: Polina (Pique Dame), Siébel (Faust), Orlofsky (Die Fledermaus), Suzuki (Madama Butterfly), Rosina (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Olga (Eugen Onegin), Carmen and Charlotte (Werther). Elena Maximova gave her debut in 2005 on the stage of the Bavarian State Opera in a new production of Rigoletto (Maddalena). She also sang there Suzuki, Carmen, Olga and Frederica (Luisa Miller). Furthermore, she has sung at the Opéra in Lyon (Eugen Onegin, Pique Dame) and performed as Carmen at houses like the Berlin State Opera, the Teatro Comunale in Florence, the Palau de les Arts in Valencia and in the Scala. Elena Maximova is also active worldwide as a concert singer. Recently she sang Carmen, Preziosilla, Charlotte, Despina, Rosina, Nicklausse and Isabella in Moscow, Carmen in Palermo, Helsinki and Moscow, Olga in the ROH London and the Met. She gave her debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in 2012 as Carmen and also sang Maddalena.
ALEXANDRU MOISIUC was born in Bucharest and completed his violin studies at the Enescu University of Music. In 1980 he began his opera singing studies at the Porumbescu Music Academy. In 1984 he made his debut at the Bucharest National Opera in Werther, where he was engaged as soloist. In 1991 he was engaged at the Wiener Kammeroper as Don Giovanni, and went on a tour to Japan and South Korea with the Kammeroper. In 1992 he became 1st soloist at the National Opera in Temesvar, two years later his collaboration with the Wiener Staatsoper began, where he has been a soloist ever since. In 1990 he started working as singing teacher at the Bucharest Music Academy. Performances have led the artist to La Scala in Milan, the Semperoper, the Alte Oper Frankfurt, the Palais des Beaux-Artes in Brussels, the Herodes Atticus in Athens. His repertoire includes more than 50 of the most important roles of his fach, spanning four centuries and ranging from Monteverdi to Schönberg.
ORDAN YILDIZ was born in Turkey. He studied at the Mersin Conservatory, where he graduated in 2002. As of 2000 he sang at the Staatsoper Mersin. He was finalist and winner of several competitions, among them the Siemens Voice Competition in Istanbul and the Belvedere competition, the Leyla Gencer competition, the Francisco Vinas or the Operalia competition. As of 2010 he sang at the Theater Braunschweig as ensemble member and performed essential parts, for example as Figaro (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Conte d’Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro), in the title role of Don Giovanni, Ping (Turandot), Belcore (L’elisir d’amore), Klingsor (Parsifal), Guglielmo (Così fan tutte), Enrico in Donizetti´s Lucia di Lammermoor, Giorgio Germont in La traviata, Nick Shadow in The Rake’s Progress, Jeletski in Pique Dame, Ford (Falstaff). He guested at the Hamburgische Staatsoper, at the opera in Bremen, at the Teatro Municipal de Santiago de Chile, at the Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse and at the Grachtenfestival Amsterdam. As of the season 2016/2017, he will be ensemble member of the Wiener Staatsoper.
Pavel Kolgatin was born in 1987 in Balaschow (Russia). After his studies in Moscow, he won numerous competitions. He performed among others at festivals like the Moscow December Nights Festival, the Festival de Colmar in France, the Rheingau Music Festival and the Oldenburger Promenade. He has worked with conductors, among others, like Louis Langrée, Vladimir Spivakov, Viktor Popov and Nikolai Nekrasov, and graduated as a soloist with the Choral Art Accademy of performances in Russia, Switzerland, Holland, Japan, Germany and France. In 2009, he became a member of the Bolshoi Young Artists Program. Furthermore, he was seen as Nemorino in L’elisir d’amore at the Salzburger Landestheater and as Ferrando in Così fan tutte at the Teatro de San Carlo in Naples. Current projects include engagememtns as Tamino (Die Zauberflöte), Fenton (Falstaff), Elvino (La sonnambula) at the Bolschoi-Theater and as Tamino at the Opera in Rome. Since 2012, he is an ensemble member in the house on the ring, where he gave his debut in the Mestersingern von Nürnberg, and furthermore also performed Brighella, Don Basilio (Le nozze di Figaro) and Gottesnarr (Boris Godunow).
MARCUS PELZ was born in Stuttgart, studied solo vocals, lied and oratorio, classical operetta as well as the fach Old Music at the Conservatory of Vienna and graduated from the opera school of the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna. First engagements at the Landestheater St. Pölten, the Wiener Kammeroper (1995-1997) and the Neue Oper Wien were the basis for his engagement at the Wiener Staatsoper (member of the ensemble since 1999). Guest engagements for example led him to the Teatro Avenida in Buenos Aires in the leading role of Wozzeck, and to the Maggio Musicale in Florence with the Rosenkavalier. His repertoire in the House on the Ring includes more than eighty parts, e.g. Hermann, Gregorio, Schaunard, Notar and Polizeikommissar, Kothner and Konrad Nachtigall, Sprecher and 2. Priester, Antonio, Phorbas, Angelotti, Donald, Gualtiero Raleigh, Alessio, Masetto, Haly, Johann, 1. Schäfer, Albert, Altgesell and Saretzki. His appearances in children´s operas on the roof of the Wiener Staatsoper are very popular among the young audience.
Soprano Lydia Rathkolb studied vocal arts in Vienna and Milan. She studied media communiations and musicology at the Universität Wien. She for example performed at the opera house Rousse as Lucia di Lammermoor and Rosina in Rossini´s Barbiere di Siviglia, in Savonlinna as Königin der Nacht (Zauberflöte), at the opera house in Brno as Violetta, in Lisbon as Rosalinde, furthermore in Linz, Basel, Bregenz, Hagen and Heidelberg.
Also, Lydia Rathkolb sang roles such as Konstanze (Entführung aus dem Serail), Pamina, Olympia and Antonia (Les Contes d’Hoffmann), Gilda (Rigoletto) as well as numerous roles from the operetta fach. In addition, she is an internationally successful concert singer. She made her debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in 1997 as 1. Dame in the Zauberflöte and has since then for example sung Ida, Königin (Traumfresserchen), Blumenmädchen (Parsifal), Berta (Il barbiere di Siviglia) and in the Nibelungenring für Kinder, Najade (Ariadne auf Naxos), Poussette (Manon), Contessa di Ceprano (Rigoletto), Schäferin (Jenufa), Modistin (Rosenkavalier).
Roles at the Wiener Staatsoper 2013/2014: e.g. Hullewulle, Giannetta, Marzellina, Ida.
ILEANA TONCA was born in Rumania and studied at the Music Academy in Bucharest. She has won several singing competitions and has performed in Bucharest, Brasov and Timisoara as well as on tours in Germany, Austria, Italy and France. She has been a member of the ensemble of the Wiener Staatsoper since 1999, where she debuted as Jemmy (Guillaume Tell). Furthermore, she has for example sung Woglinde (Das Rheingold, Götterdämmerung), Waldvogel (Siegfried), Echo (Ariadne auf Naxos), Lisa (La sonnambula), Xenia (Boris Godunow), Mädchen (Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny), Elvira (L’italiana in Algeri), Nannetta (Falstaff), Barbarina (Nozze di Figaro), Oscar, Papagena, Zerlina, Sophie (Rosenkavalier, Werther), Stimme vom Himmel and Tebaldo (Don Carlo), Zdenka (Arabella), Adele (Fledermaus), Servilia, Musetta, Adina, Susanna. Furthermore, she performed in productions of children´s operas (Traumfresserchen, Peter Pan, Bastien und Bastienne, 35. Mai, Pinocchio, Pünktchen und Anton). In 1999/2000 she was awarded an advancement award by the Waechter Medal Foundation. In 2004 she received the Austrian frauen.kunst.preis.
The Australian Mezzosoprano MARGARET PLUMMER completed her singing studies at the Sydney Conservatoire of Music. Furthermore, she is trained as a Jazz singer. She is a multiple prize-winner at opera competitions and visited the School of Music and Theater in Hannover in 2005. For a while, she was a member of the choir of the Opera Australia, before wtarting her career as a soloist. In this way, performances followed among others, at the Opera Australia and the Pinchgut Opera. In the 2015/2016 season, she will be the youngest scholar of the Opera Foundation Australia. Margaret Plummer has sang among others, Dorabella in Così fan tutte at the Pacific Opera and Hänsel in Hänsel und Gretel at the Ozopera School‘s Company. At the Opera Australia, Margaret Plummer sang in Dido und Aeneas, in the Rosenkavalier and in Le Nozze di Figaro. She sang Knusperhexe in Hänsel und Gretel with the Sydney Symphony, Charlotte in Werther at the Lyric Opera of Melbourne, Phoebe in Rameaus Castor and Pollux at the Pinchgut Opera. At the Wiener Staatsoper she gave her debut as Tebaldo in Don Carlo.
Act 1 At a party, the Duke of Mantua reveals that he has been pursuing a young woman he does not know. He considers being faithful to one woman laughable; to him all women are attractive. Goaded by his jester Rigoletto, he has just set his sights on Countess Ceprano. Marullo tells the other courtiers about his latest discovery: the ugly Rigoletto seems to have a lover. Since Rigoletto is hated at court but is untouchable, the courtiers – led by Count Ceprano – plan to take their revenge on him by abducting his presumed lover. When Rigoletto mocks Count Monterone, who arrives to accuse the Duke of having dishonoured his daughter, Monterone curses the despot and his cynical jester. On his way home, Rigoletto encounters the hired killer Sparafucile. When he unexpectedly offers Rigoletto his services, Rigoletto seems interested. He realizes that Sparafucile is a reflection of himself: both of them are outsiders. Disconcerted by Monterone’s curse, Rigoletto blames society and his dubious metier for his own wickedness. At home with his daughter Gilda, whom he tries to keep hidden away from the world, Rigoletto seeks the happiness that life denies him. He sidesteps all her questions about her identity and his own. Out of fear of losing her Rigoletto forbids his daughter all contact with the outside world, other than attending church. A young man is nevertheless courting her. It is the duke, who is passing himself off as a poor student. When Rigoletto leaves the house, the Duke assails Gilda with declarations of love that seem to her to be her girlish dreams coming true. Noise from the street forces the Duke to leave: the courtiers have arrived to abduct Rigoletto’s “lover”. Rigoletto, whom they have blindfolded, even helps them in their endeavour, believing that they are abducting Countess Ceprano. Too late, Rigoletto realizes what has happened. Act 2 The Duke finds Rigoletto’s house deserted. He laments his lost love, for whom for the first time he believes to have felt deep affection. At court, he discovers that Gilda has been brought by his courtiers to the palace, and he hurries to be with her. Rigoletto searches frantically for his daughter, but the courtiers are of no assistance to him, even when he reveals to them that they abducted not his lover but his daughter. When the Duke sends Gilda away, she tries to confide in her father. But Rigoletto can think only of bloody revenge. Act 3 To “cure” Gilda of her love for the Duke, Rigoletto takes her to Sparafucile’s house and forces her to watch as the Duke takes his pleasure with the prostitute Maddalena (Sparafucile’s sister). Rigoletto sends his daughter away to prepare for their flight and instructs Sparafucile to kill the Duke. However, Gilda has returned secretly and overhears how Maddalena persuades her brother to murder the next person to come to the house before midnight instead of the Duke. Gilda is firmly resolved to sacrifice herself for her love. She knocks at the door. A short while later, Sparafucile gives Rigoletto a corpse in a sack. At the moment of his greatest triumph – Rigoletto feels like the omnipotent avenger – he hears the Duke’s voice.Horrified, he opens the sack and sees his dying daughter. Without comprehending what has happened, Rigoletto believes that Monterone’s curse has caused the tragedy.