Skip to main content

State Opera South Australia is delighted to share the commitment to championing emerging operatic talent with The Consulate of Italy in South Australia. A new venture sees the two organisations partnering to provide Italian language coaching to five South Australian young artists as part of their ongoing training.

Performing in a different language is a challenge all opera singers face, one which they need to regularly practise and refine to reach their artistic and professional goals.

Opera is born from deep roots in Italian heritage. It became a celebrated and popular form of entertainment only a few hundred years ago and continues to pull big crowds at venues like La Scala, Milan’s famous opera house.

Many of the world’s most beloved operas are sung in Italian including Puccini’s La bohème, Verdi’s La traviata and Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, and who can forget the infamous, spine-tingling aria ‘Nessun Dorma’?

With language being such an integral part of a singer’s skillset, coaching is vital for young and emerging performers to excel. A strong proficiency and confidence in language allows them to hone their craft and create an edge to their artistry and individuality.

“I am incredibly excited that our young singers have an opportunity to work with the Italian Consulate to develop and improve their language skills” said Mark Taylor, Executive Director of State Opera. “This is a unique opportunity to learn from native speakers about the intricacies of the language which they can take into their own performance and create a new layer of meaning and integrity in what they put out on stage.”

In the 100-year anniversary of the death of Puccini, State Opera and the Italian Consulate are excited to continue the relationship between Italian language, culture and opera. The partnership continues with the Consulate’s support of two Puccini themed concerts, Passionate Puccini, at UKARIA Cultural Centre in November this year. Appearing are two renowned Australian singers who have recently performed for the company; tenor Paul O’Neill as Macduff in Verdi’s Macbeth last year, and soprano Cathy-Di Zhang who played the role of Mimi in the outdoor spectacle Bohème on the Beach.

“It is fantastic to celebrate the works of Puccini in the 100-year anniversary of his death with two of Australia’s finest opera stars” said Ernesto Pianelli, Consul of Italy in South Australia. “This is also a magnificent opportunity to build on a relationship with State Opera to promote Italian music and culture in South Australia. I am very proud of our partnership and the coaching programme for emerging artists that will help them best interpret the Italian operatic repertoire.”

Pictured (L-R): Mark Taylor, Ernesto Pianelli, and young artists James Nicholson, Jessica Mills, Lucy Stoddart, Callum McGing, Jiacheng Ding