Denison's Vail Series Presents Soprano Renée Fleming
Date of Event: April 14, 2009
Posted: April 6, 2009 / Last Updated: April 14, 2009
Denison University’s Vail Series continues its 30-year history of bringing the world’s premier performers to campus with a concert by renowned American soprano Renée Fleming at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, April 14, 2009, in Swasey Chapel (200 Chapel Drive). Tickets are no longer available for this performance, but depending on turnout, a small number of tickets may be released to the public at the door five minutes before the 8 p.m. performance at a cost of only $15. For updated ticket information, please call the Vail Series information line at 740-587-6557.
Fleming’s luminous sound, brilliant stage presence and superb artistry are just a few of the qualities that make her one of the most beloved and recognizable figures on the world stage. Her freshness and purity of tone, together with an exceptional musical intelligence and grace, continue to enchant audiences worldwide. As a passionate champion of creativity in the arts, she continues to be a proponent of new music and an advocate of overlooked masterpieces.
Born in Indiana, Pa., and raised in Rochester, N.Y., Fleming completed her undergraduate studies at the State University of New York at Potsdam, her graduate studies at Rochester’s Eastman School of Music, and attended the Juilliard School’s American Opera Center from 1983 to 1987 under the tutelage of Beverly Johnson.
Fleming’s voice has resounded throughout distinguished opera houses and concert venues around the globe. She made her professional debut in 1986 as Konstanze in Mozart’s “Die Entführung aus dem Serail” and a year later earned top honors at the Eleanor McCollum Competition in Houston. The exposure helped her land the star-making role of the Contessa in a revival of Mozart’s “Le nozze di Figaro,” and in 1989 she made her New York City debut in “La Bohème.” After making her London bow as Glauce in Cherubini's “Médée” later that same year, Fleming returned to New York in 1991 to make her Metropolitan debut with a return to “Le nozze di Figaro.” Just months later she starred in the world premiere of Corigliano’s “The Ghosts of Versailles.” Other roles Fleming created include her 1994 turn as Madam de Tourvel in Susa’s “The Dangerous Liaisons” and her 1998 performance as Blanche DuBois in André Previn’s “A Streetcar Named Desire.”
In 1998, “The Beautiful Voice,” a collection of Fleming’s favorite songs and arias, received that year’s prize from L’Academie du Disque Lyrique, as well as the 1999 Grammy Award for Best Classical Vocal Performance. Previous releases include “Great Opera Scenes,” with the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Sir Georg Solti; Mozart’s “Don Giovanni,” in which she played Donna Anna alongside Bryn Terfel’s Don, again conducted by Sir Georg Solti (both recordings received Grammy nominations); Mendelssohns “Elijah,” again with Bryn Terfel, and a disc of Schubert “Lieder” with Christoph Eschenbach, piano.
Among dozens of other critically acclaimed recordings, Fleming’s most unusual recording experience may have been “The Lord of the Rings” soundtrack, on which the soprano sang in the language “Elvish.”
The Vail Series was formally established in 1979, with an endowment dedicated to the memory of 1946 Denison alumna Jeanne Vail, by a gift from her mother and stepfather Mary and Foster McGaw. The gift was intended to enrich the artistic experience of all Denisonians with intimate contact to world-renowned performers, and performances, in music. Over the years the Vail Series at Denison University has become synonymous with unsurpassed quality and is respected throughout the international arts community.
It is a Denison tradition that students, in particular, have the opportunity to experience, up close and free of charge, the performances of the world’s best-known musicians. The Vail Series makes this possible with a “collaboration of high ideals and magnificent good fortune,” according to series director Lorraine Wales.
Many of the world’s premier performers, as well as promising new musical talents, have come to Granville as part of the Vail Series or one of the many wide-ranging residencies the Vail Series supports. Past performers include Itzhak Perlman, Leontyne Price, Yo-Yo Ma, Kathleen Battle, Wynton Marsalis, Maya Angelou, Emanuel Ax and Yuja Wang.
Calendar Listing: Denison University, Granville — Vail Series concert with Renée Fleming at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, April 14, 2009, in Swasey Chapel (200 Chapel Drive). Tickets are no longer available for this performance, but depending on turnout, a small number of tickets may be released to the public at the door five minutes before the 8 p.m. performance at a cost of only $15. For updated ticket information, please call the Vail Series information line at 740-587-6557.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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