"Even an earthquake could not have dislodged the extraordinarily powerful Venera Gimadieva from her richly toned sonorities [...] the heart of this solid, enjoyable show remains the thrilling Venera Gimadieva."
"Gimadieva dazzled with the agility of her voice and her ease on the high notes. The phosphorescent quality of her top register, which flutters in a myriad of colours, was perfectly suited to the character's flirty nature"
"A soprano of huge presence, compelling to watch, with a voice of thrilling security and range, and a special quality to her quieter singing that makes you hang on every note."
Russian soprano Venera Gimadieva has quickly become one of the most sought-after lyric coloratura sopranos in Europe. Having studied at the St Petersburg Conservatoire and on the young artist programme at the Bolshoi Theatre, Moscow, she now performs regularly at prestigious opera houses and venues across Europe and the USA.
In the 2022/23 season she sings the title role Norma for Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, Violetta La traviata with Hong Kong Opera, and Donna Anna Don Giovanni at Glyndebourne.
Her operatic engagements include Violetta La traviata (Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Teatro Mario del Monaco, Treviso and Teatro Verdi, Padova, Washington National Opera, Glyndebourne Festival Opera, and her US debut with the LA Philharmonic Orchestra at the Hollywood Bowl); title role Lucia di Lammermoor (Staatsoper Hamburg, Semperoper Dresden, Teatro Real, Madrid and Bayerische Staatsoper); Elvira I puritani (Teatro Real, Madrid and Wiener Staatsoper); The Queen of Shemakha The Golden Cockerel (Adelaide Festival, Théâtre de la Monnaie Brussels, Teatro Real Madrid and Santa Fe Opera); Amina La sonnambula (Deutsche Oper Berlin and Bolshoi Theatre); Giulietta I Capuleti e i Montecchi (Deutsche Oper Berlin); Marguerite Les Huguenots (Semperoper Dresden); Juliette Roméo et Juliette (Gran Teatro Nacional Lima); Gilda Rigoletto (Hungarian State Opera); and Norina Don Pasquale and the title role in Rimsky-Korsakov’s The Snow-Maiden (Bolshoi Theatre).
Gimadieva's recital and concert repertoire features bel canto arias and Russian arias and song repertoire. She has given recitals at the Edinburgh International Festival (Russian repertoire by Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov and Rimsky-Korsakov); the Bolshoi Theatre, Moscow (as part of a concert of bel canto arias by Bellini and Donizetti); and Wigmore Hall (Russian repertoire by Glière, Rimsky-Korsakov and Tchaikovsky) accompanied by her husband, pianist Pavel Nebolsin.
Gimadieva has worked with conductors including Sir Mark Elder, Vasily Petrenko, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Ivor Bolton, Evelino Pidò, Tugan Sokhiev, Yves Abel, Domingo Hindoyan and Daniel Oren, and directors including David McVicar. Laurent Pelly, Paul Curran and Francesca Zambello. She won the Golden Mask award for Best Female Performer in Opera for her performance as Amina La sonnambula (2014, Bolshoi Theatre), as well as First Prize in the 2010 International Shalyapin Competition and Second Prize in the 2015 Paris Opera Competition.
Gimadieva's discography includes her critically acclaimed performance as Violetta La traviata at Glyndebourne (Opus Arte), The Queen of Shemakha The Golden Cockerel at Théâtre de la Monnaie, Brussels (BelAir Classiques) and the Operngala für die Deutsche AIDS-Stiftung (Naxos). Her first solo album Momento Immobile, a collection of bel canto arias by Donizetti, Bellini and Rossini with The Hallé Orchestra conducted by Gianluca Marcianò, was released on Rubicon Classics in 2018.
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Violetta, La Traviata
Hong Kong Opera, September 2022
Magnificently sung and superbly acted by a world-class cast led by Venera Gimadieva, one of today’s most celebrated Violettas [...] Any La Traviata ultimately depends on its Violetta, and Gimadieva displayed her consummate mastery of the role [...] Her command of the stage and ability to bring out every detail of Violetta’s journey were mesmerising, with each emotional milestone making an impact.
Vocally she was equally flawless, from the glittering, effortless power of her coloratura singing in Act 1, through the simple lyricism of her encounter with Germont in Act 2 to the delicate, febrile quality she brings to her voice in the death scene; all were quite extraordinary.
The scene in Act 1 where Violetta is torn between sticking with her old, successful life and abandoning everything to love and be loved by Alfredo is a test of any soprano’s vocal and dramatic staying power – Gimadieva brought it to life, making it real and riveting throughout.
Natasha Rogai, South China Morning Post
This production is blessed with a depth of talent and experience in the principal roles. Venera Gimadieva brings international star power to the role of Violetta,
Peter Gordon, Asian Review of Books, Arts & Culture
Queen of Shemakha, The Golden Cockerel
Adelaide Festival, March 2022
The Queen of Shemaka, performed here by Venera Gimadieva, is both the embodiment of this lure and the cause of the Tsar’s ultimate emasculation. Resplendent in a stunning peacock feather headdress by costume designer Victoria Behr, Gimadieva delivers a sublime rendition of Hymn to the Sun. [...] Gimadieva handles the chromatic scale of Rimsky-Korsakov’s music perfectly.
Jansson J. Antmann, Limelight, March 2022 *****
The principal cast, Pavlo Hunka (Tsar Dodon), Venera Gimadieva (Queen of Chemakha), Andrei Popov (Astrologer), Samuel Dandas (Tsarevich Aphron), Nicholas Jones (Tsarevich Gvidon), Mischa Schelomianski (Polkan), Samantha Clarke (Golden Cockerel’s Voice) and Matthew Whittet (On stage Cockerel), all gave exquisite performances. However, Hunka, Gimadieva and Popov’s performances pushed this opera into a league of its own. Their voices were velvet, both in their solo work and when singing together. Popov’s upper register was incredibly pure and natural, as was Gimadieva.
Ben Stefanoff, Glam Adelaide, March 2022 *****
Venera Gimadieva sings this part with a bewitchingly mellifluous sound, and it is worth seeing this production just to hear her sing.
Nicholas Routley, Australian Stage, March 2022
The capriciously murderous tsar is comically seduced by the comely Queen of Chemakha, played by Russian soprano Venera Gimadieva, who sang with a wonderfully agile coloratura voice.
Steve Dow, The Age, March 2022
The Tsaritsa of Chemakha is sung by Venera Gimadieva, her rich voice perfectly complementing the seductive nature of her character, with all of the moves and facial expressions to complete the wonderful interpretation.
Barry Lenny, Broadway World, March 2022
...there were also memorable contributions from the singers, including Gimadieva’s dazzling lyric soprano...
Humphrey Bower, Arts Hub, March 2022
The gorgeous Queen of Chemakha – Venera Gimadieva – appears in diaphanous tinselly dress, and in the long second act seduction of Dodon she, Arvo Volmer and the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra realise every ounce of sexiness that the music provides.
Nicholas Braithwaite, InDaily, March 2022
Marguerite, Les Huguenots
Semperoper Dresden, July 2019
Venera Gimadieva was the Queen of Navarre, a somewhat silly character who tries to bring peace between the two religious sects. It is a classic coloratura soprano role, and Gimadieva dazzled with the agility of her voice and her ease on the high notes. The phosphorescent quality of her top register, which flutters in a myriad of colours, was perfectly suited to the character’s flirty nature.
Laura Servidei, Bachtrack, 1 July 2019
Venera Gimadieva is an attractive Queen Marguerite, secure in her coloraturas...
Roberto Becker, Concerti.de, 1 July 2019
Venera Gimadieva as Queen Marguerite successfully conquers the coloratura heights of her part.
Joachim Lange, Die Deutsche Bühne, 1 July 2019
Title role, Lucia di Lammermoor
Opernhaus Zürich, March 2019
For the final two performances of the run, Venera Gimadieva has assumed the title role, one that she has sung previously in the house. In the first act, Gimadieva was young, girlish and carefree, her voice fresh and sparkling. By the time she was coerced into marrying Arturo, incomprehension and fear were evident on her face, and her voice took on a distinct metallic edge. The Mad Scene was a descent into desperation, with all the tricks of a coloratura soprano’s trade at Gimadieva’s command, including spot-on intonation in her dialogue with the flute.
Rick Perdian, Seen and Heard International, 8 March 2019
The Hallé cond. Gianluca Marcianò / Momento Immobile
Rubicon; RCD1021 / release date 26 October 2018
Gimadieva tackles the coloratura with dexterity, presenting characterful interpretations throughout. [Both guest soloists] serve to highlight Gimadieva’s vocal pyrotechnics
BBC Music Magazine, January 2019
The Golden Cockerel, La Monnaie (DVD, BelAir Classiques)
La Monnaie / December 2016 (released March 2018)
Among the performers, Venera Gimadieva shines as the Queen of Shemakha, seductively wrapping herself like a tendril around the chromatic lines of her Hymn to the Sun
Mark Pullinger, Gramophone Magazine, June 2018
Appropriately stunning is the Queen of Shemakha, Venera Gimadieva, a big hit in Glyndebourne and Covent Garden’s Traviatas, who has exactly the right luscious but steely tones, and radiates outrageous sensuality and serpentine menace
Michael Scott Rohan, BBC Music Magazine, July 2018
Title role, Lucia di Lammermoor
Bayerische Staatsoper, May 2018
Venera Gimadieva was a perfect Lucia to Flórez’ Edgardo. Her voice exuded excitement and anticipation, with a brilliant, phosphorescent top register perfectly suited to the young girl in love.
Laura Servidei, Bachtrack
The Queen of Shemakha, The Golden Cockerel
Santa Fe Opera, July 2017
Making the most distinguished company debut of the season was Russian soprano Venera Gimadieva. As the Tsaritsa of Shemakha, the magical seductress who convinces Tsar Dodon to marry her, she deployed her ample, beautiful voice in a velvety legato. The top notes, especially the high E way off the staff near the end of the second act, were precise and brilliant.
Charles T. Downey, The Classical Review
Venera Gimadieva sang the Queen of Shemakha with free coloratura, full sound, and a shimmering tone, particularly on her top notes. She danced and moved with graceful confidence, especially during her striptease (ingeniously costumed so that her dress could instantly become more and more revealing).
Ilana Walder-Biesanz, Bachtrack
Violetta, La traviata, cond. Yves Abel, dir. Richard Eyre
Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, January 2016
Her Covent Garden performance was acted and sung with rare intensity, making one eager to hear her in other major parts. The voice is clearly focussed, and her command of dynamics imparted variety and sparkle to the duets and solos of Acts 2 and 4. The lightly touched high notes in the Act 1 duet with Alfredo were uncommonly delicate and true, she dispatched the coloratura demands of ‘Sempre Libera’ without strain, and yet she also soared over the brass in ‘Amami, Alfredo’. These musical talents are enhanced by theatrical acumen. With a face signalling tragic resignation, she looked very beautiful in Bob Crowley’s costumes...
Russ McDonald, Opera
Even an earthquake could not have dislodged the extraordinarily powerful Venera Gimadieva from her richly toned sonorities, expressive penetration and superb stagecraft.
…the heart of this solid, enjoyable show remains the thrilling Venera Gimadieva.
Her vibrato and coloratura are excellent, and her voice constantly carries an air of lightness about it. She very much looks the part, and has a natural presence meaning that she never has to indulge in histrionics in order to portray the social butterfly. She conveys all of the requisite emotions sensitively and effectively.
Violetta, and I’ve been busting to tell you this, is the glorious Russian soprano Venera Gimadieva who sang the same role with such radiance at Glyndebourne a year or two back. Here on her Royal Opera debut she surpasses even that achievement with a voice that blends Rossinian warmth and late-Verdian power, rock-solid technique and perfect intonation, together with a riveting stage presence. Gimadieva is the most moving Violetta I can recall: she inhabits the heroine’s story arc with total commitment from her first-act set piece “È strano! È strano!” to her devastating death scene.
What’s On Stage
Anyone who had seen the Russian soprano Venera Gimadieva in the role of Violetta at Glyndebourne a couple of years ago will have known they were in for a treat. Her good looks, great acting and magnificently full voice make her perfect for the role and this time she was even better than ever.
…cut glass coloratura and superb intonation in ‘Sempre libera’ and wonderful ease at the top. However, Gimadieva also has the lyric soprano qualities to tackle Act II… There was initial vehemence in her response to Salsi’s bullish Germont, but she collapsed to deliver a moving ‘Dite alle giovine’ from the floor. In the final act, ‘Addio del passato’ was hauntingly fragile.
Title role of Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor
Opéra de Limoges
Venera Gimadieva is beautiful, passionate and sensual in the title role, shining out amongst a cast of young talented and committed singers... the Russian singer seems to electrify her partners - both in moments of love and in violence. A great lyric soprano, her excellent technique and purity of tone allows her to move easily in the lower midrange. Her charm moves as much as it impresses alongside her virtuosic vocals right until the final climax
This young Russian soprano is a match for her two illustrious predecessors Anna Netrebko and Olga Peretyatk, with a flexible and powerful voice and a beautiful timbre that can do justice to the formidable vocal difficulties of a challenging role. Moreover, her performance is moving, expressive and compelling from start to finish. Discovered just a few years ago, this young leading lady clearly has a promising career ahead of her
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