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Dame Felicity Palmer

Mezzo-soprano

  • Felicity Palmer is renowned for her incisive and powerful interpretations across a remarkably varied repertoire, ranging from Monteverdi to Messiaen. Equally at home on the operatic stage, concert platform and in the recital hall, she brings a musical and dramatic fidelity to every performance, which has earned her a reputation as one of the outstanding British singers of her generation.

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  • Future highlights include Merope in Oedipe with the London Philharmonic and Vladmir Jurowski at the Enescu Festival in Romania and at the Royal Festival Hall. She returns to Opéra National de Bordeaux to perform Klytemnestra in Elektra with Paul Daniel, and the role of Geneviève in Pelléas et Mélisande with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla. She will be revisiting a major signature role at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden during her 18/19 season.


    Felicity’s pioneering emphasis on text, and its capacity to transform music, has defined her success as an artist throughout her career. In recent years she has been working to bring this approach to the opera rehearsal process, and her work has contributed to award winning productions at English National Opera (Lady Macbeth of Mtensk, Jenufa, Force of Destiny, Magic Flute, Lulu) and Glyndebourne (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Hamlet).


    As an operatic mezzo-soprano, her extensive credits includes regular appearances at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (Elektra, Katya Kabanova, Sweeney Todd), The Metropolitan Opera, New York (The Ring Cycle, Dialogues des Carmélites, Pelléas et Mélisande, The Queen of Spades), Bayerische Staatsoper (Das Rheingold and Die Walküre) as well as work with Zurich, Toulouse, Amsterdam, Chicago, San Francisco, Paris and English National Opera. She has collaborated with many conductors, including James Levine, Sir Simon Rattle, Antonio Papanno, Ricardo Mutti and Zubin Mehta. She has been a regular guest at the BBC Proms and with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic, Philharmonia, London Symphony and London Philharmonic.


    She started her career as a concert soprano, and during these years she toured Australia for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and collaborated with many artists, including Sir Colin Davis, Rozhdestvensky (Shostakovich Symphony No.14 and The Trojans), Raymond Leppard (with a recording of The Messiah), Sir Charles Mackerras (including a recording of Judas Maccabaeus for DGG) as well as concerts with many of the major orchestras across Europe and North America.


    Highlights of her considerable catalogue of recordings include Elektra with the WDR Orchestra and Semyon Bychkov, and with the London Symphony Orchestra and Valery Gergiev, as well as Dialogues des Carmélites with English National Opera and Paul Daniel. She recorded three celebrated disks of French song for Argo Records with John Constable and the Nash Ensemble, directed by Sir Simon Rattle, and recorded and toured Messiaen’s Poemes pour Mi with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Pierre Boulez, in collaboration with the composer.


    She was made a CBE in 1993 and a Dame of the British Empire in 2011.

    2017-2018 season / 482 words. Not to be altered without permission.

Performances

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Season highlights

Geneviève Pelléas et Mélisande 
Philharmonia Orchestra and Esa-Pekka Salonen

Countess The Queen of Spades (new production)
English National Opera

In a league of her own, the magnificent Palmer was unbelievably believable.

Observer

Towering over the whole cast was Dame Felicity Palmer’s Countess. Her mere presence was enough to electrify the Coliseum and her haughty demeanour and powerful voice immediately established her character. The long scene in her bedroom was riveting, mesmerising the auditorium in her delivery of the aria Je crains de lui parler la nuit.

Bachtrack

The ‘Oscar’ performance was given by Dame Felicity Palmer… Her Klytemnestra was a marvel of pained, paranoid malevolence.

Opera Now

Intermusica represents Dame Felicity Palmer worldwide

Julia Maynard
Director / Head of Vocal & Opera
+44 20 7608 9902
jmaynard@intermusica.co.uk

Isla Mundell-Perkins
Associate Manager, Vocal & Opera
+44 20 7608 9915
imundell-perkins@intermusica.co.uk

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Special projects

Charles Hazlewood

Nora Fischer

Clarinet

Mark Simpson

Chansonnier

HK Gruber

Counter-tenor

Tim Mead

Rupert Enticknap

Piano accompanist

Roger Vignoles