Young Sicilian tenor Pietro Adaíni studied singing and music with baritone Salvo Todaro and has attended masterclasses with notable tenor Marcello Giordani. He currently studies under renowned bel canto tenor Salvatore Fisichella. He was a finalist in the 2011-12 international singing competition Voci dal Mediterraneo – Premio Archimede in Syracuse, and in 2014 was awarded a scholarship at Teatro Carlo Felice in Genoa, where he debuted in the roles of Rodolfo La Bohème and Nemorino L’elisir d’amore.

Pietro quickly began establishing himself on the operatic stage in Italy, attending the ‘Gran Prix of the Opera’ in Parma, performing as the tenor soloist in Puccini’s ‘Messa di Gloria’ in Cagliari, and appearing as Beppe and Arlecchino in Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci at the Sferisterio Macerata Opera Festival and as Ernesto in Don Pasquale in Bergamo, Como, Cremona, Pavia and Jesi.

An adept singer of Rossini repertoire, Pietro has had much success as Il Conte d’Almaviva in Il barbiere di Siviglia, a role that he has performed in Florence, Salerno, Padua, at the Operaestate Festival Veneto and at the Gran Teatro Nacional in Lima, Peru, as well as the role of Don Ramiro in La cenerentola in Ravenna, Lucca, Piacenza and Ancona. Other roles include Fenton Falstaff in Genoa, Narciso Il turco in Italia at the Bergen National Opera, Norway, Ruodi Guillaume Tell and Lindoro L’italiana in Algeri at the Teatro Massimo di Palermo, Fadinard Il cappello di paglia di Firenze at the Teatro di San Carlo, Naples and Il Conte di Libenskof Il viaggio a Reims in Verona and at the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma.

Recent highlights include highly praised appearances as Elvino in La sonnambula at the Teatro Regio di Torino, Il Duca di Mantova in Verdi’s Rigoletto in Salerno with conductor Daniel Oren and Dorvil La scala di seta at the Royal Opera House Muscat, Oman. Pietro has also recently achieved great success in the role of Rinuccio in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi on the Circuito Lombardo. Pietro also made his Wexford Opera Festival debut in Rossini’s Petite messe solonelle.

Conductors & Piano

Thomas Adès CBE

Renowned as both a composer and a performer, Thomas Adès works regularly with the world’s leading orchestras, opera companies and festivals.

As a conductor, Thomas appears regularly with the Los Angeles, San Francisco and London Philharmonic orchestras, the Boston, London, BBC, Finnish Radio and City of Birmingham, Symphony Orchestras, the Royal Concertgebouworkest, Leipzig Gewandhaus and the Orchestra of Santa Cecilia. In opera, in addition to The Exterminating Angel, he has conducted The Rake’s Progress at the Royal Opera House and the Zürich Opera, The Tempest at the Metropolitan Opera and Vienna State Opera, and Gerald Barry’s latest opera Alice’s Adventures Under Ground in Los Angeles (world premiere) and in London (European premiere).

In the 2020-21 season Thomas is a featured composer at the Elbphilharmonie and will conduct the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra and Deustche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen in Europe. In the USA, he returns to the Los Angeles, Boston and Chicago Symphony Orchestras, as well as the Cleveland Orchestra. To celebrate his fiftieth birthday in 2021, the Barbican Centre will host a celebration that includes a performance of Totentanz by the London Symphony Orchestra and an in-concert performance of The Tempest by Britten Sinfonia, both conducted by the composer.

David Afkham is Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Orquestra y Coro Nacional de España since September 2019, following a highly successful tenure as the orchestra’s Principal Conductor since 2014. His work with the OCNE so far has featured critically acclaimed performances of Schoenberg’s Gurrelieder, Mahler’s Symphony No. 6, Bruckner Symphony No. 9, Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique, Brahms’ Requiem, Haydn’s Die Schöpfung, as well as several world premieres and semi-staged projects with Wagner’s Die fliegende Holländer, Strauss’ Elektra, Bach’s St. Mathew Passion and Bartók’s Bluebeard’s Castle. Born in Freiburg, Germany, in 1983, David Afkham is in high demand as a guest conductor with some of the world’s finest orchestras and opera houses, and has established a reputation as one of the most sought after conductors to emerge from Germany in recent years.

Future highlights as a guest conductor include return engagements with the Chicago Symphony, Münchner Philharmoniker, NHK Symphony Orchestra, as well as debuts with the Belgian National Orchestra, Dresden Philharmonic, Orchestre National de Lyon, BBC Scottish Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony and the Minnesota Orchestra.

As an opera conductor, David Afkham made a noted debut at Glyndebourne Festival Opera in 2014, with Verdi’s La Traviata, later reviving the production for performances around the UK and Ireland for Glyndebourne on Tour. In 2017, he conducted Ginastera’s Bomarzo at Teatro Real in Madrid in a new production by Pierre Audi, to unanimous critical acclaim, and leading to an immediate re-invitation. In season 18/19 he made his German opera debut at Frankfurt Opera with Humperdinck’s Hänsel & Gretel, followed by Stuttgart Opera with Wagner’s Die fliegende Holländer. He opened his 19/20 season at Theater an der Wien with Dvorak’s Rusalka. In 20/21 he will conduct Tannhäuser at the Liceu Opera in Barcelona, and further ahead he is looking forward to conducting productions of Strauss’ Arabella and Wagner’s Meistersinger.

David Afkham began piano and violin lessons at the age of six in his native Freiburg. At 15, he entered the city’s University of Music to pursue studies in piano, music theory and conducting and continued his studies at the Liszt School of Music in Weimar. David Afkham was the first recipient of the ‘Bernard Haitink Fund for Young Talent’ and assisted Maestro Bernard Haitink in a number of major projects including symphony cycles with the Chicago Symphony, Concertgebouworkest and London Symphony Orchestra. He was the winner of the 2008 Donatella Flick Conducting Competition in London, and was the inaugural recipient of the ‘Nestle and Salzburg Festival Young Conductors Award’ in 2010. He and was Assistant Conductor of the Gustav Mahler Jungendorchester 2009-2012.

For full biography, please download Artists “publicity pack” with season biography and photos opposite.

Tenor

Migran Agadzhanyan

Armenian tenor Migran Agadzhanyan came to international attention in 2018 when he won 2nd prize at Operalia. He has worked at the major opera houses around Europe, including the Mariinsky Theatre where he regularly performs, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Grand Théâtre de Genève, Opéra Royal de Versailles, Hamburgische Staatsoper, and Royal Swedish Opera, in roles including Don José Carmen, Pinkerton Madama Butterfly, Rodolfo La bohème, Macduff Macbeth, and Alfredo La traviata. 

This season he returns to the Deutsche Oper Berlin for Madama Butterfly, debuts at Royal Danish Opera in Barrie Kosky’s Carmen, and makes his Opera di Roma and Teatro di Pisa debuts. The coming seasons see debuts at Teatro di san Carlos Napoli, and New National Theatre Tokyo for Carmen, and his debut at Royal Opera House Covent Garden.

Louise Alder studied at the Royal College of Music International Opera School where she was the inaugural Kiri Te Kanawa Scholar.

In the 2020/21 season Louise makes her debut at the Wiener Staatsoper as Susanna Le nozze di Figaro, singing also Sophie Der Rosenkavalier and the title role in Massenet’s Manon. She also returns to the Bayerische Staatsoper as Susanna and to Madrid’s Teatro Real as Zerlina Don Giovanni.

Recent highlights on the concert platform have included Schumann’s Szenen aus Goethes Faust with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra/Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Messiah with the New York Philharmonic/Harry Bicket, the title role in Semele on tour with the the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique/Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Tokyo Philharmonic/Jonathan Nott, Mozart Arias at the Salzburg Mozartwoche with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra/Daniel Harding and the title role in Theodora at the BBC Proms and in the Wiener Konzerthaus with Arcangelo/Jonathan Cohen.

Recital appearances include the BBC Proms, Graz Musikverein and the Oper Frankfurt with Gary Matthewman, Wigmore Hall with both Joseph Middleton and James Baillieu and the Oxford Lieder Festival and Fundación Privada Victoria de los Ángeles in Barcelona with Sholto Kynoch.

American cellist Ifetayo Ali-Landing is quickly establishing herself as one of today’s leading young artists, earning praise for her “charismatic” playing (Chicago Tribune) and being described as a “powerhouse” by Classical MPR.

In 2017, Ali-Landing won the First Place Laureate of the Sphinx Competition’s Junior Division and has since gone on to perform with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at Ravinia (under Marin Alsop), Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony, New World Symphony, Chicago Sinfonietta, Wilmington (NC), South Bend, Southwest Michigan and Elgin Symphonies, Buffalo Philharmonic, and Vermont Symphony Orchestra on a state-wide tour; recitals include the Kansas City Harriman-Jewell Series and The National Arts Club, among many others.

Ali-Landing features frequently in the media, with notable appearances on NPR’s From The Top (where she performed Vivaldi with Kevin Olusola beatboxing), a residency as Young Artist with APM’s Performance Today, and a TED talk at [email protected]

Her musical studies began on the violin before switching to cello at the age of four. Previous teachers and coaches include Lucinda Ali-Landing, Megan Lauterbach, and Martine Benmann at the Hyde Park Suzuki Institute in Chicago, as well as Tahirah Whittington, Oleksa Mycyk, and Hans Jørgen Jensen. She currently studies at the Colburn School in Los Angeles with Clive Greensmith.

Azerbaijani soprano Dinara Alieva graduated at the Baku music academy and joined the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow as soloist in 2010. She has won prizes at the Operalia Competition, Francesco Viñas Competition and Maria Callas Competition, and has since performed with the Wiener Staatsoper, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Oper Frankfurt, Hamburgisch Staatsoper, Semperoper Dresden, Staatstheater Stuttgart and Bayerische Staatsoper. Ms Alieva’s growing discography includes Pace mio Dio, a CD of Italian opera arias for Delos Records, and a recording of great Italian love duets with Alexandr Antonenko.

Engagements for the 2018/19 season and beyond include Elisabeth Don Carlos at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Nedda Pagliacci at the Liceu Barcelona and Liu Turandot for the Wiener Staatsoper, as well as her debut appearances with the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (Violetta) and Paris Opera (Cio Cio-san Madama Butterfly).

Baritone & Director

Sir Thomas Allen

Sir Thomas Allen is an established star of the great opera houses of the world. He has sung over fifty roles at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden; in 2012 he celebrated his 40th anniversary of his debut with the company. An acclaimed recitalist, he is equally renowned on the concert platform and has appeared with the world’s great orchestras and conductors. He is Chancellor of Durham University. His many honours include the title of Bayerischer Kammersänger awarded by the Bayerische Staatsoper. In the New Year’s Honours of 1989 he was created a Commander of the British Empire and in the 1999 Queen’s Birthday Honours he was made a Knight Bachelor. Among his proudest achievements is having a Channel Tunnel locomotive named after him; and most recently, being awarded the Queen’s Medal for Music 2013.