Ailyn Pérez, La traviata
"Go and see her. A huge star in the making is amongst us," urged the Opera Creep blog after Ailyn Pérez's recital at London's historic St. John's Smith Square last March. Now a new recording recreates the Richard Tucker Award winner's memorable performance on her debut album, which is due for U.S. release on the Opus Arte label in May. The soprano returns to Europe to reprise the title role of La traviata - fast becoming one of her signature roles - in Johannes Erath's new production at the Hamburg State Opera (Feb 17-March 19), before joining her husband and frequent co-star, tenor Stephen Costello - also a Tucker Award winner - to headline Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore at the Vienna State Opera (March 1-8). These European engagements follow a momentous winter at home in the United States, where Pérez
added the Plácido Domingo Award to her numerous honors, and lit up the stage in the Richard Tucker Music Foundation's annual gala, which was broadcast nationwide as part of the Emmy Award-winning Live From Lincoln Center series on PBS.
Pérez's upcoming debut album comprises a mix of studio recordings made at Abbey Road and live recordings from her March 7, 2012 performance - the soprano's third in London's prestigious Rosenblatt Recitals series. In a program featuring Spanish and French art song together
with arias from Massenet's Manon, her performance came, according to Opera Creep, "as close to my idea of perfection as possible."
Pérez headlines La traviata once again next season, when she reunites with her husband, tenor Stephen Costello, at San Francisco Opera in July 2014. Their collaborations' potent chemistry consistently draws notice; the two are profiled in the cover story of Classical Singer's February 2013 issue, and they were recently billed as "opera's hottest
couple" at Los Angeles Opera, while the Associated Press dubs them "America's fastest-rising husband-and-wife opera stars," and Vanity Fair depicts theirs as "a match made in verismo heaven."
It was Costello who sang Alfredo to Pérez's Violetta at Cincinnati Opera, prompting Opera News to comment: "What moved this Traviata beyond highly competent routine were the fine performances of Ailyn Pérez and Stephen Costello, the husband-and-wife team singing Violetta and Alfredo." They will be joined in San Francisco by Hawaiian baritone
Quinn Kelsey, who lends his "major-league instrument" (Opera News) to the role of Georgio Germont. Conductor Giuseppe Finzi leads the cast in the first of four performances of John Copley's "handsome new staging" (New York Times) on July 5.