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Thomas : Mignon

Paris, 2010 (Audio)

Director: Francois Xavier Roth

  • Ismael Jordi (tenor)
  • Nicolas Cavallier (bajo)
  • Marie Lenormand (mezzo)
  • Malia Bendi Merad (soprano)
  • Blandine Staskiewicz (mezzo)

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    In 2010, french mezzo-soprano Marie Lenormand received the "Grand Prix de la Critique, Revelation Musicale of the 2009-2010 season" for her interpretation of Mignon, by Ambroise Thomas, in a widely acclaimed revival of the piece at the Opéra comique in Paris (the very theater where Mignon had been created), with stage director Jean-Louis Benoit and conductor François-Xavier Roth.

    This season, Marie Lenormand sings Dorabella at Lyric Opera of Kansas City (Kristine McIntyre and Ward Holmquist), Despina at New York City Opera (in a new production by Christopher Alden, with Christian Curnyn conducting); and the Massenet cantata "Louise Mézières" with François-Xavier Roth and Les Siècles at the Opéra Comique in Paris.

    Last season, Marie Lenormand sang Niklausse/ La Muse in Les Contes d'Hoffmann at the Opéra de Massy (Paul-Emile Fourny and Kaspar Zehnder) Olga in Eugene Oneguine at the Opéra d'Avignon, (Claire Servais and Rani Caldron) Cherubino in les Noces de Figaro at Houston Grand Opera (Harry Silverstein and James Gaffigan),The Fox in Janacek's Cunning Little Vixen with the New York Philarmonic (Doug Fitch et Alan Gilbert).
    In the Fall, Marie recorded melodies by the forgotten belgian composer Albert Huybrechts, with Cypres-Records in Brussels.
    In May, she sang in recital with pianist Keith Weber in Houston,and performed over the summer at the Berlioz Festival with François-Xavier Roth and les Siècles,and at the Festival de Fénétrange with Jacques Verdier conducting l'Orchestre de Lorraine.

    In 2009-2010, Marie sang Urbain in Meyerbeer's Les Huguenots at Bard Summerscape (Thaddeus Strassberger/Leon Bostein) Fragoletto in Offenbach's Les Brigands (Deschamps-Makeieff/Emmanuel Joel-Hornak)at the Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux and at l'Opéra du Luxembourg,Lapak in Cunning Little Vixen in Florence (Laurent Pelly/Seiji Ozawa)Cherubino at l'Opéra de Rouen (Stephan Grogler/Oswald Sallaberger)and the title role in Ambroise Thomas' Mignon at l'Opéra comique de Paris (Jean-Louis Benoit/ François-Xavier Roth).

    During the 2008-2009 season, Marie sang Dorabella with l'Opéra de Rouen (Oswald Sallaberger),
    Arsamene in Haendel's Serse with Boston Baroque (Martin Pearlman),Hermia in Britten's Midsummer Night's Dream at Houston Grand Opera (in a new production by Neil Armfield, Patrick Summers conducting),Annio in Mozart's Clemenza di Tito at l'Opéra d'Avignon, Siebel at Madison's Opera (Bernard Uzan/ Laurent Campellone) and Cherubino at Cincinnati Opera (Sir Roger Norrington).
    She appeared in concert with François-Xavier Roth and Les Siècles in Mozart's Requiem in Aix en Provence, France, and with Houston baroque ensemble Ars Lyrica.

    During the 2007-2008 season, Marie sang with "Ars Lyrica" in Houston and in recital with the outheastern Festival of Songs in Atlanta and Dallas. She went back to New Orleans Opera to sing Siebel with Paul Groves as Faust, made her debut with the Bochum Orchestra in Germany, singing Le Nuits d'été with Steven Sloane conducting, before a series of Handel's Messiahs with the Winston-Salem Symphony.
    She reprised Aloès in L'Etoile by Chabrier at l'Opéra du Luxembourg, before joining le Gradus ad Musicam ensemble in Nancy, France, for Pergolèse's Stabat Mater. She returned to the Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux in the spring for Siebel in a new Faust production by J.P.Clarac and O.Deloeil. For her debut with San Francisco Opera, Marie was delighted to reprise the role of The Fox which she created in The Little Prince by Rachel Portman for Houston Grand Opera in 2003. She then sang in concert for the opening night gala of Berkshire Opera in Massachussets, and spent the rest of the summer at Seiji Ozawa's Saito-Kinen Festival, in Japan, singing Lapak and covering the fox in "Cunning Little Vixen", a beautiful new production by Laurent Pelly and conducted by Seiji Ozawa.

    In the 2006-2007 season, Marie sings Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Dallas Opera followed by Siebel in Faust with Houston Grand Opera. Additionally, she makes her debut with Chicago Opera Theater as Penelope in Monteverdi's Il Ritorno d'Ulisse in Patria and sings Siebel again with Cincinnati Opera. She makes her debut with the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Francois-Xavier Roth as the alto solo in Beethoven IXth at the Florida International Festival in Daytona Beach. Also, she performs in recital in New York with Steven Blier's New York Festival of Song at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall.

    The previous season, Marie performed Siegrune in Die Walküre at the Chatelet under Christoph Eschenbach, was heard in Chabrier's L'Etoile in Angers and Nantes, and sang Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Dorabella in Così Fan Tutte in Stuttgart. In January 2006, she sang Cidippe in Aristeo and the title role in Bauci e Filemone by Glück, recorded under the label Ambroisie , with Christophe Rousset and Les Talens lyriques: They took the two newly rediscovered operas on a concert tour (Bruxelles, Paris, Montpellier, Monte-Carlo) benefiting "Les sept vies de Philémon", an French organization fundraising for research on rare genetic diseases. Also, she appeared in recital with Steven Blier in a program entitled "The Banquet Years" in New York and with the Vocal Arts Society in Washington, DC.

    In 2005, she made her debuts with New Orleans Opera as Nicklausse in Les Contes d'Hoffmann, Opera Pacific as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, and performed Zerlina, in Don Giovanni at La Cité de la Musique in Paris under the baton of Emmanuel Krivine with his newly established orchestra, La Chambre Philharmonique in February. She was also heard in recital with Steven Blier at the prestigious New York Festival of Song, and sang the role of Rosina at Opera de Bordeaux.

    Past notable engagements include her debut with the Bard Music Festival, where she performed in two Shostakovich operas, the role of Masha in Cherry Tree Towers and also in The Nose. Other recent opera engagements include Dorabella in Così Fan Tutte at the Opéra de Bordeaux, Cherubino at the Opéra de Marseille, and Zerlina with both New York City Opera and Toledo Opera. Additionally, she created the role of the Fox in Rachel Portman's The Little Prince with Houston Grand Opera in the early summer of 2003, of which Opera News wrote, "Among the best were Marie Lenormand, whose rich mezzo-soprano and elegant stage presence shone in the role of the Fox." She has also sung with Opera-Atelier in Lully's Persée and L'Incoronazione di Poppea, a recital for the Marilyn Horne Foundation at Carnegie Hall's Weill Hall in New York City, and recitals in New York and Minneapolis with Steven Blier.

    Marie Lenormand was a member of the Houston Grand Opera Studio from 1999 to 2002. At Houston Grand Opera, she performed Dorabella, the title role in L'incoronazione di Poppea, Mercédès in Carmen, Tebaldo in Don Carlo, the Page in Rigoletto, the Chambermaid in The Makropulos Case, and Thelma Predmore in the world premiere of Carlisle Floyd's Cold Sassy Tree. At Glimmerglass Opera, she sang Melanto in Il Ritorno d'Ulisse in Patria and performed in the world premiere of Central Park, which was later telecast on national television. She returned to Glimmerglass Opera to perform the role of Aloës in Mark Lamos' new production of Chabrier's L'Etoile. She has also sung Cherubino at Fort Worth Opera, as well as Stéphano, and the title role in Carmen at the Oberlin Opera Theater. She has appeared numerous times in broadcasts of NPR's World of Opera.

    In addition to her operatic work, Marie Lenormand is also a distinguished oratorio singer. She was the alto soloist in Haydn's Lord Nelson Mass under Robert Shaw, as well as in Elijah with a cast headed by Sherrill Milnes. She was a Regional Finalist at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and the recipient of several awards, including the Bloomberg Greenwood Prize, the Faustina Hurlbutt Prize, and the prestigious Lavoisier Scholarship from the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
    She studies with Patricia MacCaffrey in New York.

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