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In the beginning

Copyright�1996 by Bob Shomler
Anna Netrebko as Adina in L'elisir d'amore, San Francisco,
Merola Opera Program 1996
photo by Bob Shomler cyrillic.gif

This website, begun in 1998, initially spread the good news of Anna Netrebko's existence and chronicled her appearances and critical reception. Now news of her is in every newspaper and magazine, and available all over the web. So the focus of this website has changed. It is now intended as a partial documentation of her early career.

Those who heard her on a Sunday evening (February 1, 1998) at Old First Church in San Francisco, in what was billed as the Russian soprano's world debut recital, were clamorously enthusiastic. Her fetching presence was matched by a secure voice of power and brilliance.

The previous month, her vivid Susanna, in the third round of Figaro performances at the San Francisco Opera house, was the centerpiece of the production. In addition to extraordinary singing, she achieved a real sense of Beaumarchais's play being performed. The natural thespic talent was unforced and very persuasive.

Those smitten and awed in 1998 were certain she would achieve her present brilliant international career. Her fine voice and intelligent acting are now acclaimed world-wide.

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Backstage after the February 17, 2005 performance of Romeo et Juliette in Los Angeles
Upper left: with webmaster and wife
Above: Rolando Villazon (Romeo) and Simone Alberghini (Capulet)
Left: with Simone Alberghini

Sources of current information about Anna's coming performances and her recordings

Operabase DGwebsite IMG website

Bits of Bio

Anna's birthday is September 18th (which happens to be the day of Genius in the French Revolutionary Calendar, 1 Sans-culottide CLXXIX).

Krasnodar, the city of Ms. Netrebko's birth, is a provincial capital in southern Russia, 750 miles south of Moscow and 60 miles from the Black Sea, just east of the Crimea. Its population is roughly 650,000, and it lies at the same latitude as Minneapolis, Bordeaux and the northern tip of Japan. It was founded in 1794, on the Kuban River, by Black Sea Cossacks at the direction of Catherine the Great.

Artists making their S.F. Opera debuts in 1995 included sopranos Daniela Dessi, Rebecca Evans, Catherine Malfitano, Anna Netrebko, Deborah Riedel, Valentina Tsidipova and Yoko Watanabe; mezzo-sopranos Olga Borodina and Marjana Lipovsek; tenors John Mark Ainsley, Poul Elming, Stanford Olsen and Giuseppe Sabbatini; baritone Rodney Gilfry; bass-baritone Gregory Yurisich; and conductors Steven Mercurio and Carlo Rizzi.

link to bio on the Mariinsky website
Wikipedia bio

Sample her voice

A few bars from Lyudmila's first act cavatina

Longer excerpt from War & Peace, live Met broadcast, 3/2/2002    (Third tableau: What right have they?)
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