new album: REGARDS SUR L'INFINI songs of Messiaen, Debussy, Delbos, Dutilleux, and Saariaho with pianist Sam Armstrong "an extraordinarily polished and thought-through disc" —The Guardian (Classical Album of the Week) photo by Jasper Grijpink un révélation DIAPASON Soprano Katharine Dain was pure and heart-piercing, singing as if the music might have been written just for her. IRISH TIMES photo: Evelien van Rijn energetic and finely polished NEW YORK TIMES Photo: Evelien van Rijn I can well imagine the panic that struck the organization one day before the planned recital in the Concertgebouw. What to do? Find a replacement? That they managed this is a miracle, and the miracle has a name: Katharine Dain. PLACE DE L'OPERA Photo: Evelien van Rijn
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Soprano Katharine Dain performs opera, chamber music, orchestral repertoire, and oratorio throughout Europe and North America. In recent seasons, she has been highly praised for her Konstanze in Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Rouen, Avignon, Clermont-Ferrand, Reims, and Massy) and Donna Anna in Don Giovanni (the Netherlands and Belgium with the Orchestra of the 18th Century, Hungary and Ecuador with the Armel Opera Festival). In December of 2020, Dain debuted with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra under Antony Hermus in the premiere of a new work for soprano and orchestra by Bram Kortekaas. Other recent concert engagements include works of Dutilleux and Berlioz with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra under Ryan Bancroft, song cycles of Zemlinsky and Berg under Reinbert de Leeuw in Austria’s Osterfestival, and Mahler’s Fourth Symphony with Grammy-award-winning chamber orchestra Ludwig.

Soprano Katharine Dain performs opera, chamber music, orchestral repertoire, and oratorio throughout Europe and North America. In recent seasons, she has been highly praised for her Konstanze in Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Rouen, Avignon, Clermont-Ferrand, Reims, and Massy) and Donna Anna in Don Giovanni (the Netherlands and Belgium with the Orchestra of the 18th Century, Hungary and Ecuador with the Armel Opera Festival). In December of 2020, Dain debuted with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra under Antony Hermus in the premiere of a new work for soprano and orchestra by Bram Kortekaas. Other recent concert engagements include works of Dutilleux and Berlioz with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra under Ryan Bancroft, song cycles of Zemlinsky and Berg under Reinbert de Leeuw in Austria’s Osterfestival, and Mahler’s Fourth Symphony with Grammy-award-winning chamber orchestra Ludwig.

scorching top notes … impressively elegant and thoughtful … penetrating artistry

THE TIMES LONDON

scorching top notes … impressively elegant and thoughtful … penetrating artistry

THE TIMES LONDON

A musician of unusual intelligence and curiosity, Dain is becoming known for fearless performances of modern repertoire as well as thoughtful program curation and writing.

Her recent album with pianist Sam Armstrong, Regards sur l’Infini, has been universally hailed in the press: “extraordinarily polished … glowing” (The Guardian); “a discovery … Dain sings with merciless beauty” (Trouw). Her last pre-Covid project was a tour with the NSO under Manoj Kamps in Wagner’s Liebestod and a newly-commissioned piece by Rick van Veldhuizen, a performance called “outstanding” by NRC. She has co-founded several chamber groups, including Damask Vocal Quartet, whose first album of works by Brahms and contemporaries, O schöne Nacht, won wide acclaim and the French award the Choc de Classica.

A musician of unusual intelligence and curiosity, Dain is becoming known for fearless performances of modern repertoire as well as thoughtful program curation and writing.

Her recent album with pianist Sam Armstrong, Regards sur l’Infini, has been universally hailed in the press: “extraordinarily polished … glowing” (The Guardian); “a discovery … Dain sings with merciless beauty” (Trouw). Her last pre-Covid project was a tour with the NSO under Manoj Kamps in Wagner’s Liebestod and a newly-commissioned piece by Rick van Veldhuizen, a performance called “outstanding” by NRC. She has co-founded several chamber groups, including Damask Vocal Quartet, whose first album of works by Brahms and contemporaries, O schöne Nacht, won wide acclaim and the French award the Choc de Classica.

pandemic projects

My work, like all performers’, has been severely affected by Covid-19 since March 2020. It’s unclear when restrictions on live events will ease and my schedule of performances will resume.

Although it has been a difficult time, I was lucky to be able to spend many isolated months working on a very special album/recital program with pianist Sam Armstrong. This work resulted in a disc of songs by Messiaen, Debussy, Delbos, Dutilleux, and Saariaho titled Regards sur l’Infini. Since its release on Dutch label 7 Mountain Records in late 2020, the critical response in the Netherlands, Belgium, the UK, and France has been overwhelmingly positive. The Guardian called it “a memorable, effortlessly polished album” and chose it as classical CD of the week; Volkskrant called it “sublime,” NRC “breathtaking,” Parool “exceptionally successful,” the Times “impressively elegant and thoughtful.” Read more about the project, listen to excerpts, and buy your own copy here.

In early December, I made an unexpected debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra under Antony Hermus, jumping in on a few days’ notice to sing the premiere of a piece by Bram Kortekaas. The performance was filmed and streamed; watch an excerpt here.

Next season will be an exciting one for me if plans can go ahead: I will work with the Dutch National Opera, the Orchestra of the 18th Century, Tapiola Sinfonietta, Wonderfeel, the International Lied Festival Zeist, and numerous chamber groups in performances large and small. Fingers crossed!

pandemic projects

My work, like all performers’, has been severely affected by Covid-19 since March 2020. It’s unclear when restrictions on live events will ease and my schedule of performances will resume.

Although it has been a difficult time, I was lucky to be able to spend many isolated months working on a very special album/recital program with pianist Sam Armstrong. This work resulted in a disc of songs by Messiaen, Debussy, Delbos, Dutilleux, and Saariaho titled Regards sur l’Infini. Since its release on Dutch label 7 Mountain Records in late 2020, the critical response in the Netherlands, Belgium, the UK, and France has been overwhelmingly positive. The Guardian called it “a memorable, effortlessly polished album” and chose it as classical CD of the week; Volkskrant called it “sublime,” NRC “breathtaking,” Parool “exceptionally successful,” the Times “impressively elegant and thoughtful.” Read more about the project, listen to excerpts, and buy your own copy here.

In early December, I made an unexpected debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra under Antony Hermus, jumping in on a few days’ notice to sing the premiere of a piece by Bram Kortekaas. The performance was filmed and streamed; watch an excerpt here.

Next season will be an exciting one for me if plans can go ahead: I will work with the Dutch National Opera, the Orchestra of the 18th Century, Tapiola Sinfonietta, Wonderfeel, the International Lied Festival Zeist, and numerous chamber groups in performances large and small. Fingers crossed!

news

  • Regards sur l’Infini: Reactions

    Sam and I have been overwhelmed by the response to Regards sur l’Infini, our debut disc as a duo, the project that kept us both moving forward through the hardest months of 2020. We’ve heard from many friends, and critics (see below), and critics who are now friends because they sought us out to talk about what we made, that the album has helped others bear the uncertainty of the current moment, too, and has provided beauty and inspiration. We […]
  • Concertgebouw Orchestra debut on four days’ notice

    I was honored to step in this week as soprano soloist with the Concertgebouw Orchestra, one of the world’s greatest. A colleague had fallen ill just before the planned premiere of a piece by Bram Kortekaas. I was contacted on Sunday afternoon: could I learn the fourteen-minute score immediately? Would the piece be a good fit? Was my command of Dutch language good enough? I had worked once before with Antony Hermus, the wonderful conductor of this all-Dutch program, but […]
  • “merciless beauty”

    Our album is out!! Regards sur l’Infini was officially born on November 27th, 2020. Sam and I performed a small CD release concert in the gorgeous concert hall in Nijmegen, the same space where we recorded, that night, and we are overwhelmed by the positive response to the disc so far. The Guardian chose Regards sur l’Infini as their classical pick of the week: “a memorable, effortlessly polished album.” MusicWeb International has given us a sublime review and one of […]
  • Mahler, Berg, and Schubert with Grammy-winning Ludwig

    Most of my concerts this spring, summer, and fall were cancelled. But not this one, which went off last week without a hitch, and thank goodness, because it was a complete pleasure from start to finish. Scroll down to listen to our Mahler and Schubert. Ludwig is a Dutch chamber orchestra that almost exclusively plays without conductor. (A notable exception is whenever they work with Barbara Hannigan, who sings and conducts; their 2018 album Crazy Girl won a Grammy.) I’ve […]

blog

  • the things I am still, a year in, trying to tell myself
    February 27, 2021
    Someday, you will recognize how brave you were. Someday, you will recognize that your grief was reasonable, whether it was connected to a specific loss or not. Someday, you will (possibly) forgive yourself for your unearned privileges—a home, a few close people, tolerance of solitude, money and food enough, health care—that others suffered and died without. Someday, you will (possibly) forgive the politicians who dismissed the importance of your life's work during a crisis that stripped you...
  • Ruth Falcon, 1942-2020
    October 12, 2020
    I was shaken to learn last night that soprano and legendary teacher Ruth Falcon has died. I was lucky to study with Ruth at Mannes for three years. She was an exacting technician, a force of nature, someone who could be both boundlessly generous and terribly difficult. Although we haven't been close in many years, it's hard to believe she's gone. I remember our first lesson. I had been accepted to Mannes and was trying to...
  • Mahler, Berg, and Schubert with Grammy-winning Ludwig
    September 25, 2020
    Most of my concerts this spring, summer, and fall were cancelled. But not this one, which went off last week without a hitch, and thank goodness, because it was a complete pleasure from start to finish. Scroll down to listen to our Mahler and Schubert. Ludwig is a Dutch chamber orchestra that almost exclusively plays without conductor. (A notable exception is whenever they work with Barbara Hannigan, who sings and conducts; their 2018 album Crazy...

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