Stephen Costello’s 2011-12 Season Begins With Met Opening Night, in Donizetti’s Anna Bolena

“A prodigiously gifted singer whose voice makes an immediate impact.” — Associated Press

On Monday, September 26, just a few days before his 30th birthday, Stephen Costello will sing the role of Lord Percy at New York’s Metropolitan Opera in the company’s first production of Donizetti’s Anna Bolena (twelve performances through Feb 4). The performance – Costello’s second appearance in an opening night at the Met – begins an exciting new season for the fast-rising Philadelphia-born tenor described by Opera News as “a first-class talent.” Among the highlights of Costello’s 2011-12 season are his company role debut as Alfredo in Verdi’s La traviata at London’s Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and his debut at Los Angeles Opera, where he will sing Rodolfo in Puccini’s La bohème alongside his wife, soprano Ailyn Pérez, who portrays Mimì. He also returns for the second season running to the Vienna State Opera, where he will perform Nemorino in Donizetti’s L'elisir d'amore.

The Met’s Anna Bolena is a new production by David McVicar and features Anna Netrebko in the title role. The October 15 performance will be transmitted to movie theaters worldwide as part of the “Met: Live in HD” series. Costello starred with Netrebko in Gounod’s Romeo and Juliet at the Salzburg Festival last summer, and he will sing two performances of La traviata with her at London’s Covent Garden this season (Jan 17 and 20). Costello made his role debut as Lord Percy last season at Dallas Opera, marking the completion of his performances of the leading tenor roles in Dallas’s trilogy of Donizetti’s Tudor operas.

Costello met his wife, Chicago-born Ailyn Pérez, at Philadelphia’s Academy of Vocal Arts, and they often perform together as the lead romantic couple, including last season in Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette with the Opera Company of Philadelphia. In addition to their performances at Los Angeles Opera, they will also appear together this season in Mascagni’s L'amico Fritz, with the Moscow Philharmonic, and in La traviata at Cincinnati Opera. Following a performance together in La bohème at Cincinnati Opera, the Enquirer wrote enthusiastically about “the young newlyweds,” calling Costello’s Rodolfo “wonderfully sung” and Pérez’s Mimi “radiant”. The reviewer added: “Costello's fresh, Italianate tenor was consistently a joy to hear. … Mimi and Rodolfo's duet, ‘O soave fanciulla’ was stunning for the singers' warmth of tone and effortless high notes.”

Other engagements during Stephen Costello’s next season include Leicester in Donizetti’s Maria Stuarda in concert performances to be recorded at the Gasteig in Munich, and Edgardo in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor at Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville.

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