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Rosenblatt Recitals

Dear subscriber,

Ahead of Aida Garifullina's Rosenblatt Recital with Iain Burnside next Wednesday (3 Dec), we caught up with the 2013 Operalia winner for a short Q&A.

In conversation with... Aida Garifullina

We are delighted to be welcoming you for your UK debut! Have you been to London before?

I’ve been to London many times and love it so much I seriously considered moving to the city. I love its beauty, elegance and – of course – the shopping. Without doubt it’s one of my favourite places in the world so I’m thrilled to be making my debut here.

Aida Garifullina

You were something of a child prodigy, being able to sing simple opera arias by the age of 11 and winning the Feodor Chaliapin Fund ‘Voice of the Year’ Award at 13. At what point did you know you wanted to be a professional opera singer?

To be honest, it wasn’t until I sang for Gergiev and he believed in me. I’d spent many years doing training, taking part in competitions and appearing on television shows but I’d always doubted whether I’d make it as a professional singer. But having someone like Gergiev say that he believed in me was what it took for me to accept that this would be my life and that I could succeed.

Last year you joined a very select group of singers who can call themselves Operalia winners! Please can you tell us about the whole experience?

I worked in preparation for Operalia for several months on my own and then with a teacher for the month before where we worked every single day for that month! When I arrived I realised that many of the other contestants were much more advanced in their careers than I was but there was a great sense of camaraderie between us all and a wonderful sense of excitement. In round two I wasn’t happy with my performance and that was obviously dispiriting but luckily my singing in the other rounds was strong enough for me to be declared the winner. Without question one of the greatest moments of my life!

How important is it for you to be able to share your cultural heritage via the international music scene?

Being born and raised in Kazan is central to who I am as a person and I’m proud to represent my city wherever I go and sing. I hope that Kazan will soon be known for more than our great football team!

Aida Garifullina

You’ve already performed with some operatic legends, including Plácido Domingo, but who are your vocal idols?

Domingo, without question, is a real legend and the most supportive of colleagues. My other idol is Anna Moffo, plus Joan Sutherland in certain roles.

Please could you talk us through some of your selections in your Rosenblatt Recitals programme?

I’ve chosen a programme that showcases some of my favourite pieces of music. Many of them have been pieces I’ve sung at important moments in my career so they have real emotional resonance for me.

To hear Aida ahead of the recital, watch the Aida Garifullina playlist on our YouTube channel, which includes several items featuring in her Rosenblatt Recital programme.

Book now: Call the Wigmore Hall Box Office on 020 7935 2141 or book online at www.wigmore-hall.org.uk

We do hope you can join us.

With best wishes from everyone at Rosenblatt Recitals

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