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Brenda Rae
In Sun Suh

Friday, January 13, 2017 7:30 PM Weill Recital Hall
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Praised for her “dazzling, pinpoint coloratura” (Opera News) and “sparkling and elegant” voice (The Telegraph), Wisconsin-born soprano Brenda Rae dazzles audiences around the world. She has starred in operas by composers from Handel to Richard Strauss, while also enjoying a vibrant career as a recitalist.

Part of Salon Encores.


Brenda Rae, Soprano
In Sun Suh, Piano


R. STRAUSS "Die Nacht," Op. 10, No. 3
R. STRAUSS "Befreit," Op. 39, No. 4
R. STRAUSS "Muttertändelei," Op. 43, No. 2
R. STRAUSS "Schlagende Herzen," Op. 29, No. 2
R. STRAUSS "Frühlingsgedränge," Op. 26, No. 1
LISZT "Comment disaient-ils," S. 276
LISZT "Es muss ein Wunderbares sein," S. 314
LISZT "Bist du, " S. 277 (1878 version)
LISZT "Wie singt die Lerche schön," S. 312
LISZT "Oh! Quand je dors," S. 282
MOZART Vorrei spiegarvi, oh Dio, K. 418
DEBUSSY "Rondel chinois"
DEBUSSY "Clair de lune"
DEBUSSY "Pierrot"
DEBUSSY "Apparition"
SCHUBERT "Vergebliche Liebe," D. 177
SCHUBERT "Von Ida," D. 228
SCHUBERT "Aus Diego Manazares" ("Ilmerine")
SCHUBERT "Du bist die Ruh," D. 776
SCHUBERT "Lied der Delphine," D. 857, No. 1

R. STRAUSS "Amor" from Six Songs, Op. 68, No. 5

Event Duration

The printed program will last approximately 90 minutes, including one 20-minute intermission.

At a Glance

Richard Strauss knew how to write superbly for the soprano voice (he married a soprano, after all), and tonight we begin with five deservedly popular Strauss songs: a quietly ecstatic hymn to night and love, a lover “releasing” his dying beloved to death, a mother who cannot praise her darling baby enough, an irresistibly merry lover’s song, and a paean to spring and love all at once.

“My orphaned songs” Franz Liszt once called his repertory of songs in five languages (German, French, English, Hungarian, and Italian), when he was expressing the hope that singers might take these works under their wings. On tonight’s program, we hear five songs, the first and last to love poems by the French giant Victor Hugo, plus three of Liszt’s later songs.

The incomparable and inimitable Mozart wrote concert arias, including some meant for insertion into operas by other people. Vorrei spiegarvi, oh Dio is a showpiece, first performed by his sister-in-law Aloysia Weber Lange in Pasquale Anfossi’s opera Il curioso indiscreto.

When Debussy was a student at the Paris Conservatoire, he fell in love with a coloratura soprano named Marie-Blanche Vasnier and wrote a number of songs for her—songs in which he rebelled against conventional compositional rules and gave Madame Vasnier’s light, agile, high voice full reign.

We end with five songs drawn from Franz Schubert’s 600-plus songs composed over a span of less than 20 years. His early songs (with some notable exceptions) are not as well known as they should be, and we begin with three early gems, followed by two songs that are masterpieces beloved of many singers over the years. 


Brenda Rae

American soprano Brenda Rae is a highly sought-after artist who regularly performs in many of the world's leading opera houses, concert halls, and recital venues. This season, Ms. Rae takes on a number of new roles: the title-role in Berg's Lulu for her debut with the English National Opera in the William Kentridge production; Queen of the Night in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte with the Bayerische Staatsoper; Amenaide in Rossini's Tancredi with Opera Philadelphia; and Gilda in a new production of Rigoletto, as well as Zdenka in Arabella--both with her home company, Oper Frankfurt. Future projects include debuts with the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, and Opernhaus Zürich, as well as returns to the Bayerische Staatsoper, Oper Frankfurt, Santa Fe Opera, Opera Philadelphia, and The English Concert.

Last season's engagements included concerts in Ms. Rae's home state of Wisconsin, first as Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and Edo de Waart, then in a solo concert with her alma mater, the University of Wisconsin-Madison. With the Bayerische Staatsoper, she sang Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos, both in Munich and on tour in Paris, as well as Konstanze in Die Entführung aus dem Serail. Ms. Rae returned to the Berlin State Opera as Zerbinetta and to Oper Frankfurt in the title role of Lucia di Lammermoor. In the summer, she was heard in a chamber concert with the Schumann Quartett at the Schubertiade in Hohenems.

Ms. Rae appears on several recordings, including Offenbach's Fantasio (Opera Rara); Lowell Liebermann's Little Heaven (Albany Records); Strauss's Ariadne auf Naxos and Wagner's Die Feen (Oehms Classics); Milhaud's The Oresteia of Aeschylus, nominated for a Grammy Award (Naxos); and also on DVD/Blu-ray in Handel's Rinaldo from Glyndebourne (Opus Arte). She earned an artistic diploma from the Juilliard Opera Center, a master's degree from The Juilliard School, and a bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

In Sun Suh

Pianist In Sun Suh, a native of Korea, is currently a member of the music staff at Oper Frankfurt. She is also an active performer of art song and chamber-music concerts at the most prestigious halls in New York, including Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall, Symphony Space, and the Peter Jay Sharp Theater at Lincoln Center. As winner of the 2008 Marilyn Horne Song Competition, she was presented in recital as part of the foundation's series, On Wings of Song.

In Korea, Ms. Suh has established herself as both a solo and collaborative pianist, having performed many recitals with some of Korea's most distinguished vocal soloists. She received her bachelor's degree in piano from Yonsei University in Korea and her master's degree in collaborative piano from The Juilliard School, where she studied instrumental and vocal accompanying. Ms. Suh has coached and accompanied singers as part of the Metropolitan Opera's Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, Santa Fe Opera, San Francisco Opera, Spoleto Festival USA, and Ravinia's Steans Music Institute. 

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