I'm listening to the replay of Der Zwerg, and the tenor, Rodrick Dixon, whom I've never heard before, is awesome!
Dear friends - this is to inform you that last Thursday, on the first day of attack on Ukraine, I have withdrawn completely from any future concerts in Russia. I find it irresponsible and highly immoral to have my name associated with any events in a country that has decided in the light of the criminal war waged by the Russian regime against the democratic and independent nation of Ukraine, and against the European open society as a whole. I can not support people who support Putin and his regime even if they are trapped in not being able to give an open and honest statement. But being a Latvian, knowing what invasion and occupation is, me being a mother and teaching my children the meaning of morality, I stand with my voice for freedom and independence of Ukraine! War is NO solution! Music indeed has to unite, and what would the world be without cultural exchanges between each other, but, as history has shown, we can and should be able to choose which political leaders’ ideology to follow!
My heart breaks for Ukraine and my Ukrainian colleagues! NO to war in Ukraine!
I am not a politician and I have no influence on political decisions. But I am an artist and I can use my voice to express my opposition to the war that takes place just across the border of my beloved motherland. I regretfully decided to cancel my concert with the Russian National Youth Symphony Orchestra, which was scheduled for May 25 in Moscow. I know a lot of my Russian fans have been looking forward to this concert, but it is the only right decision in view of the current events, and in line with my conscience. We are not powerless! Each of us can express our opposition out loud. Each of us can provide help to the best of our ability. At this point, I would like to emphasize how proud I am of my compatriots who are helping and welcoming tens of thousands of Ukrainian citizens fleeing the war! Poles, you are great! Unity and solidarity for Ukraine!
She's trying to get by without actually denouncing Russia's invasion of Ukraine. She's quoted in this: "She added a note of defiance, writing that 'forcing artists, or any public figure, to voice their political opinions in public and to denounce their homeland is not right.' It makes me sad because her voice is a gift to the world. But she won't be singing outside Russia if she won't speak up.Netrebko did at least say she opposes the war and wants it to end. But yes, now it would be nice for her to say she opposes Putin.
The terrible events of the past few days continue to weigh heavily on my heart, as even more senseless violence continues to plague the people of Ukraine. Some say art is not political, and sometimes it’s best not to mix the two, but as I do my best to pull myself together and prepare to step onstage, I cannot help the fact that whatever misery is in the world is within me too. If there is pain, if there is suffering, and in our current climate, there is all of that and more…how can I not take that onstage with me? No one can stop these tragedies with a musical performance, and I admit I sometimes feel powerless to try. Sometimes I ask myself, what’s the point of singing now? People are dying. And these past two years have brought similar reflections about the true purpose of music, and what is my “job” as a performing artist. Maybe it’s not a job but a calling. Maybe music is purely distraction, background noise. Or maybe it’s a mirror of the human experience.
But whatever it means to me or to you, I do know this: Even the smallest gift I can bring to an audience with the power of the music I perform gives me hope that art can lift us up and inspire the best in us. I want to do my small part in spreading the message of peace, through my voice.
Smart move Rachel. When you're a lyric soprano you do what you gotta do!! Gorgeous voice though, reminiscent of La Renée in its dark colour. And she evidently likes my cat and my house, so I'm a fan for lifeRachel Willis-Sorensen competed in whatever regional phase of the Met Council Auditions that were held in Seattle in 2010 at Meany Hall on the University of Washington campus. Because Meany has the typical three Ladies Room stalls for everyone in the upper tier, it was a long wait at intermission, and we on line were all surprised when she got on it. Someone started to chat with her and asked her why she chose whatever region Seattle was in, and some of us thought she was going to say it was because she was born in Washington State (according to her program bio), and she said, "I chose this one because it was the least competitive" You'd have thunk she was a figure skater plotting her best chances to US Nationals.
Then she went on to win in the Finals.