­Opera competition meets Russian finalists

Six Russian singers have made it to the finals of one of the most prestigious opera competitions – Germany’s Competizione dell’Opera.

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Among the finalists are sopranos Vera Chekanova, Zhala Ismailova and Svetlana Moskalenko; baritones Roman Burdenko and Igor Golovatenko, and bass Mikhail Korobeinikov. The other six finalists represent South Korea, Buryatiya, Mongolia, South Africa and Lithuania.

The final round of the contest will be held on September 17 at Moscow’s Bolshoi Theater where the singers will perform to the accompaniment of the Moscow State Symphony Orchestra under maestro Asher Fisch. The winners will be named the next day.

The contest began in 1996 and since 2001, it has been held in Dresden. This year is an exception.

Moscow’s Bolshoi Theatre is to host the celebrated German contest, which awards prizes for the best renditions of Italian opera highlights for the first time. Russia has named 2011 its Year of Italian Culture and for this reason, the competitions semi-finals and finals were moved to Moscow’s most famous stage.

Since March, the competition has been hearing a range of singers from Asia, Europe, the USA and Latin America. The latest preliminary hearings were held as usual in Dresden.

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