Mezzo-soprano Alice Coote
Mezzo-soprano Alice Coote is regarded as one of the great artists of our day. Equally famed on the great operatic stages as in concert and recital, she has been named the “superlative British Mezzo” (San Francisco Chronicle). Her performances have been described as “breath-taking in [their] sheer conviction and subtlety of perception” (The Times) and her voice as “beautiful, to be sure, but, more importantly, it thrills you to the marrow.” (The Daily Telegraph).
The recital platform is central to her musical life. She performs throughout the UK, Europe and the US; at Wigmore Hall (where she has been a resident artist), the BBC Proms, The Concertgebouw, Vienna Konzerthaus, Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall, among many other prestigious venues. Most recently, she debuted Schubert’s Winterreise at “The Stars of the White Nights” Mariinsky Festival in St Petersburg.
She is acclaimed in particular for singing pieces by Strauss, Mahler, Berlioz, Mozart, Händel and Bach with orchestras such as London Symphony Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, The English Concert, Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, The Hallé and The Concertgebouw.
In her operatic engagements, Coote spends a large part of her time engaged abroad, and in the UK, interpreting male and female roles, such as Dejanira Hercules, Leonore La Favorite, the title role in Carmen, Charlotte Werther, Dorabella Così fan tutte, Lucretia The Rape of Lucretia, Marguerite La Damnation de Faust, Penelope Ulysses, Octavian Der Rosenkavalier, Composer Ariadne auf Naxos, Orfeo Orfeo ed Euridice, Idamante Idomeneo, Poppea and Nerone L’incoronazione di Poppea, Hänsel Hänsel und Gretel, Sesto and Vitelia La Clemenza di Tito, Sesto Giulio Cesare, Maffio Orsini Lucrezia Borgia, Le Prince Charmant Cendrillon, Ruggiero Alcina and the title role in Ariodante. She has performed these roles at Opera North, Welsh National Opera, Scottish Opera, English National Opera, Glyndebourne and the Royal Opera House. In Europe, she has appeared at opera houses including Opéra de Paris, Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Dutch National Opera, Grand Théâtre de Genève, Bayerische Staatsoper, Oper Frankfurt and Salzburg Festival. USA and Canadian opera houses include Lyric Opera of Chicago, Seattle Opera, LA Opera, San Francisco Opera, Canadian Opera Company and the Metropolitan Opera, New York.
Her many recordings and DVD appearances include on CD: Mahler Song Cycles (Pentatone); The Power of Love: An English Songbook (Hyperion); Songs by Robert Schumann and Gustav Mahler (EMI); Händel’s Messiah and Mahler 2 (EMI); Angel Dream of Gerontius and The Apostles (Hallé); Composer Ariadne auf Naxos (Chandos); Orfeo (Virgin Classics); Choice of Hercules (Hyperion); Brahms Alto Rhapsody (Tudor); Schubert’s Winterreise (Wigmore Hall Live); Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde (Pentatone); and on DVD: Händel’s Messiah (EMI); Hansel Hansel and Gretel (EMI); Nerone L’incoronazione di Poppea (Decca); Ruggiero Alcina (Arte); and Maffio Orsini Lucrezia Borgia (Medici Arts).
Most recent engagements include the title role in Gluck’s Orpheus and Eurydice at English National Opera; Berlioz’s Roméo et Juliette with the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas; and Mahler Semphony No. 8 with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla. Coote was a Hallé Associate Artist for the 2019/20 season.
The 2020/21 season saw Coote perform Winterreise with Christian Blackshaw and a Schumanniade with Ian Bostridge and Julius Drake, both at Wigmore Hall. She appeared in a livestream at the Royal Festival Hall in a widely praised assumption of Britten’s Phaedra with Sir John Eliot Gardiner and the Philharmonia. In addition, an evening of Tchaikovsky songs depicting the composer’s inner life narrated by Ralph Fiennes with Christian Blackshaw at the piano was live streamed from Wigmore Hall in April 2021 to critical acclaim.
On the concert platform, Coote’s 2021/22 season included recitals at the Wigmore Hall with Graham Johnson, Mahler in concert at Middle Temple City of London, Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, and Mahler’s Symphony No.2 with Michael Tilson Thomas with the National Symphony in Washington. Operatic roles included the title role in Händel’s Agrippina at Staatsoper Hamburg; and Mère Marie in Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites at Opernhaus Zürich. Tchaikovsky Songs with Christian Blackshaw narrated by Ralph Fiennes streamed for a month from The Library of Congress, Washington.
In the 2022/23 season, Coote will perform the role of Orfeo in a concert performance of Orfeo ed Euridice at Opera North and Madame de Croissy Dialogues des Carmélites at the Metropolitan Opera. On the concert platform, she will perform Verdi’s Requiem with the Hallé Orchestra and Sir Mark Elder; Ravel’s Shéhérazade with the Sinfonia of London and John Wilson at the Barbican; Elgar’s Sea Pictures with Philharmonia and John Eliot Gardiner; The Dream of Gerontius with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Sir Andrew Davis, and the Ripon Choral Society; Das Lied von der Erde with the Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia and The Apostles and The Dream of Gerontius with The Hallé and Sir Mark Elder.
In 2018, she was awarded an OBE for services to music.