The Belgian contralto, Ria Bollen, was trained at the Conservatory of Antwerp. Her distinction in her studies led to frequent appearances in concerts and broadcasts throughout Europe. She won many awards at international competitions.
Ria Bollen made her debut in 1965 as soloist in the oratorio Godelieve by E. Tinel. She unfolded then an exclusive concert career, whereby she could be characterised both as oratorio and Lieder singer. Appearance tours led the artist to Canada, Austria and England, to West Germany and Switzerland. In addition she appeared again and again in the music centres of Belgium and Holland. Her first appearance in Israel was in 1979 in a concert of J.S. Bach’s Mass in B minor (BWV 232) with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Helmuth Rilling.
Ria Bollen’s wide repertoire includes the world premiere of Frank Martin’s Requiem, led by the composer, J.S. Bach’s Matthäus-Passion (BWV 244) with Ferdinand Leitner and Burgos, appearances at Milan and the Flanders Festival, etc. Her range encompasses works from Giovanni Battista Pergolesi and Antonio Vivaldi to Martin and Igor Stravinsky.
Ria Bollen reputation was also built upon the numerous recordings she made, including: on Intercord Masses of J. Haydn, on CBS sacred music of J.S. Bach, on Claves Sacred vocal music of Galuppi; additional recordings on HMV (Lieder, Alessandro by George Frideric Handel) and on Disco Jecklin (Requiem by Frank Martin, recorded in the premiere of the work in 1973), Calig (Harmony Mass by J. Haydn), Tudor (I quattro stagioni by Scarlatti).