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Olivia Vermeulen (Mezzo-soprano)

Born: The Netherlands

The Dutch mezzo-soprano, Olivia Vermeulen, began her vocal training with Caren van Oijen in Arnhem and continued her singing studies in the summer of 2000 with Mechtild Böhme at the Musikhochschule Detmold. In September 2003 she moved to the University of Arts in Berlin, where she studied with Professor Julie Kaufmann, graduating in 2007. She has participated in various stage productions and concerts including the Detmolder Kammerorchester and at the 2001 Salzburg Festival in the Arnold Schoenberg Chor. Her concerts during her studies have led abroad, to Britain, France and the Netherlands. She received a scholarship in a master-class with Andreas Scholl and attended courses in singing with Thomas Quasthoff and Juliane Banse. She supplemented her studies with song classes given by Wolfram Rieger and Axel Bauni and master-classes with René Jacobs, Irwin Gage and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. Since the season 2002-2003 season she was repeatedly involved as a guest at the Stadttheater Bielefeld and in October 2003 she appeared in the role of Amor in Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice in the first opera production of the newly opened Sommertheaters in Detmold. She also sang sang in a production of UDK the role of Ramiro in W.A. Mozart's La Finta Giardiniera. In 2008 the rising young star won Bavarian Radio’s international song competition ‘La Voce’..

Olivia Vermeulen launched her operatic career as a member of the Studio of Berlin’s Komische Oper from 2008 to 2010, where she appeared in such leading W.A. Mozart roles as Cherubino (directed by Barrie Kosky) and Zerlina. She sang the roles of Daphnis in The Queen of Spades, Phénice in Gluck’s Armide (directed by Calixto Bieito) and Mastrilla in Offenbach’s La Périchole (3sat live TV broadcast). At the opening of the 2010-2011 season at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow she took the role of L’Enfant in a concert performance of Ravel’s opera L’Enfant et les sortilèges, conducted by Vladimir Jurowski. Since 2008 she has been a regular guest at the Potsdam Winter Opera, where she was heard as Oberto in George Frideric Handel’s Opera Alcina under Andrea Marcon, also appearing in this production at the Handel Festival in Halle (Saale). She returned to Potsdam in the title role of Rossini’s La Cenerentola and as Cherubino in W.A. Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro (directed by Andreas Dresen) in 2011 and 2012.

Olivia Vermeulen has in recent years established an international reputation as a versatile soloist. In 2010 Vermeulen sang Elvida in a concert performance of Alessandro Scarlatti’s opera Penelope la casta with the Lautten Compagney Berlin at the Rheingau Music Festival, where she returned in 2011 as Almirena in G.F. Handel’s Rinaldo, repeating that role at De Singel in Antwerp. The singer was heard as a Flower Maiden in a concert performance of Parsifal with the Radio-Symphonie-Orchester-Berlin under Marek Janowski at the Berlin Philharmonie and in Joseph Martin Kraus’s opera Aeneas in Carthago, conducted by Lothar Zagrosek, at the Berlin Konzerthaus.

In 2012 Olivia Vermeulen was acclaimed by critics and audiences alike at her Amsterdam Concertgebouw debut, singing the leading role of Trune in the world premiere of Peter-Jan Wagemans’s opera Andreas weent with the Netherlands Radio Chamber Philharmonic under Michael Schønwandt. Another highly successful Amsterdam debut followed in 2013, at the Nederlandse Opera as Smeraldine in Prokofiev’s The Love for Three Oranges, conducted by Tomáš Netopil.

Plans for the 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 seasons include the Second Lady in W.A. Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte under Iván Fischer at the Budapest Festival, followed by a tour with appearances at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and Lincoln Center in New York. Olivia Vermeulen will also sing this role at Munich’s Prinzregententheater under Enoch zu Guttenberg. The artist will appear as Almirena in G.F. Handel’s opera Rinaldo with Lautten Compagney Berlin at the Handel Festival in Karlsruhe, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw and in The Hague. Her solo CD of Italian Baroque arias recorded with the Lautten Compagney Berlin was released by Sony/BMG at the end of 2013.

Olivia Vermeulen appears as a concert soloist in 2013 at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw under Frans Brüggen and at the Berlin Konzerthaus in works by Dvořák conducted by Iván Fischer. In 2014 she will be heard in J.S. Bach’s Weihnachts-Oratorium (BWV 248) with Hansjörg Albrecht and Matthäus-Passion (BWV 244) under Enoch zu Guttenberg at the Munich Philharmonie. The singer appears regularly at the prestigious Kissingen Summer Festival, where she gave the premiere of songs by Wolfgang Rihm, and at the International Herrenchiemsee Festival. Other appearances have included the WDR Early Music Days in Herne, the RheinVokal Festival, the Stuttgart Music Festival, the Munich Opera Festival in the premiere of Elfriede Jelinek’s Rein Gold (directed by Nicolas Stemann) and in concerts with Bavarian Radio. At the Musikfest Berlin she appeared with Musikfabrik Köln under Péter Eötvös at the Berlin Philharmonie and has sung on international concert stages under Masaaki Suzuki, Philippe Herreweghe, Andrew Parrott, Reinhard Goebel, Michael Schønwandt and Andreas Spering. The artist has drawn invaluable inspiration from her work with such renowned conductors as Alessandro de Marchi, Michael Sanderling, Konrad Junghänel, Emilio Pomarico and Christoph Spering in concert and opera performances.

Olivia Vermeulen’s artistry is documented on numerous radio and CD recordings.

‘As Cherubino, Olivia Vermeulen sings with exquisite, inexhaustible sweetness’ - (FAZ 08.11.11)
‘In the title role of Ariodante, Olivia Vermeulen coloratura singing was so wonderfully luminous and captivating that... no listener will ever forget it’ - (Eleonore Büning, FAZ 2011)

Source: Olivia Vermeulen Website; Bits & pieces from other sources
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (February 2014)

Recordings of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works




Hansjörg Albrecht


BWV 147, BWV 243

Links to other Sites

Olivia Vermeulen - mezzosoprano (Official Website)


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Last update: Tuesday, May 30, 2017 05:44