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Cecilia Bartoli

Cecilia Bartoli’s singing defies comparison, obliging critics to devise new metaphors to describe it as their usual vocabulary is inadequate for such a task. It has been said that her throat must conceal ‘a nest of nightingales’ and that the only way of portraying her is with confessions of love. The Bartoli phenomenon cannot be captured in prosaic words or expressed in simple facts and figures, but at least these statistics may illustrate how she can stir us with her music.

More than ten million of her audio and video recordings have been sold worldwide, making her today’s best-selling classical artist. She has become one of the most well-loved singers of her generation without making any attempt at popular marketing strategies. Constantly open to new ideas, she has achieved global success with choice projects whose thematic content is meticulously planned. The Vivaldi AlbumItalian Arias (by Gluck), The Salieri AlbumOpera proibitaMariaSacrificiumMission and St Petersburgh ave all received numerous awards, including five Grammys.

Cecilia Bartoli’s concerts have taken her to the most important concert halls in Europe, America, Asia and Australia. On her more recent voyages of discovery into the world of music she has been accompanied by leading ensembles specializing in historically informed performance practice such as the Akademie für Alte Musik in Berlin, Les Arts Florissants, I Barocchisti, Concentus Musicus of Vienna, the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra, Il Giardino Armonico, the Basel Chamber Orchestra, Les Musiciens du Louvre and the Zurich-based ensemble La Scintilla. She has also worked with many leading symphony orchestras, one such highlight being the programmes she has developed and performed with the Vienna Philharmonic. She recently founded the Monaco-based orchestra Les Musiciens du Prince and appeared with them for the first time in summer 2016.

Cecilia Bartoli became artistic director of the Salzburg Whitsun Festival in 2012, and her contract has in the meantime been extended to 2021. Her ability to create links between the conceptual and the artistic made this an ideal role for her. Salzburg has also become central to her work as an opera singer, including her stage debut as Norma in 2013, an important milestone in her career. In 2017 she delighted Salzburg audiences in the title role in Handel’s Ariodante and as Elena in a concert performance of Rossini’s La donna del lago.

She has also performed at New York’s Metropolitan Opera, London’s Royal Opera House, La Scala, Milan, the Bavarian State Opera in Munich, the Zurich Opera and the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris. Between October 2015 and November 2016 the Salzburg production of Norma visited Zurich, Monte Carlo, the Edinburgh Festival, the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées and Baden-Baden. Her most recent CD, Dolce Duello, recorded together with Sol Gabetta and the Cappella Gabetta, showcases a programme that she introduced to audiences at a series of sold-out concerts in leading European concert halls, including Paris, London, Vienna, Berlin and Baden-Baden.

Cecilia Bartoli was born in Rome. By her own admission, she has never pursued a particular career plan but has been fired only by her desire to make music. Her mother, Silvana Bazzoni, taught her singing and remains her only teacher. Daniel Barenboim, Riccardo Muti, Herbert von Karajan and Nikolaus Harnoncourt were all keen to work with her during her early career.

Among the many awards that Cecilia Bartoli has received are the Léonie Sonning Music Prize (2010), the Herbert von Karajan Prize (2012) and the Polar Music Prize (2016).

Current as of May 2018

Cecilia Bartoli, ©  Decca / Uli Weber

Cecilia Bartoli, © Decca / Uli Weber


Cecilia Bartoli