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04 June 2021

Joyce DiDonato's Secret Garden

by Anne Payot-Le Nabour

Artist in residence
Joyce DiDonato


Declared the «diva of hearts of modern times» by Le Temps, mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato moves with disarming ease and extraordinary stage presence between the baroque and contemporary eras and has long since become one of the central personalities on the current opera scene. She cuts an outstanding figure in bel canto trouser roles and in the guise of Händel’s great heroines alike. Nor is she afraid to venture into the fields of jazz and musical. Her residence at the Philharmonie invites the audience to stroll through sumptuous sonic landscapes. First is her programme «Songplay», which brought her a Grammy Award for best solo album in 2020 and combines jazz, opera and tango. This is followed by Georg Friedrich Händel’s English oratorio Theodora, in which the American singer will be heard in the moving role of Irene, the devoted friend to the eponymous Christian martyr who is sentenced to unimaginable tortures. The grand finale is the programme «Eden», a musical stroll through DiDonato’s personal paradise, where compositions by Purcell, Gluck and Wagner blossom alongside a new work the singer commissioned from Rachel Portman. In these last two concerts, DiDonato rejoins the conductor Maxim Emelyanychev and ensemble il pomo d’oro, with whom she recently recorded Händel’s opera Agrippina, a work she also performed at the Philharmonie in 2019. The ensemble’s name refers to the apple the Trojan prince Paris was charged with presenting to the most beautiful goddess. His choice ultimately led to the Trojan War. Fortunately, the audience is not faced with such momentous decisions between Joyce DiDonato’s three concert offerings, having the possibility to wander all three gardens of delights with equal enjoyment.


Cover photo: Chris Singer


  • 20.10.2021 19:30

    Joyce DiDonato

    Has already taken place

    Joyce DiDonato mezzo-soprano
    Craig Terry piano

    October brings the launch of the Philharmonie residency of an exceptional personality from the world of opera: mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato. Celebrated by Le Temps as a «modern diva of hearts», the singer commands repertoire ranging from baroque to our present time, with outstanding dramatic talent and disarming naturalness. Before Handel’s Theodora in November and «Eden», her stroll through personal musical gardens of delight, in March, the self-styled «Yankee Diva» conquers the Salle de Musique de Chambre with a level of vocal artistry that is all her own.

    For this concert, all visitors aged twelve years old and two months and up must show proof of eligibility to attend via CovidCheck. For further information, click here

  • 24.11.2021 19:00, Voyage dans le temps – musique ancienne et baroque

    Joyce DiDonato – Händel «Theodora»

    None There is a résonances event linked to this concert Has already taken place

    il Pomo d’Oro
    il Pomo d’Oro Choir
    Maxim Emelyanychev direction
    Lisette Oropesa Theodora
    Joyce DiDonato Irene

    After an intimate recital in October, Joyce DiDonato continues her residency at the Philharmonic on 24.11., performing George Frideric Handel’s oratorio Theodora. She sings the role of Irene, the confidante of the titular Christian martyr who is sentenced to terrible torture, sung here by soprano Lisette Oropesa. Further vocal roles feature Paul-Antoine Bénos-Dijan, Michael Spyres and John Chest. They are joined by Maxim Emelyanychev and his ensemble il pomo d’oro. Before the concert, Joyce DiDonato will participate in an artist conversation about her musical development and her repertoire, which encompasses baroque to present-day compositions.

    For this concert, all visitors aged twelve years old and two months and up must show proof of eligibility to attend via CovidCheck. For further information, click here

  • 04.03.2022 20:00, Grandes voix

    «Joyce DiDonato: Eden»

    Has already taken place

    il Pomo d’Oro
    Maxim Emelyanychev direction
    Joyce DiDonato direction artistique, mezzo-soprano
    Manuel Palazzo comédie
    Marie Lambert-Le Bihan mise en scène

    Following an intimate song recital in October and the Handel oratorio Theodora, Joyce DiDonato completes her residency at the Philharmonie on March 4 with «Eden», a musical stroll through a very personal garden of delights, where compositions by Gluck, Mahler, Wagner and other composers flourish, but also a new work by Rachel Portman commissioned by the singer. The evening also offers an opportunity to reencounter Maxim Emelyanychev and his ensemble il pomo d’oro, which accompanies the vocalist in discovering nature’s beauty and joins her in questioning the role of humankind within the environment.

    This concert takes place under the CovidCheck 3G regulations (vaccinated, recovered or tested negative) for visitors aged 12 years and 2 months and up. You must wear a facemask for your entire stay at the Philharmonie, including for the duration of the concert, if you are over the age of 6. For further information, click here