BU Today

Arts & Entertainment

Brava, Diva

Denyce Graves shares art and advice at the Opera Institute

Click above to play the slide show.

The rich mezzo-soprano voice of Denyce Graves has brought her fame in the world’s greatest opera houses and concert halls. This Wednesday, Graves, whose signature role of Carmen has been critically acclaimed, will lead Boston University voice students in a 90-minute seminar.

In honor of the BU Opera Institute’s 20th anniversary, the College of Fine Arts school of music has collaborated with the Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center to bring six opera icons to teach the institute’s annual public master classes.

The master class series allows Opera Institute and vocal performance students to perform for, and receive instruction from, celebrated opera stars. “Obtaining direct insight from these renowned artists profoundly enhances our singers’ training,” says Sharon Daniels, director of the Opera Institute and a CFA associate professor. “Great artists inspire great art-making, and personal contact is an exciting advantage.”

Graves, who recently donated her career archives to the Gotlieb Center, performed the title role in the 2005 world premiere of Richard Danielpour’s Margaret Garner. Written specifically for Graves, it is considered by many to be the singer’s tour de force. She most recently sang the role of Judith in Duke Bluebeard’s Castle at the Washington Opera.   

Graves’ master class will take place Wednesday, December 13, from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at the Tsai Performance Center. It is free and open to the public, but reservations are required. Upcoming master classes will be taught by soprano Dawn Upshaw, on Monday, February 26, soprano Deborah Voigt, on Thursday, March 29, and mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade and baritone Richard Stilwell, on Monday, April 2. For more information, call 617-353-8725.