Magazine article Opera Canada

The Final Take: Music Joni Henson Can't Live Without

Magazine article Opera Canada

The Final Take: Music Joni Henson Can't Live Without

Article excerpt

"It's a tough world out there, so I feel really lucky to have been able to do what I've done so far," says soprano Joni Henson, just after her successful debut as Fricka in Pacific Opera Victoria's landmark production of Wagner's Das Rheingold. With Wagner operas few and far between in Canada, it's hard, too, for singers to develop that repertoire, but Henson already has the Gotterdammerung Gutrune to her credit for the Canadian Opera Company, and Der fliegende Hollander's Senta for both POV and, most recently, Calgary Opera. She's setting aside some time this season to learn Sieglinde and says she has also started to look at Isolde, at the same time planning to go to Germany to try out some of her Wagner on an audition tour. Not that Henson is all Wagner all the time. She closed last season at Vancouver Opera as Elisabetta in her first Italian Don Carlo, and also last fall performed Britten's War Requiem with the Victoria Symphony. She makes her debut with the Winnipeg Symphony in late March in concerts pairing Beethoven's 9th Symphony with Bruckner's Te Deum. Before that, she's at home in Toronto with a Jan. 27 recital for the Canadian Art Song Project singing Godfrey Ridout's Cantiones Mysticae (settings of John Donne), and is on call as cover for two of the Valkyries in the Canadian Opera Company's remount of Die Walkure.

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