Mezzo Emily D'Angelo Sweeps Top Prizes at Plácido Domingo's Operalia Competition in Lisbon
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2 September 2018

Mezzo Emily D'Angelo and Tenor Pavel Petrov Win Top Prizes at Plácido Domingo's Operalia Competition in Lisbon

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Pavel Petrov, Plácido Domingo and Emily D'Angelo at this year's Operalia Competition in Lisbon

ITALIAN-CANADIAN MEZZO-SOPRANO EMILY D'ANGELO, 23, swept many of the top prizes at this year’s Operalia competition in Lisbon on Sunday night, winning first prize among women in the general division, the competition’s Birgit Nilsson Prize, its Zarzuela prize and its Audience Prize. 

The competition’s final round, which was streamed live by, featured twelve singers performing one aria each alongside a full orchestra conducted by Plácido Domingo at Lisbon's Teatro Nacional de São Carlos. Singers competing in Operalia's Zarzuela category also presented a zarzuela aria. A jury of ten distinguished opera experts adjudicated the competition.

In total, D’Angelo will take away $55,000 and a Rolex wristwatch for winning the competition’s main division and all but one of its subcategories. 

Belarusian tenor Pavel Petrov, 27 was the first-prize winner among the men in the general division, and will receive $30,000. Second-prize winners in the competition’s general division included American mezzo Samantha Hankey, 26, and Russian tenor Migran Agadzhanyan, 26, both of whom will each receive $20,000. Canadian mezzo Rihab Chaieb, 31, and Russian tenor Arseny Yakovlev, 26, received the competition’s third prizes, each of which carries a purse of $10,000.

In addition to D’Angelo, Samantha Hankey was also named a winner of the competition’s Birgit Nilsson Prize, which goes to a singer who performs repertoire by Richard Strauss or Wagner during the competition.

Two men were named as winners of the competition’s Don Plácido Domingo Ferrer Prize of Zarzuela: Petrov and Portuguese tenor Luis Gomes, 31 will each receive $10,000 for winning the category. D’Angelo was the recipient of the Pepita Embil Zarzuela prize, named in honor of Plácido Domingo’s mother. Gomes, along with D’Angelo, was named as a recipient of the Audience Prize, which garnered a Rolex wristwatch. Brazilian mezzo Josy Santos, 29, was announced as the recipient of the $10,000 CulturArte Prize, which is offered by Bertita & Guillermo Martinez from CulturArte de Puerto Rico. 

The twelve finalists were selected from forty young singers who traveled to Lisbon to take part in two days of quarterfinals beginning on August 26. Founded in 1993 by Domingo to discover and launch the careers of young singers of every voice type from every country, Operalia annually receives some 1,000 applications from singers who are between the ages of 18 and 32 at the time of entry. A jury of three opera professionals assesses every recording, and the top forty singers are invited to participate in the competition, which each year is located in a different international host city. This year’s Operalia was the twenty-sixth edition of the competition. 

Past Operalia winners include Joseph Calleja, Giuseppe Filianoti, Rolando Villazón, José Cura, Joyce DiDonato, Susanna Phillips, Nina Stemme, Elizabeth Futral, Ana María Martínez, Olga Peretyatko, Lisette Oropesa, Angel Blue, Sonya Yoncheva, Ryan McKinny, Pretty Yende, René Barbera, Janai Brugger, Anthony Roth Costanzo and Aida Garifullina. spacer 

More information can be found at Operalia

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