Venera Gimadieva studied at the Kazan Music College and the St. Petersburg State Conservatoire. In 2008 she was invited to join the St. Petersburg Opera, where she took roles including the title role of Donizetti Lucia di Lammermoor, Gilda in Verdi Rigoletto, Lucia in Britten The Rape of Lucretia, Serafina in Donizetti Il campanello di note and Genevieve in Puccini Suor Angelica, also appearing as a guest soloist with the Kazan State Opera. She was a prize winner at the Rimsky-Korsakov International Competition in St. Petersburg in 2008 and was awarded a diploma at the Competizione dell’Opera in Dresden in 2009.
In 2009 Gimadieva joined the Young Artists Programme of the Bolshoi Theatre, where she studied with Professor Dmitry Vdovin, making her debut at the Bolshoi as Sirin in Rimsky-Korsakov The Legend of the Invisible City of Kitezh and Maiden Fevronia. In February 2010 she performed the role of Serpina in Pergolesi La serva padrona on tour to Istanbul with the Musica Viva Chamber Orchestra conducted by Alexander Rudin and also took part in concerts with the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Yuri Simonov. In June 2010 she was awarded First Prize at the International Shalyapin Competition.
In the 2010-11 season, Gimadieva made her debut singing the title role of Rimsky-Korsakov The Snow-Maiden to great critical acclaim and she appeared as the soprano soloist in Brahms’ German Requiem with the Russian National Orchestra conducted by Mikhail Pletnev at the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall. Later, she sang the Queen of Shemakha in the new production of Rimsky-Korsakov The Golden Cockerel directed by Kirill Serebriannikov and conducted by Vassily Sinaisky. The end of the season marked the completion of her time on the Bolshoi Young Artists’ Programme, and she graduated into the company.
Last season’s highlights included a new co-production of La traviata at the Opéra de Limoges and the Opéra de Reims, for which she earned wide critical acclaim, as well as Marfa in Rimsky-Korsakov The Tsar’s Bride and Ksenia in Mussorgsky Boris Godunov at the Bolshoi. Highlights of the 2012-13 season include the role of Amina in a new production of Bellini La Sonnambula and the title role in a new production of La traviata directed by Francesca Zambello, both at the Bolshoi.
Venera Gimadieva is represented by Intermusica. September 2012 / 372 words.
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Opera Ball / Badische Staatskapelle cond. Justin Brown
“… soprano Venera Gimadieva infatuated audiences with Juliet’s aria "Je veux vivre" from Gounod's opera Romeo and Juliet. Considered the new voice of Russia… her performance was celebrated as a sensational success.”
Christiane Lenhardt, Badisches Tagblatt, May 2013
Violetta in Verdi La Traviata / Opera de Rheims
"(...) la Violetta de Venera Gimadieva fait chavirer les oreilles autant que les yeux – chair veloutée de la voix, expressivité et tempérament déjà très affirmés pour cette jeune soprano russe à qui l’on promet un bel avenir. A mille lieues des courtisanes désincarnées vues récemment sur les planches, l’élégance de sa ligne et de ses robes galbe une féminité dont elle révèle l’ambivalente attraction, entre idéalisation et asservissement aux désirs des hommes."
“Venera Gimadieva’s Violetta is devastatingly beautiful, both to the ears and to the eyes. Her voice has a velvety richness, and her expressiveness and temperament are already very established for this young soprano from Russia, whose future looks highly promising. Her Violetta is a thousand miles away from the disembodied courtisanes that we have seen recently on stage, and the elegance of her figure and her dresses underline the ambiguous attraction of the femininity she portrays, caught between idealisation and enslavement to the desires of men.”
Gilles Charlassier, Concert Classic, May 2012
Violetta in Verdi La Traviata / Opéra de Limoges
“The production was made extraordinary by Venera Gimadieva’s Violetta. This very young singer, house artist at the Bolshoi since 2010, was a revelation. With her captivating timbre, her flexible yet powerful voice, her strong stage presence, and her true physical beauty (which never hurts), she will be a star before long … This production will be revived in Reims and in Rennes. It’s really worth the detour”.
« La représentation est transcendée par le Violetta de Venera Gimadieva. Cette très jeune chanteuse, permanente au Bolshoï depuis 2010, est une magnifique révélation. Un timbre prenant, une voix à la fois souple et puissante, une présence scénique évidente, et ce qui ne gâte rien, une véritable beauté physique, pourraient la propulser très vite au rang de star … Cette production sera reprise à Reims et à rennes. Elle vaut vraiment le déplacement. »
Catherine Scholler, Opéra magazine n°74, June 2012
“Venera Gimadieva, a soprano from Kazan who is already singing big roles at the Bolshoi, was a revelation: she dazzled the audience with her agility, her high-flying technique, her fresh and lustrous tone and her breath control. She already has everything required for a first rate career.”
ODB Opera, April 2012
“Aix-en-Provence may have adored Natalie Dessay, but Limoges now venerates Venera Gimadieva. She was more than equal to the challenges of this role, which demands absolute vocal and theatrical mastery. The whole range of emotions, from love to hate and from joy to death, filtered through her tone. “Ah forsé lui”, for example, demands precision and great breath control; and “Sempre libera” requires perfect vocal technique. But nothing gave her cause to fear. She let herself be carried by the arpeggios and trills, and reached the high C effortlessly. Neither Callas nor Sutherland could have done a better job. There are many who bewail in specialist music publications that there are no more true Violettas, but Venera Gimadieva proves them all wrong.”
Le Populaire du Centre, April 2012
Violetta in concert performance of Verdi La Traviata / Göttingen Symphony Orchestra
“Venera Gimadieva used a varied palette of dynamics for the role of Violetta, ranging from powerful, yet never shrill high notes through to a moving, wonderfully tender pianissimo. She gave the part clear, distinctive musical contours, and shaped the role with great expressiveness … vocal brilliance.”
“Venera Gimadieva hatte für die Rolle der Violetta eine große dynamische Bandbreite parat, die von kraftvollen, aber nirgends rohen Spitzentönen bis zu einem bewegenden, wunderbar zarten Pianissimo reicht. Sie gab der Violetta klare, unverwechselbare musikalische Konturen, gestaltete ihre Partie mit großer Ausdruckskraft und vokalem Schmelz.“
Göttinger Tageblott, October 2011
“Such a Queen of Shemakha hasn’t appeared at the Bolshoi for many years – none of the sopranos in the previous production of The Golden Cockerel could be compared with Venera Gimadieva. Her voice feels comfortable throughout the whole range, singing out all coloratura with amazing precision and not ignoring even the slightest nuance of the role. And what a great top E at the end of the second act!”
Kultura, October 2011