Interview with Kathleen Cassello (by Karen Lotter)
The Three Sopranos (Main Page)
"Ah fors'e lui" Sound Clip (Requires the RealPlayer).
Born and raised in the USA, Kathleen Cassello has won prizes in a number of the most prestigious singing competitions during the 1980's, including the Pavarotti, Puccini, Vinas and Viotti competitions. After winning first prize in the Salzburg Mozart competition in 1985, Miss Cassello made her European debut as the Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflöte at the Hamburg Staatsoper, and during the subsequent three years sang the role in more than 200 performances in Austria, Germany, Russia and Switzerland.
From 1987-89 she was engaged by the Badische Staatstheater in Karlsruhe, where she built up a wide-ranging and extensive repertoire including the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor, for which she enjoyed an outstanding success in performances with Alfredo Kraus at the Rome Opera in 1993.
In addition to the leading bel canto roles in I Puritani, La Sonnambula and I Capuleti e i Montecchi, Kathleen Cassello sings the major roles in the Mozart operas, Mimi and Musetta in La Bohème, and the title roles in Massenet's Thais and Manon. Her Verdi repertoire includes Leonora in Il Trovatore, Violetta in La Traviata, and Gilda in Rigoletto, with which she made her debut at the Teatro alla Scala, Milan, in 1994 with Riccardo Muti conducting.
Other leading conductors with whom Miss Cassello has worked include Salvatore Accardo, Christian Badea, Sylvain Cambreling, Bruno Campanella, Friedemann Layer, Daniel Oren, Evelino Pidó, Michel Plasson, Carlo Rizzi, Peter Schneider, Stefan Soltesz, Michelangelo Veltri and Lothar Zagrosek. She also has worked with such noted directors as Nicolas Joël, Giancarlo Menotti, Giancarlo del Monaco and Graham Vick. In addition to her European appearances, Kathleen Cassello has sung in Israel, Japan, Mexico, Russia and the United States, where she appeared in a number of concerts in Philadelphia singing Bach Cantatas, Mozart Concert Arias and in Handel's Messiah, as well as the role of Musetta opposite Luciano Pavarotti in the Philadelphia Opera Company's production of La Bohème.
In the past seasons Kathleen Cassello returned to the Teatro alla Scala for Lucia di Lammermoor, performed Rigoletto with Leo Nucci in Naples, La Sonnambula in Rome, and portrayed the role of Donna Anna at the Dallas Opera in Oviedo and at the Semperoper in Dresden. At the Hamburg Staatsoper she sang Mimi and Violetta and then returned to Toulouse, where she had triumphed in La Traviata and as Vitellia in La Clemenza di Tito, for her role debut in Louise under the baton of Michel Plasson and to sing Gilda. She made her debut in Seville as Lucia di Lammermoor with Alfredo Kraus and performed recitals and concerts in Lyon, Valence and Durban.
In January 1996, after a very successful South African debut appearance in two concerts with Luciano Pavarotti, Miss Cassello was engaged by producer Tibor Rudas as one of the Three Sopranos for a series of concerts beginning at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles in September 1996 (which was released on CD and video). The trio's European debut appearance took place at the Palladium in London in October 1996. In 1997, she appeared in Three Sopranos concerts in Cologne, Budapest, Kosice, Atlantic City and Reno.
In 1997, Miss Cassello continued her close relationship with the Chorégies d'Orange. After the highly acclaimed La Traviata with Roberto Alagna and Paolo Coni, her huge success as Gilda with Jean-Philippe Lafont and Roberto Alagna, and a 1996 performance as Donna Anna under the baton of Jeffrey Tate, she triumphed in Lucia di Lammermoor in the summer of 1997.
In the 1997/98 season Miss Cassello participated in a gala concert, "Hommage à Maria Callas", in Paris. She then returned to Oviedo to sing the role of Violetta and made her debut at the Teatro Teresa Carreno in Caracas where she performed the role of Lucia. At the opera houses of Karlsruhe and St. Gallen, she sang gala performances of Lucia di Lammermoor and La Traviata and then returned for a concert in Durban where she had been highly acclaimed the previous season. In February 1998 she made her role debut as Elisabetta in Donizetti's Roberto Devereux in Marseille and in July 1998 she returned to Mexico to sing the role of Elettra in Idomeneo. In addition to her opera performances, she sang in Hamburg Chausson's Poème de l'amour et de la mer with Serge Baudo conducting. In Leipzig and in Berlin, she performed Frank Martin's Golgotha, Poulenc's Gloria and Cantatas from Ravel under the baton of Marcello Viotti. Concerts of The Three Sopranos were performed in Oslo, Aschaffenburg and Pretoria.
More recent performances include a concert of Verdi's Requiem in Chartres, concerts of The Three Sopranos, performances of Don Giovanni at the Semperoper in Dresden (as Donna Anna), and a performance of Mimi in La Bohème in Karlsruhe. She also recently appeared as Liù in Turandot and made her role debut as Marguerite in Faust in Marseille.
Accessees since July 19/97: