Mezzo-soprano Adriana Festeu is an experienced soloist, lecturer and voice teacher.
She recently performed the roles of Rosina (Rossini – Il Barbiere di Siviglia) and Charlotte (Massenet – Werther) at the Romanian National Opera in Cluj and previously she performed the role of the Komponist in Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos in London, for New Palace Opera. Other operatic roles include Cenerentola, Calbo Maometto secondo, Megacle L’Olimpiade, Rustena La verita in cimento (all Garsington Opera, cover); Marianna Il Signor Bruschino, Lucilla La Scala di Seta (British Youth Opera); Isolier Le comte Ory (Opera South); Xerxes (Longborough Opera, cover); Orphée Orphée et Euridice (Opera Prelude); Endimione La Calisto, Komponist Ariadne auf Naxos (Royal Academy Opera); Fidalma Il matrimonio segretto, Marcellina Le nozze di Figaro, Madame Nolan The Medium, Zerlina Don Giovanni (Romanian National Opera); Candida Emilia di Liverpool (European Opera Centre).
As a recitalist and oratorio soloist, Adriana has performed in venues including St. Martin-in-the-Fields, King’s Place, Wilton’s Music Hall, Gloucester Cathedral, St. David’s cathedral, Bridgewater Hall and Cité de la Musique (Paris). Her song cycle performances include Mahler Lieder eines Fahrenden Gesellen and Kindertotenlieder, Respighi Il Tramonto, Enescu Sept chansons de Clement Marot, Dvořák Cigánske melódie and Korngold 5 Lieder, Op. 38. Adriana recorded Romanian art songs for the BBC Radio 3 dramatisation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and was invited back to record Greek songs for The Oresteia: The Libation Bearers and most recently The Mysteries of Udolpho.
In 2010 Adriana co-founded Opera Prelude, a charity that delivers lecture-recitals and masterclasses at the Cadogan Hall and throughout the UK; she regularly delivers education and outreach work with companies including Garsington Opera and Grange Park Opera. Adriana completed her PhD, Exploring Zwischenfach: Understanding vocal classification and its professional significance, at the Royal Academy of Music. She also gained her Masters with Distinction at Royal Academy Opera and her LRAM at the same institution. She has received generous support from the AHRC and the International Opera Awards.
Q&A with Adriana Festeu
I was 20, still an undergrad. I sang the role of Fidalma in Cimarosa’s Il Matrimonio Segretto at the Romanian Opera House in Cluj, Romania.
Hopes for the future?
That my voice will finally do everything I tell it to!
Strangest costume you've had to wear on stage?
I was dressed up as an old man. Had a prosthetic beard and moustache which took 40 minutes to put on. I spent more time in make-up than on stage.
What did was your childhood dream?
For a while I wanted to become a ballerina so I would put on one of my mother's discs with the Swan Lake and would jump around the living room for hours. We lived on the 3rd floor of a block of flats. Poor neighbours!