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The German-Italian soprano Anja Kampe was born in the GDR in 1968 and trained in Dresden and Turin. She made her debut in Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel in 1991, but was soon in demand for jugendlich dramatischer roles such as Strauss’s Ariadne, Beethoven’s Leonore, and in particular Wagner’s Senta, Elisabeth and Sieglinde; she has performed the latter role regularly at Bayreuth, and at the Bayerische Staatsoper, Unter den Linden, the Salzburg Festival and across the US, as well as recording it under Valery Gergiev on Mariinsky Live (‘full, rich tone and beautiful text-work’ Limelight Magazine). Her repertoire also includes the title-roles in La fanciulla del West, Shostakovich’s Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk and, since the mid-2010s, Kundry, Isolde and the Walküre Brunnhilde. On the concert-platform she is in demand for Verdi’s Requiem, Schoenberg’s Gurrelieder and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.
Kampe was made a Kammersänger in 2018 following a performance of Sieglinde in Munich, and nominated for a Laurence Olivier award in 2010 in recognition of her Senta (opposite Bryn Terfel’s Dutchman) at Covent Garden (‘she sings this killingly difficult role with thrilling abandon and intensity’ – The Guardian).
Further Reading: Anja Kampe
Gergiev conducts an electrifying Walküre starring René Pape as Wotan, Nina Stemme as his rebel daughter, and Jonas Kaufmann and Anja Kampe as the Walsung Twins; Kaufmann’s solo album of opera scenes and the Wesendock-Lieder, meanwhile, is the best thing he’s ever done.