South African Soprano Golda Schultz Makes LA Philharmonic Debut

Soprano Golda Schultz , photo by Gregor Röhrig

The Los Angeles Philharmonic offers a series of concerts this weekend at Disney Hall that highlight the orchestra’s past, present and possible future, with each of its three most famous living Conductors leading a program. Tonight, Zubin Mehta leads the Phil in a performance of the epic Symphony No. 2by Mahler. Saturday and Sunday programs mark the LA Phil debut of soprano Golda Schultz, a rising star in the world of classical music. At 8 pm on Saturday, October 26th, Ms. Schultz will join the orchestra under the direction of Conductor Esa-Pekka Solonen to sing Sibelius’s Luonnotar as part of a concert that also includes the sames composer’s Symphony No. 5 and the world premier of Maestro Salonen’s own Gemini. The following afternoon at 2, Ms. Schultz returns to join the Phil under Gustavo Dudamel for a performance of Beethoven’s beloved Ninth Symphony, on a program that also includes another brand new work, Gabriela Ortiz’s Yanga. The Los Angeles Master Chorale under the direction of Grant Gershon will also be performing on each program.

Ms. Schultz, a native of South Africa, got a relatively late start to her career. Attending Rhodes University in Grahamstown as a journalism major, she discovered the recordings of Dame Kiri Ti Kanawa and Maria Callas in the school library while taking an elective course in music. From her education in music led to the University of Cape Town, to Juliard and Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich. From there, the soprano continues to build a career working in the upper echelons of classical music. Her credits include performances with the Metropolitan Opera in New York (she returns this season in Der Rosenkavalier and Porgy and Bess), the Vienna State Opera, the Cleveland Orchestra and a recent European tour with Dudamel and the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. She is scheduled to reconnect with Maestro Salonen next March with the Philharmonia Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall in London.

This week’s programming neatly encapsulates the spirit of LA Phil’s centennial celebration, juxtaposing some of the most enduring and powerful works in the canon with work newly commissioned for the Philharmonic. Conductors Mehta and Salonen were each pivotal in elevating the profile of the Philharmonic to that of a world-class orchestra, creating the legacy that current Musical and Artistic Dudamel continues to build on. On top of that, Saturday and Sunday’s programs offer the chance to hear soprano Golda Schultz in her LA debut.

The Los Angeles Philharmonic. Walt Disney Concert Hall. Friday, October 25th & 26th, 8 pm. Sunday, October 27th, 2 pm. Tickets from $20.

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