The French soprano Elsa Benoit is not only a ravishingly beautiful Giulietta with perceptible stage presence, she also sings the challenging role very convincingly. She shines in the coloratura passages, but also achieves very beautiful piano phrases.
- Der Opernfreund (I Capuleti e i Montecchi, Stadttheater Klagenfurt, 2016) -
French soprano Elsa Benoit is one of the most captivating young singers in front of the public today.
Ms. Benoit opens the 2018-19 season with her debut at Theater Basel in the role of Mélisande in Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande. Her season includes leading roles with the Bavarian State Opera such as her role debut as Poppea in Händel’s Agrippina directed by Barrie Kosky and conducted by Ivor Bolton during the Opernfestspiele, and her role debuts as Adina in Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore and Zerlina in Mozart’s Don Giovanni. She also appears as soprano soloist in Camilla de Rossi’s Il Sacrifizio di Abramo with the Nederlandse Bach Vereniging at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. She returns to the Concertgebouw with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra under Leonardo García Alarcón as Gabriel and Eva in Haydn’s Die Schöpfung, with a further concert at the Tivoli Vredenburg in Utrecht
In the 2017-18 season Ms. Benoit returned to the Bavarian State Opera as Papagena in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte and as the Shepherd in Wagner’s Tannhäuser. In recital, she could be heard at Stadttheater Klagenfurt. In the 2016-17 season Ms. Benoit joined the ensemble of the Bavarian State Opera in Munich where she appeared in three new productions: singing Inès in Donizetti’s La Favorite, Azema in Rossini’s Semiramide and the Shepherd in Tannhäuser. She also had celebrated role debuts as Gretel and as Oscar in Verdi’s Un Ballo in Maschera, with further roles including Frasquita in Bizet’s Carmen, Najade in Richard Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos, and Tebaldo in Verdi’s Don Carlo and Anna in Nabucco. She could also be heard as soloist with Ensemble Modern in the Cologne Philharmonie and in recital under the auspices of the Bavarian State Opera.
She took the stage at Stadttheater Klagenfurt in the 2015-16 season in acclaimed performances as Tytania in Britten´s A Midsummer Night´s Dream conducted by Alexander Soddy and Giulietta in Bellini´s I Capuleti e i Montecchi under Giacomo Sagripanti. Audiences in Klagenfurt also heard her as Micaëla in performances of Bizet´s Carmen (for which she won an Austrian Music Theatre Prize) and Despina in Mozart´s Cosí fan tutte. She had celebrated debuts at Opéra de Lille and in Reims singing the title role in the world premiere of Marta by Austrian composer Wolfgang Mitterer. In summer 2016 she sang the role of Emilie in Rameau’s Les Indes galantes at the Bavarian State Opera in a new production directed by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and conducted by Ivor Bolton. The production was presented at the Prinzregententheater as part of the Munich Opera Festival.
The 2014-15 season marked Ms. Benoit´s final year in the Opera Studio of the Bavarian State Opera, where she sang Comtesse Adéle in Rossini´s Le Comte Ory in a celebrated production at the Cuvilliés Theater. She also took the stage as Euridice in Monteverdi´s L´Orfeo at the Prinzregententheater in Munich in a production presented as part of the Bavarian State Opera Festival and conducted by Christopher Moulds. During her time in the Opera Studio she portrayed Mozart roles such as Papagena in Die Zauberflöte, Amital in La Betulia Liberata, and Barbarina in Le nozze di Figaro, as well as the title role of Mirandolina by Martinů.
Ms. Benoit studied singing and piano at an early age, and then while studying musicology made her first steps on stage as member of the Opera Choir of Rennes and Angers-Nantes. Subsequently she graduated with a Bachelor of Music from the Amsterdam Conservatory. She was then selected to join the Dutch National Opera Academy from 2011-2013, where she received her Master´s Degree in Opera with distinction.
In November 2012, she won three awards at the International Singing Competition Symphonies d’Automne and also won the prize Brane-Cantenac at the International Singing Competition MACM in March 2013. In January 2013, the role of Zsuzska in the new opera Sinking by Georgy Zsojanov was composed for her. She has also performed a number of sacred works such as Mozart’s Coronation Mass and Exultate Jubilate, Poulenc’s Gloria and Bach‘s Magnificat.
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Wie wirklich schönes Singen klingen könnte, hört man (…) bei Elsa Benoît. [Sie] gibt die Inès mit brillanter Technik und mühelos glänzender Höhe.
Stuttgarter Zeitung (Inès, Bayerische Staatsoper, October 2016)
Elsa Benoit zaubert als Marta mit schlankem, agilem Sopran Koloraturen in der Tradition von Offenbachs Olympia.
Opernwelt (Marta, Opéra de Lille, May 2016)
Die grandiose Protagonistin dieser auf allen Positionen sehr gut besetzten Produktionen des Opernstudios der Bayerischen Staatsoper ist Elsa Benoit als Gräfin. Jede Note bei ihr ist Ausdruck. Sie produziert nicht nur die aberwitzigen Koloraturen mit betörender Nonchalance, sondern zeichnet allein schon mit den Tönen eine Frau, deren erotische Sehnsüchte weit übers sozial veträgliche Mittelmaß hinausgehen. Diese Gräfin will Traum und Wirklichkeit zugleich.
Süddeutsche Zeitung (Le Comte Ory, Bayerische Staatsoper, April 2015)