Meet The Performers

Visiting Artist

Rinat Shaham

Israeli born mezzo-soprano Rinat Shaham has received accolades for her operatic and concert performances throughout the world. A versatile artists equally at home on both concert and opera stages, Ms. Shaham has collaborated with some of the most eminent conductors of our day including Simon Rattle, Andre Previn, Christoph Eschenbach, Leonard Slatkin, William Christie, David Robertson and many others. She has been praised in roles including Carmen, Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Dorabella in Cosi Fan Tutte, Melisande in Pelleas et Melisande and Blanche in Dialogues des Carmelites in theaters including the Berlin State Opera, Teatro La Fenice in Venice, Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Palau de Reina Sofia, Valencia, Stuttgart Opera, L’Opera de Montreal, New York City Opera and at the Glyndebourne Festival. She made her debut at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, her Paris debut as Dorabella in Cosi Fan tutte at the Theatre des Champs Elysees in the fall of 2008.

In the 2011/2012 season, Shaham will perform the title role in Carmen with the Opera Company of Philadelphia. She will also appear in La Monnaie in Cendrillion and will continue on to perform Rossini’s Stabat Mater with the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra.

Born in Haifa, Rinat Shaham completed her musical studies in the United States at the Curtis Instute of Music. While still a student she was invited to make her professional operatic debut as Zerlina with the Opera Company of Philadelphia. She has since returned to Philadelphia as Charlotte in Werther and as Cherubino, a role she has also sung for the Vancouver Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Opera Pacific and at the New York City Opera. In 2004 she made a spectacular debut at the Glyndebourne Festival in the title role of Carmen and received the highest of praise from the British musical Press. Shaham subsequently made her Covent Garden debut in 2006 as Cherubino in the new production of Le nozze di Figaro conducted by Antonio Pappano and staged by David McVicar. She was also heard in this role at the Berlin State Opera under Daniel Barenboim. Shaham made her debut in Berlin as Melisande in the revival of Pelléas et Mélisande under Michael Gielen and subsequently returned as Dorabella under Simone Young and Dan Ettinger. Shaham made her debut in Tokyo in 2005 singing her first Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia. Shaham made her New York City Opera and Pittsburgh Opera debuts as Zerlina. She sang her first performances of Dorabella in Jonathan Miller's production of Cosi fan tutte, conducted by Robert Spano at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in the spring of 2004, and then in the autumn of that year added to her repertoire the role of Blanche de la Force in Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmelites. Her European operatic debut was as Dido in Dido and Aeneas at the Aix-en-Provence Festival. Shaham returned to the Glyndebourne Festival in 2007 as Dorabella in Cosi Fan Tutte. In the 2007/2008 season she sang Carmen for her debut in Stuttgart and in New Zealand, returned to Florida Grand Opera as Dorabella in Cosi fan tutte, and made her debut with the Opera de Valencia as Cherubino in a new production Le nozze di Figaro. Shaham subsequently debuted at the Teatro La Fenice as Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia.

In 2004 Rinat Shaham sang her first performances of the title role in Bizet’s Carmen for her debut at the Glyndebourne Festival. Since her triumphant reception in the role, she has appeared as Carmen for her Italian stage at the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma as well as at the Minnesota Opera, L’Opera de Montreal, Florida Grand Opera, New York City Opera Stuttgart Opera, Vancouver Opera, New Orleans, and for her debut at the New Israeli Opera. In the fall of 2009 Shaham debuted in Cologne as Carmen, and later in the season appeared in the role for her debut with the Canadian Opera Company in Toronto as well as for her return to the Berlin State Opera, Stuttgart Opera and for a new production in Baden-Baden.

In the 2010/2011 season, she debuted as Carmen with the Australian Opera in Sydney and also appeared in the role in Padova and will also sing the role at the Teatro San Carlo in Lisbon. Also during the 2010/2011, season Rinat Shaham made her debut at the Salzburg Easter Festival singing Ravel’s Sheherezade as well as appear in Salome, and appeared in concert with the Bamberg Symphony singing Berlioz’s Les nuits d’ete.

Equally acclaimed as an orchestral soloist and recitalist Rinat Shaham made her debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic in the title role of L'enfant et les sortilèges under Sir Simon Rattle in 2000. Her debut with the London Symphony was in the same work under Andre Previn, which was subsequently recorded for Deutsch Grammophon. The artist made her New York Philharmonic Debut in 2001 under Leonard Slatkin singing Jeremiah Symphony and debuted in the same work in Ravinia with Christoph Eschenbach and with the Israel Philharmonic under David Robertson. She has also performed this work with the San Francisco Symphony and Chicago Symphony. Rinat Shaham appeared with Les Arts Florissants under William Christie in at the Theatres des Champs Elysees in Paris in 2001 and returned to Paris for further concerts and a tour through Europe to concert halls which included the Vienna Musikverein and London's Barbican Hall. The same year Ms. Shaham appeared in Birmingham in De Falla's Psyche and a world premiere of Boots of Lead a new work by Simon Holt both conducted by Simon Rattle. The latter was also recorded by the BBC for release by NMC Recordings in 2004. In 2003 Rinat Shaham appeared with Simon Rattle and the Orchestra of the Age Enlightenment at the Barbican in London in Haydn's Harmonie Messe, repeating the program in Vienna and Brussels. In June of 2005 Shaham debuted with the Berlin Philharmonic under Simon Rattle in Stravinsky’s Les Noces and Hadyn’s Harmonie Messe. She made her Philadelphia Orchestra debut, with Rattle, in Ravel’s Sheherezade in 2004. Ms. Shaham later returned to the Philadelphia Orchestra and appeared with the Orchestra de Paris for Bernstein’s Jeremiah Symphony conducted by Christoph Eschenbach. She debuted in Dresden in Bach’s Magnificat, also under Maestro Eschenbach.

A winner of numerous vocal competitions, Shaham had the privilege to work closely with Marilyn Horne at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara. She was subsequently invited to participate in the Marilyn Horne Foundation Birthday Gala at Carnegie Hall and in 2001 she was presented by the Foundation in several recitals in New York City and Los Angeles.

Rinat Shaham has recorded excerpts from operas by Lully under William Christie for Erato and a solo CD of Gershwin and Purcell with The Viol Group "Fuoco e Cenere" on ATMA. She made her feature film debut as the "Jazz Singer" with Harvey Keitel in the Isztvan Szabo film, "Taking Sides".

Please note: Biographies on the CSO website are based on the information that was most recently provided to the CSO by the artists or their representatives. More current information may be available on the artists' own websites or those of their representatives.