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Bracha Kol (Mezzo-soprano, Recorder)

Born: Israel

The Israeli mezzo-soprano (and recorder player), Bracha Kol, began her musical career as a child prodigy playing the recorder, performing with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Maestro Zubin Mehta at the age of 13. She travelled to Holland to study with Marion Verbruggen at the Utrecht Conservatory, where she graduated her Artist degree with honours in recorded playing, at the age of 17. She holds an artist degree with distinction, in singing, from the Tel-Aviv Academy. In 2000, she received the IVAI scholarships to study in New York with the renowned singer and teacher Mignon Dunn, and in 1992 she was awarded the America-Israel Cultural Foundation Scholarship. She and later in Paris and Milan with the opera singers coach, Robert Kettelson. She was teaching at the Tel-Aviv Rubin Academy of music (both recorder and singing) for 5 years.

Bracha Kol has earned the praise of critics and audiences alike for the beauty of her voice, unique timbre, musicianship and the depth of her interpretations and brilliant acting. As one of the leading singers in her country, she regularly performs opera, lied and oratorio. She has appeared in numerous recitals in the USA and in Europe and is most frequently heard in Israel. An extraordinarily sensitive interpreter of different styles and periods, she performs concert, oratorio and operatic repertoire ranging from early to contemporary music.

As a mezzo-soprano soloist, Bracha Kol has worked with some of the world's leading conductors, including Harry Bicket, Leon Botstein, Robert Canetti, Philippe Entremont, Dan Ettinger, Asher Fisch, Gábor Hollerung, Nir Kabaretti, Jiri Kout, Nicholas Kraemer, Hermann Max, Zubin Mehta, Paul Nadler, Mendi Rodan, Peter Schreier, David Sebba, Gil Shohat, Saulius Sondeckis, Christoph Spering, Stanley Sperber, David Stern, Yaron Traub, Jonathan Webb, and Alberto Zedda, and and with stage directors such as David Alden, Jean Claude Auvray, Jakob Peters-Messer, Omri Nitzan, Emilio Sagi, Carlos Saura among others. As a concert singer, she sang with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Santa Cecilia Orchestra, Rome, Orchestra of Maggio Musicale Fiorentino (Florence, Italy), Greece Chamber Orchestra, and Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra. She performs regularly with all of the leading orchestras in Israel. In April 2013 she performed her USA debut as a soloist in several concerts, in Verdi's Requiem and in Dvorak's Stabat Mater under the baton of Maestro Lucas Richman. Her performances were praised by the press.

Bracha Kol is often invited to perform at the Israeli Opera. Between her her varied roles there: Cenerentola and Tisbe in La Cenerentola (Rossini), The Fox in Cunning little vixen (Janacek), Zulma in L’Italiana in Algeri (Rossini), Mercedes in Carmen (Georges Bizet), Sesto and Nireno in Guilio Cesare (George Frideric Handel), Olga in Yevgeni Onegin (Tchaikovsky), Varvara in Katya Kabanova (Janacek), Amore in L’Incoronazione di Poppea (Monteverdi), Mrs. Sedley in Peter Grimes (Benjamin Britten); and several world premieres: The Queen of Hearts at the world premiere of Alice in Wonderland (Sebba), Moritz in the world premiere of the opera Max&Moritz (Gil Shohat), and A Woman Born for Love at the world premiere of The Child Dreams (Shohat) which was performed both in Israel and in the Wiesbaden Festival, Germany. In the IVAI project, she sang Zita in Gianni Schicchi and The Witch in Hänsel und Gretel. She has also sung the leading role in Carmen in a concert version.

Bracha Kol is often invited to perform as a soloist with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra led by Maestro Zubin Mehta. She sang with them Flora in La Traviata (Verdi), and The Page in Salome (R. Strauss). The Israeli premiere of Requiem Ebraico (Zeisl) where she sang the Mezzo-Soprano solo role, was recorded for a CD.

Bracha Kol sang the Alto role in the directed version of J.S. Bach's St. Matthew Passion (BWV 244) under the baton of Christoph Spering. She also gave a recital of Spanish music in the Tel-Aviv Museum and a recital of contemporary Israeli music at the Jerusalem Music Center that was broadcast over radio. Recent solo appearances with orchestras include the Santa Cecilia Orchestra, Rome, the Patras Chamber Orchestra, Greece, and most recently, a concert tour with the Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra. Performances with leading Israeli orchestras include appearances with the Jerusalem Symphony in the Dvorák Requiem and Missa Tango by Kabalov. She sang J.S. Bach’s Magnificat (BWV 243), W.A. Mozart’s Requiem, Bruckner’s Requiem, and Dvorak’s D Major Mass with the Israeli Chamber Orchestra and Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass with the Kibbutz Orchestra.

Bracha Kol is often invited to perform in contemporary music pieces and in world premieres. Numerous composers have dedicated works to her. She is a member of the "Meitar Ensemble" that specializes in contemporary music.The ensemble have been acclaimed for their significant contribution to the development of Israeli culture and music, receiving many awards and prizes, including the prestigious Landau Award (2010) for best classical music performance. Bracha puts special emphasis on her performance of Israeli music and Jewish artistic music. She was invited by the "Israel Music Institute" to record a disc in Yiddish and is member of an ensemble that performs Ladino music.

Bracha Kol's projects in 2005-2006 season, were performed to stunning critical and audience acclaim and included: Flora in La Traviata, with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Zubin Mehta, she returned to the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, with an Israeli premiere of Requiem Ebraico (Zeisl), conducted by Maestro Zubin Mehta. Other projects that season included Christmas Oratorio (BWV 248) (J.S. Bach) with the Jerusalem Symphony, under Peter Schreier, J.S.. Bach's Solo Alto Cantata BWV 35 with the Israel Chamber Orchestra under Gábor Hollerung, Les nuits d'ete (Berlioz) with the Israel Sinfonietta conducted by Doron Solomon, Kindertotenlieder (Gustav Mahler) with the Ra'anana Symphonet conducted by Nir Kabaretti, W.A. Mozart's Requiem with the Israel Chamber Orchestra, J.S. Bach Solo Alto Cantata BWV 170 with the Israel Camerata Orchestra Jerusalem conducted by Avner Biron, and Cantata BWV 119 conducted by Stanley Sperber.

Her 2007-2008 engagements included debut at the Florence theatre, Italy in the role of Mercedes in Carmen, conducted by Maestro Zubin Mehta, a concert tour to Russia with the Israel Chamber Orchestra singing Giovanni Battista Pergolesi's Stabat Mater, a broadcasted concert of Dmitri Shostakovich From Jewish Folk Poetry Op.79 with the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, a Johannes Brahms Lieder recital with Maestro Dan Ettinger (piano), and an Israeli contemporary music recital organized by the Israel Music Institute. She later sang the role of the Fox in Cunning little vixen (Janacek) at the Israeli opera, conducted by Maestro Jonathan Webb.

Bracha Kol's recent projects were performed to stunning audience and critical acclaim, and included an Israeli premiere of Requiem Ebraico (Zeisl) with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Zubin Mehta. With the Israel Chamber Orchestra she sang J.S. Bach solo Cantatas BWV 35, BWV 53 and BWV 170, Il Tramonto (Ottorino Respighi), and El Amor Brujo (De Falla). With the Israel Sinfonietta, she sang Les Nuits d'ete (Berlioz) and with the Israel Symphonet she sang Kindertotenlieder (G. Mahler). Her latest projects included Verdi's Requiem, Pierrot Lunaire (Arnold Schoenberg), Les Nuits d'ete (Berlioz), Kindertotenlieder and Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (Gustav Mahler) and the world premiere of 5 Tragic songs by the renowned composer Leon Biriotti (Uruguay) which was performed on the International Holocaust Remembrance Day in Jerusalem, and recorded to the Dutch television.

Bracha Kol's performances are most often broadcasted on the Israeli national TV and radio. Her performances and recordings are regularly broadcasted world wide, both to the television and to leading radio channels. In January 2006, two different Israeli TV channels dedicated programs to her special life story. She was honoured by flutist Er'ella Talmi and Maestro Yoav Talmi, to jointly perform on their latest CD; "Talmis play Talmi", was released in January 2006 on Centaur Records, USA.

Source: Artists International Website; Ruud Janssen (February 2006); The Artist (September 2006, July 2008, July 2013)
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (November 2005); Bracha Kol (September 2006, July 2008, July 2013)

Recordings of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works




Robert Canetti


BWV 53

Links to other Sites

Bracha Kol - Mezzo-soprano (Official Website)
Vocalists: Bracha Kol, Mezzo-soprano (Artists International)
Bracha Kol (Beauty in Music)

Bracha Kol (Innocentiis Artists' Management) [Italian]
Bracha Kol (Habama) [Hebrew]

Biographies of Performers: Main Page | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
Explanation | Acronyms | Missing Biographies | The Sad Corner


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Last update: Monday, May 29, 2017 09:58