Background Information
Performer Bios

Poet/Composer Bios

Additional Information

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

Silvia Tro Santafé (Mezzo-soprano)

Born: Valencia, Spain

The Spanish mezzo-soprano, Silvia Tro Santafé, Silvia Tro Santafé, studied at the Conservatorio “Joaquin Rodrigo” with Ana Luisa Chova, later studying with Carlo Bergonzi, Walter Berry, Gérard Souzay, Félix Lavilla, Magda Olivero, Monserrat Caballé and Renata Scotto. After her professional debut in La Scala di Seta at the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro in 1992 she won a place at the Julliard School in New York and was awarded first prize in the Opera Index Competition. Shortly afterwards she made her American debut singing Cherubino in Santa Fe.

Since then Silvia Tro Santafé has become one of the most sought after coloratura mezzos of her generation. She has established a major reputation with audiences and leading opera houses over the world. Her repertoire ranges from the Baroque to the 21st century. As a great Handelian, she has sung Medoro (Orlando) in Valencia; Tolomeo (Giulio Cesare) with the Netherlands Opera and in Bologna; Polinesso (Ariodante) in Paris (Palais Garnier), Dresden and at the Salzburg Festival; the title role in Rinaldo at the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin; Amastre in Xerxes in Paris (Théâtre des Champs Elysées); Ruggiero in Alcina in Paris (Châtelet) Amsterdam and Oviedo; and the title role in Ariodante at the Liceu, Barcelona. Among many other Baroque roles she has sung the title role in Eliogabalo in Brussels (La Monnaie).

But above all Silvia Tro Santafé is recognised as one of today’s finest exponents of Rossini and the Bel Canto. Her Rosina (“big warm notes which, as the voice ascended, opened out to reveal a shining secure top” Washington Post) has been heard in Bologna, Toulouse, Amsterdam, Berlin, Hamburg, Zürich, Luxembourg and at the Wiener Staatsoper; Isabella in L'Italiana in Algeri in Teatro alla Scala, Teatro Real Madrid, Amsterdam and Zürich; and her Angelina in La Cenerentola has been acclaimed in, Barcelona, Zürich, Brussels, Dresden and Munich. Seria roles include Arsace in Semiramide (Napoli – “nella parte di Arsace è apparsa la migliore per fluidità di canto e adesione al personaggio” La Repubblica), Malcom in La Donna del Lago at the San Carlos in Lisbon and, recently recorded for Opera Rara, Arsace in Aureliano in Palmira (“technically impeccable and generous of tone” The Guardian). Other Rossini roles include Ernestina in L’equivoco sravagante at the Rossini Opera Festival, and Marchesa Melibea in Il viaggio a Reims in Frankfurt Opera.

Over the last seasons her repertoire has extended to Bellini’s Adalgisa in Norma in Berlin and Brussels (“Silvia Tro Santafé fait merveille,elle évolue en souplesse sur toute la tessitura: l’aigu s’envole clair et tender et ses duos avec Edita Gruberova respirent d’une subtile harmonie d’inflexions communes” Le Soir), Romeo in Capuleti at the Munich State Opera and Isoletta in La Straniera in Moscow. Her Donizetti repertoire includes Orsini in Lucrezia Borgia, in Brussels, Munich and recorded with Edita Gruberová, Sara in Roberto Devereux, Giovanna Seymour in Anna Bolena, and most recently Elisabetta in Maria Stuarda at the Opera Liceu in Barcelona (“Her interpretation grew through the performance, showing the hate, the evil of the character with a fearless passion” El Pais).

Other appearances include the title role in L’enfant et les sortileges, Barcelona (Liceu); Nicklausse (Les Contes d’Hoffman) with the Rome Opera; Dorabella in Oviedo; and Charlotte (‘Werther’) in Como and Pisa. Her recent debut, singing Adalgisa to Edita Gruberová’s Norma in Hamburg and Berlin, was a great public and critical success. Other recent performances include: a return to Vienna for L’Italiana and Barbiere, a new Massenet's Don Quichotte in Brussels, singing Dulcinée, and L’Italiana at the Teatro Real Madrid. She returned again to the USA to open the Washington Opera Season in 2009 singing Rosina. Adalgisa in Norma at the Monnaie, La Cenerentola at the Dresden Semperoper, Nicklausse in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Pierotto in Linda di Chamounix and Cecilio in W.A. Mozart's Lucio Silla at the Liceu Barcelona, Giovanna Seymour in Anna Bolena in Dortmund and Rosina at the Geneva Opera.

Silvia Tro Santafé has an extensive concert and recital repertoire. Her recording for Globe of Spanish songs was given a top rating by Diapason Magazine. Other recordings include La Verbena de la Paloma with Plácido Domingo, Zerlina in W.A. Mozart's Don Giovanni on Kikko Classics, Xerxes (Amastre) with William Christie for Virgin and Alessandro Scarlatti’s Griselda for Harmonia Mundi with René Jacobs. She has recorded and performed many of the greatest roles of the Baroque including the title roles of George Frideric Handel's Xerxes (Champs Elysées), Rinaldo (Berlin State Opera), Ariodante (Barcelona) and has appeared as Polinesso in Ariodante (Salzburg Festival, Paris Opera) Tolomeo in Giulio Cesare (Netherlands Opera). Recent concert performances have included Verdi's Requiem (Hamburg) Rossini's Stabat Mater (Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra).

Recent highlights of her wide repertoire on CD and DVD include G.F. Handel's Deidamia (Netherlands Opera – “sang like a god, with a warm voice suffusing both her legato and dazzling coloratura, a combination of Horne and Berganza” Mundo Clásico; “If heroism is measured in vocal terms, the palm goes to Silvia Tro Santafé for her firm, vibrant singing of Ulisse” New York Times) to Massenet’s Don Quichotte (La Monnaie – “une Dulcinée souveraine – par la puissance, par la couleur, par la precision du contrôle…” La Libre). Her recent solo recital discography was acclaimed, "Spanish Heroines" (Signum Classics “Et avec quelle puissance d’émotions elle l’emporte! Juste la voix sur de grandes lignes mélodiques, entrecoupées d’envolées lyriques. Une magnifique interpretation” Harmonia Mundi; “an impressive voice and sound vocal technique” International Record Review) and "Rossini Mezzo" (Signum “attacking the myriad notes with accuracy, with no suggestion of cheating by insertion of aspirates. To these strengths can be added her breath control…impressive” Record Review; “a most impressive recital” Gramophone Magazine).

Future plans include a return to the Teatro Real Madrid for productions of W.A. Mozart's Lucio Silla and Donzetti's Roberto Devereux and a return to the role of Charlotte in Werther in Las Palmas and to the role of Orsini at the Munich State Opera.

“Thrilling top notes; dark resonance below; unfailingly expressive.” - The Times

Source: Silvia Tro Santafé Website (January 2015) & Facebook profile; Signum Classics Website
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (February 2017)

Recordings of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works




Christophe Rousset


Audio (2005): G.F. Handel: Opera Alcina, HWV 34 [2nd recording, Ruggiero]

Links to other Sites

Silvia Tro Santafé (Official Website)
Silvia Tro Santafé on Facebook

Silvia Tro Santafé (Signum Classics)
Silvia Tro Santafé - Mezzo-soprano (Hyperion)
Silvia Tro Santafé (Stage Door)

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


Back to the Top

Last update: Tuesday, May 30, 2017 05:15