Press Release: Celebrity Series of Boston Presents Natalie Dessay, soprano Philippe Cassard, piano

Saturday, April 29, 2017, 8pm — NEC’s Jordan Hall

For Immediate Release
Contact: Stephanie Janes PR, (617) 419-0445,
Dessay high-res photo | Dessay Video Preview
Celebrity Series Press Room

Natalie Dessay (c) Simon Fowler

(Boston) Celebrity Series of Boston will present soprano Natalie Dessay with pianist Philippe Cassard on Saturday, April 29, 2017, at 8pm at New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall, 30 Gainsborough Street, Boston, MA. This performance is generously sponsored in part by the French Cultural Center. Media Partner is 99.5 WCRB.


Tickets start at $42, and are available online at, by calling CelebrityCharge at (617) 482-6661 Monday-Friday 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m., or at NEC’s Jordan Hall Box Office, 30 Gainsborough Street, Boston, MA.

This performance marks the second Celebrity Series performance for both Natalie Dessay and Philippe Cassard; their Celebrity Series debut was together in March 2014.

French soprano Natalie Dessay is one the stars of today’s operatic world, thrilling audiences as both a singer and an actress. She is an admired interpreter of bel canto and lyric heroines such as Violetta (La traviata), Lucia di Lammermoor, Marie (La Fille du régiment), Amina (La sonnambula), Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), Manon, Juliette, Ophélie (Hamlet) and Cleopatra (Giulio Cesare). Dessay originally made her reputation with showpiece coloratura roles such as Offenbach’s Olympia, Mozart’s Queen of the Night and Strauss’ Zerbinetta.

Born in Lyons in 1965, Natalie Dessay grew up in Bordeaux. She first dreamed of becoming a dancer, but later studied acting and singing at the Bordeaux Conservatoire. She progressed with extraordinary rapidity, completing five years’ worth of study in just one year and graduating with First Prize at the age of twenty. In 1989, after a brief period in the chorus of the Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse, she entered France’s first Concours des Voix nouvelles and won second prize. This led Dessay to further studies at the Paris Opéra and also brought her to the attention of the agent Thérèse Cédelle – still her agent today – and to her first major engagements as a soloist.

Philippe Cassard has established an international reputation as concerto soloist, recitalist and chamber musician since giving a joint recital with Christa Ludwig in Paris in 1985. The same year he was finalist at the Clara Haskil Competition and in 1988 he won the First Prize at the Dublin International Piano Competition.

His performance of the complete piano works of Debussy (four recitals in a single day) received enthusiastic press and media coverage. He has presented the cycle in London Wigmore Hall, Dublin, Paris, Lisbon, Sydney, Singapore and Tokyo. His Debussy’s recordings published by Decca have been awarded Grand Prix du Disque Français in 1994. He also visits China, Australia, South America and Canada regularly.

Philippe plays an extensive repertoire of chamber music, and he appeared with such artists as Natalie Dessay, Angelika Kirchschlager, Wolfgang Holzmair, Cédric Pescia, Paul Meyer, David Grimal, Anne Gastinel, Matt Haimovitz, Isabelle Faust, the Ebene, Modigliani, Takacs, Auryn, Vanbrugh, Danish and Chilingirian string quartets.

Philippe Cassard is artistic director of the festival “Nuits Romantiques du Lac du Bourget”, and since 2005, he has presented 430 live weekly programs on France Musique Radio dedicated to piano interpretation.


“Portraits de femmes”/“Women’s Portraits”

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart    

from Le nozze di Figaro Susanna’s recitativo and aria: “Giunse alfin il momento… Deh vieni non tardar”

Franz Schubert                                 

Two Lieder on poems by J.W. Goethe:

Lied der Mignon D.877

Gretchen am Spinnrade D.118

Felix Mendelssohn                        

Two Lieder on poems by J.W. Goethe:

Suleika, Opus 57

Die Liebende schreidbt, Opus 86

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart       

from Die Zauberflöte Pamina’s aria: “Ach, ich fühl’s”

Hans Erich Pfitzner                       

Alte Weisen, Opus 33

Mir glänzen die Augen (My eyes glow)

Ich fürcht’ nit Gespenster (No fairies and witches)

Du milchjunger Knabe (Why you gaze upon me)

Wandl’ ich in dem Morgentau (When in dewy fields)

Singt mein Schatz wie ein Fink (When my love sings like a finch)

Röschen biss den Apfel an (Rosy, oh the careless girl!)

Tretet ein, hoher Krieger (Enter in Lord)

Wie glänzt der helle Mond (How coldly shines the moon)

Ernest Chausson                             

Chanson Perpétuelle

Le Colibri

Claude Debussy                              

Two Preludes for piano

La fille aux cheveux de lin


Claude Debussy                              


Coquetterie posthume

Charles Gounod                              

“Air des Bijoux,” from Faust

“Ô légère hirondelle,” from Mireille

About Celebrity Series of Boston

Celebrity Series of Boston was founded in 1938 by pianist and impresario Aaron Richmond. Over the course of its 78-year history, Celebrity Series has presented an array of the world’s greatest performing artists, including Sergei Rachmaninoff, Arturo Toscanini, Ignace Paderewski, Artur Rubenstein, Vladimir Horowitz, Glenn Gould, Fritz Kreisler, Jascha Heifetz, Isaac Stern, Andrés Segovia, Kirsten Flagstad, Marian Anderson, Luciano Pavarotti, Béla Bartók, Igor Stravinsky, Martha Graham, Ballet Russe De Monte Carlo, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Mstislav Rostropovich, and the New York City Opera Company.

The Celebrity Series has been bringing the very best performers–from orchestras and chamber ensembles, vocal and piano music, to dance companies, jazz, and more–to Boston’s major concert halls for 78 years. The Celebrity Series of Boston believes in the power of excellence and innovation in the performing arts to enrich life experiences, transform lives and build better communities. Through its education initiatives, the Celebrity Series seeks to build a community of Greater Boston where the performing arts are a valued, lifelong, shared experience–on stages, in schools, at home– everywhere.

The Celebrity Series of Boston, Inc. receives generous support from Amy & Joshua Boger, the Barr Foundation, Leslie & Howard Appleby, the Boston Cultural Council, The Boston Foundation, the Stephanie L. Brown Foundation, Charlesbank Capital Partners LLC, the Susanne Marcus Collins Foundation, Deloitte LLP, Donna & Mike Egan, Foley & Lardner LLP, Gabor Garai & Susan Pravda, David & Harriet Griesinger, Zachary Haroutunian and the Garbis & Arminé Barsoumian Charitable Foundation, Paul L. King, the Liberty Mutual Foundation, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, Joseph McNay, the National Endowment for the Arts, the New England Foundation for the Arts, Eleanor & Frank Pao, The Peabody Foundation, PTC, the Cynthia and John S. Reed Foundation, the Royal Little Family Foundation, the Stifler Family Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. Henri A. Termeer, Michael and Susan Thonis, Tufts Health Plan, Sanjay & Sangeeta Verma, Nancy Richmond Winsten, Anonymous, and many others.


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