Birgitta Festival: opera gala STARS OF PLACIDO DOMINGO’S OPERALIA

18.08.2018 at 19.00
Venue: Pirita's Convent Ruins
Location: Tallinn, Estonia
Artists: Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, soloists Marina Costa-Jackson (soprano, Italy-USA), Kai Rüütel (mezzo-soprano, special guest), Stefan Pop (tenor, Romania), Edward Parks (baritone, USA)

Plácido Domingo’s Operalia Stars

Opera gala



Marina Costa-Jackson (soprano, Italy-USA)

Kai Rüütel (mezzo-soprano, special guest)

Stefan Pop (tenor, Romania)

Edward Parks (baritone, USA)


Estonian National Symphony Orchestra

Conductor Risto Joost


The programme consists of arias by Puccini, Verdi, Bizet and ensembles from well-known operas.


Host of the evening Marko Reikop


There are superstars who shine only for themselves and the audience, but there are a few exceptions who think beyond artistic quality and aesthetic enjoyment about the future of the genre as well. The Operalia Competition for young opera stars was born in 1990 under the direction of Plácido Domingo. Here future talents from all over the world are sifted out every year. The careers of Joseph Calleja and Giuseppe Filianoti, but also Elizabeth Futral or Inva Mula have really taken off from Operalia. Domingo’s aristocratic and at the same time genial style of feeling has given this competition its unique aura. The Birgitta Festival has the great honour of presenting the best of the most recent years of Operalia between the ancient walls of Pirita Abbey with the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra and the conductor Risto Joost. This is a historic moment.

The American soprano Marina Costa-Jackson, who grew up in Italy and has earned the 2017 Maria Callas Debut Artist of the Year Award, combines within herself Mediterranean temperament and a delightfully melodious timbre. Costa-Jackson’s career to date has taken her to the stage of the Paris Opera, the New York Metropolitan Opera, and the Wales Opera.

The fame of the baritone Edward Parks began at the very epicentre of opera life: his debut was at the New York Metropolitan Opera. He is appreciated throughout the world primarily for his main roles in works by Puccini, Mozart and Verdi, yet he also played the founder of Apple, Steve Jobs, in an opera by Mason Bates brought to the stage at the Santa Fe Opera in 2017.

The Rumanian tenor Stefan Pop made his international debut at the Rome Opera, and thereafter he has appeared at the Vienna National Opera as well as at the London Royal Opera, Moscow’s Bolshoi Opera, and the Bastille Opera in Paris. His powerful yet sensitive voice has made him famous among people who enjoy music theatre in many parts of Asia.

As a special guest, the mezzo-soprano Kai Rüütel will also mount the stage alongside the Operalia stars. After her studies at the Georg Ots Music School in Tallinn, the Royal Conservatory of The Hague and the Dutch National Opera Academy, and due to the successful career that has followed her studies, she has become the absolute number one performer among Estonian opera singers. Rüütel’s creative career has for a long time been connected to the legendary London Royal Opera but her incredible voice has also been heard on famous stages in Madrid and Barcelona, Antwerp and Vienna.

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