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Yves Saelens


After obtaining a pedagogical diploma, Belgian tenor Yves Saelens studied at the Brussels Royal Conservatoire of Music with Dina Grossberger, where he obtained the Higher Diplomas for Singing and Lyric Art, and at the Juilliard Opera Center in New York with Ed Zambara. He won the “Concours Nany Phillipart ‘96”, “Jeugd en Muziek Vlaanderen ‘97”, “New York Oratorio Society Competition ‘97” and the “Marilyn Horne Foundation Competition ‘97”; In Salzburg, he became 2ndlaureat
e of the “International Mozart Competition ‘99”. He was elected “Young Musician of the Year 2004” by the Union of Belgian Music Press. He has participated in masterclasses with Ernst Haefliger, Ruben Lifschitz and Martin Isepp; at the Steans Institute Chicago with Christoph Eschenbach, Peter Schreier, Ian Partridge, Roger Vignoles and David Owen Norris; at the Music Academy of the West with Marilyn Horne, Warren Jones and Frank Lopardo; at the Juilliard School with Christa Ludwig and James Levine and at La Monnaie with Helmut Deutsch. Yves Saelens has been a soloist in many cantatas and oratorios throughout Europe, North America and Asia. His repertoire includes works by Haydn (Die Schöpfung, Die Jahreszeiten), Haendel (Messiah), Bach (the Passionen, Weihnachtsoratorium), Beethoven (9th Symphony, Misssa Solemnis), Mendelssohn (Paulus), Schumann (Das Paradies und die Peri, Der Rose Pilgerfahrt), Rossini (Petite Messe Solennelle, Stabat Mater), Berlioz (Requiem, Te Deum), Puccini (Messa di Gloria), Verdi (Requiem), Orff (Carmina Burana), Britten (War Requiem, Serenade, Nicolascantata), A.L.Webber (Requiem), Martin (In Terra Pax), Mozart (Requiem, Grosse Messe), Bruckner, Salieri, Dvorak, Benoit.. He participated in recordings of Der Tod Jesu (Telemann), Carmina Burana (Orff), the Serenade for Tenor and Horn (Britten), Le Nozze di Figaro (Mozart), L’Enfance du Christ (Berlioz), Lucie de Lammermoor (Donizetti), La Capricciosa corretta (Martin y Soler) and the Kosegarten Song Cycle (Schubert). He made solo recordings with Lieder by Robert Franz (Etcetera), together with pianist Jan Vermeulen; Goethe Songs by Hugo Wolf (Eufoda), Romanze by Francesco Paolo Tosti (Eufoda) and Wehmut und Liebeshauch, with lieder by Beethoven, Schumann, Grieg and Strauss (Eufoda), all with pianist Inge Spinette. In 2014 This Wing’d Hour, a new CD with songcycles by Quilter, Vaughan-Williams, Britten and Finzi was released. An active recitalist, Yves Saelens has performed a.o. Schumann’s Dichterliebe, the Liederkreise and Kerner-lieder, Beethoven’s An Die Ferne Geliebte, Schubert’s Die Schöne Müllerin, Winterreise and Schwanengesang, Brahms’ Die Schöne Magelone and Britten’s Illuminations and Nocturne. He performed Vaughan-Williams’ Songs of Travel, accompanied by the Belgian National Orchestra, and his On Wenlock Edge, with the Penderecki String Quartet, in a Marilyn Horne Foundation Recital. He sung Mahler’s Lied von der Erde with the Opera Orchestra de Tours, and with the ASKO Schönberg Ensemble Amsterdam in a transcription by Reinbert de Leeuw.  His debut operarole was Paolino in Il Matrimonio Segreto by Cimarosa. Since then he has performed a number of major Mozart-roles: Tamino (Die Zauberflöte), Belmonte (Die Entführung aus dem Serail), Don Ottavio (Don Giovanni), Ferrando (Cosi Fan Tutte), the title role of Idomeneo, Titus (La Clemenza di Tito) and Gomatz (Zaïde). Other major parts include Rinuccio (Gianni Schicchi), Pinkerton (Madama Butterfly), Alfredo (La Traviata), Fenton (Falstaff), Narraboth (Salomé), Admeto (Alceste), Alwa (Lulu), Tambourmajor (Wozzeck), Steva (Jenufa), Tichon (Katia Kabanova), Toni (Elegy for Young Lovers), Belfiore (Il Viaggio a Reims), Pluton (Orphée aux Enfers), Bénédict (Béatrice et Bénédict), Gérald (Lakmé), Faust (La Damnation de Faust), Ulysse (Pénélope), Jason (Médée), Camille (Die Lustige Witwe), Gonzalve (L’Heure Espagnole), Gernando (L’Isola Disabitata), Filippo (L’Infedeltà Delusa), Lelio (La Capricciosa corretta), Guido Bardi (Eine Florentinische Tragödie), Male Chorus (The Rape of Lucretia), Edgar Linton (Wuthering Heights), Ferdinand (The Tempest – Adès) and David (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg). He also created the parts of Il Matto (La Strada – Van Hove), L’Avventore (L’Uomo dal fiore in Bocca – Brewaeys), Le Chef de la Garde (Affaire Étrangère – Villenave), Festus (Legende – Wagemans), Shoko (Andreas Weent – Wagemans) and Schatz/Big Uncle (An unserem Fluss – Navok). He performed in the opera-theatres of Tours, Marseille, Nancy, Rennes, Caen, Lille, St.Etienne, Bordeaux, Lyon, Montpellier, Avignon, Reims, Limoges, Rouen, Paris-LeChâtelet, Paris-Champs-Elysées, Monte-Carlo, Brussel, Antwerpen, Gent, Liège, Luxemburg, Lausanne, Barcelona, Madrid-LaZarzuela, Frankfurt, Leipzig, Mannheim, Weimar, Halle, DNO Amsterdam, Nationale Reisopera Enschede, Opera Zuid Maastricht, Toronto, Indianapolis; les Chorégies d’Orange, the Festivals of Aix-en-Provence and Montpellier, and the Glyndebourne Touring Opera; Kameropera Transparant Antwerpen; in Carnegie Hall New York, the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Konzerthaus Wien, Theater an der Wien, The Gulbenkian Foundation Lisbon, Suntory Hall Tokyo, Sydney Opera House; with L’Orchestre National de Lille, the Münchner Rundfunkorchester, L’Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, Tiroler Symphonieorchester Innsbruck, the Philharmonisch Orkest van Vlaanderen, the Philharmonie Zuidnederland, La Petite Bande, Les Talens Lyriques and Anima Eterna. He sung with conductors such as Serge Baudo, Sigiswald Kuijken, Helmut Rilling, Michel Corboz, Peter Schreier, Marc Minkowski, Christophe Rousset, René Jacobs, Jos van Immerseel, Jean-Claude Casadesus, Dennis Russel Davies, Marcello Viotti, Evelino Pidò, Friedemann Layer, Reinbert de Leeuw... Engagements in 2017-18 include the roles of Premier Commissaire (Les Dialogues des Carmélites) at La Monnaie, Der Vater (Kinkakuji) at the Opéra national du Rhin and Pelléas (Impressions de Pelléas) in concert–tour in Belgium and The Netherlands, as well as concerts with Renard by Stravinski, with the Ensemble Intercontemporain, Carmina Burana in concert-tour in the Netherlands, the Verdi Requiem at the Antwerp Singel, the Ninth Symphony by Beethoven, with the a Philharmonie Royale de Wallonie, and Britten’s Saint-Nicolas Cantata for the festivities of the 800-year existence of the city of Sint-Niklaas.
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“der fabelhafte Yves Saelens als Alwa…” – Lulu – Oper Leipzig Leipziger Volkszeitung


“Belgian tenor Yves Saelens is to my mind an ideal soloist – he isn’t afraid to produce a sound that is not always pretty, and combined with an equally stratospheric bassoon solo that is similarly incredibly pained in nature (I mean this in the best possible way!), he gives us the most vividly characterised rendition I can recall of this tale of the sizzling swan.” – Carmina Burana CD – Anima Eterna & Collegium Vocale Gent