“A fascinating Violetta was played by the internationally-renowned soprano Natalia Ushakova. Beautiful and slim, she fulfils every optical expectation and is in all senses the central figure of the drama. A passionate woman, with an exquisite soprano sound whose impressive piani and delicate coloraturas transform despair and happiness into song….An unforgettable evening…”
Natalia Ushakova received her vocal training at the “Rimsky-Korsakov-Conservatory” in St. Petersburg. She won a scholarship to the Graz Opera Studio in Austria and sang all major roles for Soprano in Mozart´s operas. She continued with the master class at the University of Munich and the “Accademia di perfezionamento” of the Teatro alla Scala in Milano. Natalia Ushakova won first prize in two prestigious Italian opera competitions, namely the “Concorso Internazionale Riccardo Zandonai” at Rovereto and the “Concorso delle voci verdiane” at Busseto,the birthplace of Verdi. There she made her opera debut as Violetta in Verdi’s “La Traviata” and portrayed Giuseppina Strepponi (Verdi’s second wife) as well as Violetta Valéry in the BBC television film “The private life of Giuseppe Verdi”. In the same year she sang the role of Mimi in Franco Zeffirelli’s production of “La Bohéme” at La Scala in Milano. She has since appeared at the world’s major opera houses and concert venues and established herself as one of the music world’s newest stars thanks to her beautiful voice, musicianship and compelling stage portrayals.
Within just 13 years she has made her debut in 44 principal opera roles like Puccinis La Boheme (Mimi and Musette), Tosca, Madama Butterfly, La Rondine (Magda), Verdis La Traviata (Violetta Valery), Il Trovatore (Leonora), Otello (Desdemona), Aida, Un ballo in maschera (Amelia), Mozarts Don Giovanni (Donna Anna and Donna Elvira), Le nozze di Figaro (Contessa Almaviva), The magic flute (Queen of the night), Janaceks Jenufa, Tschaikowskis Eugen Onegin (Tatjana), Pique Dame (Lisa), Dvoraks Rusalka, Strauss’ Salome, Wagners Lohengrin (Elsa), Bellinis Norma, Lehárs The Merry Widow (Hanna Glawari), Giuditta und Strauß’ Die Fledermaus (Rosalinde) etc. at the Metropolitan Opera, Carnegie Hall, The Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Teatro alla Scala, Wiener Staatsoper, Volksoper, Theater an der Wien, Bolschoi- and Marinski Theater, Prinzregententheater in Munich, State Opera of Hamburg, Opera Amsterdam, New National Theatre Tokyo, The National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing, Arena di Verona, SNG Ljubljana, Slovak National Theatre in Bratislava, Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, Opera Tel Aviv, Nizza, Athen, Teatro Real in Madrid, the Musikverein and Konzerthaus in Vienna.
Natalia Ushakova won two Italian Music Awards „Voci Verdiani“ and „Riccardo Zandonai“ and has recorded two solo albums with Universal Music Austria, Tschaikowskis Mazeppa with Mstislaw Rostropowitsch at La Scala in Milano, Strauß’ The Gypsy Baron with Armin Jordan, Prokofievs Semen Kotko with Valery Gergiev and Lehars Giuditta with Rudolf Bibl.
She received the Culture Prize from Austria – Leading Ladies award, during a gala at the Palais Lichtenstein in Vienna which was broadcast on Austrian television.