BiographyPhoto: David Port
Guest of the National Theatre Opera.
Magdalena Kožená was born in Brno, studied at the Brno Conservatoire and continued her studies with Eva Blahová at the College of Performing Arts of Bratislava, graduating in 1995. She was awarded several major prizes in both the Czech Republic and internationally (culminating in the 6th International Mozart Competition in Salzburg in 1995). In 1996/97 she was a member of the Vienna Volksoper and in 1998 she sang Paride in Gluck's Paride ed Elena in her debut at the Drottningholm Festival.
Miss Kožená’s recordings include a recital of Bach arias, Handel’s Roman Motets and Italian Cantatas and Messiah with Marc Minkowski for DG/Archiv, and her first solo recital disc (Dvořák, Janáček and Martinů with Graham Johnson - Gramophone Solo Vocal Award, 2001) for Deutsche Grammophon, with whom she has signed an exclusive contract. Her most recent discs are recitals of arias of Mozart, Gluck and Mysliveček (with the Prague Philharmonia and Michel Swierczewski), of French arias with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra and Minkowski and a recital disc with Malcolm Martineau.
Magdalena Kožená is already established as a major concert and recital artist. Her recitals have taken her to London, the Schubertiade Schwazenberg, Brussels, Paris, Hamburg, Amsterdam, Munich, Prague, Tokyo, Yokahama and Sapporo. This season she appears in recital at Carnegie Hall, in San Francisco and in London, Brussels, Lisbon, Vienna, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Hamburg and Prague.
Her operatic engagements have included several noteable debuts: at the Châtelet, Paris in the title role of Gluck's Orphée with John Eliot Gardiner; at the Vienna Festival as Nerone (L’Incoronazione di Poppea) with Minkowski; at the Edinburgh Festival (Sesto in La clemenza di Tito); at the Leipzig Opera (Mélisande with Minkowski); at the Aix-en-Provence Festival as Cherubino; at the Netherlands Opera as Sesto (Giulio Cesare) and at the Salzburg Festival as Zerlina under Harnoncourt. She sang the centenary performance of Pelléas et Mélisande at the Opera Comique, Paris under Minkowski and most recently Cleopatra in Giulio Cesare under Minkowski. Recent engagements include Idamantes at the Glyndebourne and Salzburg Festivals (under Rattle), Cherubino for both the Bavarian State Opera and the Metropolitan Opera (under Levine) and Dorabella under Rattle (Salzburg Easter Festival and in Berlin).
Miss Kožená’s forthcoming engagements include her debut with San Francisco Opera as Dorabella, Varvara (Katja Kabanova) at the Metropolitan Opera and the title role in Cavalli’s Calisto for the Bavarian State Opera. In 2003 she was awarded the title of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government.