Academy from 31 October
to 7 November 2021

Françoise Pollet

Voice Master Class

Soprano lyrico spinto, she first studied violin at the Conservatoire National de Région de Versailles (France) and later obtained unanimously a First Prize in Singing (1972) at the same institution. She then left France for Germany, where she studied singing again with Ernst HAEFLIGER, Erik WERBA, Hermann REUTTER at the Musikhochschule Münich (Bavaria), where she obtained a state examination with honours (Künstlerisches Staatsexam für Sologesang – 1972-1976).

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Wishing to perfect her knowledge in the lyric field and to continue her training, she first of all joined the Bavarian Radio Choir (Bayerischer Rundfunk) attached to the two orchestras of this house, under the artistic direction of Rafaël Kubelik (1976-1983).
Winner of the Geneva International Singing Competition (1981), she began her career in 1983-84 with the Lübeck Opera Company in the role of the Marshal (Rosenkavalier / R. STRAUSS).

During the three years she spent at the Stadtstheater, she sang die Mutter (Hänsel und Gretel), the Foreign Princess (Russalka), Giulietta (Les Contes d’Hoffmann), Santuzza (Cavalleria Rusticana), Elisabeth (Tannhäuser), Fiordiligi (Cosi fan tutte), Amelia (Ballo in maschera), the Woman (the Human Voice), the Woman (the Lady of Monte Carlo), Arabella (Arabella), Donna Anna (Don Giovanni), Ariadne (Ariadne auf Naxos).

Leaving Germany, she comes back to France, called by Jean-Marie POILVE, artistic agent, and starts working as “freelance”, freed from the constraints of a troupe. Her first contract takes her to Marseille for ” der Freischütz “, Alain Duault writes a very complimentary review in l’Événement du Jeudi, welcoming the appearance of a great French voice. Nantes, Orleans, Metz, Montpellier and the Opéra-Comique will follow, as well as several concerts for Radio-France for this 1st season back in France. She was the classical guest at the MIDEM in Cannes as a “discovery of Lyric Talent” (1987), and on this occasion, Eve Ruggieri invited her to take part in “Musiques au cœur”, the first programme of a collaboration that continued over many seasons, particularly a 60-minute portrait in 1990. She also took part in numerous television programmes for Philippe Meyer, Jacques Martin and the music channel Mezzo.

Her repertoire is expanding: Agathe (der Freischütz), Rezia (Oberon), Vitellia (the Clemency of Titus), Elettra (Idomeneo), Leonore (the Trouvère), Mimi (La Bohême), Sieglinde (die Walkyre), the Countess (the Marriage of Figaro), the Cantatrice (Reigen), Medea (Freispruch für Medea), the Countess (Cappriccio), the 2nd Prioress (the Carmelite Dialogues), Fidelia (Edgar), Catherine of Aragon (Henry VIII), Valentine de St-Bris (the Huguenots), Marguerite (la Damnation de Faust), Cassandra and Dido (les Troyens), Grete (der Ferne Klang), Anita (Jonny spielt auf), Ariane (Ariane et Barbe-Bleue), Alceste (Alceste), Bérénice (Bérénice), Brunehild (Sigurd), Mathilde (Guillaume Tell), Elisabetta (Don Carlos), Amelia (Simone Boccanegra), Alice Ford (Falstaff).

The First Victoire de la Musique Classique she was awarded in February 1994 as Lyric Artist of the Year consecrates an astonishing career that began barely ten years earlier, both on the lyric stages and in concerts with orchestra, or chamber music concerts and recitals. In 1996, she was awarded a Victoire for her participation in the production of Francis Poulenc’s Dialogue des Carmélites, directed by Michel Plasson and directed by Nicolas Joël at the Théâtre du Capitole (Halle aux grains) in Toulouse.

The greatest chefs such as Pierre Boulez, Sylvain Cambreling, Jean-Claude Casadesus, Michel Plasson, Georges Prêtre, Semyon Bychkov, Ricardo Chailly, Charles Dutoit, Carlo Maria Giulini, Marek Janowski, Pinchas Steinberg, Seiji Osawa, Yutaka Sado and many others quickly enabled her to affirm her career all over the world.

Guest of such prestigious opera houses as Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, La Fenice in Venice, the Met in New York or the Opéra Bastille, as well as no less illustrious orchestras such as the Orchestre de Paris and all the great French national orchestras, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Konzertgebow Orchestra, the Académie Sainte-Cécile de Rome, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, the Royal Orchestra of Copenhagen, the New York Philharmonic and, more recently, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra celebrate Pierre Boulez and his 80th birthday with him.

Françoise Pollet astonishes by her immense musicality and the eclecticism of her repertoire, Strauss, Verdi, Wagner, Berlioz, Dukas… rubbing shoulders with the greatest contemporary composers, such as Boulez, Liebermann, Messiaen, Boesmans, Florentz, Durieux…
An outstanding personality, she created the role of the Cantatrice in Philippe Boesmans’ opera “Reigen” at the Monnaie de Bruxelles (1993) and, at the Hamburg Opera, she created the title role in Rolf Liebermann’s last opera “Freispruch für Medea” (1995).

Her years of learning music as an instrumentalist and her years in Germany trained her as a recitalist; she has always favoured this aspect of her career and has performed with many musicians such as Jean-Marc Luisada, Pierre-Laurent Aymard, Brigitte Engerer, Philippe Cassard, Jean-François Heisser, Dalton Baldwin, Roger Vignolles, Augustin Dumay, Bruno Fontaine, Claude Lavoix, Laurent Korcia, the Quatuor Parisii, Philippe Bernold, Alexandre Lagoya, the Wanderer Trio, the Nash Ensemble of London, the ECM2 Ensemble, Cord Garben… but also Sacha Distel, William Sheller, Gilbert Montagné, Juan José Mosalini, Sortie d’Artistes, Fabienne Thibault, Jean Claude Vannier.

Popular with the public, she was chosen by the organisation of World Youth Day to welcome Pope Jean Paul II on his arrival in Paris, at the Champ-de-Mars (1997) and by the Paris City Council to honour the memory of Maria Callas on the 20th anniversary of her death (1997).
Her extensive discography confirms the breadth of her repertoire. Amongst others : les Troyens (winner of a Grammy Award), La Damnation de Faust by Hector Berlioz, the Gloria and the Stabat Mater by Poulenc, under the direction of Charles Dutot (Decca), the Poèmes pour Mi by Olivier Messiaen, the complete works of Werbern, under the direction of Pierre Boulez (DGG), the last four Lieder by Richard Strauss, the seven Lieder de Jeunesse by Alban Berg and the Wesendonck Lieder by Richard Wagner under the baton of Klaus Weise (Musidisc), a recital of Airs Sacrés Français with Jacques Mercier (RCA), a recital of French opera tunes with Cyril Dietrich, (Erato).

Françoise Pollet has been teaching at the CNSMDL (Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Lyon) since 2002-03. She gives numerous Masterclasses: at the Opéra-Studio in Strasbourg «Les Jeunes Voix du Rhin», at the Maurice Ravel Academy (St Jean de Luz), at the Académie Internationale d’Eté in Nice, at the Musikakademie in Amsterdam, at the Musikhochschule in Freiburg, the Franz-Liszt-Hochschule in Weimar, the Centre de la Voix de la région Rhône-Alpes, the Conservatoire Royal in Brussels, McGuill University in Montreal, and the Académie Internationale de Musique Lyrique Française by Michel Plasson.

Françoise Pollet is a Knight of the National Order of Merit and of Arts and Letters.

Academy from 24
to 31 October 2021

Stefan Genz

Voice Master Class / German repertoire

Stephan Genz is a German baritone, born in Erfurt, GDR, in 1973. At the age of 8, he joined the St. Thomas boys’ choir in Leipzig where he remained a “Thomaner”
until 1991. He then pursued his studies with Hans-Joachim Beyer at the Leipzig Conservatory, Mitsuko Shirai and Hartmut Höll at the Karlsruhe Conservatory, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau in Berlin and Elisabeth Schwarzkopf in Zurich.

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He earned his first successes by winning the international competition “Johannes Brahms” in Hamburg (1994) and “Hugo Wolf” in Stuttgart (1994). In 1998, he got
awarded the “Brahms-Preis” of Schleswig-Holstein and in 2000, he was elected “Young Artist of the Year” by the Belgian Critics.

Recognized for his interpretations of Lied and German repertoire, he divides his career between opera, recitals and concerts. He sang on international stages such as the Berlin Staatsoper, the Hamburg Staatsoper, the Bastille Opera, the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées and the Châtelet in Paris, the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, the Grand Théâtre in Geneva, the Semperoper in Dresden, the Teatro La Fenice in Venice, the Bolshoi in Moscow as well as on the stages of the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, the Kölner Philharmonie in Cologne, the Opéra Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels, the Louvre in Paris, the Alice Tully Hall, Frick Collection and Rockefeller Center in New York, the City Opera, Oji Hall and Suntory Hall in Tokyo and in numerous the festivals including the Edinburg festival, the Schubertiade (Feldkirch, Hohenems, Schwarzenberg), the festival d’Aix-en-Provence, the Maggio Musicale Firenze, the festival de Zermatt and the festival de Verbier.

He worked under the direction of conductors such as Teodor Currentzis, Myung-Whun Chung, Gerd Albrecht, Daniel Harding, Philippe Herreweghe, Thomas Hengelbrock, Gustav Kuhn, Sigiswald, Kuijken, Rene Jacobs, Jesus Lopez-Coboz, Fabio Luisi, Georges Pretre, Bruno Bartoletti, Kent Nagano, Jeffrey Tate, Giuseppe Sinopoli, Kurt Masur, Eliahu Inbal, Mario Venzago and Nikolaus Harnoncourt.

Stephan Genz released more than 50 recordings. His recital CD’s got awarded international prizes such as the “Gramophone Award”, the “Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik”, the “Platinum Timbre” and several “Diapason d’Or”.

Since October 2020, he is responsible for teaching Lied and Oratorio at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. He divides his time between Berlin, Salzburg and Paris, where he teaches German repertoire at the Conservatoire National de Paris.

Academy from 11 to
18 April 2021

François Le Roux

Singing Master Class
French repertoire : mélodie / opéra

François Le Roux was a member of the Lyon Opera Company from 1980 to 1985.

He then starts an international career. His name is associated with Debussy’s opera Pelléas et Mélisande.

He is recognized as an ambassador of French Song and of lieds and recitals. He is also the founder and the artistic director of the Centre International de la Mélodie Française, and of the Académie Francis Poulenc in Tours, dedicated to the interpretation of the genre. His discography is impressive: the complete melodies of Poulenc, Debussy and Henri Dutilleux, among others, and often award-winning.

He is a professor at the École Normale de Musique de Paris Alfred Cortot.

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François Le Roux began his vocal studies with François Loup (now a teacher at Peabody-Baltimore) at the age of 19, and later he studied under Vera Rosza and Elisabeth Grümmer at the Opéra Studio, Paris.

A member of the Lyon Opera Company from 1980 to 1985, he has since been a guest with all the major European opera houses and festivals, as well as renowned American Operatic venues: Santa Fé (NM), Los Angeles Opera, New Orleans Opera, Colon Buenos Aires (Argentina). His wide operatic repertoire uncovers a large scale, from Monteverdi to David Lang. Debussy’s only opera has been his “carte de visite”, first as Pelléas, then as Golaud; he has been acclaimed in both these roles.

Named “Mr Mélodie” by American critics, François Le Roux gives numerous recitals accompanied by such renowned names as Graham Johnson, Roger Vignoles, Christian Ivaldi, Olivier Godin and Jeff Cohen, and conducts master courses dedicated to the interpretation of French songs and recital repertoire around the world: Orford and Lachine Academy (Québec, Canada), Vancouver (BC, Canada), Minneapolis Song Source Festival (USA), Sibelius Academy Helsinki (Finland), Kyoto Société Mélodie Française (Japan), Central Conservatory of Music Beijing (China), Association Mélodie Française (Seoul, South Korea), Académie Ravel de Saint-Jean-de-Luz (France). He is artistic Director and founder in 1997 of the « Académie Francis Poulenc in Tours », where students are taught every year (in August) the interpretation of French Song, and has been organizing the « French Song Concert Seasons » of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France (French National Library) in Paris between 1997 and 2002.

He has recorded for many famous labels the songs of Fauré, Debussy, Ravel, Poulenc, Saint-Saëns, Gounod, Reynaldo Hahn, etc. His CD of Henri Dutilleux’ Complete Songs (for the label Passavant Music), has won in June 2016 the “Orphée d’or Michel Garcin” of the Académie du disque lyrique. Since this, a Jolivet melodies CD, and a CD of melodramas and melodies have been released under the same label.

His first book Le Chant intime, on the interpretation of French Art Song, published by Fayard in August 2004, with co-author Romain Raynaldy, has received the « René Dumesnil Price 2004 » of the French Académie des Beaux-Arts. It has been translated in Japanese and published by Shunjusha (Tokyo). His second book L’opéra français-une question de style-De l’interprétation lyrique published by Hermann has been issued in 2019.

He has been awarded the grade of “Chevalier” in the French National Order of “Les Arts et Lettres” in 1996, and chosen as « Musical Personality of the year 1997 » by the French Critics Union. He has been a vocal teacher at the National Music Conservatoire in Paris (CNSMDP), and is now teaching at the “Ecole normale de Musique de Paris Alfred Cortot”, where he is in charge of developing the exclusive “French Vocal Art Certificate”.

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