The young Russian soprano Irina Oknina will sing the title roles in "Manon Lescaut" and "Rusalka", as well as Leonora in "Il trovatore" at the Bonn Opera House, during the 2011/12 season. Also the title role in "Aida" in Regensburg, during the 2012/13 season.
In April 2011 Vienna Music Magazine, "Der neue Merker", wrote about her debut as Rusalka: "And then there's the marvellous voice of exceptional actress Irina Oknina. Whether as Violetta, Mimi or Katya, she brings her audience to tears. ...., A coming world star at the Opera Bonn, a singer, you would have to experience in various roles, if you want to know what opera really means."
The concert "Big Voices of Tomorrow" with the Russian National Orchestra conducted by Mstislav Rostropovich at Frankfurt's Alte Oper, provided Irina Oknina with an occasion that led to her engagement as a company member of the Bonn Opera. Since then she has been singing mostly the leading roles from the Italian repertoire, such as Desdemona, Amelia in "Un ballo in maschera" and Adriana Lecouvreur, but also Tatjana in "Yevgeny Onegin", Lisa in "Pikovaya dama" and the title role in "Káta Kabanová". She has further demonstrated her musical versatility in Bonn, singing Contessa in "Le nozze di Figaro" and Donna Anna. Irina Oknina enjoyed a special success as Violetta in "La Traviata", a role she has frequently sung at the Leipzig Opera. At Essen's Aalto Theater she has been engaged as Mimi.
After first studying to be a choral conductor, Irina Oknina changed direction, studying voice and acting at Moscow's University of Arts from 1994-99. First engagements took her to the Na Basmannoy Theatre in Moscow and the Galina Vischnevskaja Opera Center, where she completed her education taking master classes with Mstislav Rostropovich, Zubin Mehta and Ernst Haefliger.
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