Internationally acclaimed soprano Adrianne Pieczonka will be the inaugural vocal chair and head of the vocal department at the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. The announcement was made Jan. 8 via press release.
In her new role, Pieczonka will conduct monthly masterclasses and oversee the Glenn Gould School’s voice and opera programs. This includes selecting the conductors, directors and casts for the department's two annual opera productions and the Glenn Gould School's annual vocal showcase, as well as choosing visiting masterclass artists.
"Great artists are developed through the ongoing mentorship and guidance of outstanding teachers," says Peter Simon, president and CEO of the Royal Conservatory of Music, noting that Pieczonka's stature as "one of the world’s preeminent operatic sopranos" will be an undeniable asset to the Glenn Gould School.
Pieczonka, who performs regularly at the Vienna State Opera, the Metropolitan Opera, and the Royal Opera House, says she's excited to assume this new role at the Glenn Gould School beginning in May. “For the past several years, I have given annual masterclasses for the singers of its artist diploma program; I look forward to being involved with all other aspects of the voice department. Drawing on my experience from many years onstage, I hope to inspire and support young artists as they prepare themselves for careers as professional singers.”
The Glenn Gould School is the Royal Conservatory of Music's professional training program, offering programs at the undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate levels.
Winner of a Juno Award in 2011 for Puccini on the Orfeo label, Pieczonka aims to continue her activities as a performing artist while serving as the Glenn Gould School's vocal chair.
In 2012, CBC interviewed her about her performance of the title role in Puccini's Tosca at the Canadian Opera Company. She talked about maintaining vocal health, the pleasure of playing a strong woman onstage, and the behind-the-scenes work of being an opera singer:
Hand-selected opera gems by the most celebrated dramatic tenor in the world, Ben Heppner. The most familiar arias from the most-loved operas of all time along with opera overtures, intermezzi and choruses. Performances combine the great voices of the 20th century with today's rising stars!