“Barbara Kozelj revealed the art of singing that spoke straight to the heart.”
– De Telegraaf
Slovenian mezzosoprano Barbara Kozelj has established herself as a charismatic and versatile soloist and musician. Her performances have brought her to the leading international stages and continue to captivate audiences around the world.
Following her debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in 2013 her career has taken flight. A Carnegie Hall debut the year after in St. Matthew Passion with Iván Fischer received critical acclaim, describing her voice as “deep and dark” and “enchanting”. In her appearance as Penelope in Monteverdi’s Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria at the Barbican hall in London with the Academy of Ancient Music and Richard Egarr the press praised her for “a beautifully calm demeanour, combined with a deep expressivity in the way she sang Monteverdi”.
Barbara has made her BBC Proms debut as the alto soloist in Mozart’s Requiem in 2016 with Budapest Festival Orchestra. She is in great demand on the concert stage and has distinguished herself in various leading opera roles at opera houses in Leipzig, Amsterdam, Essen en Bonn. Her performances have been described by the press as “piercingly beautiful”, “breathtaking”, “deeply expressive” and her voice “gleaming, with a velvety legato”. she aslo made a succesful debut as Brangäne at Oper Leipzig which has opened many doors for her into this repertoire.
Highlights this season and beyond include Asko|Schönberg Ensemble Bettison The light of lesser days;
Mahler Das Lied von der Erde with Camerata RCO (members of the Royal Concertegbouw orchestra) at the Flanders Festival Ghent; Wagner Wesendonk Lieder, Respighi Il tramonto and Mozart Requiem
with the Residentie Orkest; Beethoven Symphony No 9 with the Athens State Orchestra; a revival of Tristan und Isolde and her role debut as Magdelone Nielsen Maskarade for Oper Leipzig; Giovanni Battista Ferrandini Il pianto di Maria and Handel Dixit Dominus with Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra; a world premiere for Alba Rosa Viva! festival at the Muziekgebouw Amsterdam; a recital with organist Tomaž Sevšek at the Liszt Academy Budapest and Rossini Petite messe solenelle and Mozart Requiem with Ensemble Vocal de Lausanne for the Aix-en-Provence Festival de Pâques.
She has worked with conductors Jaap van Zweden, Gennady Rozdestvensky, Neeme Järvi, Jun Märkl, Paul McCreesh, Kenneth Montgomery, Stefan Soltesz, Reinbert de Leeuw, Antony Hermus, Giordano Bellincampi. She has performed with The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightement, Gabrieli Consort and Players, Academy of Ancienty Music, St.Luke’s Orchestra, Slovenian Philharmonic and most Dutch orchestras.
Barbara has a strong affinity with Lieder giving recitals with Julius Drake, Thomas Beijer and Phyllis Ferwerda and composers of this time are writing especially for her.