Biography

Riccardo Angelo Strano, controtenore

The Italian countertenor Riccardo Angelo Strano made his opera debut in 2009 singing the role of Nerone in the Händel’s Agrippina at Koninklijke Schouwburg (The Hague, Holland) and at L. Pavarotti Theater (Moderna, Italy).

Recent role debut highlights include Apollo in Parnasso in Festa at the Händel Festspiele in Halle with the Lautten Comagney Baroque Orchestra (Germany, 2018); Nerone in Monteverdi’s L’Incoronazione di Poppea at Theater Aachen (Germany – 2017/2018); Lo Scriba in A. Draghi’s oratorio Il Terremoto, at the Chapelle Royale of Versailles, Chapelle Corneille of Rouen and the Sablé Baroque Festival (France, 2018) with Le Poème Harmonique (Vincent Dumestre, conductor); Il Giovane/Voce Lontana in S. Sciarrino’s Superflumina at Teatro Massimo in Palermo (Italy, 2017); Mustafà / Vendetta in J. Melani’s Il Girello, with the Auser Musici baroque orchestra (Carlo Ipata, conductor) at Teatro Verdi in Pisa (Italy, 2017); Vivaldi’s Stabat Mater at the National Forum of Music in Wroclaw with the Wroclaw Baroque Orchestra (Jaroslaw Thiel, conductor – Poland, 2016); Ruggiero in Händel’s Alcina (2016), and Medoro in Händel’s Orlando (Italy, 2014/2015) both for Luglio Musicale Trapanese; the Swan in Orff’s Carmina Burana at Teatro Massimo “V. Bellini” in Catania (Italy, 2015); Nireno in Händel’s Giulio Cesare in Egitto at Teatro Regio in Turin (Alessandro de Marchi, conductor – Italy, 2014); Bacco/Tirsi in Steffani’s Baccanali (2016), Acheloo in Steffani’s La lotta d’Ercole con Acheloo (2014) and Orfeo in Glück’s Orfeo e Euridice (2014), all three roles played at Martina Franca’s Valle d’Itria Festival (Italy); the Spirit in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas at Teatro dell ‘Opera in Rome (Italy, 2013); L’ Innocente in Cilea’s L ‘Arlesiana for the Pergolesi-Spontini Festival at Teatro G.B. Pergolesi in Jesi (Italy, 2013); Palemone in Porpora’s Gli Orti Esperidi for Early Music Center Pietà de ‘Turchini in Naples (Italy, 2013).

His interest in historically informed performance practice led him to work with directors specialized in baroque gesture, such as Sigrid T’Hooft and Benjamin Lazar.

He has also performed all over the world in concerts and solo recitals for several festivals such as Chateau de Versailles Festival with Les Nouveaux Caractères (Sébastien d’Hérin,  conductor – France, 2016) and with Cantar Lontano baroque ensemble (Marco Mencoboni, conductor – June 2018);  Countertenors from the World Festival in La Habana promoted by Leo Brower, where he also conducted a masterclass and was a jury member at the Secundo Certamen Mundial de Contratenores (Cuba, 2016) also presenting the recital Héroes y Amantes; Martes de Musica y Opera Festival at Degollado Theater in Guadalajara (Mexico, 2015) with the Baroque Kings recital; Festival der Jungen Stimmen (Switzerland, 2014) which allowed him to make his debut at the Tonhalle in Zurich and at the Zentrum Paul Klee in Bern; Copenhagen Renaissance Music Festival (Denmark, 2013); Val di Noto International Festival Magie Barocche (Italy, 2017); Oude Kerk Festival in Amsterdam (Holland, 2010); Dante 2021 Festival where he performed Dallapiccola’s Sicut Umbra (Italy,2012).

In addition, the breadth of his sacred repertoire extends to compositions such as Rossini Stabat Mater (soprano II),which he performed in Florence in 2012, invited by the L. Cherubini Conservatory of Music.

In 2015 he began a collaboration, as a solo singer, with the famous contemporary dance company “Compagnia Zappalà Danza” (Roberto Zappalà, choreographer) with which he debuted two shows: La Nona, dal caos il corpo at Teatro Massimo V. Bellini in Catania (Italy, 2015), revived at the A. Ponchielli Theatre in Cremona (Italy, 2016), at Teatro Comunale in Bologna (Italy, 2017), at Shaanxi Grand Opera Theater in Xi’an (China, 2017), and at LAC Theater in Lugano (Switzerland, 2018); and Liederduett, with the pianist Luca Ballerini, a solo recital of Schubert’s lieder with contemporary ballet choreography.

He recently received, in 2018, a “Career Acheivement Award” from the Centro Studi Santa Giacinta Marescotti (Vignanello, Italy), where he previsiously had won an Honorary Distinction at the 7th International Baroque Competition Principe F.M. Ruspoli in 2015.

Among his other prizes obtained: Second prize at the 4th International Opera Singing Competition “Premio Etta  e Paolo Limiti” (Milan, Italy – 2018); Second prize at the 9th International Baroque Competition F. Provenzale (Naples, Italy –  2012); Third prize at 18th International Opera Competition, Città di Alcamo (Alcamo, Italy – 2015); and Special Prize at the Third International Early Music Competition Canticum Gaudium (Poznan, Poland – 2015).

In 2016 Toccata Classics (London) released in a world premiere recording his first solo CD about Nicola Fago solo voice Neapolitan baroque cantatas and in 2018 it published the second edition as well.

Moreover, Dynamic (Italy) released in 2017 Steffani’s opera Baccanali, where he played the title-roles of Bacco/Tirsi, recorded live in 2016 at the 42nd Valle d’Itria Festival and in 2015 the opera L‘Arlesiana by F. Cilea, where he sang the role of L’Innocente (live recording at Pergolesi-Spontini Festival 2013 at Jesi Opera House in Italy).

In 2018 Farelive (Italy) released a new discographic project called #C.I.P. , Counter Irish Project, a solo recital of traditional Irish folk song, for solo voice and classic guitar, arranged for this recording.

His upcoming engagements include: Scriba in Draghi’s oratorio Il Terremoto at Sevilla Early Music Festival (Spain, March 2019) with Le Poème Harmonique (Vincent Dumestre, conductor), the role of Nireno in Händel’s Giulio Cesare at Dresden Semperoper (Germany, April 2019) and a recording of the third volume of Fago’s Neapolitan baroque cantatas (January 2018).