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Reigning diva to perform one-off show with NZSO

Glamour will sweep into the capital when Grammy Award-winning super diva Renée Fleming makes her debut with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (NZSO) in a one-off show on 12 September.

Fleming is a household name in the United States as the operatic voice of her generation. She was the first opera singer to perform the national anthem at the Super Bowl and sang at President Barack Obama’s first inauguration. She also performed on the balcony of Buckingham Palace for Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee concert in 2012.  In 2013, the four-time Grammy Award winning soprano was presented with the National Medal of Arts, America’s highest honour for individual artists, by President Obama.

2015A ReneeFlemming3Although best known for her compelling performances as some of opera’s greatest heroines, including Desdemona in Verdi’s Otello and Marschallin in Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier, Fleming is also at home with other musical genres. Her extraordinarily diverse career has included singing a duet of ‘Perfect Day’ with rock star Lou Reed and making a guest appearance on Sesame Street to teach children how to read. In 2010 she released an album of indie-rock and pop covers called Dark Hope, including songs by Muse and Leonard Cohen.

Fleming already has a New Zealand connection, having sung on the soundtracks to Sir Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King and The Adventures of Tintin.

In a review of Fleming’s performance in Dvořák’s Rusalka last year, Huffington Post opera critic Wilborn Hampton wrote:

There are few greater joys in opera than to hear Fleming sing…seemingly forever youthful and certainly forever beautiful, Fleming is still the reigning diva of the opera world, and her voice, gleaming and pure as crystal, is as captivating as ever.

2015A2 JamesJudd 330x307Fleming’s Wellington performance with the national orchestra will include a selection of songs and famous arias by Ravel, Canteloube, Richard Strauss, Mascagni and Puccini. Tickets for this once-in-a-lifetime show, conducted by much-loved NZSO Music Director Emeritus James Judd, are selling fast.

More information about Renée Fleming is available at

For further information or interviews, please contact:

Tania Guenter | Media & Communications Advisor
New Zealand Symphony Orchestra | Te Tira Pūoro o Aotearoa
P +64 4 801 2037 Ext. 722; M +64 275 745 294