Biography

Danae Bletsa is a greek-born composer and lyrical soprano. Being an active contemporary opera creator and an opera singer whose repertoire ranges from early to modern music, Danae is proving herself to be a significantly versatile artist committed to the creation of a bridge between the classical and the contemporary.

Having been admitted with scholarship and 1st prize at the University of Music Science and Art in Thessaloniki, Greece (professor: Georgios Kyriakakis), she obtained her Bachelor of Music in Composition at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam with Wim Henderickx and Richard Ayres. She studied orchestration with Theo Verbey and she attended master classes with internationally prominent composers, such as Fabio Nieder, Stefano Gervasoni, Misato Mochizuki, Tristan Murail and Brian Ferneyhough. Danae further pursued a Master of Music at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, specializing in Opera with Claron Mc Fadden as a vocal professor, additionally coached by stage director Javier López Piñón. She gained important impulses continuing her classical singing education with Ks. Elena Filipova in Vienna and enriched her musical vision at master classes with Dame Emma Kirkby, Margreet Honig, Cheryl Studer and Ks. Edda Moser.

Danae worked from a young age as a composer and producer of multidisciplinary pieces, with the 1st Biennale of Contemporary Art of Thessaloniki as a starting point. She composed her first short opera collaborating with Neuköllner Oper of Berlin and Yo-opera Festival (Utrechtse Stadsschouwburg). Danae’s first complete opera “One legatura to be plucked” was premiered in Amsterdam Composers’ Festival 2011, combining baroque and modern instruments in its orchestration. At a later edition of the festival she presented “Absinth”, a self-performed monodrama for soprano and “Aneme”, a ritualistic music theater piece composed especially for Orgelpark, Amsterdam. As a chamber music composer she composed “Carosello” for the Nieuw Ensemble Amsterdam as well as “Kynorodo” for the Hellenic Group of Contemporary Music, which was presented in Athens Concert Hall under the baton of Theodore Antoniou. She was an active member of the Atlas Academy multi-cultural compositional research at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam and she has appeared as a lecturer on Iannis Xenakis’ music, as well as on her own music (‘Cooking History, Consuming Art’: An Encounter in-between History, Musicology, and Performance Practice, 2016, Senate House, London).

Danae’s versatility as an opera singer qualifies her for performing both classical repertoire and contemporary scores that are often composed especially for her. After her education she was immediately accepted at the Vienna International Opera Academy (VIOA) for the first role of “Celia” in Haydn’s “La fedelta premiata” (conductor: Karolos Trikolidis). She recorded Dmitri Shostakovich’s Greek Songs to accompany the peer-reviewd article “War in Time, music in space” by Art. Ignatidou in Musicology Research. Having been an active interpreter of opera scores of contemporary composers in world premiere (Amsterdam Composers’ Festival, First Biennale of Contemporary Art in Thessaloniki), she premiered her own monodrama for soprano “Dandelion cupcakes” in Senate House London in 2016. She was further invited to become a member of the “Living Voices Ensemble” of Operadagen Rotterdam in 2017 and performed a series of portrait concerts. In Operadagen Festival 2017 she also sung and directed a sold-out world premiere of Wim Henderickx’s contemporary opera “Mantras” for soprano and electronics to great critical acclaim. After the success of “Mantras” in Rotterdam she was further invited to perform at the National Opera of Greece and be part of the Big Bang Festival tour in Belgium and France in autumn 2019 by Zonzo Compagnie.