Elza van den Heever

South African-born soprano Elza van den Heever is one of the world's most important representatives of the youthful dramatic genre.

In the 2023/24 season, Elza van den Heever will be heard in her showpiece role of the Empress (Frau ohne Schatten) under Christian Thielemann at the Vienna State Opera. At the MET, she will make her role debut as Elisabeth (Tannhäuser). Following her triumphant success as the Empress, she now returns to the Baden-Baden Easter Festival as Chrysothemis (Elektra) under Kirill Petrenko, which she will also sing in concert in Berlin. She also has a long-standing artistic partnership with Yannick Nézet-Séguin. In the new season, Elza van den Heever will sing Sieglinde (Walküre) under his direction with the Rotterdam Philharmonic in Rotterdam, Dortmund and Paris. She will return to the Opera de Paris as Julia in Spontini's La Vestale (Lydia Steier / Bertrand de Billy).

Elza van den Heever caused quite a stir recently with several important role debuts:  As Senta (Der fliegende Holländer) under Thomas Guggeis at the MET, as Salome in Paris (Simone Young / Lydia Steier), as Julia in La Vestale at the Theater an der Wien under the baton of Bertrand de Billy, and in each case under the baton of Yannick Nézet-Séguin as Wozzeck-Marie at the MET and as the Empress in Die Frau ohne Schatten in concert with the Rotterdam Philharmonic. 

Audiences in Vienna, New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Zurich, Munich, Hamburg, Frankfurt and Bordeaux celebrate the soprano for her outstanding performances. Her vocal capabilities allow her to sing a wide range of repertoire from Handel (Rodelinda), Mozart (Vitellia, Elettra, Donna Anna), Beethoven (Fidelio-Leonore), the bel canto repertoire (Norma, Anna Bolena, Maria Stuarda) to Verdi (Elisabetta, Desdemona, Ernani-Elvira, Trovatore-Leonora), Puccini (Suor Angelica, Giorgetta), Wagner (Elsa, Senta) and into the 20th century to Strauss (Empress, Chrysothemis). Century to Strauss (Empress, Chrysothemis), Berg (Wozzeck-Marie) and Britten (Ellen Orford). 

Elza van den Heever also cultivates the concert repertoire in addition to her opera engagements. Examples include Beethoven's 9th Symphony, Verdi's Messa da Requiem, Brahms' Ein deutsches Requiem, Wagner's Wesendonck Lieder, Bruckner's Te Deum, Gustav Mahler's 8th Symphony and Richard Strauss' Four Last Songs. In concert, she regularly collaborates with conductors such as Simone Young, Kirill Petrenko, Bertrand de Billy and Yannick Nézet-Séguin.

Elza van den Heever was an ensemble member of the Frankfurt Opera from 2008 to 2013, where she was able to build up her extensive repertoire. She made her brilliant European debut there with the Giorgetta in Puccini's Il trittico. Since then she has become one of the most sought-after sopranos of her generation.

Her interpretation of Giorgetta, conducted by Bertrand de Billy, has been released on CD by Capriccio. Her MET debut as Elisabetta (Maria Stuarda) is documented on DVD.