An Injured Deborah Voigt Cancels One Weekend Appearance But Makes Another

Classic Arts News   An Injured Deborah Voigt Cancels One Weekend Appearance But Makes Another
 
Due to a back injury sustained late last week in her New York apartment, Deborah Voigt was forced to withdraw from a high-profile appearance at Philadelphia's Academy Ball this past weekend.

The soprano was slated to be one of the headline soloists at the gala concert/dinner/ball presented Saturday night (January 27) by the Philadelphia Orchestra to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the city's Academy of Music. At the event — which drew an unusual amount of media attention due to the presence of the Prince of Wales and his wife — Voigt was replaced by Angela M. Brown, a dramatic soprano whose career has been on a rapid rise ever since her Metropolitan Opera debut in the role of Aida was reviewed on page A1 of The New York Times.

Brown, tenors Ben Heppner and Dongwon Shin, 1970s rock icon Rod Stewart, stage and screen star John Lithgow, and (as host) former television news anchor Tom Brokaw joined the Philadelphia Orchestra and Philadelphia Singers Chorale for a program of operatic, orchestral, Broadway and rock favorites.

Happily, Voigt was present for last night's second annual Opera News Awards dinner, at which she was one of the five honorees. (The others were Heppner, bass Ren_ Pape, longtime Metropolitan Opera music director James Levine, and retired soprano/current stage director Renata Scotto.) A spokesperson for Voigt told PlaybillArts that she felt able to attend because of the less strenuous nature of the event — she herself did not have to sing, and the travel involved was only a brief taxi trip. (The only featured guest who was unable to appear was Marilyn Horne, who has been battling health problems for about a year; baritone Thomas Hampson, the event's co-host, filled in for Horne in presenting Levine's award.)

Voigt is scheduled to be the featured soloist for this week's Boston Symphony subscription concerts under Levine: At three performances February 1-3 (plus an open rehearsal on January 31), she is to sing Beethoven's concert aria Ah! perfido and Schoenberg's monodrama Erwartung, on a program which also includes Beethoven's Coriolan Overture and Symphony No. 8.

Her spokesperson said yesterday afternoon that "these concerts in Boston are very important to her" and that she fully expects to be there for all rehearsals and performances.


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