Albina Shagimuratova

“Albina Shagimuratova’s delicately-inflected incarnation of the title role was the most perfect coloratura performance I have ever heard at the Royal Albert Hall.”
The Independent


Albina Shagimuratova has been hailed by Opera News as “a phenomenon that must be heard to be believed” and by the New York Times for her “riveting Lucia.” She first came to international attention as the Gold Medal winner in the 2007 Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow. This was followed quickly by her European opera debut as the Queen of the Night at the Salzburg Festival under the baton of Riccardo Muti. She has come to be regarded as the world’s leading interpreter of the role, from Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, and has sung it with the Metropolitan Opera, Royal Opera House – Covent Garden, Teatro alla Scala (available on DVD), Wiener Staatsoper, Bayerische Staatsoper, Deutsche Oper Berlin, San Francisco Opera, Bolshoi Theater, Los Angeles Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Hamburg Staatsoper, and the Lucerne Festival, among others.

In the 2017/18 season, Albina returns to Houston Grand Opera for performances of La traviata (Violetta) and to the Lyric Opera of Chicago to perform Elvira (I puritani) conducted by Enrique Mazzola. European appearances include Rigoletto (Gilda) with Deutsche Oper Berlin, Semiramide (title role) at Bayerische Staatsoper and Die Zauberflöte (Queen of the Night) at the Salzburg Festival.

The Russian coloratura soprano is a graduate of the Houston Grand Opera Studio and has since appeared at Houston Grand Opera, Bolshoi Theatre, Metropolitan Opera, Hamburg State Opera, Vienna State Opera, Teatro alla Scala Milan, Deutsche Oper Berlin and Chicago Lyric Opera. She has worked with conductors such as Ivor Bolton, James Conlon, Nicola Luisotti, Zubin Mehta, Patrick Summers, Vladimir Jurowski, Daniel Harding, Robin Ticciati, Edward Gardner, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos and Riccardo Muti.

 To hear and see Albina as Lucia at La Scala follow this link.


Performance Schedule


Ariadne auf Naxos Zerbinetta
Die Zauberflöte Königin der Nacht
Don Giovanni Donna Anna
Don Pasquale Norina
Entführung aus dem Serail Konstanze
Falstaff Nanetta
I Capuleti e i Montecchi Gulietta
I puritani Elvira
Il Mondo della Luna Flaminia
Il Turco in Italia Fiorilla
L’elisir d’amore Adina
La fille du régiment Marie
La Sonnambula Amina
Lucia di Lammermoor title role
Lyudmila and Ruslan Lyudmila
Rigoletto Gilda
Semiramide title role
Golden Cockerel Queen of Shemakhana
Traviata Violetta / Tsars Bride Marfa
Norma title role
Anna Bolena title role
Maria Stuarda title role


  • 04 Feb 18 Bellini I puritani
    Lyric Opera of Chicago
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    “The singer’s easy, limpid phrasing, bright sound and expressive use of ornamentation made Elvira’s plight very touching.”
    John von Rhein, Chicago Tribune 

  • 21 Oct 17 Verdi La traviata
    Houston Grand Opera
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    “Her first act showpieces were executed with authority. She demonstrated a controlled, vocally expressive legato in the poignant Ah, fors e lui.  Her Sempre libera demonstrated the command of coloratura fireworks in that has made her Queen of the Night in Mozart’s “Magic Flute” a signature role.”
    Opera Warhorses


    “And so Shagimuratova carried the production once again. Using the slanted stage as a natural amplifier, Shagimuratova’s voice rose above the audience. She wasn’t afraid to alter her sound by pressing against the floor, or against the chest of Dimitri Pittas (who co-stars as Violetta’s courter, Alfredo). Doing so angled and often muted her sound, but she did so deliberately to serve the story.”

    “Shagimuratova expressed her character’s perilous societal standing with a blend of vocal, facial and bodily expression.”
    Wei-Huan Chen, Houston Chronicle

    “There was no greater star in this production than soprano extraordinaire Albina Shagimuratova … Her first act aria, in which she debates between her pleasurable and undemanding life in the city and the tribulations of her love for Alfredo was pure, sweet and potent.”
    Joseph Campana, Culture Map Houston

  • 26 Jun 17 Mozart Mitridate, re di Ponto
    Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
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    “Albina Shagimuratova, all too rare a visitor to these shores, rose above the indignities and sang with a beauty that never palled even at volume. The Russian soprano’s grace notes in Aspasia’s second-act showpiece, “Nel grave tormento”, were as sweetly centred and powerful as her sustained lines elsewhere.”
    Mark Valencia,

    “Albina Shagimuratova launches herself at some of the most daunting arias — high, low, everything in between — with exciting abandon.”
    Neil Fischer, The Times

    “A honey toned Albina Shagimuratova full of anguish and melancholy…”
    Anthony Evans, Planet Hugill

  • 29 Apr 17 Mozart The Abduction from the Seraglio
    Houston Grand Opera
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    “Shagimuratova brought such gleam, agility and impact to the blockbuster aria “Martern aller Arten” that it showcased not only her vocal heft, but Konstanze’s indomitable resolve. Shagimuratova’s finesse enabled her to savor the soulful lyricism of “Traurigkeit” — abeted by conductor Thomas Rösner, who made room for the vocal line and the orchestra’s weighty punctuation to register equally.”
    Steven Brown for Texas Classical Review

  • 17 Mar 15 Donizetti Lucia di Lammermoor
    Metropolitan Opera
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    “Shagimuratova, singing in only her second role at the Met, hits every note squarely with ringing brilliance, and with only a solo flute for accompaniment, exquisitely played by Stefan Ragnar Hoskuldsson, evokes all the pathos of a deranged mind struggling with an ill-fated love.”
    William Hampton, The Huffington Post

    “…the Russian soprano Albina Shagimuratova reached Lucia’s highest notes with crystalline ease.”
    Zachary Woolfe, The New York Times

  • 14 Aug 14 Britten War Requiem
    Usher Hall
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    “Albina Shagimuratova thrills as the voice of the angel. Magnificent.”
    Gordon Parsons for the Morning Star

    “A full-strength Festival Chorus sang the Latin text of the Mass, combining seamlessly with Shagimuratova’s golden soprano solos in Dies Ira and the Sanctus.”
    Iain Gilmour for 

  • 18 Aug 14 Rachmaninov The Bells
    BBC Proms
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    “It helped that he had three pitch-perfect soloists in Stuart Skelton, Albina Shagimuratova and Mikhail Petrenko (…) Shagimuratova plangently mingled rapture with disquiet in the “Mellow Wedding Bells” movement.”
    Edward Seckerson for The Arts Desk

  • 18 Mar 14 Donizetti Lucia di Lammermoor
    LA Opera
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    “a dominant force, first among a cast of equals, as she reined in her power to skillfully delineate Lucia’s increasing isolation and mental decline, seeming as
    fresh vocally in her climactic 16-minute mad scene as she was at the beginning of the opera. Perhaps she could have gone on for another virtuosic quarter-hour.
    She earned the thunderous ovation she got at its end.”

    LA Times

    “an unambiguous triumph… In this most lustrous of the coloratura diva roles, Shagimuratova was a phenomenon, handling the part’s serene legato passages effortlessly, while dashing off the coloratura trills and cadenzas with seeming perfection.”

    “Shagimuiratova provided a show by herself. (…) as Lucia, she negotiated Donizetti’s hire-wire somersaults with ease and knocked everyone’s socks off. It’s a gorgeous voice, opulent and bejeweled, with a surprising volume and penetration for all its basic delicacy.”
    The OC Register

  • 01 Feb 14 Donizetti Lucia di Lammermoor
    Teatro alla Scala
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    “Shagimuratova performs with expressive virtuosity and intense involvement”

    “Shagimuratova esegue con virtuosismo espressivo, e densità di partecipazione”
    Margherita Rubino for Il Secolo XIX

  • 17 Apr 13 Mozart Die Zauberflöte
    Royal Opera House Covent Garden
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    “Albina Shagimuratova’s show-stealing Queen of the Night is electrifyingly accurate”
    Tim Ashley for The Guardian 

    “Brindley Sherratt’s Sarastro is one of the best this production has seen. […] Likewise with Albina Shagimuratova’s Queen of Night: every note is luminescent, star-bright and perfectly placed in the constellation.”
    Hilary Finch for The Times 

    “Possessed of a large voice with laser like attack, she cuts a formidable vocal figure. She was also an imposing presence on stage.”
    Sebastian Petit for Opera Britannia 

    “But the highest accolades go to Albina Shagimuratova as the Queen of the Night […] she has real presence;  this was an exceptional performance. ‘Der Hölle Rache’ was a revelation combining sumptuousness, subtlety and accuracy in the execution of every note, and demonstrating impeccable phrasing.”
    Sam Smith for Music OMH 

    “The cast is exceptional:  […] Albina Shagimuratova’s lightweight but secure Queen of the Night”
    Simon Thomas for What’s on stage 

    “Albina Shagimuratova, brings a magnificent stridency to that role. She only has two real arias in the opera but both are absolute raging show-stoppers, and Shagimuratova delivers them impeccably. I doubt that I have ever heard such a pure, crystal-shattering tone. With such a cast, McVicar’s Flute really is Magic.”
    William Hartston for the Express 

    “Albina Shagimuratova brought red-blooded force to her precisely-pitched coloratura passages.”
    Mark Valencia for What’s on stage 

    “Albina Shagimuratova, in her (house) debut, was a sparking Queen of the Night. She nailed all the coloratura and was supported by Jones in a rather large way, no small feat. Her second, more famous, aria “Der Hölle Roche” was excellent”
    Michael Migliore for Musical Criticism 

  • 27 Feb 13 Verdi Rigoletto
    Lyric Opera of Chicago
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    “And in Albina Shagimuratova, the superb Russian soprano who was making her Lyric debut as Gilda, the company has found a shining star indeed. She walked away with the show.

    Gilda is, of course, one of the great coloratura soprano roles in Italian opera, and Shagimuratova fulfilled its every requirement thrillingly. She traced the florid phrases of “Caro nome” with meltingly expressive phrasing, ample colorings and a clear, shining, beautiful sound that carried easily over the orchestra. Where full-bodied lyricism was needed, notably in Gilda’s two duets with her father, her singing went straight to the heart.

    Indeed, Gilda’s dying fade to a hushed pianissimo held the audience at rapt attention at the very end. Not for nothing did the soprano receive a rapturous standing ovation on opening night. Get used to the name; you can be sure Lyric will be inviting her back.”
    John von Rhein for Chicago Tribune 

    “Russian soprano Albina Shagimuratova, was utterly luminous as Rigoletto’s innocent, teenage daughter, Gilda. […] A young soprano whose career is taking her to the major American and European operas houses, Shagimuratova was a thrilling Gilda. Her soprano is clear and pure, and in the dulcet aria “Caro nome,” her phrases blossomed and melted away like gentle caresses. She was every inch the innocent girl basking in the glow of her first real romance.”
    Wynne Delacoma for Chicago Sun Times

  • 01 Feb 12 La Traviata, February 2012
    Houston Grand Opera
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    “Coming up through the ranks of HGO’s studio program, soprano Albina Shagimuratova, like mezzo Joyce DiDonato, is a success story and house favorite. A natural coloratura, she can blaze through signature roles like Mozart’s treacherously thrilling Queen of the Night in Magic Flute or early Verdi’s warbler Gilda in Rigoletto. She can toss off high Fs with flawless technique, silkily maneuvering through rollercoaster roulades as if skiing blindfolded. There’s no denying the beauty of her voice”

    D.L. Grooverfor Houston Press, February 2012

    “Friday night at Houston Grand Opera the unforgettable voice belonged to Russian soprano Albina Shagimuratova as Violetta Valéry. Program notes describe her as “today’s reigning Queen of the Night” in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte. She certainly reigned on the Wortham stage, Mozart or not, winning a heady standing ovation at the curtain call. If you saw her last year in HGO’s Lucia di Lammermoor, you know the experience. Shagimuratova’s Verdi, however, is just as thrilling as her Donizetti, perhaps even more.Shagimuratova changes voice and character as necessary to the action unfolding in each act, from a party gal at the beginning to a vulnerable wisp of half-dead beauty at the end.”

    Theodore Bale for Houston Culture Map, February 2012

  • 01 Jun 12 Magic Flute, June 2012
    San Francisco Opera
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    “The audience favorite, though, was Russian soprano Albina Shagimuratova, in a bravura company debut as the Queen of the Night. She did well in her Act 1 aria, then brought down the house with a dazzling, pinpoint delivery of the Act 2 showpiece.”

    Joshua Kosman for San Francisco Chronicle, June 2012

    “Shagimuratova is simply breathtaking. Forceful and vehement in her lower range, she is remarkably, strong, focused, and spot on as she ascends to a high F above high C. She may not sound vengeful in the stratosphere, but she produces the Queen’s highest notes with a round, glowing brilliance you will be lucky to experience again in your lifetime. You absolutely must hear her.”

    Jason Victor Serinus for San Francisco Classical Voice, June 2012

  • 01 Sep 12 Rigoletto, September 2012
    San Francisco Opera
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    “We were fortunate to have so vocally accomplished a Gilda as Shagimuratova. … Gifted with a voice of tremendous size and power, she exhibited considerable control of it, at times tapering to a lovely pianissimo that drew me forward in my chair to hear the secure, pretty tone.”

    Jeffery S McMillan for Bachtrack,September 2012

    “But Shagimuratova, who sang a remarkable Queen of the Night in “The Magic Flute” earlier this year, was my favorite. She projects spectacularly, as few singers can. Her bright, rich voice filled the huge War Memorial in a seemingly effortless performance; she even sang her big, challenging aria “Caro nome” reclining on her back. “When you’ve got it, flaunt it,” said the gesture.”

    Janos Gereben for San Francisco Examiner, September 2012

    “Saturday’s Gilda, Russian soprano Albina Shagimuratova, took a more traditional approach, delivering the score’s coloratura flights with spotless precision and lustrous tonal beauty.”

    Joshua Kosman for San francisco Gate, September 2012


For a film about Albina, please click this link