Opera China Magazine on the OfP Academy 2023

11th July 2023

重回一个重生的巴黎 : 引领一场文化运动

« Each of the singers not only sang well but also had captivating stories. Several years have passed since Forooz Razavi, a talented Wagnerian soprano from Iran, last visited her homeland. During the team building seminar, Nikita Volkov from Russia spoke about his pursuit of inner peace…They are young in age but have extraordinary experiences, and with their artistic sensitivity and unrestrained emotions, they are experiencing it all. »
« When she talked about the singers selected this year, Julia Lagahuzère, co-founder and general director of Opera for Peace, became very excited. I asked her, “You have expectations for them, but it has already been so difficult for them just to survive, hasn’t it? Are they ready to contribute to society and peace?” She said, “… I hope these young people can all become leaders, not just machines for making sounds. They need to realize that they have power and the ability to communicate with the public so that they can truly be heard. »
« Opera for Peace stands as an exception. In contrast to many opera organizations in the Western world, this team stands out for its active participation of Asians. With this diverse team backing her up, Julia is empowered to achieve extraordinary feats.»
« Sumi Jo, the celebrated Korean coloratura soprano, concluded the (Eiffel Tower) performance with an uplifting rendition of “Nella Fantasia”, dedicating her performance to the aspirations and ambitions of the next generation. A few days before the performance, I observed a masterclass taught by Sumi Jo, organized by Opera for Peace. (…) she not only enthusiastically participated in various activities but also did not take a penny. She encouraged each singer to “believe in yourself; you will definitely have a future”. Her every move was exemplary: she spared no effort in giving her time, turning a scheduled two-hour class into four hours. »
« I asked Julia, “Is this ultimately a project or a system?” She said, “It is a cultural movement”. Ah! A cultural movement starting from Paris! It has been a long time since Paris led a cultural movement! »