The 2011 Winner of Placido Domingo’s Operalia World Competition, South African Pretty Yende is one of the fastest rising sopranos. Winner of several other prestigious international competitions such as the Belvedere International competition, Pretty Yende studied in South Africa before completing her training at the Accademia Teatro La Scala, Milan.
Her European opera debuts include the role of La musica in Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo in Mantua, Micaela in Bizet’s Carmen at the Latvian National Opera House, Clara Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess at Deutsche Oper Berlin and Den Norske Opera & Ballet.
In 2010 she gave a much acclaimed debut at Teatro LaScala as Berenice in Rossini’s L’occasione fa il Ladro. She then appeared as Elvira in Italiana in Algeri conducted by Antonello Allemandi and Barbarina in the Strehler Production of Le Nozze di Figaro conducted by Andrea Battistoni.
Her concert repertoire includes Mozart ‘s Requiem, Missa Solemnis Solemn Vespers, Brahms’s Ein Deutsches Requiem, Vivaldi Magnificant, Faure Requiem, Beethoven’s Mass in C, 9th Symphony as well as Richard Strauss’s Four Last Songs.
She was voted one of South Africa’s most successful women as well as South Africa Cosmopolitan’s Fun and Fearless female and since her arrival in Italy, she has been awarded the Prize La Siola D’oro. She has worked with Virginia Davids, Angelo Gobbato, Kamal Khan in South Africa and Mirella Freni, Lucianna Serra, Renato Bruson, Luigi Alva at the Accademia Teatro La Scala, she has taken masterclasses with Renee Fleming, Raina Kabaivanska, Montseraat Caballe. She currently studies with Mariella Devia.