Ille Saar

Ille Saar


A Nordic young dramatic soprano from Conservatory G. Verdi of Milan
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2018Verdi: La Forza del DestinoLeonora
2018Mascagni: Cavalleria RusticanaSantuzza
2018Verdi: La Forza del DestinoLeonora
2015Tchaikovsky: Eugene OneginTatyana
2015Leoncavallo: PagliacciNedda


Ille Saar (soprano, Estonia) comes from a family of musicians. She started to develop her voice as a choir singer under the famous conductor Paavo Järvi and with the Ellerhein choir, winning the Grammy Award 2004 and participating in a world tour. She graduated from Italian and French (BA, 2011) at Tallinn University and from Opera Studies (BA, 2015 with N. Kurem) in the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre.  She won various scholarships to improve her musical studies in Italy and was later selected to enter the prestigious Conservatory Giuseppe Verdi of Milano where she is about to receive an advanced degree (MA) in Vocal Studies.  She has studied vocal techniques and interpretation with well-known artists such as F. Patanè, R. Bruson, D. Uccello, M. Formichella, G. Banditelli, G. Ravazzi, C. Rubin, H. Gjerris, N. Shetler, K. von Binzer, K. Buhl Møller, M. Shaguch.
Frequently lauded for her powerful yet flexible voice and considered one the most promising Nordic dramatic sopranos of the young generation, she is an active singer in various recitals, concerts and performances of operatic selections in Estonia and in Italy.  Besides her innate musicality, she is a perfectionist in the Italian phrasing and pronunciation and has a keen interest in the history of Italian Opera. She has appeared many times at the Estonian National Radio, including singing Puccini and Catalani for the International Day of Music.
Ille is a recipient of various awards and grants, including National Opera’s Young Artist’s Award Naan Põld (2014), Erasmus scholarship at Conservatory of Milan G. Verdi (2015), Nomination as Most Promising Young Musician at Orvieto International Opera Competition (2015), Hans Teetlaus Award assigned by The Estonian National Culture Foundation (2015), Nordic Council of Ministries Scholaship "Nordopera" - audition training in Vilnius (2015), semi-finalist at “Pelizzoni” International Opera Competition (2017), Italian Foreign Ministry’s Study Grant at the Conservatory of Milan (2016 to 2018).
She first appeared at National Opera in 2013, with a small part in “Il matrimonio segreto” (D.Cimarosa), staged by G. Bongiovanni.  On her 2014 graduation she performed selections from Puccini's “La bohème” as Mimì, Tchaikovsky's “Eugene Onegin” as Tatyana and Leoncavallo's “Pagliacci” as Nedda. At Conservatory of Milan G. Verdi she has prepared several roles in stages with the Milan G. Verdi Symphony Orchestra, that include Puccini's title roles in “Tosca” and “Manon Lescaut”, and with I Pomeriggi Musicali Orchestra, singing Donna Anna and Donna Elvira in Mozart’s “Don Giovanni”.  Recently she has started performing as leading soprano in complete operas staged in Italy. She made her debut in Mascagni's “Cavalleria rusticana” as Santuzza in 2017 at Sissa Castle (Parma, Italy) and after being hailed for her powerful dramatic soprano voice she was called to sing the same role again in 2018 at Reggia di Colorno (Parma, Italy).  She debuted Verdi's Leonora di Vargàs from “La forza del destino” in 2018 at Teatro Astra  di San Donà (Venice, Italy).
Her roles include main soprano roles in Mascagni's “Cavalleria rusticana” (Santuzza), Verdi's “Il trovatore”, “La forza del destino”, “Un ballo in maschera” and “Aida”, Puccini's “Tosca”, “Manon Lescaut” and “La bohème” (Mimì), Bellini's “Norma” and Donizetti's “Anna Bolena”, Mozart's “Le nozze di figaro” (Contessa) and “Don Giovanni” (Donna Anna and Donna Elvira).
Among the highlights of her career so far, a special mention deserve the operatic debuts with Santuzza (2017) and Leonora (2018) in front of a demanding Italian audience, and a special concert held for the friends of Teatro La Scala of Milan for the 100th Anniversary of Estonia. Her future roles will include Leonora (Verdi’s “Il Trovatore”) and Aida (Verdi’s “Aida”) in Venice in 2019.

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CV & Repertoire

Musical Work Role Jump-in ready? Company Year
Verdi: La Forza del Destino Leonora 24 hours 2018
Mascagni: Cavalleria Rusticana Santuzza Immediately Parma OperArt 2018
Verdi: La Forza del Destino Leonora Nuovo Teatro Metropolitano Astra di San Donà (Venice) 2018
Tchaikovsky: Eugene Onegin Tatyana Pärnu Concert Hall 2015
Leoncavallo: Pagliacci Nedda Olustvere manor (Estonia) 2015


Estonian national opera young artist prize "Naan põld"
Estonian National Culture foundation Hans Teetlaus award