Ille Saar

Ille Saar


An Estonian soprano from Conservatory of Giuseppe Verdi of Milan
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2019Verdi: Il TrovatoreLeonora
2019Lieder RecitalSoprano
2019Mozart: Le Nozze Di FigaroContessa D'almaviva
2018Mascagni: Cavalleria RusticanaSantuzza
2018Verdi: La Forza del DestinoLeonora
2017Mascagni: Cavalleria RusticanaSantuzza
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, from Opera Studies (BA, 2015 with N. Kurem) in the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre and from Vocal Arts (MA, 2019 with D. Uccello) at the prestigious Conservatory Giuseppe Verdi of Milan.
She has studied vocal techniques and interpretation with well-known artists such as F. Patanè, R. Bruson (Bruson Academy in Busseto, Italy), H. Keckeis (Mozarteum University of Salzburg), G. Ravazzi, H. Gjerris, N. Shetler, K. von Binzer, K. Buhl Moller, M. Shaguch.
Frequently lauded for her powerful yet flexible voice capable of adapting to very different repertoire, she is considered one the most promising Nordic sopranos of the young generation. Besides theatre roles, thanks to her international musical studies, she is often performing in recitals and concerts singing a wide repertoire (from Italian bel canto arias to romantic opera and chamber music to the 20th century modern repertoire) in almost every European language.  She is a perfectionist in the Italian phrasing and pronunciation and has a keen interest in the history of Italian Opera, which was also the subject of her Bachelor thesis. She has appeared many times at the Estonian National Radio, including a concert broadcast in which she performed arias by Puccini and Catalani for the International Day of Music 2014.
Ille is recipient of various 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), semi-finalist at “Pelizzoni” International Opera Competition (2017), Italian Foreign Ministry’s Study Grant at Conservatory of Milan (2016 to 2018).
She first appeared at Estonian 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 Tatiana 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 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 Elvira).
Among the highlights of her career as soprano both at theatres and concert venues, to be mentioned are the operatic performances with Santuzza and Leonora in front of a demanding Italian audience, and highly acclaimed concerts such as the one held for the opera friends of Teatro La Scala of Milan for the 100th Anniversary of Estonia. In April 2019 she debuted the role of Contessa (Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro”) at the Estonian National Opera under Arvo Volmer, directed by Marco Gandini.

In June 2019 she had the honour to sing at a concert dedicated to the Italian National Day organized by the Italian Embassy of Estonia. In June 2019 she also appeared in an Italian opera recital “Casta diva” in an exquisite villa of Keila-Joa near her hometown Tallinn and sang the aria of Santuzza at her Conservatoire graduation at Suure-Jaani Music Festival 2019, accompanied by the Symphony Orchestra of the Estonian Music and Theatre Academy under Andres Kaljuste. In July 2019 she was selected to participate in the final phase of the International Lyric Competition Portofino. Currently she is preparing her next debut as Mimì in Puccini’s La bohème, Puccini’s Tosca and Verdi’s Il trovatore.

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CV & Repertoire

Musical Work Role Jump-in ready? Company Year
Verdi: Il Trovatore Leonora No 2019
Lieder Recital Soprano Milan Conservatory 2019
Mozart: Le Nozze Di Figaro Contessa D'almaviva Immediately Estonian National Opera 2019
Mascagni: Cavalleria Rusticana Santuzza Immediately Parma OperArt 2018
Verdi: La Forza del Destino Leonora 24 hours Nuovo Teatro Metropolitano Astra di San Donà (Venice) 2018


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