Opus XX Orchestra
Giving a voice to women’s works.
Sought after as conductor, vocal soloist and gambist, Vanessa Chartrand-Rodrigue formed the OpusXX Orchestra out of a passion for the fascinating and neglected repertoire of female composers across the centuries. Her experience in directing music both from its harmonic roots as a continuo player as well as its lyrical aspect as a singer give her a unique insight from the conductor’s podium. Vanessa has collaborated with renowned ensembles including Ensemble UnitedBerlin, Zafrann Ensemble, Mosaik Ensemble, Chroma Ensemble, Michaelis Consort, and performed at major contemporary music festivals such as MärzMusik, MIKROMUSIK Festival for Experimental music and sound art, ULTRASCHALL Festival, Documenta 14 and Duisburger Akzente.
Vanessa began her musical training at a young age on the cello and subsequently took up vocal studies, graduating with honours in Voice Performance from McGill University in Montreal. She went on to attended a Master’s degree in viola da gamba at the Université de Montréal before moving to Germany to further her operatic studies with KS Jeanne Piland at the Robert Schumann Hochschule. Her extensive operatic repertoire includes Dorabella, Hänsel, Medoro, Niklaus, Ciesca, Carmen, Lucienne, Hermia, Cherubino and Giulo Cesare. As a concert soloist she has sung Handel’s Messiah and Monteverdi’s Beatus Vir (Montreal, Canada), Mahler’s Das Himmlische Leben (Tonhalle Düsseldorf), Saint-Seans’ Christmas Oratorio (Giessen, Germany), Mozart’s Requiem (Tomar, Portugal) and Mendelssohn’s Sommernachtstraum (Deutsche Oper am Rhein). She frequently performs as a soloist with Berlin’s Solistenensemble Phoenix16, with whom she performs avant-garde and experimental vocal music.
Vanessa has worked as musical director and performer with the theatre ensemble kainkollektiv (winner of the Georg Tabori development prize in 2015), Beggar’s Opera Berlin and baroque ensemble The Dansant, which she directs from the viola da gamba. As a conductor, Vanessa’s operatic experience includes assistant conductor for Don Giovanni (Alltagsoper Berlin), Les Contes d’Hoffmann(Opera On Tap Berlin), assistant to Peter Leonard in the Berlin Opera Academy’s production of Carmen, and second principal conductor with Lyric Opera Berlin’s L’elixir d’Amore. Vanessa was recently awarded a scholarship from the Royal Philharmonic Society of London for their contemporary music conducting masterclass with Jessica Cottis.