Maria Temesi

Liszt Award-winning opera singer, master vocal coach and opera ambassador of the Hungarian State Opera (1981-2022). Professor at the University of Szeged Béla Bartók Faculty of Arts (1997-2023), Head of the Department for Voice in Szeged for 25 years. In 1998 she founded the International József Simándy Singing Competition in her hometown. She is also the general and art director of the competition. Her foundation, the HAZÁM, HAZÁM Arts and Education Foundation, has been a supporter of young opera singer talents for ten years.

In addition to her wide-ranging career, she is still actively singing in Florida (2019), Shanghai (2019), London (2021), Bayreuth (2022), Helsinki (2022), Heraklion (2022), Budapest (2023), Szeged (2023). She is an invited jury member of international singing competitions and masterclass lecturer at universities in Europe, the USA, Italy, and China.

Her name is recorded in “Hungarian and International Who’s Who?” (1994), the English “Who is who?” (1991), the Berlin “Opernlexikon” (1989), the Munich “Grosses Sängerlexikon” (1997). She has received numerous artistic and state awards for her artistic and teaching activities. In 2023 she was awarded the title of Knight of Hungarian Culture.

She graduated as a singing and piano teacher in Szeged (1979), then graduated with honours from the Master of Opera and Teaching at the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music in Budapest (1981). She studied singing and oratorio at the Master Courses of the Weimar Musikhochschule and the Mozarteum in Salzburg (1977-1980). Her academic degrees are Habilitated Master (2001) and DLA – Doctor of Liberal Arts (2003).

As a beginner, she won two world competitions: the SBRAC, International Singing Competition for Champions in Rio de Janeiro (1981) and the Luciano Pavarotti International Singing Competition in Philadelphia (1985).

She made her debut at the Hungarian State Opera House with the role of Elsa (Wagner: Lohengrin) (1982). She has sung the leading female roles of Mozart, Verdi, Puccini, Wagner, R. Strauss and contemporary operas in Hungary and on major opera and concert stages abroad: in Dresden, Berlin, Prague, Hamburg, Cologne, Frankfurt, Munich, Stuttgart, Mannheim, Milan (RAI), Venice, Parma, Montevideo, Ankara, Istanbul, Cairo, Zagreb, Sofia, Lisbon, London, Liverpool, Birmingham, Strasbourg, Toulouse, New York (Manhattan TV), Philadelphia.

In addition to her career as an opera singer, she has performed with a rich concert repertoire and with famous music conductors as a soloist at major musical events, and her recordings are still played on various Hungarian radio and television channels. “Wagner Heroines” was released in 2004 by HUNGAROTON studio as a solo CD with the Hungarian National Radio Symphony Orchestra conducted by Yuri Simonov.

As an opera ambassador of the Hungarian State Opera House, she has given 50-60 performances a year in Hungary and internationally (in Slovakia, Romania, Serbia, England) popularizing the genre of opera from 2014 to 2022.

Throughout her pedagogical career, she has launched and still launches many young talents into national and international careers as opera singers and teachers. Many of her competition-winning students have appeared on national and international opera stages. From time to time, she performs with her students, presenting them to the audience within the framework of ‘Mária Temesi and her students’ concerts.