Donatienne Michel-Dansac

© Jean Radel

Donatienne Michel-Dansac

Donatienne Michel-Dansac began by playing the violin and piano, joined the Maîtrise de l’Opéra de Nantes at the age of 7. She entered the CNSMD in Paris at 19 and obtained her Prix de Chant.

At the age of 21 she performed Berio’s “Laborintus II” with the Ensemble intercontemporain conducted by Pierre Boulez. This memorable encounter awakened her passion for the contemporary repertoire, although she always continued to interpret and record classical and baroque pieces. She met Georges Aperghis in 1992, for the creation of “Sextuor, l’origine des espèces”. She went on to perform the major part of the vocal music of this composer since then. She performed “Le Marteau sans maître” by Pierre Boulez and conducted by François-Xavier Roth, to mark the composer’s 90th birthday.

Among her eclectic repertoire: “Knoxville” by Samuel Barber, “Quatre chants pour franchir le seuil” (Gérard Grisey), “Schöpfung” (Josef Haydn), “Pelléas et Mélisande” (Claude Debussy), “Pygmalion” (Jean-Philippe Rameau), “Tamerlano” and “Messiah” (Georg Friedrich Handel), “Folksongs” (Luciano Berio), “An index of Metals” (Fausto Romitelli), “L’icône paradoxale” (Grisey).

Her keen interest in contemporary art has brought her into contact with many plastic artists working on musical forms, films or readings in connection with their work, as well as performances/conferences held in museums. She has performed in the theatre and movies. In 2014 she is a member of the jury of the Villa Medici in Rome.

The coming year she will perform in Munich (with Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks), in Cologne (with Gürzenisch Orchester, François-Xavier Roth performing Unsuk Chin’s “Le silence des sirens”), in Berlin at Musikfest Berlin with the world premiere of a new piece by Rebecca Saunders.

International critics have praised highly her many records. She teaches at the IMD Darmstadt and is Regent Lecturer at the UC Berkeley. She has been honoured as Chevalier des Arts et Lettres. In 2016 she was honoured with a lifetime achievement award Grand Prix in Honorem from The French Academy Charles Cros.

As of June 2017

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