Arrow Five questions for… Joanna Moskowicz about Queen of the Night in “The Magic Flute”

28 May, 2024
Five questions for… Joanna Moskowicz about Queen of the Night in “The Magic Flute”
© Joanna Moskowicz as Queen of the Night / Warszawska Opera Kameralna

Joanna Moskowicz is one of the few Polish sopranos with appropriate vocal conditions to perform Queen of the Night. We chat with her about this demanding role ahead of two performances of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute”, on stage May 28 and 29 at the Warszawska Opera Kameralna (Warsaw Chamber Opera) during the 33rd Mozart Festival.

Queen of the Night is a part you have successfully performed for years on many stages.

Queen of the Night has accompanied me me since my stage debut at the Wrocław Opera. I went there to audition for the role with Director Ewa Michnik. There was an urgent need to fill a performance so I sang at the 10 a.m. show. I remember that day very well because I was immediately hired for two performances in February 2008.

That means Queen of the Night has been with you for over 16 years.

I must be the oldest Qeen of the Night in Poland (laughing). All my colleagues who perform the role are younger than me. 16 years is a good score for the role, but I am still four years short of the round number 20 that Jola Żmurko reached in her Queen of the Night career.

Do you consider Queen of the Night the most important role in your repertoire?

Yes, definitely. I have just counted I have sung it in ten different productions.

What vocal challenges does Queen of the Night pose?

This is an extreme part, requiring the use of powerful, high sounds. There is no delicacy, she is strong and determined. You have to balance your voice in the high register, with the power necessary to perform the role, but at the same time you cannot exaggerate. That’s what the real problem is. You also need to be as healthy as a horse to sing Queen of the Night. And have a strong head. There are always bad days and slips you have to deal with. You must raise your head and quickly find a reasonable solution. It pertains not only to Queen of the Night, although when you perform this particular role, you hear everything immediately. It is impossible to hide anything. The audience knows every note and expects perfection.

Is Queen of the Night your favourite role?

Probably not. I prefer Constance from “The Abduction in the Seraglio.” Even if I am a bit indisposed, I can handle it as the rehearsals progress. I also love singing Lucia di Lammermoor. Having said that, I definitely feel the greatest sense of accomplishment after performing in “The Magic Flute.” And Queen of the Night, as I mentioned, is the most important role I play on the opera stage.

#polishoperanow #QueenoftheNights #JoannaMoskowicz