Polish opera director wins European accolade
Poland’s Karolina Sofulak has won the 10th European Opera Directing Prize in a competition held at the Opera House in Zurich.
Karolina Sofulak shared the top honour with British director Gerald Jones. No other prizes were handed out.
More than 200 candidates from 32 nations submitted a concept for Puccini’s opera Manon Lescaut. Ten of them were entitled to give an oral presentation in front of a jury in the semi-final stage, and in the final round four directors were given an opportunity to develop a scene from their concepts on the rehearsal stage in Zurich.
In addition to a cash prize of EUR 20,000, Sofulak will direct the Puccini opera for the opening of next year’s Holland Park Festival in London.
She is the first Pole to win the prestigious event.
Sofulak studied Western European culture and languages at the University of Warsaw as well as opera and music theatre directing at the Drama Academy in the southern Polish city of Kraków.
She made her directing debut in 2011 with Verdi’s La Traviata at the Baltic Opera in Gdańsk, northern Poland.
She has worked as an assistant director at the Polish National Opera in Warsaw as well as with several foreign companies, including the English National Opera, Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe, Teatro Regio di Torino, Opéra National de Bordeaux, and Opéra de Dijon. Last year she directed Mascagni’s Cavalleria rusticana at Opera North in the UK.