A native of Ottawa, Thérèse Sevadjian debuted in Montréal as a soprano before making an amazingly successful transition to mezzo-soprano. She has since appeared in performances of Verdi’s Il Trovatore and Otello, Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, Puccini’s Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi, Rossini’s Il Barbieri di Siviglia, Gounod’s Faust and Roméo et Juliette, Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites, Giordano’s André Chénier, Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, and has twice performed dual roles in Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov, among others. Mme. Sevadjian has been a prominent performer with many opera companies in Canada, as well as in the U.S. She was a particular favourite for character mezzo roles at l’Opéra de Montréal, and has been invited to perform as a soloist in Québec City, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, and Vancouver.
Despite her continual operatic appearances, Mme. Sevadjian was first regaled as a consummate recitalist, spending nearly 20 years performing with pianist and vocal coach John Newmark in repertoire recitals in Montréal, Toronto, across Canada, the U.S. and in Europe. Together they recorded for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in the Sunday morning series Recital. Her frequent appearances at Le Festival de Lanaudière were highlighted by a performance in Russian with the Bolshoi: under the baton of Semyon Vekstein, she performed as the Countess in a concert version of Tchaikovsky’s The Queen of Spades. For the same festival, she was also invited to perform Mozart’s Requiem, the roles of Nurse and Innkeeper in Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov in Russian, and gave many additional recitals with John Newmark.
Public performances have always been numerous for Mme. Sevadjian. In the public series “Les grands Concerts de Radio Canada” she sang Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder with l’Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, and again sang under the direction of Semyon Vekstein in Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov. She performed Bach’s Matthäuspassion under the direction of Miklós Takács with Montréal’s l’Orchestre Métropolitain.
After receiving her bachelor’s degree in piano, Mme. Sevadjian studied voice with the renowned baritone Bernard Diamant and was awarded a grant from the National Council of Canada to continue studies with him when he moved to Toronto. Mme. Sevadjian received additional bursaries to study with Gérard Souzay and Dalton Baldwin. A grant from the Department of Cultural Affairs later enabled her to work with the esteemed German bass-baritone Hans Hotter.
Her intelligent demeanor and strong work ethic earned her a Master of Music degree in Voice with Grande Distinction from Université de Montréal. With nearly 30 years of teaching experience, Thérèse Sevadjian is renowned as a pedagogue. Her mastery of varied repertoire has graced her with the ability to form a cogent musical and artistic expression in any musical style. She is sought-after for teaching master classes across the province of Québec, and her students can be found singing professionally throughout Europe and North America. They are frequently praised for their sound technical abilities and high-levels of artistic finesse.
Mme. Sevadjian joined the voice faculty at McGill University in 1994.