Pia Davila is a versatile singer. In addition to her highly esteemed concert repertoire and church music, she enjoys performing world premieres, new forms of music theatre and new ideas.
Pia Davila was able to make a name for herself in important productions in just a few years. Her first opera engagements took her to the Städtische Bühnen Osnabrück with Mozart's Barbarina in "Le nozze di Figaro" under the direction of Peter Lund and the world premiere of "Somnio ergo sum". This was followed by engagements at the Bremen Theatre with the world premiere of "The Little Mermaid", as well as a flower girl in Wagner's "Parsifal" directed by Marco Štorman and Mozart.
She is a welcome guest at the Hamburg State Opera and has appeared in several productions. One highlight was the crazy production "Ring and Wrestling" and Purcell's "Fairy Queen". In June 2022, she sang the soprano part in the world premiere of "La Luna" by Italian composer Lorenzo Romano. She has also interpreted world premieres at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, which received excellent reviews. She sang "Ein Geschäft mit Träumen" by the composer Alexandra Filonenko, a staged audio book by Ingeborg Bachmann. In a collaboration with the Deutsche Oper, the Munich Biennale and the Onassis Center in Athens, she sang the lead role in the world premiere of "Once to be realised" in 2022 under the direction of Cordula Bürgi and Michail Marmarinos, with compositions by Olga Neuwirth, Barblina Meierhans, Christian Wolff, Samir Odeh-Tamimi and Beat Furrer.
She has already sung a baroque opera twice under the direction of Thomaskantor Andreas Reize in Solothurn, Switzerland. There she sang Poppea in 2020, a CD recording of which is available on Rondeau, and Clarine from Rameau's opera "Platée" in 2023. The CD recording was nominated for the German Record Critics' Award. She has a long-standing collaboration with the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen for the Stadtteiloper Bremen. She has regularly performed baroque operas with conductor Antonius Adamske and harpsichordist Ira Hochman. She has often collaborated with director Alicia Geugelin, who received the City of Graz Prize at the Ring Award 2021, on new music theatre directing ideas.
Karlheinz Stockhausen's music has played a major role in Pia Davila's work. In summer 2019, she sang two leading roles (Dienstag and Donnerstag) with the National Opera Amsterdam for "Aus Licht", directed by Pierre Audi. Under the direction of Maxime Pascal, she sang "Donnerstag" from "Licht" again in 2021 under the direction of Benjamin Lazar at the Philharmonie Paris. In 2023, she was invited back by Maxime Pascal to interpret "Düftezeichen" from "Sonntag" under the direction of Ted Huffman. She recorded "Pietà" with trumpeter Marco Blaauw for the "Label Musikfabriek".
Due to her busy concert schedule in oratorios, Pia Davila has given concerts in Germany, Austria, Croatia, Slovenia, Sweden and Italy. In June 2017, she was awarded third prize at the international Bach competition "cantate Bach!" in Greifswald. She was also honoured at the PodiumJungerGesangssolisten 2017 in Magdeburg. In 2018, she was awarded first prize at the International Gebrüder Graun Competition and the special prize of the Kulturfeste. She enjoys lively collaborations with the LauttenCompagney Berlin, the Schirokkoensemble, Capella Vitalis and others. In June 2019, she was invited with a quartet for saxophone (Asya Fateyeva), soprano and BC for a concert with a mixture of baroque and modern music at the Händel Festival in Halle.
She has regularly performed the classical concert repertoire at the Philharmonie Berlin, the Konzerthaus and Berlin Cathedral, the Laeiszhalle and the Elbphilharmonie. She is a welcome guest in all the main churches in northern Germany. In spring 2023, she sang with Vox Luminis for the first time at "SPAM - Spandau macht alte Musik".
2023 was a very special year for her: she performed on stage with Martha Argerich for the first time! - Pia Davila took on the soprano solo in Beethoven's Choral Fantasy for piano, soloists, choir and orchestra! Two months later, she sang the Virgin in "Paradise and the Peri" with the same orchestra, the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Sylvain Cambreling.
At the opening concert of the bachfest Leipzig 2023, she was given a special honour: she sang the world premiere of the cantata by composer Jörg Widmann under the direction of Andreas Reize together with the Thomanerchor and the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig. She has repeatedly sung Bach's cantatas with Andreas Reize and his choir in St Thomas's Church and also the Christmas Oratorio in the Konzerthaus Berlin with the Konzerthausorchester.
She also enjoys singing works with small ensembles. She regularly performs with the "Ensemble musica getuscht", for example, which specialises in early Italian Baroque music. In March 2024, she will release "Dolente partita", her first CD with works by Monteverdi, Frescobaldi, Merula and others. Fortunately, Pia Davila was able to help shape the last musically active years of the great Hermann Max in Knechtstedten, where she sang Alessandro Melani's Marienvesper and Lully's Misere under his direction.
In 2023, she performed "Four Women of Shakespeare" by Manfred Trojahn with the Jewish Chamber Orchestra Munich under the direction of Daniel Grossmann. Thorsten
Encke in Hannover repeatedly invited her to première his compositions. In the Netherlands, she sang "Thirty Situations" by Joel Bons with the "Nieuw Ensemble" at the
Muziekgebouw Amsterdam, at the Verkadefabriek Hertogenbosch and at the Sound of Music Festival in Groningen.
As a counterpart to the vocals, Pia Davila loves working with drummers. Together with jazz composer and percussionist Tilo Weber, who received the German Jazz Award for the best arrangement in 2022, they will perform his new compositions with jazz singer Almut Kühne in churches and festivals in Hamburg, Bonn, Berlin and at "Betzau Beatz". An album by this ensemble "Du" will be released in 2025. She enjoys working with percussionist Leonie Klein, most recently at the women composers' festival in Tübingen with a world premiere entitled "Danses" for vibraphone and soprano by Camille van Lunen. A concert program with evening and children's songs and new works from all over the world for stone marimba and soprano is planned with the percussionist Sebastian Flaig.
In 2020, she sang several concerts at the blurred edges festival and Clapfestival in Hamburg, at the Warsaw Autumn Festival under the direction of Rüdiger Bohn "Paraíso cerrado II " by José M. Sánchez Verdú. She also sang the world premiere of the opera "ChatRoom" by the composer Dong Zhou, "Starlings" by the composer for electronic music Pedro Gonzalez, the opera "Der Riss", a world premiere by Jelena Dabic, the world premiere of the opera "Piano Tuner" by Yixuan Hu and "Obersalzberg" by Rudolf Kelber at the Resonanzraum Hamburg.
She regularly works closely with composers. As many as 18 works have been dedicated to her.
Her work has a particular focus on song. She can often be heard in recitals both in northern Germany and in Austria. A third prize at the ninth international song duo competition "Schubert und die Moderne" in 2015, a second prize at the second "Gustav Mahler Song Competition" in 2016 and a first prize at the "International Competition for Ostracised Music" in Schwerin in 2016 honoured her performance. She received all of these prizes together with pianist Linda Leine, with whom she has been working for 10 years. Together they create varied programmes and perform and present many concerts. They have performed together at the Arnold Schönberg Centre and Exilarte in Vienna, Liedwelt/Rheinwelt in Cologne, berliedfestival, Nordliedfestival Berlin, NDR-Kultur à la Carte, Château de Mussel in France and many other concert venues. In 2022, they released their first joint CD "Irgendwo auf der Welt" with music by mainly ostracised composers such as Erich Zeisl, Ruth Schonthal, Ursula Mamlok and Georg Kreisler. Pia Davila was nominated in two Opus Klassik categories (best singer of the year, best newcomer singers) for this CD. You can read the detailed reviews under the heading "Discography". A further release is planned for 2025, for which Pia Davila is researching sheet music in archives and estates.
Of course, she also works with other pianists. In October 2019, she made her debut in the Small Hall of the Elbphilharmonie with a chamber music programme by pianist Ragna Schirmer. In autumn 2020, she recorded the CD "o luna mia" together with song accompanist Eric Schneider. This CD earned Pia Davila a nomination in the Opus Klassik "Singer of the Year" category. At the Heidelberger Frühling festival, where she was an academy member, she took on the Arabic part of the "Divan of Song", conceived and performed on the piano by Prof Burkhard Kehring. With pianist Marlene Heiß, she sang "Agorá" - art song with poetry slam, together with TV presenter and poetry slamer Fee Brembeck.
Always on the lookout for new ways to bring classical music and the Lied genre in particular closer to the public, she founded the "liedmovies" project, in which she created a museum installation together with director Luise Kautz, video artist Simon Janssen and set designer Valentin Mattka. Further information can be found on this website under "Projects" or at www.liedmovies.com
Pia Davila has made recordings and concert recordings for NDR, Deutschlandfunk, ORF, RBB, MDR and WDR. Her discography now includes 11 CDs and films, as well as a documentary about Johannes Brahms in Hamburg on arte.
Berlin-born soprano Pia Davila studied classical guitar as a junior student at the Julius Stern Institute of the Berlin University of the Arts until she decided to study singing after graduating from high school. She also received her musical training with the Berlin Girls' Choir under the direction of Sabine Wüsthoff, as well as many other choirs. She then studied with Prof. Jörn Dopfer at the University of Music and Theatre in Hamburg, where she graduated with distinction in March 2018. She also attended (masterclasses with) Prof Dr Barbara Hoos de Jokisch, Ulla Groenewold, Prof Eric Schneider, Margreet Honig, Deborah York, Brigitte Fassbaender, Thomas Hampson, Christine Wolff, Norman Shetler and Peter Gülke, among others. From 2015 to 2020 she studied with Christiane Oelze.
Pia Davila was a 2017-2019 fellow of the Claussen Simon Foundation. She was previously supported by the Oscar and Vera Ritter Foundation. Pia Davila is a prizewinner of the International Festival of Young Opera Singers at Rheinsberg Castle. She was also a scholarship holder of the Heidelberg Spring Song Academy under the direction of Thomas Hampson in April 2016. She has been a member of the LiveMusicNow association since 2015. In April 2017, she received a project scholarship from the Hamburg University of Music and Theatre for a project involving artistic collaboration with refugees and composition students at the university. As part of her work for refugees, she was invited to the Federal President's New Year's reception at Bellevue Palace in 2019.