World-renowned opera star Danielle De Niese and her husband, Glyndebourne's executive chairman Gus Christie,are thrilled to announce that they are expecting their first child. A statement from Glyndebourne: "Glyndebourne is delighted to announce that Mr and Mrs Gus Christie are expecting a baby in May. This will be the first child for soprano Danielle de Niese and Glyndebourne Chairman Gus Christie. Both families, Glyndebourne staff and colleagues are all thrilled by the news."
The baby is due in May, shortly before Danielle starts rehearsals at Glyndebourne Festival this summer. She will perform the leads in a double bill of two one-act operas by Ravel (L'heure Espagnole/L'enfant et les sortileges), one in which she plays an adulteress and the other a boy, as she explains: "Playing both an adulterous femme fatale and an androgynous young boy in the same evening will be an exciting challenge and transformation for me as actress. It is a chance for me to show different sides of my musical and dramatic palette as I debut both lead roles for the first time in the UK."
The couple live at Glyndebourne House where Gus' grandfather John Christie built the opera house and founded the opera festival in 1934. "We couldn't be happier," says Danielle, "Gus was born in this house and it will be poignant for us to bring up a child here, just as Gus was raised, among all the amazing people who inhabit Glyndebourne throughout the year. "Glyndebourne is where I made my professional British breakthrough and the whole company is like a family to me, even since before my husband and I became a couple. We want to continue everything as planned and I am very much looking forward to my performances. I'm fortunate that the next engagement after giving birth is a 10-second walk from my home and I'm excited to be a working Mum." Danielle will not be slowing down.
She finished a run as Susanna in Richard Eyre’s production of Mozart’s “Le Nozze di Figaro” at the Metropolitan Opera in New York at the end of 2014 before performing 'Ave Maria’ as the first Met singer to feature exclusively for the New York Times' celebrated “In Performance” series. On Christmas Eve, she performed O Holy Night for the Midnight Mass led by Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan in New York City. The ceremony was broadcast live nationally and worldwide from St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
On January 15th she performs with the RTE National Orchestra of Ireland in Dublin before heading to Paris for the opening gala of the brand new Philharmonie de Paris on January 16th with William Christie and Les Arts Florissants. In February, she transfers to Hamburg for Le Nozze do Figaro at the Hamburg State Opera before returning to the Metropolitan Opera this spring to sing Valencienne in Tony Award Winning director Susan Stroman’s production of Lehar’s The Merry Widow.