Decca Classics signs mezzo soprano Aigul Akhmetshina

Decca Classics signs mezzo soprano Aigul Akhmetshina

Decca Classics has signed mezzo soprano Aigul Akhmetshina.

Akhmetshina is from an isolated village in rural Bashkortostan in the Ural Mountains. At the age of 27, she is the youngest artist ever to take on the title role of Bizet’s Carmen at the Royal Opera House in London. 

Her first single, Habanera, is out today (January 26) via Decca Classics. A debut album, Aigul, will be released on July 26, and features operatic arias, including from Carmen.

Decca co-president Tom Lewis said: “Aigul’s story is an extraordinary reminder of the transformative power of music. She set out from a tiny village with nothing but her talent and a formidable work ethic. And, in a very short time, that talent has taken her to the very, very top of her profession. She has a voice that will captivate the world!”

“I first heard Aigul in a London church in the depths of winter,” said Decca Classics label director Dominic Fyfe. “We had invited her to record the final scene from Carmen and it’s no exaggeration to say her voice could make snow melt. The electricity crackled. This is an exciting moment for Decca Classics – our first mezzo-soprano signing in over thirty years – and we couldn’t be happier to welcome Aigul to the label.”

She has a voice that will captivate the world

Tom Lewis

At the age of 18, she was the youngest artist ever to have enrolled in the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme at the Royal Opera House.

Since then, Akhmetshina has taken on various roles, including in Il Barbiere Di Siviglia, West Side Story, Werther and The Seven Deaths of Maria Callas, an opera project conceived by Marina Abramovic alongside Willem Dafoe. 

In November, Akhmetshinal was named Best Female Singer at the 2023 International Opera Awards. 

On New Year's Eve 2023, the Metropolitan Opera premiered a new production of Carmen, directed by Carrie Cracknell. A screening of the filmed live performance will be broadcast on January 27, as part of the Met’s Live in HD series of cinema transmissions. 

Her upcoming engagements include Romeo in I Capuleti e i Montecchi at the Salzburger Festspiele, and she will also return to the Royal Opera House and Glyndebourne Festival, in her lead role of Carmen. 


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