Nikola Printz | Oakland, California
Nikola Printz (they/them) is an artist and performer known for their velvety voice, charismatic stage presence, and artistic fearlessness. They most recently were seen playing the title roles of “elle” in La Voix Humaine with Magic Circle Opera, as well as premiering a song cycle by Jake Heggie, entitled “Intonations” at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, with members of the SF Opera Orchestra as part of the Violins of Hope festival with Kohl Mansion Music. Other recent titular role debuts include Orfeo ed Euridice ( West Edge Opera) Carmen (Opera Modesto) as well as Rosina, Cherubino, and Isabella in L’italiana in Algeri with Opera Memphis, where they spent two years as a company resident artist. Nikola also is an avid performer of Jazz, having sung at Viracocha and Yoshi's lounge in San Francisco.
Nikola is also a professional Aerialist- combining their two skills of singing and Dance Trapeze to create high flying acts. Nikola is currently a 2020/2021 young artist with the Merola Opera program in San Francisco.
La Voix Humaine
My project proposal for the BANFF centre is a “large scale-small town” production of Poulenc’s La Voix Humaine. I chose this piece for many reasons. It was the last live Opera I performed before the covid shut down in February of 2020, it’s a one-man show (meaning less bodies to be concerned about) and it just so happens to be one of my favorite operas. I saw that many companies had this same idea to put on La Voix Humaine, and very much no offense to any of the streamed productions of this piece- but none of them hit the crux of the piece for me, and I want to show something completely different.
I want to show real-wretched pain, stark loneliness, and addiction (the addiction being to one’s phone.) This opera was never about one person, never about one love. It’s about the insatiable need for connection- by any means. I centered my story about Covid- and being cut off from human interaction- during the course of the 30-something odd minutes- “L” slowly descends into mania, obsessed with their phone. I decided not to end the opera in the same boring old “Woman dies at the end for love” trope and am decidedly taking it in a different direction- a manic episode, that astral projects us into a deep sinking acid trip, leaving L in the desert of their mind, with no entertainment or hope of relief- only themselves to keep company. With this piece- I want to explore devices, addiction, mental health in isolation with unflinching reality. It will be ugly, sometimes funny, and most of all- true.