Elena Tsallagova was born in Vladikavkaz, southern Russia. She was awarded a bursary to attend the famous Saint Petersburg Conservatory and went on to sing several roles at the Mariinsky Theatre (Le Coq d’Or, Suor Angelica...).
She studies repertoire and interpretation with Mme Ileana Cotrubas , recently working on such roles as Ilia (Idomeneo), Marzellina (Fidelio), Sophie (Werther), Sophie (Der Rosenkavalier), Adèle (Die Fledermaus). Winner of the regional Rachmaninov vocal competition in Saint Petersburg, she integrated the young artists programme at the Opéra National de Paris in October 2006. It’s with this opera house that she sang the Italian Singer (Capriccio), Despina (Così fan Tutte) and the Falcon (Die Frau ohne Schatten).
In December 2007 she sang the soprano role in Cimarosa’s Il Ritorno di Don Calandrino under Maestro Riccardo Muti’s direction having made her Salzburg Festival debut in summer 2007 as Zelmira (Armida), Haydn.
In autumn 2008 she was invited back to the Paris Opera for the title role of Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen for which she received outstanding reviews. The production was caught on film (and awarded winning DVD of the year at 'Les Victoires de la Musique' awards), and is available on medici.tv.
In November 2008 Elena began a two year contract with the Bayerische Staatsoper Munich where among the roles she sang Despina (Così fan Tutte), Sophie (Werther), Nanetta (Falstaff), Zerlina (Don Giovanni) and Musetta (La Bohème). She returns to the Bayerische Staatsoper this season for Der Zwerg.
She made her UK debut as Nanetta with Glyndebourne Touring Opera in 2009 and returns for the Glydnebourne Festival in 2013 as Nanetta.
Following her debut at the Rossini Festival in Pesaro this summer she sings Corinna and La Contessa di Folleville at De Vlaamse Opera in Il Viaggio a Reims and returns there the following season for Agrippina.
2011/2012 season also sees her debut at the Teatro Real in Madrid (L'Incoronazione di Poppea) and she returns to the Paris Opera in 2012 to sing her first Mélisande under Philippe Jordan's direction (available live on medici.tv), in a production to be released on DVD.
Recent concert engagements include Ravel’s Schehezade with the MDR Leipzig and Mozart Concert Arias with concerto Köln conducted by Ivor Bolton as part of their anniversary season. This season she will debut at the Lucerne Festival in a programme of Bach Cantatas.
Elena Tsallagova in The Little Cunning Vixen, directed for stage by André Engel and caught on film by Don Kent
Philippe Jordan, Robert Wilson – Stéphane Degout (Pelléas), Elena Tsallagova (Mélisande), Anne Sofie von Otter (Geneviève), Vincent le Texier (Golaud)
Dennis Russell Davies, André Engel – Elena Tsallagova (The Vixen), Paul Gay (Harašta)