Irena Savelieva works as a concertmaster in Budapest Opera.She is a also singing master:
"I work as a piano accompanist. After graduating from the Ural State Conservatory I ended up by distribution in the Perm Opera and Ballet Theatre as a vocalist concertmaster. There I realized that it may take forever to master this profession, possibly my whole life. Our profession has many sides and one’s duties are not limited by the sole practical function – accompaniment. Besides, work in an ensemble requires a certain mindset… I do believe that continuity and preservation of traditions of performing arts are essential parts of the global notion of SCHOOL. I think that is the reason why the Russian music education is universal. We gained our diplomas in the country which had a profound system of education and schools: violin, cello, vocal, directors, piano…
Traditions of performing arts are being preserved nowadays as well. Russian musicians work in different parts of the world and their creative work is much appreciated as it has always been and always will. This is true not only for the performers but for the teachers too. When I moved to Hungary it was not long before I was invited to work in a music school. Of course by that time I did not know the language yet. I am sure it worked out because of my diploma. The quality of the Russian music education was well-known. They did not even ask me to play during the audition!
Later on, when I had just started working in Budapest Opera they mostly wanted me to be a Russian coach. The theater was directing the “The Queen of Spades” opera by Tchaikovsky and they asked me, as a person who came from Pyotr Ilyich’ motherland, to teach the vocalists how to pronounce Russian text. However, over time my piano experience was becoming to be useful. There were two outstanding Russian operas: “Eugene Onegin” by Tchaikovsky and “Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District” by Shostakovich. Although music knows no bounds, there is always the language of the author. We come across this when we talk about composer’s style. Singing Verdi’s opera and Béla Bartók’s opera is not the same thing! I am sure that the most profound and interesting interpretations are made by those musicians who speak the same language as the composer or at least take it into consideration. Today I collaborate with different European and Russian theatres. The Ural Piano School serves me well as it did for years and warms my heart"