Biography


Soprano, Maureen McKay, is praised and celebrated for her silvery soprano and dynamic character portrayals. In the 2016-17 season McKay makes her debut with San Diego Opera as Nannetta in Falstaff and returns to the Lyric Opera of Kansas City as Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro. McKay also sings Pamina in Die Zauberflöte in returns to Gran Teatre del Liceu and Komische Oper Berlin, as well as debuts with The Bolshoi Theatre in the production where she originated the role in 2012 with Barrie Kosky and "1927".

In the 2015-16 season McKay made her mainstage debut with Seattle Opera in her role debut as Léïla in Bizet's Les pêcheurs de perles. She also joined The Danish National Symphony Orchestra for performances of Händel's Messias and the Choir and Orchestra of Teatro Carlo Felice in Génova for Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, both under the baton of Fabio Luisi. She also joined the Colorado Springs Philharmonic for Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 and Barber's Prayers of Kierkegaard. Other engagements included performances of Pamina in Die Zauberflöte with Gran Teatre del Liceu and returns to both The Atlanta Opera for Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance and Portland Opera for Pamina in Die Zauberflöte.

As a previous member of the ensemble at the Komische Oper Berlin, McKay sang leading roles in the premieres of several new productions that include Blanche in Dialogues des carmélites, Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, and Marzelline in Fidelio. Also with the company, she sang Mozart’s Requiem in performances conducted by music director, Henrik Nánási, as well as Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, Norina in Don Pasquale, and Musetta in La bohème. She returned as a guest to reprise the role of Elisa in a concert performance of Il re pastore.

Among her other previous engagements are Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel with Bayerische Staatsoper, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Portland Opera, and Tulsa Opera, Nannetta in Falstaff with the Saito Kinen Festival, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte with Washington National Opera, Edinburgh International Festival, Lyric Opera of Kansas City, and Opera Colorado, Anne Trulove in The Rake's Progress with Portland Opera, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro with Opera Cleveland, a return to the Opera Company of Philadelphia for Eurydice in Gluck’s Orphée et Eurydice, Lightfoot McLendon in Cold Sassy Tree with The Atlanta Opera, Lilla in Una cosa rara and Elisa in Il re pastore with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Zerlina in Don Giovanni with New Orleans Opera, Despina in Così fan tutte, Caroline Gaines in Richard Danielpours Margaret Garner with New York City Opera, Musetta in La bohème with Opera Omaha, Norina in Don Pasquale with Anchorage Opera, Lisa in La sonnambula with Washington Concert Opera, and Laurey in Oklahoma! with Central City Opera. She joined Seiji Ozawa for the Dew Fairy and the Sandman in Hänsel und Gretel in his Ongaku-juku Opera Project throughout Japan and made her debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic as Papagena in Die Zauberflöte conducted by Leonard Slatkin at the Hollywood Bowl. The soprano’s concert performances include Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 with The Cleveland Orchestra, Schmidt’s Das Buch mit sieben Siegeln with the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Mozart’s Requiem and Debussy’s La demoiselle élue with the Utah Symphony, a program of Viennese music by Lehár and Johann Strauss with the Saint Louis Symphony, Carmina Burana with the National Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, and Utah Symphony, Grieg’s Peer Gynt with the Oregon Symphony and Louis Andriessen’s The New Math(s) with the Seattle Chamber Players. With Seattle’s Music of Remembrance, she premiered Lori Laitman’s song cycle I Never Saw Another Butterfly for soprano and clarinet and sang Aninku in Tony Kushner’s adaptation of Hans Krasa’s Brundibár; a recording including both Brundibár and Laitman’s song cycle is available on the Naxos label. She also performed Simon Sargon’s song cycle, Shema, with Music of Remembrance. Ms. McKay joined Judith Clurman for The Sound of Music 50th Anniversary Festival at the Mozarteum in Salzburg to perform a program of Rogers and Hammerstein classics.

Ms. McKay is a former member of Seattle Opera's Young Artists Program and was a Filene Young Artist with Wolf Trap Opera Company, where she sang Johanna in Sweeney Todd, Ismene in Telemann’s Orpheus, and Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro. She earned her Bachelor of Music at Columbus State University in Georgia (summa cum laude) and her Master of Music at The Ohio State University.

 

©2016 Maureen McKay
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