The Kennedy Center

Tamara Wilson

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    Sitting Down with Tamara Wilson



Biography

Hailed by The New York Times as "a young American who sings Verdi with a passion that surpasses stereotype," Tamara Wilson is being recognized as an exciting soprano on the rise. Most recently she has been named winner of 2016 Richard Tucker Award, an annual prize conferred by the Richard Tucker Music Foundation given to a rising American opera singer on the "threshold of an major international career." Other recent honors include a 2016 Olivier Award nomination and receipt of the 'Revelation Prize' by the Argentine Musical Critics Association. Ms. Wilson is also a Grand Prize Winner of the Annual Francisco Viñas Competition held at the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, Spain.

In the 2016/17 season Ms. Wilson will debut at the Bayerische Staatsoper and Deutsche Oper Berlin, as well as return to Gran Teatre del Liceu and Théâtre du Capitole, all in leading Verdi roles. Ms. Wilson will also appear on the concert platform at the BBC Proms, Amsterdam's Het Concertgebouw with the Radio Filharmonisch Orkest, and with the Orchestre National de Lyon, the American Symphony Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the Milwaukee Symphony, the North Carolina Symphony, and the Oregon Symphony. 

In the 2015 /16 season, Ms. Wilson made her London debut in Calixto Bieto's new production of La forza del destino at the English National Opera. She returned to Oper Frankfurt as Elisabetta in Don Carlo and Teatro Municipal de Santiago as Lucrezia Contarini in I due Foscari. She also inaugurated the new opera house in Kyoto, Japan with Seiji Ozawa as Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus. In concert, Ms. Wilson performed Mahler's Symphony No. 4 with Marin Alsop and Orquestra Sinfônica do Estado de São Paulo to be released for commercial recording, Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 with Osmo Vänskä and the Minnesota Orchestra, Verdi's Messa da requiem with Marin Alsop and the Baltimore Symphony, and Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 with Donald Runnicles at the Grand Teton Music Festival. Ms. Wilson also returns to Cincinnati for her first performances of Desdemona in Verdi's Otello with James Conlon and the Cincinnati Symphony at the May Festival.

In the 2014/15 opera season Ms. Wilson made her role and house debut as the title role 
in Norma at the Gran Teatre del Liceu; she returned to Oper Frankfurt for her first performances as the Empress in Die Frau ohne Schatten. Ms. Wilson also made her much-anticipated Metropolitan Opera debut singing the title role in Aida. In concert, she returned to the Ravinia Festival as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni under James Conlon and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, a role she also debuted with Edo de Waart and the Milwaukee Symphony. Additionally, Ms. Wilson debuted with the National Symphony in Mendelssohn's Symphony No. 2 and returned to the Baltimore Symphony in Mahler's Symphony No. 4 with Marin Alsop.

In the 2013/2014 season Tamara Wilson added a new Verdi heroine to her repertoire at the Théâtre du Capitole in Toulouse as Lucrezia Contarini in Verdi's I due Foscari. In celebration of the Verdi bicentenary, she also debuted at Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville as Aida and with Washington Concert Opera in his rarely-heard Il corsaro as Gulnara alongside tenor Michael Fabiano as Corrado. She was also heard in Britten's War Requiem with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra under Marin Alsop, as well as with James Conlon and the Colburn Orchestra as part of the Britten 100/LA celebration. Other concert engagements included Bruch's Moses with the American Symphony Orchestra at Carnegie Hall and Verdi's Messa da Requiem with the Jacksonville Symphony.

In the 2012/ 2013 season, Ms. Wilson returned to the Canadian Opera Company as Rosalinde in a new Christopher Alden production of Die Fledermaus conducted by Johannes Debus; Théâtre du Capitole as Lady Billows in a new production of Albert Herring; and Houston Grand Opera as Leonora in Il trovatore. Ms. Wilson also made her Company and Role Debut at Opera de la ABAO in Bilbao as Hélène in Les Vêpres Siciliennes. On the concert platform, the soprano debuted with the Saint Louis Symphony as the soprano soloist in Handel's Messiah and was heard with Helmuth Rilling in Verdi's Messa da Requiem on tour with Internationale Bachakademie Stuttgart. Additionally, she returned to Carnegie Hall as Malwina in Marschner's rarely-heard opera Der Vampyr with the American Symphony Orchestra. At the Oregon Bach Festival, she performed works of Verdi and Wagner in concert with Matthew Halls and was heard as soprano soloist in Beethoven's Missa Solemnis with Helmuth Rilling.

Other notable recent engagements include Elisabeth de Valois in the five-act French Don Carlos at Houston Grand Opera; Amelia in Un Ballo in Maschera at Washington National Opera, HoustonGrand Opera, and Teatre Principal de Maó in Menorca, Spain; Alice Ford in Falstaff for her debut with Washington National Opera; Amelia Grimaldi in Simon Boccanegra at the Canadian Opera Company; the title role in Aida at Opera Australia; her German debut at Oper Frankfurt in concert performances of Wagner's early opera Die Feen as Ada under Sebastian Weigle; Elettra in Idomeneo under Harry Bicket at the Canadian Opera Company; Konstanze in Die Entführung aus dem Serail at Houston Grand Opera; Miss Jessel in The Turn of the Screw and the First Lady in Die Zauberflöte at Los Angeles Opera, both under the baton of James Conlon.

On the concert stage, Ms. Wilson made her Carnegie Hall debut with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra under Marin Alsop in Honegger's Jeanne d'Arc au Bûcher, as well as appeared with the Eugene Concert Choir in Britten's War Requiem, Charlotte Symphony in Beethoven's Missa Solemnis, and returned to the Oregon Bach Festival in Tippett's A Child of Our Time. Recently, she has been soprano soloist for performances of Missa Solemnis with John Nelson and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe in Lisbon, which is available on DVD, as well as Mozart's Requiem with Edo de Waart and the Milwaukee Symphony and Mendelssohn's Symphony No. 2 (Lobgesang) with the Grant Park Symphony Orchestra. A favorite of the Oregon Bach Festival, she debuted in Verdi's Messa da Requiem under Helmuth Rilling for the opening of their 40th Anniversary season. She then returned to sing Brahms's Ein Deutsches Requiem and Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 under Rilling, as well as Marguerite in Jeanne d'Arc au Bûcher under Marin Alsop. She recently toured Japan with Helmuth Rilling and Internationale Bachakademie Stuttgart in Beethoven's Symphony No. 9.

An alumna of the Houston Grand Opera Studio Ms. Wilson's awards include the George London Award from the George London Foundation in which she was hailed for a "striking timbre all her own" (Opera News), as well as both a career grant in 2011 and study grant in 2008 from the Richard Tucker Music Foundation. Other notable awards include first place in the 2005 Eleanor McCollum Competition for Young Singers in Houston and finalist in the 2004 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, among others. In addition to her operatic and orchestral performances, Ms. Wilson is an avid lecturer of vocal technique. She has been a Guest Master Class Lecturer for the National Pastoral Musicians in the Chicago area. Ms. Wilson received her degree at the University of Cincinnati-College Conservatory of Music.
Tamara Wilson