This week's Spotlight Sunday featured artist is Julie DeVaere! Julie will be in the world premiere of The Faith Operas on Saturday, April 8 at 7:30 PM at Charter Oak Cultural Center. For more information on the show and to get tickets click here.
Praised as a mezzo-soprano who is “skillful and passionate”, Ms. De Vaere has performed with Michigan Opera Theatre where she delighted Detroit audiences with her portrayal of Olga in Eugene Onegin, the Detroit Symphony, where she sang the role of Hansel in Hansel and Gretel, and Dayton Opera where she debuted as Mercédès in Carmen. Acclaimed in her Opera Carolina debut as Loma Williams in Carlisle Floyd’s opera, Cold Sassy Tree, she was engaged to reprise the role with Opera Omaha. Her rich array of operatic roles has grown to include Lucretia in The Rape of Lucretia, Cherubino, Marcellina, Miss Jessel in The Turn of the Screw, Nicklausse in Les contes d’Hoffmann, L’enfant in L’enfant et les Sortilèges, Tisbe in La Cenerentola, Florence Pike in Albert Herring, The Secretary in The Consul, the title role in Massenet’s Thérèse, Maddalena in Rigoletto, Madame de la Haltière in Massenet’s Cendrillon, Ottavia in L’incoronazione di Poppea, Cecilia March in Adamo’s Little Women and Desirée Armfelt in A Little Night Music.
Her New York concert debut in the role of Carmen was reviewed as “a rich mezzo-soprano in splendid vocal form...a fiery, passionate gypsy girl with dramatic intensity and a dash of fatalism.” Ms. De Vaere’s performance of Hélène in Chabrier’s Une education manquée was heralded by the New York Times as “elegant and direct” and by Opera News as “warm-voiced and gracious." A champion of rarely-performed works, Ms. De Vaere was delighted to debut the role of Laura in the first New York staging of the Weber/Mahler opera Die Drei Pintos as well as the role of Mrs. Malaprop in the New York premiere of Kirke Mechem’s The Rivals. Upcoming engagements include singing a trio of roles (Maya/Sylvia/Tina) in the premiere of David Wolfson’s The Faith Operas with Hartford Opera Theater.
As a concert artist, Ms. De Vaere has appeared as the mezzo-soprano soloist in works including Mahler’s Symphony #2 and #3 with the University of Michigan Symphony, Mozart’s Requiem with the Hartford Symphony, and the Requiems of Duruflé and Mozart with the Connecticut Chorale Society. Ms. De Vaere made her Carnegie Hall debut as the mezzo-soprano soloist in Mozart’s Requiem and Bruckner’s Te Deum with the New England Symphonic Ensemble and returned to Carnegie Hall for Handel’s Messiah under the baton of John Rutter. As a recitalist, she journeyed to France for a recital debut as part of the Atelier Concert Series at the American Church in Paris featuring the music of 21st century American composers.
Ms. De Vaere earned a Master of Music degree in Voice from the University of Michigan where she received the prestigious Jessye Norman Graduate Fellowship. Her Bachelor of Music degree was received from California State University Fullerton. She currently resides in New York City and studies with Arthur Levy.
Here are Julie's thoughts on opera without borders-
Opera should be allowed to live and breathe outside of its antiquated box. Encourage and provide an outlet for new works, embrace updated visions and stagings that engage & challenge the audience and expand the perception of who an opera-goer can be. Opera needs to celebrate, challenge & explore all aspects of the human condition- even in dealing with the touchiest of subject matter. This beloved art form should be allowed to evolve while respecting tradition. I'm thrilled to be joining Hartford Opera Theater for The Faith Operas- this project embodies the very essence of what 'Opera Without Borders' can and should be.