Hailed by Opera News for her "wondrous power” and by the Boston Globe for her “rippling wine-dark voice with a low range of staggering strength, combined with a splendid stage presence”, Japanese-American mezzo-soprano Kelsey Lauritano is a rising young talent on opera and concert stages around the globe. Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, she began her artistic training in musical theatre and choral music. Lauritano recently completed her Bachelor of Music degree at The Juilliard School in New York City, where she was granted the Peter Mennin Prize for outstanding achievement and leadership in music. She is currently in her second year of graduate studies at Juilliard studying with Professor Edith Wiens.
Lauritano performs music ranging from the Renaissance to the present day. This season, she sings Venus in Monteverdi’s balletic opera Il ballo delle Ingrate as part of the “Genius of Monteverdi” concert conducted by William Christie. She will also sing the title role in a concert version of L’enfant et les sortilèges (Ravel) in Alice Tully Hall and Diane in Juilliard Opera’s production of Hippolyte et Aricie (Rameau). Also this season, Lauritano will perform Luciano Berio's avant-garde song cycle, Circles with the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, Florida and Thomas Adès' dramatic musical monologue, Life Story, on a concert curated by Brian Zeger at the Juilliard School dedicated to the composer.
This past summer season, Lauritano debuted at the Virginia Arts Festival and the Boston Early Music Festival. In Virginia, she starred opposite William Burden in Kept: A Ghost Story, a new opera by Kristin Kuster and Megan Levad. The piece was the first operatic work produced by the Virginia Arts Festival’s John Duffy Institute for New Opera. Lauritano also starred as Cleofe in La Resurrezione (Handel) with the Boston Early Music Festival in a concert production led by Stephen Stubbs and Paul O’Dette. She finished her summer in Neumarkt in der Oberpfalz, Germany, singing concerts of various genres with the Internationale Meistersinger Akademie. Concerts included an opera gala with the Nürnberger Symphoniker and a Liederabend recorded and broadcast by the Bavarian Radio, BR-Klassik.
This past season, Lauritano was featured in a live-streamed master class of contemporary American art song with mezzo-soprano Stephanie Blythe at The Juilliard School. She also played the Stewardess in Juilliard Opera's production of Flight by English composer Jonathan Dove and covered Varvara in Katya Kobonova (Janáček). In concert, Ms. Lauritano was the alto soloist in a production of Mozart’s Requiem that joined the Juilliard School Orchestra with the Westminster Choir College Chorus. Performances took place at Alice Tully Hall and in Princeton, New Jersey and were conducted by Maestro Gary Thor Wedow. She also starred the Little Orchestra Society’s original children’s concert about Leonard Bernstein at the Kaye Playhouse in New York City.
In past seasons, Lauritano played the title role in Juilliard Opera’s production of L'enfant et les sortileges. She has also sung in multiple concerts with the New York Festival of Song including their Harry, Hoagy, and Harold program at the Lincoln Center Peter Jay Sharp Theater and their concert of The Killer B’s: American Song from Bernstein to the Beach Boys in Orient, New York. Lauritano made her early music debut with Juilliard415 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art performing music to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the deaths of William Shakespeare and Miguel de Cervantes. The program was conducted by the legendary Jordi Savall. She made her professional operatic debut in 2015 as a Gerdine Young Artist with the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis.
Past summer programs include the prestigious Internationale Meistersinger Akademie in Neumarkt i.d. OPf, Germany where she was featured in recital with the Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Chautauqua Voice Program under the direction of Marlena Malas and Michael Dean, the Franz Schubert Institut in Austria, and the leading American art song festival SongFest in Los Angeles where she was granted a Sorel Fellowship.
Lauritano won Third Prize in the 2016 Gerda Lissner/Liederkrantz Song Competition. In 2013, she placed 1st in the Hal Leonard Musical Theater Competition, University Division and in 2012, was named a Presidential Scholar in the Arts by President Barack Obama in Washington D.C. She received the Silver Award for Vocal Music from the YoungArts Foundation in Miami. Ms. Lauritano is a proud recipient of the Loretta Lewis Award in Voice, Lewis and Elizabeth Bellardo Scholarship in Voice, and the Mildred H. Kellogg Scholarship from The Juilliard School.