Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Japanese-American mezzo Kelsey Lauritano has been hailed by the New York Times for the “warmth” and “heroism” of her voice, Opera News for her "wondrous power” and the Boston Globe for her “rippling wine-dark voice with a low range of staggering strength, combined with a splendid stage presence”.
Lauritano is currently a member of the Opernstudio at Oper Frankfurt. During the 2018/19 season, she makes her European operatic debut singing Third Dryad in Dvořák's Rusalka with Oper Frankfurt and joins Boston Early Music Festival singing the role of Melissa for their new production of Caccini's, La liberazione di Ruggiero dall’isola d’Alcina. Also with Oper Frankfurt she will sing the role of Enrichetta di Francia in Bellini's I Puritani, Olga in Lehár's Die Lustige Witwe/The Merry Widow, Eine Spanierin in Schreker's Der Ferne Klang, and Mrs. Nolan in Menotti’s The Medium. Throughout the season, Lauritano will tour in recital to London, New York City, Chicago, and Santa Barbara as the winner of the 2018 Marilyn Horne Song Competition in partnership with Music Academy of the West and the London Symphony Orchestra.
In the 2017/18 season Lauritano was seen as Venus in Monteverdi’s balletic opera Il ballo delle Ingrate conducted by William Christie. She reprised the title role in a concert version of L’enfant et les sortilèges (Ravel) conducted by Emmanuel Villaume in Alice Tully Hall and Diane in Juilliard Opera’s production of Hippolyte et Aricie (Rameau) conducted by Stephen Stubbs. She also performed 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, in a concert dedicated to the composer at The Juilliard School. In the summer, Lauritano appeared as Cherubino in Music Academy of the West's production of Le Nozze di Figaro (Mozart), conducted by James Conlon.
In the 2016/17 season, Lauritano debuted at the Virginia Arts Festival where she starred opposite William Burden in Kept: A Ghost Story, a new opera by Kristin Kuster and Megan Levad. She also debuted 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 with the Internationale Meistersinger Akademie, including an opera gala with the Nürnberger Symphoniker and a Liederabend recorded and broadcast by the Bavarian Radio, BR-Klassik.
In past seasons, Lauritano played the Stewardess in Juilliard Opera's production of Flight by English composer Jonathan Dove as well as the title role in Ravel's L'enfant et les sortileges and made her professional operatic debut as a 2015 Gerdine Young Artist with the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. In concert, she appeared with the Juilliard Orchestra in Mozart’s Requiem (alto soloist) at Alice Tully Hall, with the New York Festival of Song at the Lincoln Center Peter Jay Sharp Theater, and with Juilliard415 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art conducted by Jordi Savall. She also starred in the Little Orchestra Society’s original children’s concert about Leonard Bernstein at the Kaye Playhouse in New York City.
Lauritano recently completed her Master of Music degree at The Juilliard School in New York City, where she also received her Bachelor of Music degree and was granted the Peter Mennin Prize for outstanding achievement and leadership in music. She has received prizes from the Metropolitan Opera National Council (New York District), the James Toland Vocal Arts Competition and the 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. Lauritano is a proud recipient of the Novick Career Advancement Grant from The Juilliard School.