Salt Lake Symphony Guest Artist
Kirstin Chávez has captured attention and acclaim in her signature roles and is recognized as one of the definitive Carmens of today; a role that she has performed with great success throughout the United States, and around the world. Opera News reported that her Carmen in Graz, Austria was “the Carmen of a lifetime. With her dark, generous mezzo, earthy eroticism, volcanic spontaneity and smoldering charisma, Chávez has it all, including a superb command of French and a sense of humor.” Ms Chávez has also showed great success in various pants roles, including Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier (Florentine Opera), Hänsel in Hänsel and Gretel (Atlanta Opera), and Orfeo in Gluck's Orfeo (Metropolitan Opera).
Kirstin has earned praise for her performances in modern American Operas, as well, with her Jo in Adamo’s Little Women (Opera Pacific), Thérèse, in Tobias Picker’s Thérèse Raquin (San Diego Opera) and for Sondra Finchley in Picker’s An American Tragedy, which was her Metropolitan Opera principal debut in 2005. And now she has added two more modern roles to the list: Sister Helen Prejean in Dead Man Walking, of which the Tulsa World reviewer referred to her performance as “Searing and Incandescent,” and Sharon Falconer in Aldridge’s Elmer Gantry, of which the Tulsa World reviewer spoke of the “otherworldy quality to her singing; a mix of the earthy and the ethereal” Other modern works for which she has been lauded include her debut role at the Royal Opera House in London, the Marquise de Merteuil in the opera Quartett by Luca Francesconi; a role with which she also recently made her Swedish debut with Malmö Opera.
Presently, Kirstin is continuing her global presence as a highly praised and sought-after Carmen, and she is also expanding her concert career with multiple concerts in Strasbourg, France this summer, and her concert debut in London at Cadogan Hall, with her signature recital called “A world of Love,” with pianist, Paolo André Gualdi. Other concerts in which Kirstin has featured prominently include: Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, Mozart’s Requiem, Bach’s Magnificat, Rossini’s Stabat Mater, Verdi’s Requiem, the Mahler 2nd Symphony and Rückert Lieder, and Manuel de Falla’s “El Amor Brujo.”
Kirstin Chávez was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, but spent most of her formative years in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where her parents worked as English and Music teachers. She received a Bachelor of Music degree, with Honors, from New Mexico State University, and a Master of Music degree with Honors, from New Mexico State University, and a Master of Music degree in Performance, and the Performer’s Certificate, from the Eastman School of Music. After beginning an Artistic Residency with the Orlando Opera, Ms. Chávez won several major international competitions, including The Sullivan Foundation, The George London Foundation, the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation, the Opera Index Foundation, The Gerda Lissner Foundation, the Jensen Foundation, and the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions (National Finalist).