Anne Carolyn Bird
“Adept at physical comedy and balanced by a rich and surprisingly commanding instrument...” says the Washington Times of Anne-Carolyn Bird, the award-winning soprano who has graced the stages of major opera houses worldwide. Lauded for her signature role of Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, and quickly becoming one of the foremost interpreters of the role, critics have proclaimed: “Anne-Carolyn Bird is divine as Susanna. Her charm and warm personality make Susanna the true heart of the drama, as she most certainly is, and her musicality and timing are unerring.” She performed the role for Virginia Opera, Opera Carolina, Nashville Opera, Opera Columbus, and Opera Grand Rapids.
This season will see Ms. Bird in a company début with Hawaii Opera Theatre as Tytania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a return to The Metropolitan Opera in a production of L’elisir d’amore, in David Lang’s The Little Match Girl Passion at IlluminArts, and Marian Paroo in The Music Man with Opera Coeur d’Alene.
Additional noted roles in her repertoire include Pamina in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Adina in L’elisir d’amore, Nannetta in Falstaff, Juliette in Roméo et Juliette, and Gilda in Rigoletto. Hailed for her dynamic characterizations and prowess on stage, Ms. Bird’s repertoire also includes some of musical theatre’s favorite sopranos: Johanna in Sweeney Todd, Maria in The Sound of Music, Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady, Anne in A Little Night Music; and Christine Daaé in The Phantom of the Opera.
Engagements from recent seasons also include a début in the title role of Lucia di Lammermoor with Musica Viva Hong Kong; Pamina in Die Zauberflöte at Opera Coeur d’Alene; Judy McCoy in Bonfire of the Vanities at The Process Studio Theatre; Ladybird Johnson and Mary Todd Lincoln in a production of Appomattox at Washington National OperaMarguerite in Faust and Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia at Dayton Opera; Micaëla in Carmen with Opera Carolina; Yum-Yum in The Mikado at Arizona Opera; Noémie in Laurent Pelly’s highly-acclaimed production of Cendrillon at Santa Fe Opera; Zerlina in Don Giovanni with Nashville Opera; Morgana in R.B. Schlather’s production of Alcina at Whiteboxlab; and returned to The Metropolitan Opera for The Merry Widow.
No stranger to contemporary works, Ms. Bird conquered Spoleto Festival USA’s production of Facing Goya in 2014, which later went on tour to Singapore. Also with Spoleto Festival USA, Ms. Bird was featured as the 1st Soprano in Philip Glass’ Kepler. With Wolf Trap Opera, she performed Beatrice in John Musto’s The Inspector, Celia in John Musto’s Grammy-nominated comedic masterpiece Volpone, and Cunegonde in Candide, which she then performed with National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Stephen Lord and starring Seinfeld’s Jason Alexander as Pangloss. Earlier in her career, Ms. Bird performed as a soprano soloist in Santa Fe Opera’s staged and concert versions of Osvaldo Golijov’s opera Ainadamar that can be heard on the Grammy award-winning recording. Ms. Bird made her Metropolitan Opera début in the 2006-2007 Season, singing two roles in a new production of Il trittico, and has since returned in performances as Barbarina in Le nozze di Figaro, Najade in Ariadne auf Naxos, Pousette in Manon, in Boris Godunov, and Don Carlo on tour in Japan. Last fall, she won audiences over as Giannetta in the Opening Night Gala Production of Bartlett Sher’s new L’elisir d’amore, a role she reprised in 2014. Ms. Bird also appeared in numerous other productions at the famed house including Shostakovich’s The Nose, Die Frau ohne Schatten, and The Enchanted Island.
Also applauded for her work as a concert artist, recent engagements include Mozart’s Requiem with Seattle Symphony; Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel at Alabama Symphony; Pierrot Lunaire with the Spoleto Festival USA; Händel’s Messiah with Dayton Philharmonic; a concert with the New York Festival of Song at the Gardner Museum in Washington, D.C. and at Merkin Hall in New York; the Mozart Requiem and Evan Chamber’s oratorio The Old Burying Ground at Carnegie Hall; Parasha in Stravinsky’s one-act opera Mavra with the American Symphony Orchestra; Gotham Chamber Opera’s Gala concert featuring Nico Muhly; an All-American concert at Merkin Hall with New York Festival of Song; CPE Bach’s Die Auferstehung und Himmelfahrt Jesu with Brooklyn Friends of Chamber Music; A Midsummer Night’s Dream with The Cleveland Orchestra; “An Evening of Musical Shakespeare” with Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, both conducted by Nicholas McGegan; as well as Händel’s Messiah and Bach’s Magnificat with Portland Baroque Orchestra. With the New York Festival of Song, Bird has been featured on several concerts, including: “All- American Concert,” “A Modern Person’s Guide to Hooking Up and Breaking Up,” and “Mr. Gershwin Goes to Washington.” She also toured internationally with Atlanta Symphony Orchestra to perform Golijov’s La Pasión según San Marcos which was declared “luminous” by The New York Times.
Ms. Bird has been a recipient of grants and awards from many organizations, including the Sullivan Foundation, the Santa Fe Opera, the Oratorio Society of New York, and The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. Twice a Young Artist with the Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program for Singers and twice a Fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center, she holds degrees from New England Conservatory in Boston, MA and the University of Georgia.