Kirsten Lear, mezzo-soprano
Kirsten Lear has led an active performing career singing in opera, musical theater, recitals and with symphony orchestras. She was raised in Amalia and Santa Fe where she currently resides and is the Vocal Teacher at the New Mexico School for the Arts.
Lear was recently the featured soloist with the Santa Fe Symphony in their Songfest of Richard Strauss, Falla’s El Amor Brujo, their highly acclaimed Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen and Fourth Symphony by Mahler, Canteloube’s Chants d’Auvergne and Copland’s American Songs. In addition she was alto soloist in Handel’s Messiah, Mozart’s Requiem and Haydn’s Mass in Time of War; both soprano and alto soloist in Mozart’s Vespers, and soloist in Mendelssohn’s Second Symphony.
Other New Mexico appearances include Santa Fe Pro Musica’s soloist in Bach’s B Minor Mass, soloist in their Baroque Christmas Concerts and Telemann Concert. Lear also appeared as Elsa in Theatreworks’ The Sound of Music at the Lensic Theater; as a soloist in Santa Fe New Music’s John Cage Evening and in Berio’s Folksongs with Chatter; and in a voice recital with pianist Robert Tweten on the St. John’s College Recital Series. She has enjoyed singing with the Taos Chamber Music over the years in programs of Mahler, Ginastera, Montsalvatge, Bach, Martin, and Duparc.
She performed two seasons as an apprentice artist with the Santa Fe Opera and recently sang with the company as Jenny in The Beggar’s Opera and Cousin Hebe in H.M.S. Pinafore. Lear’s other operatic roles have included: Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with the Shreveport Opera, Suzuki in Madame Butterfly with Pacific Opera Victoria, Flora in La Traviata with the Vancouver Opera, Prince Orlofsky in Die Fledermaus with Des Moines Metro Opera, Hansel in Hansel and Gretel with Theatreworks, and Costanza in L’Isola disabitata with the Canadian Opera Company.
At the Banff Center of Fine Arts, Lear appeared as Polly in Weill’s Threepenny Opera as well as creating five new roles with their Music Theater Studio Ensemble, one of which was Alice in Wonderland in Fragments of Alice which was filmed by Rhombus Media and broadcast on PBS. With the Houston Grand Opera she performed in Dialogues des Carmelites and Showboat which toured to the Cairo Opera House in Egypt. Equally at home in musical theater, Lear has performed in many major productions including Madame Giry in the Toronto Broadway production of Phantom of the Opera.
She graduated Magna cum Laude from Carnegie-Mellon University and Syracuse University in theater and music.