American soprano Emily Magee has become recognized as one of the most important new voices of her generation. Her lush, radiant soprano, combined with an artistic intelligence and a vibrant, attractive stage presence has made her in demand in the most important opera houses in the world. She performs on stages throughout the world under the direction of such conductors as Daniel Barenboim, Franz Welser-Möst, Riccardo Muti, Donald Runnicles, Antonio Pappano, Zubin Mehta, Christian Thielemann, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Simone Young, Daniele Gatti, among others. Her wide ranging repertoire includes works from Britten to Zandonai, concentrating primarily on the works of Richard Strauss, Wagner, Verdi, Puccini, and Janácek. She has appeared in many of the major opera houses of the world, including London, Vienna, Milan, Paris, Berlin, Zürich, Munich, Barcelona, Chicago, San Francisco, as well as the renowned Festivals of Bayreuth and Salzburg.
Emily Magee is wrapping up the 2011-12 season which has been an extremely busy one. She began the season on tour with the Bavarian State Opera in Tokyo, where she performed the role of Elsa in Lohengrin. Afterwards she returned directly to the Zurich Opera House, to reprise one of her favorite roles to date, Minnie in La Fanciulla del West, which retired the David Poutney production. She also returned to the Semperoper Dresden to reprise her Tosca. The New Year saw her in Frankfurt making her house debut as Arabella, followed by a triumph as the Kaiserin in Die Frau Ohne Schatten in an ecstatically received new production at Milan's La Scala. The production, directed by Claus Guth and conducted by Marc Albrecht, was a welcome and triumphant return to the La Scala stage. She then reprised her successful role of Marietta in Die Tote Stadt in Bilbao, and moved quickly into another premiere, that of Ursula in Hindemith's Mathis der Mahler, which has just received a critically acclaimed opening at the Zurich Opera House. The summer season will see the soprano return to the Salzburg Festival, where she will be appearing as Ariadne in a new production of Ariadne auf Naxos.
Highlights of the 2012-13 will be Chrysothemis in a new production on Elektra at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Tosca at the Vieanna State Opera, the Foreign Princess in Rusalka at the Teatro del Liceu in Barcelona, and a long awaited return to the leading role in Strauss' Capriccio at Lyon Opera, and concert performances of Britten's War Requiem in Munich, Luzern, Bergen and lastly with Simon Rattle and the Berlin Philharmonic in Berlin.
The 2009-2010 season began with performances of three of her most critically acclaimed roles: Ariadne, in a production at Opera Oviedo; Tosca, in a production with the Semperoper Dresden; and Elsa, in Lohengrin at the Bavarian State Opera. In Novemeber/December she participated in a new production of Die Frau ohne Schatten in the title role of the Kaiserin together with the Zurich Opera House, with which she has become closely associated. The season featured more Strauss heroines, that of Chrysothemis in Elektra (her debutin the role), alsoat the Opera House Zurich, conducted by Daniele Gatti. In the New Year, she returned to Zurich for performances in the immensely successful Tosca production. Further engagements this season featured a new production of Die Frau ohne Schatten at the New National Theater, Tokyo, as the Kaiserin, and another role debut, that of Lisa in Pique Dame, at the Teatro del Liceau in Barcelona, which was broadcast to cinemas in high definition.
Emily can be seen on DVD:
as Ariadne in Ariadne auf Naxos from the Zürich Opera House - Preis der Deutschen Schallplatten Kritik , Best DVD, 2008
as Ellen Orford in Peter Grimes from the Zürich Opera House - Gramophone Editor's Choice March 2008
as Elsa in Lohengrin from the Teatro del Liceu, Barcelona
as Desdemona in Otello from the Berliner Staatsoper,
as the Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro from the Berliner Staatsoper.
And on CD:
as Elsa in Lohengrin from the Staatsoper Berlin
as Eva in Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg from the Bayreuth Festival.
Ms. Magee began her professional career at the Lyric Opera of Chicago in 1995, where she made her professional debut in the role of Fiordiligi in Cosi fan tutte, returning to that company to sing the roles of Marguerite (Faust), Liu (Turandot) and Ellen Orford (Peter Grimes). In 1996 she made her German debut at the Staatsoper unter den Linden, where she performed the role of Elsa in Lohengrin under the guidance of Daniel Barenboim, who also invited her to sing the role of Eva, which she debuted at the Bayreuth Festival the following summer. In Berlin she performed the roles of Desdemona, Elsa, Donna Anna, Eva, the Countess in Figaro, among others. She has in recent years maintained a meaningful relationship with the Opernhaus Zürich, where she has performed the roles of Marietta (Die Tote Stadt), Ellen Orford (Peter Grimes), Rosalinde (Die Fledermaus), Lina (Stiffelio), Katerina (The Greek Passion), Ariadne, Tosca, Elsa, Francesca da Rimini and now the upcoming Kaiserin and Chrysothemis. She has sung leading roles at the Vienna State Opera (Eva, Marietta), Bavarian State Opera (Elisabeth, Elsa, Gutrune, Donna Anna) Hamburg State Opera (Kaiserin, Arabella, Jenůfa, Eva, Elsa) The Royal Opera House, the Teatro del Liceu Barcelona (Elsa), and the Teatro alla Scala, Milan (Jenufa) among others. She has in recent seasons become a regular interpreter of the works of Richard Strauss, having debuted the roles of the Marschallin, the Kaiserin, Ariadne, Daphne, Salome, and Chrysothemis. Her musical education was taken at Westminster Choir College and Indiana University, where she studied with her mentor, the great dramatic soprano Margaret Harshaw. She was also a member of the Chicago Lyric Opera's Center for American Artists.
Emily makes her home in Boulder, Colorado.