Angela Brown personifies the ideal American dramatic soprano: sheer vocal power; luxurious finesse; shimmering, high pianissimos; and a charming personality larger than life. Her highly successful Metropolitan Opera debut in 2004 sparked a media excitement with reviews from The New York Times: "At last an Aida," the Associated Press: "she combines a potent, dusky lower register with a striking ability to spin out soft high notes of shimmering beauty. There's no doubt her voice is powerful enough for Verdi," CBS Evening News: "the future of opera has arrived," and a front-page feature in The New York Times and in Oprah Magazine, Essence Magazine, Ebony Magazine, Classical Singer, Reader's Digest, and Psychology Today. This year, Angela received the Governor's Arts Award from the Governor of Indiana, a Spirit of the Prairie Award from Conner Prairie in Indiana, and was inducted into the Indianapolis Public Schools Hall of Fame.
Miss Brown is a trailblazer on a mission to bring operatic and classical vocal performance to a diverse audience. Her witty and inspired recital program titled "Opera from a Sistah's Point of View" dispels the myths of opera through lively commentary on opera plots and characters, show-stopping arias, poignant art songs and moving spirituals. A noted interpreter of African-American spirituals, Miss Brown produced Mosaic, a collaborative recording featuring spirituals with guitar and piano, available from Albany Records. A live Christmas concert with the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra and Indianapolis Opera Chorus airs on PBS television stations throughout the United States each Christmas season and she has been a guest star on A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor radio show.
This season Miss Brown returned to her hometown to sing the title role in Ariadne auf Naxos with Indianapolis Opera and a special performance of "Opera from a Sistah's Point of View" at the Madame Walker Theatre. Now, she joins the Pittsburgh Symphony to sing the world premier of the song cycle, "A Woman's Life," written especially for her by American composer Richard Danielpour, inspired by poetry of celebrated author Dr. Maya Angelou. Angela makes her debut with Hamburg Opera and Vienna State Opera later this fall. She reprises "A Woman's Life" with The Philadelphia Orchestra in the spring and sings Verdi Requiem for Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.
Last season, Miss Brown sang Aida for Deutsche Oper Berlin, Cape Town Opera in South Africa and the Latvian National Symphony in Riga and Tallinn, Estonia. She followed with performances of Leonora in Il Trovatore for The Atlanta Opera, performances at Carnegie Hall for Jessye Norman's HONOR! Festival and Un Ballo in Maschera for National Opera of Paris. This summer she sang Elisabetta in Don Carlo for Cincinnati Opera and performed with the Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras.
Recent seasons have included returns to the Metropolitan Opera to sing the title role in Aida and Amelia in Un Ballo in Maschera as well as her first Leonora in a concert version of La Forza del Destino with James Conlon for the Cincinnati May Festival. In 2008, she was chosen by The Library of Congress as the featured soloist for the National Celebration of the Bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln and by the NAACP for their annual conference. In 2005, Miss Brown created the role of Cilla for the world premiere of Margaret Garner, a new opera by Richard Danielpour and Toni Morrison, for Michigan Opera Theatre, Cincinnati Opera and Opera Company of Philadelphia.
A 1997 National Metropolitan Opera Council Auditions Winner, Miss Brown received her Bachelor of Music degree in voice from Oakwood University in Huntsville, Alabama, where she studied with Ginger Beazley. She attended the Indiana University School of Music as a student in the studio of Virginia Zeani. Miss Brown received the Indiana University African American Arts Institute's inaugural Herman C. Hudson Alumni Award in 2006, given annually to recognize outstanding contributions made in the arts by former members of the Institute. Miss Brown is featured in "Nineteen Stars of Indiana," a book by Michael S. Maurer about nineteen, living Hoosier women with successful and inspirational life stories, released by Indiana University Press in December 2008.