Less than two years after her professional debut, American soprano Angela Meade has quickly become recognized as one of the outstanding vocalists of her generation. The New Yorker hailed her as "a lavishly gifted young soprano who sings across a very wide range with uncommon beauty and strength of tone...this fast rising soprano will undoubtedly have many triumphs." Meade excels in the most demanding heroines of the 19th century bel canto repertoire as well as in the operas of Verdi and Mozart.
Meade joined an elite group of history's singers when she made her professional operatic debut on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera as Verdi's Elvira in Ernani substituting for an ill colleague in March 2008. Ronald Blum of the Associated Press wrote of the debut, "she showed a vibrant voice with nice color and an assured technique and sang like an old pro from start to finish." She had previously sung on the Met stage as one of the winners of the 2007 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, a process that is documented in the film The Audition recently released on DVD by Decca. The New York Times noted Meade as "an impressive soprano who powered out a 'Casta diva' from Bellini's Norma that left everyone breathless."
A busy 2010-2011 season for Meade has her European operatic debut at the Wexford Festival in the title role of Mercadante's rarely seen Virginia, a new production by Kevin Newbury. She will also return to the Metropolitan Opera to cover the title role in Rossini's Armida. In the concert world, Meade will make her debut with the Pittsburgh Symphony in Verdi's Requiem, conducted by Manfred Honeck. She will also sing this same work for debuts with the Palm Beach Opera as well as the Baltimore Symphony, conducted by Marin Alsop. She will also perform the Mahler Second Symphony under Gerard Schwarz at the Seattle Symphony and the Mendelssohn Lobgesang at the San Antonio Symphony under Sebastian Lang-Lessing. Meade will sing her first performance of Donna Anna in a concert version of Don Giovanni with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra under Roberto Abbado. Other symphonic highlights include the Dvooak Stabat Mater with the New York Choral Society at Carnegie Hall and the Brahms Requiem with the Choralis Foundation at Strathmore Hall.
Meade's 2009-2010 season included a return to the Metropolitan Opera as Mozart's Countess in Jonathan Miller's production of Le Nozze di Figaro under the baton of Fabio Luisi. She also covered the notoriously difficult title role in Rossini's Armida. Ms. Meade will also be at the San Francisco Opera covering Konstanze in Mozart's Die Entfuehrung aus dem Serail. Meade's summer is highlighted by a return to The Caramoor Festival to perform the iconic title role in Bellini's Norma, conducted by Will Crutchfield. She also sings the role at her alma mater, the Academy of Vocal Arts, in concert performance.
Recently, Meade has been adding to her repertoire with initial performances of three of Donizetti's greatest roles, Elisabetta in Roberto Devereux at the Dallas Opera and the title roles of Anna Bolena and Lucia di Lammermoor at AVA. She also recently triumphed in the title role of Rossini's challenging Semiramide at the Caramoor Festival.
Past operatic credits include Agathe in Der Freischuetz, the title role in Handel's Agrippina, Fiordiligi in Cosi fan tutte, Mme. Herz in Der Schauspieldirektor, The Queen of the Night and First Lady in Die Zauberfloete, and Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus. On the concert stage, Angela Meade recently sang Strauss' Vier letzte Lieder with Symphony in C at Philadelphia's Kimmel Center, Poulenc's Gloria in New York City with The Little Orchestra Society, Rossini's Stabat Mater with the Academy of Vocal Arts, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with both the Pasadena Symphony and the Monmouth Civic Chorus, Verdi's Requiem and Handel's Messiah with the Pacific Lutheran University Symphony and Vivaldi's Gloria with the Santa Monica Chamber Orchestra.
Meade has triumphed in an astounding number of vocal competitions, fifty-three in all including many of the opera world's most important prizes. In addition to being a winner at the 2007 Met National Council Auditions, she was the first singer ever to take first prize in both the opera and operetta categories of Vienna's prestigious Belvedere Competition as well as the International Press Prize and the La Scala Prize chosen by its artistic administrator. Meade also garnered the largest cash prize in the world of opera, the $50,000.00 first prize of the Jose Iturbi Competition. She also triumphed at the Concours Musical International de Montreal in 2008 winning the grand prize, audience choice and a recording contract from Analekta.
She is also a first prize winner of The Richard Tucker Foundation Competition, The Gerda Lissner Competition, The Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation Competition, The George London Competition, The Liederkranz Foundation Competition, the National Opera Association Competition, the Opera Index Competition, the Marguerite McCammon Competition, the Giargiari Bel Canto Competition and the Eleanor Lieber Awards. Meade's long list of awards and honors also includes second place at the Loren L. Zachary Competition and the Fritz & Lavinia Jensen Foundation Competition, international grand finalist in the World Voice Masters Competition in Monaco, and Young Artist of the Year in the National Association of Teachers of Singing of Los Angeles Competition. Also a winner of the Astral Artists' 2007 National Auditions, Astral presented her at Philadelphia's Kimmel Center in Strauss' Four Last Songs, with Symphony in C, conducted by Philadelphia Orchestra Associate Conductor, Rossen Milanov. She is a native of Washington state and currently resides in Philadelphia.