American mezzo-soprano Catherine Martin has been praised by The Washington Post for her “gorgeous, warm voice that you want to keep listening to,” and she continues to make an impact in repertoire ranging from Verdi and Wagner to Strauss and Bellini.
Her 2016–2017 season begins in Taiwan at the National Taichung Theatre reviving Wellgunde in Das Rheingold with the La Fura dels Baus production team; a debut with Lyric Opera of Chicago singing Hécube and covering Didon in Les Troyens; a concert with Dallas Opera at the Winspear Opera House, as well as the final installment of the Ring Cycle at Houston Grand Opera, singing Wellgunde in Götterdämmerung with La Fura dels Baus.
The 2015–2016 season included debuts with Opera Colorado in her signature role of Amneris in Aïda and a role debut with Florida Grand Opera as Adalgisa in Norma, a return to Washington National Opera as Wellgunde in Das Rheingold, and Götterdämmerung and Grimgerde in Die Walküre.
Engagements for the 2014–2015 season included her debut with Dayton Opera as Sister Helen Prejean in Dead Man Walking, Waltraute in Die Walküre with Houston Grand Opera, a return to Opera Santa Barbara as Maddalena in Rigoletto, and Genevieve in Hindemith’s The Long Christmas Dinner with the American Symphony Orchestra at Alice Tully Hall.
Ms. Martin’s landmark 2013–2014 season included two important assignments for Houston Grand Opera: Amneris in its season-opening production of Aïda, filling in at the last minute for an indisposed artist, and her role debut as Wellgunde in Das Rheingold for the company’s first-ever Ring Cycle. Adding several key Strauss roles to her repertoire, she made her role debut as Der Komponist in Ariadne auf Naxos at the Glimmerglass Festival and sang Annina and covered Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center. Other performances included Mary in the world premiere of Jeanine Tesori’s The Lion, the Unicorn, and Me with Washington National Opera, Amneris for her debut with Opera Santa Barbara, leading roles in the double-bill of Musto’s Bastianello and Bolcom’s Lucrezia at UrbanArias outside Washington, D.C., and Schubert’s Mirjams Siegesgesang with the San Antonio Symphony.
Other highlights from 2013 included the role of Sara Miller in the world premiere of Approaching Ali with Washington National Opera, performances in the Steans Music Institute at the Ravinia Festival, her debut with the New Haven Symphony performing Elgar’s rarely heard masterwork The Dream of Gerontius, and her debut with Vancouver’s West Coast Chamber Players singing Alan L. Smith’s Vignettes: Covered Wagon Woman.
An alumna of the Houston Grand Opera Studio, Catherine spent three seasons from 2009–2012 performing roles such as Dorabella in Così fan tutte, Suzuki in Madama Butterfly, Anna in Maria Stuarda, Flora in La traviata, Berta in Il barbiere di Siviglia, and a Dryad in Ariadne auf Naxos. She also had the opportunity to work extensively with conductor Patrick Summers and to cover artists such as Susan Graham, Joyce DiDonato, and Michelle DeYoungin in roles such as Der Komponist, Sister Helen, and the title roles of Xerxes and The Rape of Lucretia. In 2012, she was a member of the Glimmerglass Festival Young Artists Program, making her role debut as Amneris. In 2011 and 2010, she was a Filene Young Artist with Wolf Trap Opera, where her roles included Nicklausse in Les contes d’Hoffmann, Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Zaida in Il turco in Italia, as well as multiple recitals with accompanist and vocal coach Steven Blier.
Winner of the 2011 National Opera Association Competition, Catherine was a semifinalist in the 2012 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, a finalist in the 2012 George London Competition, a second place winner in the 2013 Jensen Competition, a semifinalist in the 2013 Hans Belvedere Competition, and won awards in the Eleanor McCollum Competition at Houston Grand Opera, the Dallas Opera Guild, and Annapolis Opera. She has received the Richard F. Gold Career Grant at both Houston Grand Opera and Wolf Trap Opera, and the Catherine Filene Shouse Career Grant. A native of San Antonio, Texas, she holds a master’s degree from the University of Cincinnati, College – Conservatory of Music and a bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from the University of North Texas.