Siena Forest, a lyric coloratura, sets herself apart with her enthusiasm, compassion, work ethic, skill with new music, and effortlessly “soaring, pure soprano” voice. She recently finished her second season as a Resident Artist with Minnesota Opera. Siena will be returning to the Minnesota Opera in the 2016–2017 season singing the role of Paula Jordan in the world premiere of William Bolcom and librettist Mark Campbell’s new opera Dinner at Eight. Performances March 11–19, 2017.
During the 2015–2016 season with MN Opera, she graced the stage as Echo in Ariadne auf Naxos, Pamina in Komische Oper Berlin’s unforgettable production of Die Zauberflöte, where she “soared through her arias, especially Act II’s “Ach, ich fühl’s,” and was the first of the “exquisitely sung” Wood Sprites in Dvořák’s Rusalka. Siena also covered the role of Wendy Torrance in the highly acclaimed world premiere of Stephen King’s The Shining, composed by Paul Moravec with librettist Mark Campbell. Last Christmas, Siena sang her first Handel’s Messiah with the South Dakota Symphony. In March 2016, she received an encouragement award from the Metropolitan Opera Auditions Minnesota District. In the summer of 2015, Siena covered the role of Marie in La fille du régiment with Mill City Summer Opera and sang the National Anthem with the Minnesota Orchestra at Music in Plymouth.
In Minnesota Opera’s 2014–2015 season, Siena took the stage as the Dew Fairy in Hänsel und Gretel and with her “pure soprano soaring above the patter of a lively smuggler’s quintet,” Siena “engagingly performed” a “memorable characterization” of Frasquita in Carmen. In fact, her performance as Frasquita was chosen in the Twin Cities Arts Reader as one of the top 10 scene-stealing performances in the 2014–2015 theater season. Ms. Forest also covered the role of Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel, Adina and Giannetta in L’elisir d’amore, and Jocelyn Jordan in the world premiere of The Manchurian Candidate by the Pulitzer Prize-winning team, Kevin Puts and Mark Campbell. In summer 2014, Siena starred as Pamina in Die Zauberflöte and as the soprano soloist in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, with the OK Mozart International Music Festival under Constantine Kitsopoulos.
A graduate of Indiana University, Siena appeared with Indiana University Opera Theater as Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel (2013), Nannetta in Verdi’s Falstaff (2013), and Musetta in Puccini’s La bohème (2011), and was the soprano soloist in Haydn’s Missa Sancti Nicolai (2014). She performed The Impresario as Mademoiselle Silberklang in Carol Vaness’ Opera Workshop. In the summer of 2013, Siena was a Studio Artist with Central City Opera in Colorado, where she received an award in honor of Patsy Rose Musser. At CCO, Siena sang scenes as Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, Euridice in Orfeo ed Euridice, Noemie in Cendrillon and Rose Maurrant in Street Scene. She has also performed scenes as the First Lady in Die Zauberflöte, Gianetta in L’elisir d’amore, Despina in Cosi fan tutte, Clorinda in La Cenerentola, and Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia.
In her spare time, Siena enjoys hiking, reading novels and biographies, gardening, traveling, cooking, baking bread and cuddling with her husband and two cats.