American mezzo-soprano Zoie Reams has been lauded by Opera News for her “velvety mezzo” and for how she “phrase[s] with elegance and articulate[s] coloratura nimbly.”
In the 2022-2023 season, Ms. Reams returns to the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Ragonde in Le Comte Ory, conducted by Enrique Mazzola, and as the Mezzo Soloist and Chief’s Daughter #2 in Proximity, a trilogy of new American opera curated by Renée Fleming and directed by Yuval Sharon. Other projects include Mandane in Idaspe at the Quantum Theatre in Pittsburgh, created by Claire van Kampen and the Chatham Baroque Orchestra, and the Beggar Woman in Sweeney Todd at Austin Opera, conducted by Timothy Myers. Concert appearances include performances at the Washington National Cathedral in Handel’s Messiah.
In the 2021-2022 season, Ms. Reams made her house debut at the Metropolitan Opera as Lily in James Robinson’s acclaimed production of Porgy and Bess. She was also a Company Member with Minnesota Opera, where she performed the title role of Carmen in a new production directed by Denyce Graves, and Dorothée in Joseph Bologne’s The Anonymous Lover. Finally, during the summer of 2022, she made her house debut at Cincinnati Opera as Jane in the world premiere of Gregory Spears and Tracy K. Smith’s Castor and Patience. On the concert stage, she joined Minnesota Opera for Ópera Afuera, an outdoor concert at Allianz Field celebrating Latinx vocal music, as well as Voices United, a choral concert featuring operatic favorites.
In the 2020-2021 season, Ms. Reams made her role debut as Nancy in Albert Herring at Minnesota Opera conducted by Dame Jane Glover, returned to Houston Grand Opera both as Sister Sophia in The Sound of Music and to reprise the title role in Damien Sneed’s Marian’s Song, and returned to Des Moines Metro Opera as Juno in Rameau’s Platée and the Beggar Woman in Sweeney Todd. In concert, she rejoined Houston Grand Opera for the second annual Giving Voice recital, co-hosted by tenor Lawrence Brownlee, and also performed in a special holiday program at Minnesota Opera. Previously scheduled engagements included performances at Houston Grand Opera as Dodo in Missy Mazzoli’s Breaking the Waves and at Lyric Opera of Chicago as Witness 2/Singer 2/Woman 2 in George Benjamin’s Lessons in Love and Violence.
Operatic highlights of previous seasons include her house debut at Lyric Opera of Chicago as Flora in La traviata and performances at Houston Grand Opera as the Third Secretary in John Adams’ Nixon in China, the Alto Winged Angel in the world premiere of Jake Heggie’s It’s A Wonderful Life, and Cece in the world premiere of Laura Kaminsky’s Some Light Emerges. In addition, she performed at Opera Columbus as Suzuki in Madama Butterfly, sang the title role in Carmen at Opera Louisiane, and made her house and role debut at Des Moines Metro Opera as Margret in Wozzeck. Ms. Reams also completed her studies in the Houston Grand Opera studio, where she sang Flora, Dritte Magd in Elektra, and Rosalia in West Side Story, among other roles.
On the concert stage, she has performed Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the National Symphony Orchestra, Bruckner’s Te Deum with the Houston Symphony Orchestra, Tippett’s A Child of Our Time with the New York Choral Society at Carnegie Hall, Bernstein’s First Symphony, Jeremiah, with the Staatstheater Cottbus Philharmonic Orchestra, and Handel’s Messiah with both the Las Vegas Philharmonic and the combined choirs of Auburn University and the New Choral Society of Scarsdale, New York.
Ms. Reams’ awards include second place at Houston Grand Opera’s Eleanor McCollum Competition (2016), first place winner of the Emerging Artist division of the Classical Singer Competition (2015), and second place winner of the Gulf Coast Region of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions (2016). She holds a Master of Music degree from Louisiana State University, where she sang Isabella in L’italiana in Algeri, Dido in Dido and Aeneas, Katisha in The Mikado, and Béatrice in Béatrice et Bénédict. She earned her Bachelor of Music at Lawrence University.