Soprano, Maureen McKay, is praised and celebrated for her silvery soprano and dynamic character portrayals. Maureen's 2022-2023 season features her return to Seattle Opera as Laila in the world premiere of composer Sheila Silver's A Thousand Splendid Suns, based on the critically acclaimed novel by Khaled Hosseini. She also returns to The Metropolitan Opera to perform the 2nd Niece in Peter Grimes and also cover Pamina in their new production of Die Zauberflöte as well as Adina in L'Elisir d'Amore. Maureen's 2021-2022 season featured a number of assignments with The Metropolitan Opera, singing Echo in Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos and covering the leading roles of Pamina in The Magic Flute, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, and Anne Trulove in The Rake’s Progress, as well as covering the Soprano Soloist in Mahler's Symphony No. 2 at Damrosch Park. She also joined the Dallas Symphony Orchestra conducted by Fabio Luisi for Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with Bravo! Vail. Maureen was also invited to make special vocal appearance at the Atlantic Council's Distinguished Leadership Awards with The American Pops Orchestra conducted by Luke Frazier. During the COVID-19 impacted 2020-2021 season, her engagements included her return to the Bayerische Staatsoper as Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel (cancelled), a return to The Metropolitan Opera as the First Sprite in Rusalka (cancelled), and an appearance on the PBS Television series One Voice: The Songs We Share (performed).

Original engagements during the COVID-19 shortened 2019-2020 season included performances of Barbarina and covers of Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro with The Metropolitan Opera (performed), where she also planned to cover Sophie in Werther (cancelled). McKay also planned to sing with Festival Chamber Music at the Museum of Jewish Heritage at Battery Park as part of their Auschwitz Exhibit, featuring music by Lori Laitman (cancelled), and perform American art songs with The American Pops Orchestra at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History (cancelled). Other art song collaborations included a concert with Music by the Glass, featuring works by Dowland and Schubert (performed), and an online appearance with OmniARTS Foundation (performed).

The previous season included returns to the roster of the Metropolitan Opera as Suor Genovieffa in Suor Angelica, Opera Colorado as Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, and to Lyric Opera of Kansas City as Despina in Così fan tutte. She also made her debut with Lincoln Center for their Mostly Mozart Festival as Pamina in Barrie Kosky’s acclaimed production of Die Zauberflöte, debuted with Virginia Opera as Rose in Kurt Weill’s Street Scene, and presented a solo recital at St John’s Worthington in Columbus, Ohio as part of their Music Series.

During the 2017-18 season, McKay made her much-anticipated Metropolitan Opera debut as Gretel in Hansel and Gretel and returned to San Diego Opera as Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance. She also joined The Metropolitan Opera for their production of Roméo et Juliette. In the 2016-17 season McKay made her debut with San Diego Opera as Nannetta in Falstaff and returned to the Lyric Opera of Kansas City as Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro. McKay also sang Pamina in Die Zauberflöte in returns to Gran Teatre del Liceu and Komische Oper Berlin, as well as joined The Chekhov International Theatre Festival at The Bolshoi Theatre in the production where she originated the role in 2012 with Barrie Kosky and "1927". She also joined Opera Saratoga in her debut as Zémire in Zémire et Azor.

In the 2015-16 season McKay made her mainstage debut with Seattle Opera in her role debut as Léïla in Bizet's Les pêcheurs de perles. She also joined The Danish National Symphony Orchestra for performances of Händel's Messias and the Choir and Orchestra of Teatro Carlo Felice in Génova for Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, both under the baton of Fabio Luisi. She also joined the Colorado Springs Philharmonic for Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 and Barber's Prayers of Kierkegaard. Other engagements included performances of Pamina in Die Zauberflöte with Gran Teatre del Liceu and returns to both The Atlanta Opera for Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance and Portland Opera for Pamina in Die Zauberflöte.

As a previous member of the ensemble at the Komische Oper Berlin, McKay sang leading roles in the premieres of several new productions that include Blanche in Dialogues des carmélites, Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, and Marzelline in Fidelio. Also with the company, she sang Mozart’s Requiem in performances conducted by music director, Henrik Nánási, as well as Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, Norina in Don Pasquale, and Musetta in La bohème. She returned as a guest to reprise the role of Elisa in a concert performance of Il re pastore.

Among her other previous engagements are Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel with Bayerische Staatsoper, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Portland Opera, and Tulsa Opera, Nannetta in Falstaff with the Saito Kinen Festival, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte with Washington National Opera, Edinburgh International Festival, Lyric Opera of Kansas City, and Opera Colorado, Anne Trulove in The Rake's Progress with Portland Opera, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro with Opera Cleveland, a return to the Opera Company of Philadelphia for Eurydice in Gluck’s Orphée et Eurydice, Lightfoot McLendon in Cold Sassy Tree with The Atlanta Opera, Lilla in Una cosa rara and Elisa in Il re pastore with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Zerlina in Don Giovanni with New Orleans Opera, Despina in Così fan tutte, and Caroline Gaines in Richard Danielpour's Margaret Garner with New York City Opera, Musetta in La bohème with Opera Omaha, Norina in Don Pasquale with Anchorage Opera, Lisa in La sonnambula with Washington Concert Opera, and Laurey in Oklahoma! with Central City Opera. She joined Seiji Ozawa for the Sandmännchen and Taumännchen in Hänsel und Gretel in his Ongaku-juku Opera Project throughout Japan and made her debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic as Papagena in Die Zauberflöte conducted by Leonard Slatkin at the Hollywood Bowl. The soprano’s concert performances include Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 with The Cleveland Orchestra, Schmidt’s Das Buch mit sieben Siegeln with the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Mozart’s Requiem and Debussy’s La demoiselle élue with the Utah Symphony, a program of Viennese music by Lehár and Johann Strauss with the Saint Louis Symphony, Carmina Burana with the National Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, and Utah Symphony, Grieg’s Peer Gynt with the Oregon Symphony and Louis Andriessen’s The New Math(s) with the Seattle Chamber Players. With Seattle’s Music of Remembrance, she premiered Lori Laitman’s song cycle I Never Saw Another Butterfly for soprano and clarinet and sang Aninku in Tony Kushner’s adaptation of Hans Krasa’s Brundibár; a recording including both Brundibár and Laitman’s song cycle is available on the Naxos label. She also performed Simon Sargon’s song cycle, Shema, with Music of Remembrance. Ms. McKay joined Judith Clurman for The Sound of Music 50th Anniversary Festival at the Mozarteum in Salzburg to perform a program of Rogers and Hammerstein classics.

Ms. McKay is a former member of Seattle Opera's Young Artists Program and was a Filene Young Artist with Wolf Trap Opera Company, where she sang Johanna in Sweeney Todd, Ismene in Telemann’s Orpheus, and Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro. She earned her Bachelor of Music at Columbus State University in Georgia (summa cum laude) and her Master of Music at The Ohio State University.


©2022 Maureen McKay
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