Biography

Lauded for her strong dramatic presentation and “big, well-focused voice” (Neue Merker) of “considerable weight and expressive coloring” (Baltimore Sun), mezzo soprano Madeleine Gray was born in New York, but for many years made her home in the United Kingdom. She is a graduate of the Royal Northern College of Music, where awards included a major grant from the Peter Moores Foundation.

Since her return to the US, she has performed regularly  with the Washington National Opera where she made her debut as Rebecca Nurse in special performances of The Crucible, and returned for Mama Lucia in Cavalleria Rusticana, The Duchess of Krakenthorp in  Fille du Regiment and to cover Flora la Traviata and The Mayor’s Wife in Jenufa. In 2015 she joined the company as a Carmelite Nun in Poulenc’s Dialogues of the Carmelites, and covered The Witch in holiday performances of Hansel and Gretel. 

Other recent performances include Marcellina le Nozze di Figaro with Lyric Opera Baltimore, Frugola and La Zelatrice in Puccini’s Il Trittico with Baltimore Concert Opera, the Verdi Requiem for the Annapolis Chorale and Teresa in La Sonnambula with Washington Concert Opera, Aurelia in The Chocolate Soldier at the Bard Festival, a return to Annapolis Opera to sing Marcellina in le Nozze di Figaro , The Witch in Hansel and Gretel for Opera on the James, Emilia in Otello with Opera Roanokeand Mama Lucia in Cavalleria Rusticana for Toledo Opera, a role she repeated in critically-acclaimed concert performances opposite Dolora Zajick and the late Salvatore Licitra with Washington National Opera.

A favorite with the former  Baltimore Opera, her many roles with the company included, among others,  Berta in  il Barbiere di Siviglia, 4th Maid in Elektra, Marcellina le Nozze di Figaro, the Voice of Antonia’s Mother in Contes d’Hoffmann and Anna in Maria Stuarda.  She sang Marcellina le Nozze di Figaro with the newly-founded Lyric Opera Baltimore in its inaugral 2011-12 season.

Other US performances include her Avery Fisher Hall debut as alto soloist in Messiah with the National Chorale, a return to the National Cathedral Choral Society as mezzo soloist in the Mozart Requiem, performances of Messiah with the Annapolis Chorale – with whom she will sing the Verdi Requiem in 2012 – 3rd Lady in Die Zauberflöte with Opera Columbus, and she created the role of Marie in the world premiere of Donizetti’s “lost” opera Elisabeth at the Caramoor International Festival conducted by noted bel-canto scholar Will Crutchfield.  Other roles in her wide-ranging operatic repertoire include Orfeo (Orfeo e Euridice), Geneviève (Pelleas et Melisande), Emilia (Otello), Ma Moss (The Tender Land), 3rd Lady (The Magic Flute), Mrs Herring (Albert Herring) and Baba (The Medium), a role for which she has received considerable recognition, including earning a “Pick of the Fringe” award from the Buxton Festival for her performance.

Companies with which she has performed include the Aldeburgh Festival, Annapolis Opera, Banff Festival for the Arts, ECOV, The Opera Company, Opera North, Scottish Opera, San Francisco Opera’s touring company Western Opera Theater, and many others. She is also a frequent recital and concert performer, with numerous appearances throughout Europe and the United States.

An avid recitalist focusing on creative programming of works outside standard repertoire, she is also a frequent oratorio and concert soloist and has been heard with the National Cathedral Choral Society,  National Chorale, Annapolis Chorale, York Symphony, Quad Cities (Iowa) Symphony,  Hopkins Symphony, and many others across the US and United Kingdom.

She is also much in demand as a teacher, and in addition to her private studio has served on the faculty of several Baltimore/DC area institution.   In 2016 she joins the Peabody Preparatory Institute as Voice Department Chair.

 

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