photo by Dennis O'Brien

Janna Baty  
Soprano As Featured on Naxos, March 2004
New England Third Place Winner, 1993  

 

An Assistant Professor Adjunct of Voice at the Yale School of Music since 2008, and a Lecturer in Voice at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Janna Baty has continued her opera and concert careers, taking on another role last season at the Opera Theatre of Yale College as director and advisor for their production of Hansel und Gretel. On the opera stage in the 2014-2015 season, Janna returned to Odyssey Opera as Popova in Sir William Walton’s The Bear after joining the company as a member of the Sextet in their production of Korngold’s Die Tote Stadt. Also last season, Janna was Madame Flora in Menotti’s The Medium with the Yale Cabaret. Janna presented a recital in The Yale School of Music’s Faculty Artist Series, and in summer joined the Alexander String Quartet in music of Thomson and Argento as part of the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival.

 

Janna is an alumna of Oberlin College and the Yale School of Music. Her early career in opera included her memorable 2003 performance as the Duchess in Thomas Adès' Powder Her Facewith Boston's Opera Unlimited: the soprano had first sung the role only weeks before in a last-minute debut with the Hamburgische Staatsoper, after learning it on only one week's notice. Other notable roles have ranged from Berta in Il barbiere di Sivigliaand Despina in Cosífan tutte with Boston Lyric Opera to The Lady in Hindemith’s Cardillac with Opera Boston, the Mother in Lukas Foss’ Griffelkinwith Boston Modern Orchestral Project (BMOP) at the Tanglewood Festival of Contemporary Music,  the Infanta in the world premiere of The Face, a multidisciplinary chamber opera by USC composer Donald Crocket, and Laura Keene in the world premiere of Eric Sawyer’s  Civil War-era opera Our American Cousin in Northhampton. More recently the soprano joined Commonwealth Lyric Theater as Zemfira in Rachmaninoff’s Aleko.

 

A specialist in contemporary music, Jana has worked with many celebrated composers, including Yehudi Wyner, John Harbison, Bernard Rands, Sydney Hodkinson, Peter Child, Reza Vali, Paul Salerni, and Paul Moravec, and with innumerable chamber groups, including the enCANTA Collective, her New York-based vocal ensemble. In recent years highlights have included Salvatore Sciarrino’s “Infinito Nero” with the chamber ensemble Sound Icon at Boston’s Museum of Contemporary Art; Ravel’s “Chansons madécasses” with Concert in the Heights in New York City; “Pierrot Lunaire” with Boston’s Chameleon Arts Ensemble; and a program in New Haven with Cantata Profana in music of Messiaen, Ligeti and Shostakovich. Janna has also often sung with orchestras here and abroad and performed at festivals worldwide, including the Aldeburgh, Brighton and Britten Festivals in England, the Varna Festival in Bulgaria, the Semanas Musicales de Frutillar Festival in Chile, and the Tanglewood, Norfolk, Monadnock, and Coastal Carolina festivals in the United States.

 

A 1993 winner of the Heida Hermanns International Music Competition in Connecticut, Janna Baty has also received awards in several international competitions, most notably the XXI Concurso Internacional de Ejecución Musical "Dr. Luis Sigall" (Chile). In 2008 she received a Marion and Jasper Whiting Foundation Fellowship that enabled her to travel to Brazil to study Portuguese and do research at the Rio’s Museo Villa Lobos.

 

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