American soprano Marnie Breckenridge’s pure and supple voice, excellent musicianship, effervescent personality and dramatic intensity have rapidly established her as a rising young artist. Currently, she is making her company debut with the English National Opera performing the role of Cunegonde in CANDIDE.
The same role she made her European debut last season with the Prague State Opera where the Prague Post raved, “Breckenridge was note perfect” (The Prague Post).

Recently, she received rave reviews when she stepped in for an ailing Isabel Bayrakdarian to sing opposite Patti LuPone in the Chicago premiere of Jake Heggie's TO HELL AND BACK at the Ravinia Festival. Of her performance it was noted by reviewer John Von Rhein that, "she sounded as gorgeous as she looked, achieving both lyrical poignancy and dramatic power" (The Chicago Tribune). Her passion for contemporary music has made her a favorite of the composer, with whom she often appears on the recital and concert platform. Upon special invitation  she recently performed the role of Lucia THE RAPE OF LUCRETIA conducted by Lorin Maazel at his Chateauville Foundation Estate Theatre.

Upcoming performances include the title role in LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR with Mobile Opera, Gretel HANSEL UND GRETEL with Indianapolis Opera, Queen Tytania in Britten’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM and a company debut with the Philharmonia Baroque in San Francisco in Handel's ATHALIA. She will also make her A. Jess Shenson recital debut at Stanford University in May of 2009 presenting the full cycle of the BRENTANO LIEDER by Strauss as well as works by contemporary composers.

Ms. Breckenridge started off the 2007 season singing solos with the Moscow Chamber Orchestra in the US State Department in a concert honoring “200 years of U.S. - Russian relations” under the baton of Constantine Orbelian. A champion of contemporary music, she debuted with Berkeley Symphony this season in Unsuk Chin’s, CANTANTRIX SOPRANICA paced by Kent Nagano as well as with Berkeley’s, Cal Performances singing songs by Ricky Ian Gordon with the composer at the piano. For her debut with Festival Del Sole in Napa Valley, Marnie sang a concert with Frederica Von Stade and the Russian National Symphony conducted by Stéphan Denève where the San Francisco Examiner raved, “Her voice of peaches and cream, produced brilliantly and without effort and with a preternaturally gorgeous appearance…the Bay Area’s secret treasure”.

In the rest of the 2007 season Ms. Breckenridge debuted two distinctly American roles to high critical acclaim; Laurie in Copland’s, TENDER LAND with Trinity Lyric Opera and Emily in the West Coast Premiere of Ned Rorem’s, OUR TOWN with Festival Opera. The Contra Costa Times singled out her performance of Emily as one of the top 10 best performances in the Bay Area of the year. After a Pops concert at the Bear Valley Music Festival featuring the “Best of 100 Years of Broadway” Marnie returned to Indianapolis Opera to sing Pamina in THE MAGIC FLUTE. She finished the season with a recital of Strauss, Barber, Rachmaninoff, Villa-Lobos and Mollicone at Cornell University with Blaise Bryski accompanying at the piano.

In addition to her 2006 debut in Ned Rorem’s, BERTHA and THREE SISTERS with Black Box Opera Theater in January, she premiered a new opera written for her entitled, CHRYSALIS by Clark Suprynowicz with Berkeley Opera in April where The San Francisco Chronicle raved: “her Nelle not only looks the part – and how many opera singers are plausible as a chemically invented paragon of beauty? – She also brings plenty of vocal fireworks and even a measure of eerie vulnerability to the role”. In May, she made her European opera debut at the Prague State Opera garnering wide critical praise in her acclaimed role of Cunegonde in CANDIDE.

To start off the 2005 season Ms. Breckenridge sang her first LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR with West Bay Opera and repeated the role two months later in her Indianapolis Opera debut. Both performances garnered praise for her “stunning bel canto singing” and “extraordinary acting”, (The Almanac, Palo Alto). Further describing her performances as “breathtaking”, “willing to take risks that paid off richly” and “her performance of the extraordinary “Mad Scene”…was brilliant”. The Indianapolis Star praised her for “so much facility with the lyricism of the “bel canto” singing style…long-lined melodies were sweet indeed.”

Also in 2005, Ms. Breckenridge sang Cunegonde in CANDIDE with Festival Opera. The San Francisco Chronicle hailed, “Breckenridge is the leading light on stage”…“deploys her sparkling soprano to create an evolving character”… with a “growing depth of insight and darkening tone of the second act”. The Contra Costa Times wrote, “Breckenridge boasts diamond-bright tone and assured comic presence; her agile performance of the coloratura aria "Glitter and Be Gay" was the evening's showstopper”.

She finished the 2005 season with her debut with the Moscow Chamber Orchestra singing Mozart’s “Exsultate, Jubilate” and the role debut of Susan in the South American Premier of Lennox Berkeley’s, A DINNER ENGAGEMENT with the Brazilian Opera Society in Sao Paulo. While in Moscow, she recorded one song on an “Arias” CD with Dimitri Hvorostovsky for Delos Records to be released in 2006 conducted by Constantine Orbelian.

Highlights of Ms. Breckenridge’s 2003-2004 season include, Yum Yum in THE MIKADO with Arizona Opera, a return to San Francisco Opera to sing Papagena in DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE and Inez in Verdi’s IL TROVATORE, Corilla Sartinecchi in Donizetti’s VIVA LA MAMMA with West Bay Opera, Juliette in ROMÉO ET JULIETTE with Sacramento Opera and Gilda in RIGOLETTO in her Festival Opera debut.

During the 2001-2002 seasons the soprano made an impressive debut at Arizona Opera singing Gretel in HANSEL AND GRETEL, Adina in L’ELISIR D’AMORE with Intermountain Opera in Montana and made her Latin-American debut as Auretta in Mozart’s L’OCA DEL CAIRO with the Brazilian Opera Society in Sao Paulo. Ms. Breckenridge appeared as Olga in San Francisco Opera’s THE MERRY WIDOW seen on PBS’ Great Performances and BBC Television and subsequently released on DVD.

In the 2000-1999 seasons Marnie Breckenridge sang her first performances of Baby Doe in THE BALLAD OF BABY DOE with North Bay Opera. She appeared as Musetta in LA BOHÈME with Nevada Opera and as Elisetta in Cimarosa’s IL MATRIMONIO SEGRETO with the Israel Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv. Other roles performed include Zerlina in DON GIOVANNI with North Bay Opera, Sophie in WERTHER with San Francisco Lyric Opera and Pamina in THE MAGIC FLUTE with West Bay Opera and Carolina in LUISA FERNANDA with the Jarvis Institute in Napa, California.

Ms. Breckenridge made her San Francisco Davies Symphony Hall debut singing the soprano solos in Handel’s MESSIAH under Michael Barrett. Additional symphony credits include Samuel Barber’s KNOXVILLE: SUMMER OF 1915 with the Tassajara Symphony (Sarah Jobin) and Pacific Chamber Symphony (Lawrence Kohl) as well as CARMINA BURANA, Mozart’s REQUIEM, and BACHIANAS BRAZILERAS NO. 5 with the Vallejo Symphony (David Ramandanoff). With the Fresno Philharmonic Orchestra, she sang the role of Adele in a concert version of DIE FLEDERMAUS (Phil Kutner).

Her other concert performances include CHANTS D’AVERGNE, Bach’s MAGNIFICAT AND ST. MATTHEW PASSION, as well as Haydn’s THE CREATION. She has appeared in recital throughout California as well as Norway, Sweden, Great Britain and Italy. In 2005, she sang solos for the 60th Anniversary of the United Nations at San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral.

In 2005 and 2006, she was a featured soloist in the San Francisco Festival of Song singing works by Martin Hennessy, Mark Altmazan Buntag, Kirke Mechem and Edward Knight. Her commitment to featuring the music of modern composers on concerts and recitals has fostered relationships with Ricky Ian Gordon, Bruce Rockwell, Jake Heggie, David Conte, Kurt Erickson, D’arcy Reynolds, David Garner, Daniel Brewbaker, Michael Kaulkin, Clark Suprynowicz and Henry Mollicone.

A winner of numerous prestigious competitions, Ms. Breckenridge is a Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and the winner of the IIE International Travel Award, a Loren L. Zachary National Grand Finalist, a MacAllister Awards Regional Finalist and Mu Phi Epsilon Winner. The soprano received her Bachelor’s Degree from Pacific Union College and her Master’s Degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music where she appeared in numerous productions, including Tytania in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM and Despina in COSI FAN TUTTE. Ms. Breckenridge studies with Jane Randolph and has participated in the Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Artist Program in 2001 and the Israel Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv in 1999.

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