Amour, ranime mon courage: Roméo et Juliette (C. Gounod)
Emily Birsan, soprano
Jason Carlson, piano
Filmed and edited by Conduit Studios
Beloved by critics and audiences alike, American soprano Emily Birsan has shared her engaging skills with many of the world's finest opera houses and orchestras, including the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Welsh National Opera, Edinburgh Festival, Boston Lyric Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Rochester Philharmonic, Bergen Philharmonic, and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. Hailed for her versatility and “radiant delicacy” of tone, she takes on exceptionally broad repertoire, and has emerged as a specialist in works by Mozart and Italian repertoire. In 2021, Ms. Birsan returned to Madison Opera for a recital, as well as Chicago Opera Theater to sing 2nd Flower and cover the role of Beatriz in Daniel Catán’s La hija de Rappaccini. She also joined the Opera Festival of Chicago as the title role in Wolf-Ferrari’s Il segreto di Susanna and made her debuts with Inland Northwest Opera as Euridice in Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice and with the Northwest Indiana Symphony for their Holiday Pops concert. 2022 sees Ms. Birsan performing a wide variety of concert repertoire including Rutter’s Requiem with the Bach Society of Saint Louis; Bach’s BWV 82 and Jake Heggie’s Camille Claudel: Into the Fire with Willy Street Chamber Players; Beethoven’s Ah! Perfido and Mahler’s Songs of a Wayfarer with St. Augustine Music Festival; and a concert with Opera Edwardsville.
During the 2019-2020 season, Ms. Birsan made appearances with the Aspen Ideas Festival and Peninsula Music Festival and performed as the soprano soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Bach Society of St. Louis, Beethoven’s Mass in C with the Phoenix Symphony, Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 with the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra, and Handel’s Messiah with both the Boise Philharmonic and Tucson Symphony. In the winter of 2020, Ms. Birsan was slated to be the soprano soloist in Messiah with the Tucson Symphony (COVID19) and joined the Jacksonville Symphony as the soprano soloist in Messiah.
During the 2018-2019 season, Ms. Birsan went on for an ailing colleague at the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Violetta in La traviata for which SplashMags.com acclaimed “This opera is about Violetta, and the Lyric has a superb one here." Additionally, Ms. Birsan performed Violetta with Nashville Opera, Handel’s Messiah with the Illinois Philharmonic, Jacksonville Symphony, and Louisiana Symphony, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni with the Jacksonville Symphony, the title role in Rusalka with Madison Opera, Mahler’s 8th Symphony with Madison Symphony, and Sandman/Dew Fairy in Hänsel und Gretel with the Edinburgh International Festival.
During the 2017-2018 season, Ms. Birsan joined Sir Andrew Davis and the Liverpool Philharmonic for a concert, performed Violetta in La traviata with Indianapolis Opera, sang as the soprano soloist in Handel’s Messiah with the Jacksonville Symphony, joined a tour singing the role of Maria Callas with Pop-Up Magazine on the West Coast, appeared as the soprano soloist in Mahler’s 4th Symphony with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, and made her debut with Welsh National Opera as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni. During the 2016-2017 season, Ms. Birsan made role debuts as Juliette in Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette with Madison Opera, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro with Boston Lyric Opera, and Donna Anna in Don Giovanni with Florentine Opera. On the concert stage, she made her debut with Melbourne Symphony singing Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis, a concert with the Chicago Philharmonic, and was featured with the BBC Symphony in London singing Bliss’ Beatitudes.
In past seasons, Ms. Birsan returned to the Lyric Opera of Chicago as the Italian Singer in Capriccio, sang Leila in The Pearl Fishers with Florida Grand Opera, and performed as Anne Trulove in The Rake’s Progress with the Edinburgh International Festival. She made her Carnegie Hall debut as a soloist in Mozart’s Mass in C minor with The Orchestra Now. With the Chandos Record Label, Ms. Birsan recorded Edward Elgar's oratorio, The Saga of St. Olaf, with the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra and Sir Andrew Davis.
A veteran of vocal competitions, Ms. Birsan was awarded first prize from the Musicians Club of Women Competition and received the 2014 Richard F. Gold Career Grant through the Lyric Opera of Chicago. She was also named the winner of the 2010 Rose M. Grundman Scholarship from the Civic and Arts Union League Competition, was awarded first place in the 2007 Senior Women’s Division of the National Association of Teachers of Singing Competition, and received multiple award wins from 2008-2011 at the Upper Midwest Region of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. Ms. Birsan earned her BM from Lawrence Conservatory in Appleton, WI and her MM degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s School of Music in 2010. A student of Julia Faulkner, Ms. Birsan was also awarded the Paul Collins Fellowship during her residency at the university.