I bought this suitcase in New York: Flight (J. Dove/A. De Angelis)
Kristen Choi, mezzo-soprano
Clara Cheng Stosch, piano
Filmed and edited by Conduit Studios
Mezzo-soprano Kristen Choi is making waves in the world of opera, with Opera News dubbing her a “powerhouse in the making” for her portrayal of Suzuki in Madama Butterfly. In the upcoming 2023-2024 season, she has a host of thrilling operatic performances and debuts scheduled. Ms. Choi will reprise the role of Suzuki with return engagements at Opera Philadelphia and Virginia Opera, while also making company debuts in the role with Detroit Opera and in a traveling production with both Kentucky Opera and Florentine Opera. Additional operatic performances this season include a return to Dallas Opera to sing the 2nd Maidservant in Elektra and joining the Hart Institute for Women Conductors to sing excerpts from Suor Angelica. On the concert stage, Ms. Choi makes exciting debuts with both the Naples Philharmonic and the Phoenix Symphony singing as the alto soloist in Messiah.
In 2022-2023, she returned to Opera Philadelphia in Toshio Hosokawa’s The Raven, made her Lubbock Symphony debut as Suzuki in Madama Butterfly, joined the roster of The Metropolitan Opera as the Dimitri cover in Fedora, joined Opera Idaho in the role of Hiroko in An American Dream, returned to Opera Omaha as Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro and joined Opera Delaware for a workshop of Derrick Wang’s Fearless as Mother. In the 2023 summer season, she joined the West Edge Opera as the Cook in Stravinsky’s Le rossignol.
During the 2021-2022 season, Ms. Choi made her Dallas Opera debut as the Stewardess in Flight, joined Opera Philadelphia in Rene Orth’s Tak Tak Shoo and as Maddalena in Rigoletto, returned to Washington National Opera as Phoung Tran in a workshop of The Rift by Huang Ruo and David Henry Hwang, made her Dayton Philharmonic debut as the alto soloist in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, and debuted at HALO as Annina in La traviata.
Her 2019-2020 schedule included two house debuts as Suzuki in Madama Butterfly with performances at Opera Omaha and Opera Philadelphia (COVID19). Recent engagements also included a role and house debut with Opera Maine as the Third Lady in Mozart's The Magic Flute, as well as the creation of the title role in a brand-new production of Murasaki's Moon, a completely new work in partnership with On Site Opera and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In 2020, Ms. Choi was slated to reprise the role of Lady Thiang in The King and I for her company debut at Piedmont Opera, make her Michigan Opera Theater debut reprising Suzuki in Madama Butterfly and return to Opera Omaha as Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro (COVID19).
Ms. Choi began her 2018-2019 season on tour with the Lincoln Center Broadway Production of Rodgers and Hammerstein's The King and I as an ensemble member and Lady Thiang understudy. After six months with this production, she performed consecutive Suzukis, first with the Lyric Opera of Kansas City and then with Virginia Opera. Her time in Virginia also included a role debut as Hiroko Kobayashi in Jack Perla's An American Dream.
The 2017-2018 season was a banner year for Ms. Choi. Highlights included her Kennedy Center debut where she made a lauded reprisal of her signature role in Jun Kaneko's production of Madame Butterfly at Washington National Opera. It also featured her first foray into the European market where she performed Paquette in Bernstein's Candide with the Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse and the Opéra National de Bordeaux. New roles entered into her repertoire included Hermia in Virginia Opera's A Midsummer Night's Dream, and Ruth Sherwood in Bernstein's Wonderful Town with the Seattle Symphony. She also made a return to Santa Fe Opera as an apprentice where she performed in the ensemble of the world premiere of Mason Bates's opera The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs.
Engagements in the 2015-2016 season included Cherubino in Sarasota Opera's Le nozze di Figaro and Paquette in Glimmerglass Opera's stunning production of Bernstein's Candide directed by Francesca Zambello. The summer marked her first stint with Santa Fe Opera where she made her house debut singing the role of Wowkle in Puccini's La fanciulla del West. In the 2013-2014 season, Ms. Choi was an emerging artist with Virginia Opera where she sang the role of the Third Spirit in The Magic Flute and covered the roles of Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd and Meg Page in Falstaff. The same summer, she portrayed the independent heroine Jo from one of the most beloved stories in American literature Little Women, at Opera North. She also grew her pedigree in the realm of musical theatre with a staggering eighty-five performances of Lady Thiang in Rodgers and Hammerstein's The King and I.
Previously Ms. Choi completed an apprenticeship with Sarasota Opera where she had the distinct honor of performing original, pre-revised music from Verdi's Falstaff as the character of Meg Page in Sarasota Opera's “Verdi's Times” concert. She also performed numerous runs as the quintessential mezzo seductress Carmen singing the arias and scenes with full orchestration. Additional roles performed have included Dorabella (Così fan tutte) with Pacific Opera Project, Zerlina (Don Giovanni) with West Bay Opera, St. Teresa II (Four Saints in Three Acts) with Opera Parallèle in San Francisco, Sesto (La clemenza di Tito) with BASOTI (Bay Area Summer Opera Theatre Institute), the Old Prioress (Dialogues of the Carmelites) and Rosina (Il barbiere di Siviglia) with the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
Awards and honors include being named a Lotte Lenya Competition semi-finalist, a winner of the San Diego Metropolitan National Council District, an encouragement award winner from the MONC Regionals, a recipient of a Career Bridges grant, a Jensen Foundation finalist, and a recipient of a scholarship with the Pasadena Opera Guild and East Bay Opera League in Oakland, California. Ms. Choi also placed first in the vocal category of the Coeur d'Alene Young Artist Competition and is received the Lisa Kavelage award from the Henry and Maria Holt Competition. In 2010, she won third place in the Y.E.S. Foundation for the arts competition in San Francisco, California. A native of California, Ms. Choi holds a master's degree of music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.