Lauded by Opera News as “enchanting…radiant…glittering,” and as an artist who “owned the place” by The Philadelphia Inquirer, soprano Sydney Mancasola is quickly establishing herself as one of the most engaging singing actresses of her generation. The 2019 – 2020 season sees Ms. Mancasola make her role debut as Bess in a new production of Missy Mazzoli’s Breaking the Waves at both the Edinburgh International Festival and at the Adelaide Festival Centre in New Zealand. She also returns to Komische Oper Berlin to sing the title role in Barrie Kosky’s production of Semele and Pamina in Die Zauberflöte. Ms. Mancasola also makes her house debuts at both Washington National Opera and Teatro Municipal de Santiago as Pamina in Die Zauberflöte.
The 2018 – 2019 season sees Ms. Mancasola’s debut with the Metropolitan Opera as Pamina in the Julie Taymor production of The Magic Flute and as Frasquita in Carmen, which is broadcast to theatres around the world as part of the Met’s Live in HD program. Ms. Mancasola also returns to Oper Frankfurt to sing Roxana in a new production of Szymanowski’s Król Roger, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, and Frasquita in Carmen. Additional appearances include her Italian debut singing Haydn’s Die Schöpfung with the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale RAI conducted by James Conlon, and a recital with Elīna Garanča at The Green Space in New York as part of the Classical up Close series.
Operatic highlights include her European debut with Komische Oper Berlin as the heroines in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Cleopatra in Giulio Cesare, Pamina in the Barrie Kosky production of Die Zauberflöte, and Servilia in a concert performance of La clemenza di Tito. At Oper Frankfurt she has sung Gilda in Rigoletto, Musetta in La bohème, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, Onoria in Ezio, the Italian Singer in Capriccio, a Niece in Peter Grimes and was the soprano soloist in a new production of Betulia liberata. Additional highlights include her role debut as Gilda in the Jonathan Miller production of Rigoletto at English National Opera; the title role in Manon at Oper Köln, her role debut as Violetta in La traviata and Lisette in La Rondine at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis; the title role in Manon and the role of Comtesse Adèle in Rossini’s Le Comte Ory at Des Moines Metro Opera; her company debut with Palm Beach Opera as Marie in La Fille du régiment and her role debut as Leïla in Les Pêcheurs de perles with Florida Grand Opera.
The concert stage has seen Ms. Mancasola in performance with the San Francisco Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, and Santa Fe Symphony in Handel’s Messiah, Eugene Symphony Orchestra for Haydn’s Die Schöpfung conducted by Danail Rachev, Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915 with the Sun Valley Symphony, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Mendelssohn’s Hear My Prayer, Strauss’s Brentano-Lieder, and Handel’s Messiah with the Santa Fe Symphony, Lexington Philharmonic, and the Philadelphia Orchestra under the direction of Michael Rossi. She was also featured as a guest soloist in Schubert’s Mass in G and Mozart’s Exsultate, jubilate with the 2012 international music festival Calí de Camara in Colombia.
Honors and awards include a Grand Finals winner of the 2013 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, a winner of the 2016 Mabel Dorn Reeder Foundation Prize from Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Top Prize Winner of the Gerda Lissner Foundation Competition, 2nd Prize and Audience Favorite at the Houston Grand Opera Eleanor McCollum Competition, and 1st Prize in the Loren L. Zachary National Vocal Competition. Ms. Mancasola is an alumna of the Academy of Vocal Arts, Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program, where she received the Judith Raskin Memorial Award for Singers, the Gerdine Young Artist program at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and the Brevard Music Center.
Ms. Mancasola began her musical training as a classical violinist in her home state of California and went on to study voice at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, where she completed her Bachelor of Music degree in 2011 and was the recipient of the Margot Bos Standler Scholarship.
“Sydney Mancasola’s Bess is a compelling tour de force, encompassing every emotional extreme, forcibly dominating a cast that is equally well-served” - Ken Walton
“Sydney Mancasola as Bess, an excellent soprano. gives her all in a performance of touching sincerity.” -Rupert Christiansen
“Mancasola is hardly off stage and charts the descent of her character from shy Skye bride to Christ-like victim with laser-like power and desperate vulnerability. Part of you wants to shake her out of it. Most of you wants to hug her. It’s an extraordinarily gutsy performance.” - Neil Fisher
“The role of Violetta is assumed by up-and-coming soprano Sydney Mancasola, already known to European audiences in London, Frankfurt and Berlin, and to be featured in The Magic Flute next season at New York’s Metropolitan Opera. She has a glorious instrument and articulates the text convincingly. I was reminded that artists can get away with a lot when they’re singing in a language neither their own nor the audience’s.” - Erica Gordon
“Her voice is so pure and so powerful it could persuade angels to switch sides. But she doesn’t rest on vocal technique. She absolutely inhabits the part, making a completely convincing Violetta. Even when the libretto doesn’t really give much explanation for Violetta’s various changes of heart, this talented performer pulls you along. And in the end, you’ll truly believe she’s dying, with a finale that’s one of the most effective on-stage deaths you’ll ever witness. It’s a marvelous trick, being able to convincingly portray terrible weakness even while your voice remains strong. Mancasola pulls it off.” -Sarah Fenske
“Sydney Mancasola brings to the role of Violetta not only a stellar voice, but also the stunning beauty that Violetta should have. She deftly manages the coloratura vocal acrobatics that the role demands. She shines like a silver thread above the chorus. And how can that slender body contain the power she brings to those perfect high-notes?”
“Soprano Sydney Mancasola is beautiful and slender, with a true and well-produced instrument. Sympathetic as the doomed courtesan, she brought out Violetta’s strength as well as her vulnerabilities in a well-rounded performance.” - Sarah Bryan Miller
“The Italians—entertainingly enacted but not caricatured—were brilliantly vocalized by American soprano Sydney Mancasola (a company Gilda and Musetta) and Met Lindemann program alumnus Mario Chang (Frankfurt’s current Werther and Devereux).” —David Shengold
“Only Sydney Mancasola is in any way special as Gilda. The finest actor of the three, she is radiant and glittering in the more stratospheric writing.” - David Gutman
“Sydney Mancasola was an enchanting Manon, her soprano radiant and glittering in the display writing, and offering a surprising dose of lyric weight in mid-range.” - Mark Thomas Ketterson
“Magda’s maid, Lisette, is a delightful role. Sydney Mancasola sings Lisette, and she nearly stole the show for me. Her performance is strong, bright and sassy – filled with enormous confidence. Her voice is sweet and clear and her diction superb.” - Steve Callahan
“Her gleaming top range and effervescent lightness spun “Salut a La France” with just the right Gallic touch. Mancasola was even more effective in Marie’s two slower, more inward arias. She brought out the sadness and heartbreak at being parted from her beloved Tonio in her poignant aria near the end of the first act. Mancasola’s rich lower voice shone to impressive effect in the heroine’s second act ballad of despair as Marie longs to escape from the Bavarian chateau of the Marquise of Berkenfield.” - Lawrence Budman
“Sydney Mancasola’s Marie was a slim, petite hoyden that emanated the charm that makes her character so beloved. Her buoyant personality matched her lovely voice as she easily moved from the boisterous “Chacun le sait” and the lesson scene trio to the deeply felt “Il faut partir” and (especially) “Par le rang.”” - Karl W Hesser
“Californian Sydney Mancasola sang a bewitchingly full-voiced and vocally agile Leïla. A highly engaging singer and actress, Mancasola made us feel the priestess’s panic in “J’étais encore enfant” before she soared to coloratura heights in “Comme autrefois.”” - Jean-François Lejeune
“Rising star Sydney Mancasola offered cascades of spot-on vocalizing as the Countess Adele. The silvery soprano seemed to gain in heft after her spectacularly sung entrance aria, and her immaculate coloratura was matched by her poised stage presence.” -James Sohre
“The big discovery, for me, was soprano Sydney Mancasola…with a voice that’s bright, focused, accurate, and projects an air of effortlessness, partly thanks to the solidity of her vocal technique, partly due to her comfort level onstage. She sashayed around as if she owned the place. And she did.” - David Patrick Stearns