"...(more of her, please)." - Washington Post
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.
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.