Patricia Risley mezzosopran
is frequently sought after on national and international stages. Her 2005/06 season includes her Opera Ireland debut in the title role of La Cenerentola, as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni with Minnesota Opera, as well as her return to the Metropolitan Opera for Tisbe in La Cenerentola and a Flowermaiden in Parsifal with Los Angeles Opera. In the summer of 2006, she returns to Santa Fe Opera for Miranda in the American premiere of The Tempest by Thomas Adès.
The mezzo-soprano’s future engagements include Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro in her return to Arizona Opera and the Composer in Ariadne auf Naxos with the Utah Opera. She also returns to the Metropolitan Opera for Il Trittico and sings Cara in the world premiere of Thomas Pasatieri’s Frau Margo with Fort Worth Opera.
Her appearances in the 2004/05 season included Diana in the world premiere of Bolcom’s A Wedding with Lyric Opera of Chicago, Siebel in Faustwith Opera Company of Philadelphia, Stéphano in Roméo et Juliette with Houston Grand Opera, Sesto in Giulio Cesare with Opera Colorado, as well as Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with the New York Philharmonic. She also sang the roles of the Cat and Cuckoo in Respighi’s La bella dormente al bosco at both the Spoleto U.S.A. and Lincoln Center Festivals.
Risley is a frequent guest at the Metropolitan Opera, where she made her debut as Tebaldo in Don Carlo followed immediately by Tisbe in La Cenerentola and Mercédès in Carmen. She made her Lyric Opera of Chicago debut in 1995 as a member of the prestigious Lyric Opera Center for America Artists and has since performed 13 roles with the company.
The winner of a 2001 Aria Award, she was recently heard as Sesto in Giulio Cesare with Houston Grand Opera, Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro at the Ravinia Festival, Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia at Opera Colorado, Musetta in La bohème with Arizona Opera, Cherubino in Le nozze di Figarowith the Israel Philharmonic under the baton of Zubin Mehta, and the title role in Carmen with Palm Beach Opera. Other engagements in America include Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier for Opera Pacific, Meg Page in Falstaff with the Minneapolis Orchestra, Diana in La Calisto and the title role in Cesti’s Orontea with Music of the Baroque in Chicago, Hansel in Hansel and Gretel with the Omaha Symphony Orchestra, and performances of Mozart’s C-minor Mass with Boston Baroque, the Israel Philharmonic, and Chicago’s Grant Park Music Festival.
Her German debut took place at the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin as Cherubino in a new production of Le nozze di Figaro, conducted by Daniel Barenboim, performances of which were televised and released on DVD. She returned to Berlin for Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, which was followed by performances at Madrid’s Teatro Real. Last season, Risley also made her debut with the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich singing La Musica/La Speranza in Monteverdi’s Orfeo and later returning to that company to sing Meg Page in their new production of Falstaff conducted by Zubin Mehta.
A frequent guest at the world’s most noted opera festivals, Risley was recently heard in the roles of Dorabella in Così fan tutte and Varvara in Kátya Kabanová with the Santa Fe Opera. She appeared as Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro, and Farnace in Mitridate with Wolf Trap Opera, as well as Dorabella in Così fan tutte and Estella in Argento’s Miss Havisham’s Fire with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. She also sang Ernesto in Haydn’s Il mondo della luna (a co-production of the Berlin Staatsoper and Innsbruck Festival, under René Jacobs) and made her Italian debut as Anna in Die sieben Todsünden at the Teatro Maggio Musicale in Florence.