Barton, Jamie

Jamie Barton (born October 17, 1981)[1] is an American operatic mezzo-soprano. She won the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition (both Main and Song Prizes) in June 2013.[2] She is also the winner of the 2015 Richard Tucker Award.[3]

Early life and education

Barton was born in Rome, Georgia.[4] Her parents are Jim Barton and Robin Fox. She first performed when she was six years old, singing "Tender Shepherd" from the 1954 musical Peter Pan at a talent show at the Armuchee Elementary School.[5]

She attended Armuchee High School, obtained a bachelor's degree from Shorter College and pursued a master's degree from Indiana University, both degrees in voice performance.[6]

In the summers of 2006 and 2007, Barton was a Gerdine Young Artist at the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and a Fellow in Vocal Studies at the Tanglewood Music Center.[7] In April 2007, Barton, along with five other singers, won the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.[6][8]

Career

In summer 2007, Barton made her professional operatic debut singing the role of Annina, the lead character's maid, in Verdi's La traviata at the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis.[4][9][10]

In July 2008, Barton sang in Humperdinck's Hansel and Gretel at the Aspen Music Festival; one critic described Barton's performance as coming "close to stealing the show with her over-the-top witch."[11]

In the 2008/09 season, Barton, a graduate of the Houston Grand Opera Studio, sang three times with the Houston Opera, as Ursula in Berlioz's Béatrice et Bénédict, as Giovanna in Verdi's Rigoletto, and as Mrs. Ronaldson in the world premiere of André Previn's Brief Encounter.[12]

In the 2009/2010 season, she debuted at the Metropolitan Opera in the role of the Second Lady in Mozart's The Magic Flute. She also sang for the first time with the Canadian Opera Company as Emilia, Desdemona's maid, in Verdi's Otello.[12]

In 2011, Barton performed the role of Mère Marie in Poulenc's Dialogues of the Carmelites at the Bavarian State Opera in Munich.[13] Also in 2011, Barton debuted with the Lyric Opera of Chicago. She sang three roles: the Voice of the Mother in Offenbach's Tales of Hoffman, the Nurse in Mussorgsky's Boris Godunov, and the Dryade in Richard Strauss's Ariadne auf Naxos.[13][14]

In summer 2012, she sang again with the Bavarian State Opera at the Munich Opera Festival, singing the role of the Second Norn in Richard Wagner's Götterdämmerung.[15]

On June 21, 2013, Barton won the Song Prize at the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition.[16] On June 23, she won the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World.[2][17] The only person in the history of the competition to win both prizes before was Romanian tenor Marius Brenciu.[18]

She is represented by Columbia Artists Management[19] and Verismo Communications.[20]

Critical reception

The Guardian reviewing the 2013 Cardiff Singer of the World results: "She is a great artist, no question, with an imperturbable steadiness of tone, and a nobility of utterance that invites comparison not so much with her contemporaries as with mid-20th century greats such as Kirsten Flagstad or Karin Branzell...her performance of Unbewegte Laue Luft, marked her out as one of the great Brahms interpreters of our times."[21]

Opera News has described Barton as a "rising star" with a "sumptuous voice".[22]

In a review of a recital at the Kennedy Center in 2009, Anne Midgette said that Barton had a "big voice" and "sang very well" but "showed [a] penchant for mugging".[23]

In May 2015, Musical Toronto wrote about Barton's singing in Verdi's Requiem with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra: "Jamie Barton’s gleaming mezzo and exemplary legato was such a pleasure – no wonder she took Cardiff! Her Liber Scriptus, Quid sum miser, and Lux Eterna were all amazing. She was not afraid to use chest voice, but it was very musical and without vulgarity."[24]

Recordings

  • André Previn- Brief EncounterElizabeth Futral (soprano); Nathan Gunn (baritone ); Jamie Barton (mezzo); Kim Josephson (baritone). Houston Grand Opera; Patrick Summers (conductor). Label: Deutsche Grammophon. Released May 2011.
  • Dominico Scarlatti – La Dirindina – Ars Lyrica Houston; Brian Shurcliffe (baritone); Jamie Barton (mezzo); Joseph Gaines (tenor). Label: Sono Luminus. Released August 2012.
  • Peter Ash-The Golden Ticket – Benjamin Wenzelberg (treble); Jamie Barton (mezzo); Jason Hardy (bass); Gerald Thompson (countertenor); Daniel Okulitch (Baritone); Atlanta Opera; Peter Ash (conductor). Label: Albany Records. Released December 2012.
  • An Aids Quilt Songbook: Sing for HopeYo Yo Ma (cello); Jamie Barton (mezzo); Joyce Di Donato (mezzo); Isabel Leonard (mezzo ); Sharon Stone (spoken word). Released November 2014.
  • Holiday Harmonies: Songs of Christmas – Jamie Barton (mezzo); Maureen McKay (mezzo); Stacey Shames (harp); Essential Voices USA (chorus). Label: Sono Luminus. Released October 2015.
  • All Who Wander – Jamie Barton (mezzo); Brian Zeger (piano). Label: Delos Music. Released November 2016.

References

  1. ^ "At A Glance — Jamie Barton, mezzo-soprano". Jamiebartonmezzo.com. 1981-10-17. Retrieved 2016-12-23. 
  2. ^ a b "American mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton crowned BBC Cardiff Singer of the World". WalesOnline. June 23, 2013. Retrieved June 23, 2013. 
  3. ^ "The New York Times". Retrieved 6 February 2016. 
  4. ^ a b "Guest Artist Series". Shorter University. March 2009. Retrieved December 30, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Fairytales Can Come True" (PDF). Enjoy! The Magazine. Summer 2010. Retrieved December 30, 2012. [dead link]
  6. ^ a b Avila, Severo (January 2011). "A Diva Comes Home: Opera singer Jamie Barton to sing at First Baptist Church Sunday". Rome News-Tribune. Retrieved December 30, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Jamie Barton". Aspen Music Festival. Retrieved December 30, 2012. 
  8. ^ "National Council Audition Winners Named!". Metropolitan Opera. April 2, 2007. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  9. ^ Anderson, Eric (November 8, 2006). "Once upon an Opera". Indiana Daily Student. Retrieved January 26, 2013. 
  10. ^ "Brahms' Double Concerto". San Diego Symphony. Retrieved January 26, 2013. 
  11. ^ Steiman, Harvey (July 30, 2008). "Shaham, Wolff deliver thrills despite difficulties, thunder". The Aspen Times. Retrieved January 26, 2013. 
  12. ^ a b "Jamie Barton, Mezzo-Soprano: Marthe" (PDF). Santa Fe Opera. Retrieved January 26, 2013. 
  13. ^ a b "Soprano Ailyn Pérez Winner of 2012 Richard Tucker Award; Recipients of Career and Study Grants Also Announced". Richard Tucker Music Foundation. April 14, 2012. Retrieved January 26, 2013. 
  14. ^ "2011–12 Season Announced". Chicago Lyric Opera. February 1, 2011. Retrieved January 27, 2013. 
  15. ^ "Götterdämmerung". Bayerische Staatsoper. July 15, 2012. Retrieved January 27, 2013. 
  16. ^ BBC News Wales – "Cardiff Singer of the World: Jamie Barton wins song prize". Accessed June 23, 2013
  17. ^ "BBC Radio 3 – BBC Cardiff Singer of the World, 2013 – USA: Jamie Barton". BBC. Retrieved 6 February 2016. 
  18. ^ "BBC Cardiff Singer of the World". BBC. Retrieved June 24, 2013. 
  19. ^ "Jamie Barton – vocalists – mezzo-soprano". CAMI.com. Retrieved June 28, 2013. 
  20. ^ "Verismo Communications". Verismo Communications. Retrieved 2016-12-23. 
  21. ^ Ashley, Tim (June 24, 2013). "BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Final – review". The Guardian. London. Retrieved June 28, 2013. 
  22. ^ "Guest Artist: Jamie Barton, February 1–2". San Jacinto College. Retrieved January 27, 2013. 
  23. ^ Midgette, Anne (December 12, 2009). "Metropolitan Opera mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton sings at Kennedy Center". The Washington Post. Retrieved January 27, 2013. 
  24. ^ So, Joseph (May 22, 2015). "Stars Align For Verdi Requiem With Sir Andrew Davis". Musical Toronto. Toronto. Retrieved July 21, 2015.