American Mezzo-Soprano Rachael Wilson is a recent recipient of the honorary Bavarian Art Prize. A native from Las Vegas, Nevada, she is a graduate of the Juilliard School, and was a member of the Opera Studio at the Bayerische Staatsoper, where she joined the Ensemble in 2015. Since September 2019, Rachael is a member of the Ensemble at the Staatsoper Stuttgart.
This season, Rachael’s engagements include her debuts at the Teatro Real, Madrid as Cherubino Le nozze di Figaro - a role she also reprised at short notice for the Bayerische Staatsoper - and at the Opéra national de Rhin as Kay in Abrahamsen's The Snowqueen, a role she will reprise in concert performance with the Dutch Radio Orchestra and Maestro Kent Nagano at the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam. Further ahead, Rachael looks forward to debuts at the Opernhaus Zurich; the Glyndebourne Festival and La Monnaie, Brussels.
In Stuttgart this season, Rachael will make her role debut as Fricka in a new production of Das Rheingold; she will also sing the title role of Vivaldi’s Juditha Triumphans and La Messaggera in Monteverdi's L'Orfeo; she will return to the role of Charlotte Werther and she will perform Messiaen's Harawi.
Joining the Ensemble at the Staatsoper Stuttgart in the 2019/20 season, Rachael made her debut as La Malaspina in the Premiere of Sciarrino’s Luci mie traditrici, and she has since made roles debut Charlotte Werther and in the title role of Bizet’s Carmen.
During her time at the Bayerische Staatsoper (2015-19), Rachael’s appearances included: Kay The Snowqueen by Hans Abrahamsen; Hänsel Hänsel und Gretel; Dorabella Cosi fan tutte; Cherubino Le nozze di Figaro; the Gymnasiast Lulu; Bersi Andrea Chénier and Fatime in Weber's Oberon – a performance for which she was awarded the Bayerische Festspielpreis. She returned to Munich for the 2021 Munich Opera Fesitval, to sing the Page of Herodias Salome.
On the concert platform, she has performed in such venues as Carnegie Hall with Vivaldi’s Gloria, the Philadelphia Kimmel Center with Rossini’s Petite Messe Solenelle, and Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall singing the role of Disinganno in Handel’s Il trionfo del Tempo e del Disinganno. During her time in Munich, she performed such works as Berio’s Folk Songs in the Cuvillies Theater and Juditha in Mozart’s La Betulia liberata. She has also made multiple recordings with the Bayerische Rundfunk as an ensemble member of the Bayerische Staatsoper as well as in concert performances, including Christian Jost’s Death Knocks and a world premiere of a recently discovered Nadia Boulanger chanson. In the 2019/20 season, she made her debut with the RTV Symphony Orchestra as the Alto Soloist in Prokofiev’s Ivan the Terrible.
Biography not for publication, for an up to date version please contact Oliver Clarke.
"As the teenage Kay, Rachael Wilson offered her peachy mezzo. The tone was impressively full and rounded, the voice seemingly defying gravity, and absolutely even from top to bottom. She also exploited a notable range of vocal colour, modulating her use of vibrato to haunting effect."
"This is mainly due to Rachael Wilson as the touching Charlotte, who goes through a difficult psychological process of change and embodies this in an extremely gripping way. Your aria “Va! Laisse couler mes larmes “has an extremely emotional effect, is rich in timbres and touches you because of the sensitive slimness of the cantilenas."
"Rachael Wilson - you have to remember this name from today! One cannot take one's eyes or ears away from this singer."
"Charlotte is sung by the American mezzo-soprano Rachael Wilson in such a way that it almost takes your breath away. So many colors, so much differentiation in dynamics, sound shaping, articulation! The evening should be called "Charlotte!"
"Rachael Wilson as (as Fricka), lays so many nuances, elegance, intimate shades of hurt love, but also that own awareness of power in her shimmering, precious voice, so that in just a few moments a very differentiated character image of Wotan's wife emerges."
"Rachael Wilson's Fricka is a real sensation: She sings Wotan's wife without any bitchiness, very softly and fluently, and shapes the figure's rolling between diva pose and despair with many fine nuances."
"Rachael Wilson gives a remarkable interpretation of her schizophrenic character locked in suffering that leaves her little contact with the real world."
"Finally, if we applaud the rest of the cast overall, we must pay special attention to the beauty and power of Rachael Wilson's voice in the role of the Page."
Toute la Culture
"Rachael Wilson in the role of Kay is overwhelming by her intense acting, she seems entirely inhabited by the feelings of the character, while remaining mysterious, cold as it should be. Superb characterization. "