American soprano Sarah Coburn is captivating international audiences with her “precision placement, mercury speed, and a gorgeous liquid gold tone, gilded by a thrilling top and bottom register” (The Globe and Mail). Following her performances as Lucie de Lammermoor at Glimmerglass Opera, the New York Observer noted “she turns out to have qualities that have made legends out of so many of her predecessors, from Adelina Patti to Maria Callas: stage charisma, a thrilling upper register and, crucially, a fearlessness about abandoning herself to opera’s most abandoned heroine … this is a palpably exciting voice … Ms. Coburn is a budding prima donna of exceptional promise.”
Ms. Coburn’s 2018-2019 season begins by returning to the role of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Tulsa Opera. Additionally, she sings Marie in La fille du regiment with Opera Carolina. Last season began with a role and company debut, as the title role in Manon with Opera Santa Barbara. Her season also included concerts with tenor Lawrence Brownlee at both the Tivoli Festival and with the Copenhagen Philharmonic, Rossini’s Stabat Mater with the Choral Arts Society of Washington led by Antony Walker, and Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 with the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra.
In the 2016-2017 season Sarah Coburn returned to Seattle Opera as Adèle in Le comte Ory, a debuted with Opera San Antonio as Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia, and sang Konstanze in Atlanta Opera’s production of Die Entführung aus dem Serail. The previous season saw her perform in concert with the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra, Oklahoma City Philharmonic, and with the Tivoli Festival.
Recent highlights include the role of Amina in La sonnambula with the Wiener Staatsoper, Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos with Seattle Opera, Marie in La fille du regiment with Seattle Opera and Tulsa Opera, Juliette in Roméo et Juliette with Tulsa Opera, and Adina in L’elisir d’amore with Washington National Opera. Ms. Coburn has perfomed the roles of Princess Yue-Yang in the world premiere production of Tan Dun’s The First Emperor at the Metropolitan Opera opposite Placido Domingo, Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Florida Grand Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Tulsa Opera, Seattle Opera, and Boston Lyric Opera; the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor with Washington National Opera, Tulsa Opera and Utah Opera; Gilda in Rigoletto with Welsh National Opera, Opéra de Montréal, Los Angeles Opera, Portland Opera, Arizona Opera, and Cincinnati Opera; Asteria in Tamerlano with Washington National Opera and Los Angeles Opera; Vittoria in Pedrotti’s Tutti in maschera at Wexford Festival Opera, Euridice in Haydn’s L’anima del filosofo with the Handel & Haydn Society and Glimmerglass Opera, Elvira in I puritani with the Tivoli Festival, Boston Lyric Opera and Washington Concert Opera, Lakmé with Tulsa Opera, Lucie de Lammermoor with both Cincinnati Opera and Glimmerglass Opera, Linda di Chamounix at the Caramoor Festival, and Giulietta in I Capuleti e i Montecchi with Glimmerglass Opera. Ms. Coburn has also performed with Glimmerglass Opera as the title character in Gilbert and Sullivan’s Patience as well as Sister Constance in Dialogues of the Carmelites, a role she reprised for New York City Opera.
Ms. Coburn created the role of Kitty in the world premiere of Anna Karenina at Florida Grand Opera and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. She has sung Adele in Die Fledermaus with both Seattle Opera and Michigan Opera Theatre, Oscar in Un ballo in maschera with Opera Company of Philadelphia, Florida Grand Opera, and Cincinnati Opera, Olympia in Les Contes d’Hoffmann and Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier with Cincinnati Opera, Norina in Don Pasquale, Sandrina in La finta giardiniera and Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro with Florida Grand Opera.
Ms. Coburn has appeared in concert with Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra, the Moscow Philharmonic, Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Russian National Orchestra, Copenhagen Philharmonic at the Tivoli Festival, and the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra; and Handel & Haydn Society as soloist for Elijah and Messiah. She has also sung Messiah with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra; Carmina Burana with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, National Chorale at Avery Fisher Hall, the National Symphony Orchestra and the Dallas Wind Symphony; and has joined the Seattle Symphony for Mozart’s Mass in C Minor and Bach’s Mass in B Minor.
Ms. Coburn has appeared in concert with Bryn Terfel with Florida Grand Opera, as well as in a duo-recital for the United States Supreme Court; in recital with Lawrence Brownlee for the Vocal Arts Society, with Los Angeles Opera and the Mark Morris Dance Group in Handel’s “L’allegro, il penseroso, ed il moderato” and in recital at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.
Ms. Coburn has received awards from the George London Foundation, The Richard Tucker Foundation, The Jensen Foundation, The Liederkranz Foundation, Opera Index, and was a National Grand Finalist in the 2001 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.
Atlanta Opera – Die Entführung aus dem Serail
The lovely soprano Sara Coburn sang the role of Konstanze, and paced herself well vocally. Her back-to-back arias, the sustained and fragile-sounding “Traurigkeit” and the ensuing “Martern aller Arten,” were both impressively done.”
Stephanie Adrian, Opera News
Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra – Season Finale Concert
“Coburn seems to have it all – beauty, silvery high notes and fearlessness when tackling the most treacherous cascades and runs. That was most evident in her selections from the Italian “bel canto” tradition in the program’s second half.
She brought emotional depth to each character. Bellini’s “Oh quante volte” (“How much time”) from the Romeo and Juliet story, “I Capuleti e i Montecchi,” was deeply felt, and she phrased with enormous control and elegance. Her artistry gripped in Elvira’s famous mad scene, “Qui la voce,” from Bellini’s “I Puritani” (The Puritans), as she displayed jaw-dropping flights into the stratosphere.”
Janelle Gelfand, The Cincinnati Enquirer
Boston Lyric Opera – I puritani
“Sarah Coburn is a winsome Elvira, in control of her coloratura, vibrant in her bridal polonaise “Son vergin vezzosa,” slyly demented as she begins her mad song “Vien, diletto” after Arthur runs off with another.”
Jeffrey Gantz, The Boston Globe
“…Sarah Coburn, who remains a highly accomplished vocalist, with an especially beautiful middle range and fleet, accurate coloratura and trills.”
David Shengold, Opera Magazine
Seattle Opera – La fille du régiment
“The two opening-night stars, tenor Lawrence Brownlee and soprano Sarah Coburn, cast the best possible light on Seattle Opera’s Young Artists program (both are alums). It would be hard to find two singers anywhere who could do more credit to these roles. Brownlee, at the international top of his form, sings his highflying arias with an ease, purity and polish that could hardly be bettered. He is thoroughly at home as the lovestruck Tonio, who joins the regiment to woo its adorable mascot Marie (Coburn, whose coloratura voice has gotten bigger but has lost none of its lovely agility). Both are singers are vital, winning actors and fun to watch; the opera’s two acts seem to fly right by.
Melinda Bargreen, Seattle Times
Cincinnati Opera – Der Rosenkavalier
Radiance was also to be found in the Sophie of Sarah Coburn. She seems comfortable with the high tessitura of the role — even the treacherous conclusion of the final duet was spot on — and it was a pleasure to hear her spinning out the many long lines Strauss requires.”
Joe Law, Opera News
Coburn brought sweet vulnerability in her role debut as the ingénue Sophie. The presentation of the rose scene was radiant, and her voice had silvery beauty all the way to her stunning high notes.
Time stood still in her wonderful duet with Octavian, “Ist ein Traum” (“It is a dream”), in which the two sealed their love with ecstatic kisses.”
Janelle Gelfand, Cincinnati Enquirer
Washington National Opera – Lucia di Lammermoor
Sarah Coburn in the title role [is] a riveting presence from the get-go…. The soprano has a voice of admirable purity and security. And she knows how to burrow into the music incisively, a quality matched by exceptionally nuanced acting.”
Tim Smith, Baltimore Sun
Cincinnati Opera – Rigoletto
Cincinnati favorite Sarah Coburn did what she does best: singing like an angel, flitting through the coloratura with ease, all the while creating a youthful, innocent maiden that the audience loved and wanted to protect as much as Rigoletto.”
Charles H. Parsons, Opera News
Wiener Staatsoper – La sonnambula
Taking the soprano lead in her house debut, Sarah Coburn scored a well-earned triumph. Her finely-tuned soprano is agreeable in timbre, ample in dynamic range and accurate in pitch and flexibility. Natural stage charm, a ballerina’s figure, together with an instinct for timing and a sense of shape for the lines (as much in the recitatives as elsewhere), make her an Amina to watch out for.”
Moore Parker, Opera Critic
Los Angeles Opera – Rigoletto
The performance centered on Sarah Coburn’s multifaceted Gilda. Strikingly pretty in appearance and superlatively agile in voice, Coburn caught Gilda’s naïve wonder at the world, her yearning for freedom and her sensual curiosity most effectively, but her darker vocal qualities, already quite pronounced in her fine Los Angeles debut last year, are now even more apparent in the middle to lower registers. As early as ‘Caro nome,’ these tones suggested a powerful sexual energy that would eventually drive Gilda to her death.”
Simon Williams, Opera News
Seattle Opera – Il barbiere di Siviglia
The production boasts an elegant, witty soprano Rosina in Sarah Coburn, whose voice is equally compelling in the low notes of Una voce poco fa and the optional high D’s which glitter and blossom at full voice. Coburn is one of the few singers who can match Brownlee’s facility with lightning passagework, providing more ornaments than the White House Christmas tree. She’s also an adroit comedienne and a remarkable beauty: the very model of a Rossini heroine.”
Melinda Bargreen, The Classical Review
Welsh National Opera – Rigoletto
In an auspicious UK debut, the American Sarah Coburn helped make the father-daughter duets as heart-rending as Verdi intended. Coburn’s agile soprano was laser-like at the top, but equally capable of a deeper, gutsier tone.”
Rian Evans, The Guardian
Florida Grand Opera – Il barbiere di Siviglia
Although it was written for mezzo-soprano, the role of Rosina was transposed and taken over by sopranos for many decades before the mezzos reclaimed it. Today we can still hear the soprano version occasionally, and here Sarah Coburn showed us why. Her bel canto technique was beautifully executed; her trills alone were worth the price of admission. Added assets are her good looks and subtle comic sensitivity. Never mugging or going for cheap laughs, this Rosina was a class act.”
James L. Paulk, Musical America
Los Angeles Opera – Tamerlano
Nothing less than stunning was Sarah Coburn, Bajazet’s daughter Asteria. With a voice equal to her fairytale princess face and form and a limitless technique she is simply stellar.”
Donna Perlmutter, Huffington Post
Wexford Festival Opera – Tutti in maschera
All credit to Agler, then, for creating a European platform for American coloratura soprano Sarah Coburn. Judging by her sparkling decorative runs, perfect trills and the way she caressed the lines with her full, even timbre, she deserves an international career – and has the stage temperament for it.”
Andrew Clark, Financial Times
Glimmerglass Opera – I Capuleti ei Montecchi
You need a voice of particular radiance for such spare music to come alive; Glimmerglass had such a singer in Sarah Coburn, who emerged from the company’s Young American Artists Program several years ago. To the requisite loveliness of tone Coburn added ample breath control, pinpoint accuracy in coloratura passages, and innately musical phrasing.”
The New Yorker
Coburn represents a new generation of superb American coloratura sopranos, a wonderful singer/actor with the hardness of diamonds cocooned in a bed of velvet in her voice.”
Paula Citron, Toronto Globe and Mail
Cincinnati Opera – Lucie de Lammermoor
Once every decade or two, a voice comes along that is so breathtaking, so thrilling for its sheer beauty and power, you feel lucky to witness it. That was the case when soprano Sarah Coburn took the stage in the title role of Cincinnati Opera’s ‘Lucie de Lammermoor,’ which opened Thursday in Music Hall.”
Janelle Gelfand, Cincinnati Enquirer
Washington Concert Opera – I puritani
For a few magical hours Sunday at Lisner Auditorium, soprano Sarah Coburn and tenor Lawrence Brownlee seemed to be the world’s best opera singers. As Elvira and Arturo, their sweet and radiant voices climbed to stratospheric heights and sped effortlessly through hairpin turns…In “Qui la voce,” Coburn’s coloratura technique was flawless, each note hit squarely, never ruffling Bellini’s flowing line.”
The Washington Post
He had a sensational co-star Sunday night in Sarah Coburn, as the intermittently unbalanced Elvira. In vocal terms, the soprano proved to be a remarkably pure Puritan, her tone clear, smooth and effortless. Coburn, who would also be a very welcome presence on one of our local stages, apparently never met a coloratura hurdle she couldn’t surmount. Her technique was so comfortably controlled that, even at its highest and loudest, her voice never lost its essential beauty.”
Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun
Cincinnati Opera – Un ballo in maschera
Sarah Coburn’s Oscar – crystalline of voice, with technique to spare – stole the show.”
As Oscar, the king’s page, Sarah Coburn is a rising star of the kind one feels lucky to witness. From her first act “Volta la terrea,” she was a scene-stealer who tossed off her vocal fireworks fearlessly and with clear, silvery high notes.”
The Cincinnati Enquirer
The most outstanding overall performance, though, was delivered by Sarah Coburn in the pants role of Oscar, the king’s page. In addition to effortless, beautiful singing, she brightened the set with ebullient personality at each appearance.”
The Cincinnati Post
Washington Concert Opera – Tancredi
The evening’s big surprise came from the young soprano Sarah Coburn, in the role of Amenaide, who sang with purity, power and pinpoint accuracy in terrifically challenging music … She more than held her own in this elite company.”
Tim Page, Washington Post
Cincinnati Opera – Les contes d’Hoffman
When Sarah Coburn as Olympia the doll let loose with her coloratura fireworks in Act I of “Tales of Hoffmann” Thursday night in Music Hall, the crowd understandably went wild…As the mechanical doll, Coburn’s voice was as scintillating as her costume; her crystal-clear coloratura brought down the house.”
The Cincinnati Enquirer
Seattle Symphony – Mozart Mass in C Minor
Some voices possess a genuine radiance, and Coburn is one of those fortunate singers. Her voice, bright and flexible and expressive, was displayed to great advantage in the Mass, where her florid, difficult solos had huge interval leaps.”
Glimmerglass Opera – Lucie de Lammermoor
… Sarah Coburn turns out to have qualities that have made legends out of so many of her predecessors, from Adelina Patti to Maria Callas: stage charisma, a thrilling upper register and, crucially, a fearlessness about abandoning herself to opera’s most abandoned heroine… [T]his is a palpably exciting voice…. Ms. Coburn is a budding prima donna of exceptional promise.”
New York Observer
Glimmerglass Opera – L’anima del filosofo
Eurydice was sung by the already-risen star Sarah Coburn, who dazzled Glimmerglass audiences two seasons ago as the French Lucie (de Lammermoor) and who has grown in stature since then. The voice retains its brightness, staggering accuracy in rapid divisions and brilliance at the top, but added to those qualities is a new gentleness of expression and warmth; indeed, the accompanied recitative right before Eurydice expires was delivered in a stunning half-voice, with a finely spun legato and great expressiveness. The role of Genio, Eurydice’s spiritual guide, gets the showpiece aria, and here Ms. Coburn sang that role too (as did Maria Callas in 1951; Joan Sutherland in the late ‘50s, and Cecilia Bartoli in the ten-year-old recording of the work) and her virtuosity and coloratura brought down the house.”
..but the real star was the soprano Sarah Coburn, who dazzled in Haydn’s demanding arias.”
Sensational coloratura soprano Sarah Coburn whips through both Euridice’s and Genio’s tortuous vocal decoration with precision placement, mercury speed, and a gorgeous liquid gold tone, gilded by a thrilling top and bottom register.”
The Globe and Mail
Seattle Opera – Die Fledermaus
The evening’s real musical laurels were won and charmingly worn by Sarah Coburn, who sang Adele with poise and panache…her Act III audition aria stopped the show. Coburn’s highly polished voice shone throughout its range; she carried off the coloratura with an ease that obviously gave her (and her audience) great pleasure.”
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Sarah Coburn’s new album, “Oh, When I Dream” is now available for purchase on Amazon! For more information and to buy, click HERE.