Mezzo-soprano Rachel Calloway has established herself as one of the most versatile singers of her generation. Praised by the New York Times for her “penetrating clarity” and “considerable depth of expression” and by Opera News for her “adept musicianship and dramatic flair,” her 2013 – 2014 season includes performances with Ensemble Signal, Gotham Chamber Opera, the contemporary vocal chamber ensemble Ekmeles, the 2013 Next Wave Festival at BAM, Chameleon Arts Ensemble in Boston, the Amernet String Quartet at Bowdoin University, the Copland House, and American Opera Projects. She joins the faculty of the Cortona Sessions for New Music in Italy this June.
Last season Ms. Calloway made her Latin American debut at the Festival Internacional Cervantino alongside the Amernet String Quartet and sang the world premiere of Gabriela Frank’s Santos with the San Francisco Girls’ Choir and Joana Carneiro. This past season she created the title role in the first staged production of Mohammed Fairouz’s Sumedia’s Song in the inaugural Prototype Festival in New York City and returned to France for performances of Benjamin Britten’s The Turn of the Screw. She also appeared with Ensemble Signal in a portrait concert of Oliver Knussen at Miller Theater and with Alarm Will Sound singing Donnacha Dennehy’s The Hunger in New York (Zankel Hall) and St. Louis. With the contemporary vocal ensemble Ekmeles, Ms. Calloway appeared at Princeton University, Roulette, and the Bohemian National Hall in a large scale collaboration with Talea Ensemble in Beat Furrer’s FAMA. This summer she made her Lincoln Center Festival debut alongside Ensemble Signal in Monkey Opera: Journey to the West and also appeared at the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival singing works by Brahms and George Crumb.
In the 2011 – 2012 season, Ms. Calloway made her European debut as “Mrs. Grose” in The Turn of the Screw at Le Théâtre d’Arras, Opéra de Reims, Athénée Théâtre Louis-Jovet (Paris, France), Le Phénix, Scène Nationale Valenciennes, Opéra de Lille, and Château d’Hardelot (Condette, France). She also gave the world premiere of Mohammad Fairouz’s Third Symphony at Miller Theater. Among her recent highlights are debuts with the Berkeley Symphony under Joana Carneiro and Cal Performances with Lorin Maazel and the Castleton Festival. Ms. Calloway appeared with the Metropolitan Opera in workshops of Nico Muhly’s Two Boys and Michael Torke’s Senna and in concert at Cornell University, the Strathmore Mansion in Maryland, Le Poisson Rouge, Cornelia Street Cafe, Merkin Hall, Yale University, Columbia University, New York Society for Ethical Culture, and Depauw University. She has also performed with Lorin Maazel at the Castleton Festival in Virginia as well as at Tulsa Opera, Central City Opera, Gotham Chamber Opera, and Glimmerglass Opera. Ms. Calloway has appeared in concert at the Kennedy Center with the Biava Quartet under the auspices of Pro Musica Hebraica and at Steinway Hall, the Bulgarian Consulate, the Chautauqua Institution, Alice Tully Hall, Glimmerglass Opera, and Philadelphia’s Academy of Music.
A proponent of contemporary and lesser-known music, Ms. Calloway gave the world world premiere of New Andean Songs by Gabriela Lena Frank on the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Green Umbrella series at Walt Disney Concert Hall. She sang Harrison Birtwhistle’s Corridor in Merkin Hall, as well as the world premiere of Nico Muhly’s Stabat Mater, both with the Ensemble Signal. She has performed Pierrot Lunaire at Alice Tully Hall, Columbia University, and the Juilliard School and has appeared in the FOCUS! Festival of New Music in addition to giving the world premiere of Steven Stucky’s orchestration of Wolf’s Spanisches Liederbuch as a guest artist at Manhattan School of Music. Ms. Calloway is a founding member of Shir Ami, an ensemble dedicated to the preservation and performance of Jewish art music suppressed by the Nazis and Soviets.
Ms. Calloway was a United States Presidential Scholar in the Arts and has also received awards from the Metropolitan Opera National Council and first prize in the Arts Recognition and Talent Search sponsored by the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts as well as two Central City Opera Young Artist Awards. As winner of the Eisenberg-Fried Concerto Competition, she performed Ravel’s Shéhérazade with the Manhattan School of Music Symphony, conducted by George Manahan. She can be heard on Albany Records. A native of Philadelphia, Ms.Calloway holds degrees from both the Juilliard School (BM) and Manhattan School of Music (MM) and maintains an active teaching studio. She lives in New York City with her husband, violinist Ari Streisfeld, and their dachshund Wesley.