Hungarian-Canadian mezzo-soprano Krisztina Szabó is highly sought after in both North America and Europe as an artist of supreme musicianship and stagecraft, and has become known for her promotion and performance of contemporary Canadian works. Among her many laudatory reviews, Opera Canada declared her to be an “exceptional talent” after her performance of the title role of Dido in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, and after a performance with Tapestry Opera, the music blog, Schmopera wrote that “her instrument is one-of-a-kind and she has cemented herself as a darling of Canadian experimental music and opera…her sensibility and sensitivity to the material is truly inspiring”. In her hometown of Toronto, Canada, she has been nominated twice for a Dora Award for Outstanding Female Performance.
In the 2019-20 season, Ms. Szabó sings Gertrude in Hänsel und Gretel with Canadian Opera Company, as the soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Handel’s Messiah with Early Music Vancouver and Portland Baroque Orchestra, Bach’s Mass in B Minor with Music of the Baroque, Beethoven’s Mass in C Major with Kansas City Symphony, Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder with Donald Runnicles and Toronto Symphony Orchestra Chamber Soloists, Bach’s St. John Passion with Tafelmusik, Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, Craig Hella Johnson’s oratorio Considering Matthew Shephard with Pax Christi Chorale, and a return to Bethlehem Bach Festival for Bach cantatas and the Mass in B Minor.
Highlights of the 2018-19 season include being featured performer in Steffani: Drama and Devotion and Händel’s Messiah with the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra; George Benjamin’s Into the Little Hill with Mahler Chamber Orchestra for Musikfest Berlin; Kopernikus (Claude Vivier) with Against the Grain Theatre (Toronto) which won a Dora Award for Best Ensemble. She also sang the world premiere of Canadian composer, Ian Cusson’s Where There’s A Wall with the National Arts Centre Orchestra, Ottawa, and the Canadian premiere of Toshio Hosokawa’s The Raven for Toronto New Music Projects at the University of Toronto.
In the 2017-18 season, Krisztina Szabó made her Royal Opera and Netherlands Opera débuts in George Benjamin’s new opera, Lessons in Love and Violence. The recording of Lessons in Love and Violence was recently nominated for a Grammy.
Ms. Szabó other highlights include: singing three leading roles (Thisbe/Arianna/Clorinda) in a triple bill production, Pyramus and Thisbe, Le Pèlerin in L’amour de loin, Idamante (Idomeneo), Musetta (La bohème) with Canadian Opera Company, The Double-Offred in the Time Before (The Handmaid’s Tale) and Nancy (Albert Herring), Ring Cycle as Wellgunde (Das Rheingold and Götterdämmerung), and Siegrune (Die Walküre), Dorabella (Così fan tutte), the tile role in Cenerentola with Edmonton Opera, Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Sesto (La clemenza di Tito) and Musetta in La bohème with Vancouver Opera, Cherubino (Le nozze di Figaro) and Meg (Little Women) with Calgary Opera, Rosina (Il barbiere di Siviglia) with L’Opéra de Québec, Edmonton Opera and Calgary Opera, Second Lady (Die Zauberflöte) with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Ruggiero (Alcina) in concert with Les Violons du Roy, Nerone (Agrippina) with L’Opéra de Montréal, and as the title role in Iphigénie en Tauride with Opera Atelier. She has performed and débuted many new works, staged and concert, with Toronto’s Tapestry Opera, Against the Grain Theatre, Soundstreams, Esprit Orchestra, Continuum Music, and Queen of Puddings Music Theatre, National Arts Centre Orchestra.
Outside of Canada, Ms Szabó has performed a wide variety of roles including: Judith (Bluebeard’s Castle) with Colorado Music Festival, Rosalind (The Mines of Sulphur) for the Wexford Festival Opera (company début), Countess (Le nozze di Figaro), Judith (Bluebeard’s Castle) and Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni) – all with Chicago Opera Theater, Magnolia (Showboat) with L’Opéra National du Rhin, the title role in Charpentier’s Médée with Le Concert Spirituel in Paris, The Queen of the Fairies in Ana Sokolovic’s hilarious opera, The Midnight Court, with Queen of Puddings Music Theatre’s tour to England, Hänsel (Hänsel und Gretel), Komponist (Ariadne auf Naxos) and Cherubino (Le nozze di Figaro) with Stadttheater Klagenfurt, Bianca (Mercadante’s Il giuramento) with Washington Concert Opera, Ljubica (Sokolovic’s Svadba/Wedding) with Opera Philadelphia and Dido (Dido and Aeneas) with Music of the Baroque.
Krisztina Szabó’s concert experience includes: the soloist with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra (Mozart’s Mass in C Minor), Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (B minor Mass) L’Orchestre Symphonique de Québec (Bach’s Mass in B Minor), Vancouver Bach Choir (John Adams’ El niño), the San Antonio Symphony (Handel’s Messiah), the Talisker Players in Toronto for an evening of chamber music, the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir (Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis and Mendelssohn’s Elijah), the Elora Festival Orchestra (Verdi’s Requiem), Les Violons du Roy’s United States tour of (Haydn’s cantata Arianna a Naxos) , the Brooklyn Academy of Music (staged production of Bach’s St. Matthew Passion) and the Oregon Symphony (Mozart Requiem). She has also appeared as the soloist with Plural Ensemble in Madrid, Spain, under the baton of renowned composer-conductor, Peter Eötvös.
In recital, she has appeared with Ravinia Festival, Aldeburgh Connection, Music Toronto, Off Centre Music Salon and Music at Sharon. In addition, she has performed with Symphony Nova Scotia, Lanaudière Festival, Calgary Philharmonic, Orchestra London, Toronto Operetta Theatre, Esprit Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony, Canadian Art Song Project, Festival of the Sound, Grand Teton Festival Soundstreams, Ottawa Chamber Music Festival, Waterside Music Festival, Stratford Summer Music Festival and Indian River Festival.
Ms, Szabó has appeared on television featured in CBC’s “Opening Night” in concert with the Canadian Opera Company. On film, she can be seen as Zerlina with Dmitri Hvorostovsky in Don Giovanni Revealed: Leporello’s Revenge, and she can be heard as the voice of Leanne in the new opera movie Burnt Toast. Krisztina Szabo can also be heard as a featured soloist in a recording with the Talisker Players “Where Words and Music Meet“, Musica Leopolis CDs works of Lysenko, Stetsenko, Stepovy and Galicians I (4 different CDs), Singing Somers Theatre (the works of Harry Somers) and Baby Kintyre, a radio opera by Dean Burry.