American singer ISABEL LEONARD is already making waves in the classical music world. In the 2007/08 season, she made her Metropolitan Opera debut as Stéphano in Roméo et Juliette, which was conducted by Plácido Domingo and co-starred Anna Netrebko and Rolando Villazón. The production was recorded for DVD and broadcast live over the Metropolitan Opera worldwide radio network. In addition to her Metropolitan Opera debut, she appeared as Zerlina in Don Giovanni with the Chicago Opera Theatre. She also sang recitals in Atlanta, Washington, DC, San Francisco, and Fort Worth, and made her Carnegie Hall debut in solo recital. Orchestral engagements included performances with the St. Louis Symphony and Jirí Belohlávek in Mozart’s cantata Exsultate, jubilate and the solo in Mahler’s Fourth Symphony. Leonard also made her debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra as a soloist in Mozart’s C-minor Mass, conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen, and the title role in Berlioz’ Roméo et Juliette, conducted by Valery Gergiev.
During the 2006/07 season, Leonard made her New York Philharmonic debut in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, conducted by Lorin Maazel, and reprised her performance in Valencia, Spain, in the newly completed Palau de les Arts “Reina Sofía.” In February 2007, she made her professional U.S. opera debut as Stéphano in Atlanta Opera’s production of Roméo et Juliette. Balancing a professional and academic career, Leonard is also a member of the Juilliard Opera Center, where she appeared in their production of Orphée aux Enfers and in the role of Ramiro in La finta giardiniera.
In 2006, Leonard made her European and professional stage debut as Zerlina in Don Giovanni with the Opéra National de Bordeaux and her American orchestral debut in The Three-Cornered Hat at the Tanglewood Festival, with the Boston Symphony Orchestra conducted by Gustavo Dudamel.
In previous seasons, Leonard performed with Barbara Bonney in recital at Alice Tully Hall, as presented by the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society. As a Marilyn Horne Foundation Award Recipient at the Music Academy of the West, the Foundation presented her in solo recital as part of their On Wings of Song series in New York City.
A graduate of the Juilliard School, Isabel Leonard sang the title role in the Juilliard Opera Theater production of Cavalli’s La calisto and the role of Masha in Wargo’s The Music Shop. In 2005, she was the soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 at the Aspen Music Festival. Previously, Leonard participated in a masterclass with James Levine through the Marilyn Horne Foundation at Carnegie Hall’s newly restored Zankel Hall, sang with the New York Philharmonic in Bernstein’s Candide under the direction of Lonny Price, performed the roles of female cat/squirrel in L’enfant et les sortilèges, and covered Marenka in The Bartered Bride. She is a recipient of a 2006 Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation Award.
Leonard is a native New Yorker; she received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the Juilliard School, and studies with Edith Bers. She has also studied with Marilyn Horne, Brian Zeger, Warren Jones, and Margo Garrett.