Hailed by the London Times as “astounding”, Chicago born soprano Sophia Burgos is a passionate interpreter of vocal works ranging from art song and chamber music to contemporary opera, collaborating with artists in America and Europe. In the 2015-2016 season, Ms. Burgos made her European opera debut premiering the title role of Maria Republica by François Paris with Angers-Nantes Opera, as well as singing the title role of Jennie in the New York premiere of Oliver Knussen’s Higglety Pigglety Pop! with the Bard College Conservatory conducted by James Bagwell. In October, Ms. Burgos had the pleasure of making her Carnegie Hall debut with the American Symphony Orchestra performing Henri Dutilleux’s masterpiece Correspondances with conductor Leon Botstein.
A champion of new works, Ms. Burgos has collaborated with esteemed composers such as Andre Previn, premiering his Two Lyric Songs: The Waking as part of the 75th year anniversary of the Tanglewood Music Center, and was recognized in her performance of George Crumb’s Ancient Voices of Children by the London Times for “making light of the vocal part’s virtuoso technical demands… with an always beautiful sound.” Ms. Burgos also developed operatic roles such as Iphigenia in Osvaldo Golijov’s latest opera, Iphigenia in Aulis, with excerpts workshopped at the Metropolitan Opera.
As a member of the [Switch~ Ensemble], Ms. Burgos performs innovative electro-acoustic works such as (Voi)Rex by Philippe Leroux, Star Me Kitten by Alexander Schubert, and the multimedia opera HUNGER by Jason Thorpe Buchanan. As a soloist, she has given dozens of premieres of works by young composers in both Europe and the United States.
During her time in the Bard College Conservatory’s Graduate Vocal Arts Program, Ms. Burgos portrayed the title role of Handel’s rarely performed oratorio, Esther, conducted by James Bagwell, and the role of Angel Gabriel in Haydn’s The Creation with the Bard Conservatory Orchestra and members of the American Symphony Orchestra. Under the close mentorship of renowned American soprano Dawn Upshaw, Burgos has performed art song and contemporary music recitals throughout New York City and the Hudson Valley.
In the summer of 2014, Ms. Burgos was invited to the Lucerne Festival Academy as a soloist in Luciano Berio's Coro, conducted by Sir Simon Rattle, and selected for masterclasses and private instruction with Barbara Hannigan. She performed as soloist in Schoenberg's String Quartet No. 2 and Matthias Pintscher's Twilight Song, reviewed by Deutschlandfunk as the “Highlight of the evening, but also, and above all, due to the fantastic soprano Sophia Burgos”.
During her Bachelor’s studies at the Eastman School of Music, Ms. Burgos performed works such as Akrostichon Wortspiel by Unsuk Chin and Steve Reich’s Tehillim with the Musica Nova Ensemble conducted by Brad Lubman. She also had the great pleasure of performing Knoxville Summer of 1915 by Samuel Barber in the Eastman Theatre with the Graduate Chamber Orchestra as the winner of the Eastman concerto competition. In 2013, Ms. Burgos was awarded third place in both the Friends of Eastman Opera competition and the Jesse Kneisel Lieder Competition.
In addition to her artistry as a singer, Ms. Burgos is passionate about education and outreach through art, holding a degree and certification in Music Education. Spanish folk song and dance are her earliest musical influences as she and her family celebrate their strong Puerto Rican heritage. She is vegan, and deeply interested in animal rights. Ms. Burgos currently studies with Edith Bers and looks forward to returning to the Tanglewood Music Center this June for her second fellowship.
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Many thanks to TIGUE for the use of their music on our podcast. Check them out at TigueMusic.com.