Anna Dowsley has established herself as one of the most exciting mezzo-soprano’s to emerge from Australia in recent years. She often performs leading roles with Opera Australia while appearing on the concert stage with major Australian orchestras.
2016 has been a milestone year for Anna, performing two major roles at the Sydney Opera House. Most recently she created the role of Dorabella in Sir David McVicar’s new production of Così fan tutte (conductor Jonathan Darlington) while earlier in the year she debuted the role of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia (conductor Andrea Molino).
Within Opera Australia’s Young Artist Program in the 14/15 seasons, Anna debuted, within full performance seasons, the roles of Cherubino (Le Nozze di Figaro), Siebel (Faust), Papagena (Die Zauberflöte), Tebaldo (Don Carlos) and Zaida (Il Turco in Italia); the latter two roles awarding Anna prestigious Green Room Award nominations. These roles have seen Anna share the stage with prominent international and local artists, including Michael Fabiano, Teddy Tahu Rhodes, Nicole Car and Paolo Bordogna. She was also a featured artist in the popular 2015 and 2016 Great Opera Hits Sydney Opera House concert series, Sydney Festival’s Opera in the Domain and Melbourne’s Opera in the Bowl.
During her vocal studies at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Anna was the recipient of a number of Australian vocal prizes and scholarships, including the 2012 Lady Fairfax New York Scholarship (Opera Foundation Australia) and the 2012 Marianne Mathy Scholarship (Australian Singing Competition). Abetted by these scholarships, Anna embarked upon an extensive period of international study and artistic development in 2013. Highlights included participating in the International Vocal Arts Institute opera program in Virginia, the Siena Music Festival in Tuscany and a personal invitation from distinguished soprano Renata Scotto to participate in her Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia Opera Studio in Rome.
Anna made her international professional debut in Japan, performing the role of Dorabella (Così fan tutte) for Tokyo Arts Foundation. She has often performed with Sydney Chamber Opera, including her striking performance in their boldly staged-version of JS Bach’s solo cantata Ich habe genug.
Frequently in demand as a guest soloist with Australian choirs and orchestras, Anna has extensive performance experience of the oratorio and concert repertoire (including Verdi’s Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle), most recently performing Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. Anna was invited to be a featured artist in the 2015 Brisbane Baroque Festival’s « Heavenly Handel » concert, singing a selection of Handel arias with Queensland Symphony Orchestra, and was invited to return to Brisbane last December to co-host and perform with West End star Michael Cormick in QPAC’s annual Spirit of Christmas concerts.
Later in 2016, Anna participated in the international Neue Stimmen Master Class series in Germany while pursuing extensive travel around Europe for further auditions and career development.
In 2017, Anna performed again with Sydney Chamber Opera, debuting the title role of Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia. She also performed one of the Flower Maidens in Wagner’s Parsifal for Opera Australia (conductor Pinchas Steinberg), Smeton in Anna Bolena and Madelon in Andrea Chénier at the Sydney Opera House, Dorabella in Così fan tutte and Andrea Chénierat the Melbourne Opera House, Zerlina in Don Giovanni in Bari, Carmen in Nüremberg, Geneviève from Debussy’s Pelléas and Mélisande with Sydney Symphony Orchestra (conductor Charles Dutoit), she has also made her debut with New Zealand Opera performing the role of Pitti-Sing in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado, and Meg in Falstaff with the Liverpool Philharmonic conducted by Vasily Petrenko and the Beethoven 9th Symphony with the Adelaïde Symphony Orchestra.
Among her recent and future projects: Orontea by Cesti in Sydney, A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Mendelssohn with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Saint-Saëns’ Déjanire with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo and Norma (Adalgisa) at the Teatro Carlo Felice di Genova.
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