AZO Cast Members & Creatives
Named a 2019 Grand Finals Winner by the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, rising American mezzo-soprano Michaela Wolz (they/them) joins Arizona Opera as a member of the Marion Roose Pullin Opera Studio for the 2020/21 Season. Praised by Opera News for their “keen sense of character,” Wolz will cover the role of Addison in the World Premiere of The Copper Queen and can be seen in their mainstage debut as Mercèdes in Carmen. On the concert stage, engagements include debuts with The Phoenix Symphony, performing Handel's Messiah and Beethoven's 9th Symphony, and Opera Edwardsville, presenting a program of Renaissance and Baroque motets with renowned harpsichordist Jory Vinikour.
Last season, Wolz joined pianist Steven Blier in the New York Festival of Song “Killer B’s” tour, performing the concert at the Tucson Desert Song Festival, the Century Club in New York City, and Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. They then returned to New York City to take part in the Opera America Emerging Artists Recital featuring Seagle Music Colony Alumni.
Wolz has spent the last three summers with Opera Theatre of St. Louis, taking part in their Gerdine Young Artist and Gaddes Festival Artist programs. Their most recent performance in The Coronation of Poppea was highlighted by Opera News for their “creamy mezzo and mischievous spark as Amore.” At the company, they also covered Cherubino in The Marriage of Figaro, Pvt. Stanton in An American Soldier, and Annio in La Clemenza di Tito. Outside of their mainstage season, Michaela has participated in concerts, workshops of new operas, and outreach, most notably portraying Angelina in a reduced version of La Cenerentola for children around the St. Louis area.
Wolz trained at The Boston Conservatory, where their numerous mainstage performances were lauded for their “immense skill in both solo and ensemble singing” and for their “radiant” voice (The Boston Musical Intelligencer). While completing their studies in Boston, Wolz was seen as Dorabella in Così fan tutte, Mère Marie in Dialogues of the Carmelites, Sister Helen Prejean in Jake Heggie's Dead Man Walking, Presendia in Nico Muhly’s Dark Sisters, Bradamante in Alcina, Cherubino in The Marriage of Figaro, and Stewardess in Flight.
Last spring, Wolz was awarded first prize in the Dorothy Lincoln-Smith Classical Voice Competition through the National Society of Arts and Letters. They have also been recognized as a finalist in the international Getting to Carnegie Competition. As part of the competition, Wolz premiered Julian Gargiulo’s newly-composed cycle, “Songs from the Fork,” performing in the prestigious Weill Recital Hall.
Michaela’s training has included past resident artist apprenticeships with International Meistersinger Akademie (Neumarkt, Germany), Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, and Seagle Music Colony. Wolz holds a Bachelor of Music and a Master of Music degree from The Boston Conservatory at Berklee, where they were the recipient of the Gerry and Steve Ricci Scholarship.