A native of St. Paul Minnesota, soprano Sara Gartland earned raves as Jenufa in Jenufa with the Des Moines Metro Opera. Opera News exclaimed, “an exciting breakthrough performance from Sara Gartland in the title role…As Janáček’s heartrending heroine, Gartland displayed a most individual timbre and a considerable reserve of lyric weight in midrange. Her prayer in Act II was ineffable. Gartland has always been an appealing singer; here she emerged as a complete artist.” And Opera Today said, “In the title role, Sara Gartland is serving notice with a star-making performance of the first magnitude. Ms. Gartland not only has an incisive thrust to her robust, soprano, but also she has a charismatic and persuasive dramatic delivery that commands out attention. There is no requirement of this demanding role that eludes her artistic fulfillment. She is able to first suggest an irresponsible, even cruel girlishness with ease, encompass the sufferings of a young mother betrayed in love, and ultimately assume a tragic stature worthy of a classic Greek heroine. On the way, the soprano displays a full arsenal of effects. Her assured technique allows her to sing evenly throughout the range. Her unerring phrasing and sense of musical line is colored with underlying dramatic intent and infused with subtext. She exhibits meticulous control of even the softest, tenderest phrases, and then turns around on a dime to ravish our ears and stir our souls with throbbing forte exclamations riding easily over the full orchestra, that are laden with heartbreaking intent. Her great Act II prayer scene was a study in variety and total immersion in the musico-dramatic effect.”
Last season for Ms. Gartland included appearing in concert with The Dallas Opera’s Institute for Women Conductors, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus with Utah Opera, and Rusalka with Des Moines Metro Opera. Engagements for the 2018- 2019 season include Micäela in Carmen and Musetta in La bohème with The Dallas Opera, Violetta in La Traviata with Arizona Opera, and Marie in Wozzeck with Des Moines Metro Opera. Future seasons include appearances with San Diego Opera, Minnesota Opera, and Arizona Opera. The 2016-2017 season saw Ms. Gartland in the title role of Rusalka with Arizona Opera and the cover of Adalgisa in Norma with The Dallas Opera. In the 2015-2016 season, Ms. Gartland made her role and company debut with San Diego Opera as Musetta in La bohème, sang Marzelline in Fidelio with Opera Omaha, and performed the title role in Jenufa with the Des Moines Metro Opera. Other recent engagements include her Violetta in La Traviata with Utah Opera, Adina in L’elisir d’amore with Austin Lyric Opera, Josephine in HMS Pinafore with Arizona Opera, Gretel in Hansel and Gretel with Opera San Jose, Juliette in Roméo et Juliette with Des Moines Metro Opera, Curley’s Wife in Of Mice and Men with Utah Opera, and the cover of Pat Nixon in Nixon in China with San Francisco Opera. As a member of the prestigious Merola and Adler Fellow programs with San Francisco Opera, Ms. Gartland sang numerous roles, including Barbarina in Le nozze di Figaro, Kate Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Micaëla in Carmen, Pat/Ann in the world premiere of Christopher Theofandis’ Heart of a Soldier, and Gerhilde in Die Walküre, and with the Merola Opera Program, Suzel in Pietro Mascagni’s L’amico Fritz. As an Adler Fellow, she made her recital debut with the incomparable Steven Blier as part of the Schwabacher Recital Series in Amores Nuevos. On the concert stage, Ms. Gartland has sung Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Elmhurst Symphony, Carmina burana with the Cheyenne Symphony Orchestra, and debuted the song cycle Four Hardy Songs by Pablo Ortiz with UC Davis Symphony Orchestra.