New Zealand-born mezzo-soprano Sarah Castle has been gaining attention for her committed and idiomatic performances of a wide-ranging repertoire spanning over three-and-a-half centuries of different styles and composers. Based in the UK, she has developed an ongoing relationship with London’s Royal Opera House Covent Garden, where she debuted in 2001 as Tisbe CENERENTOLA and has gone on to sing a variety of roles, including the Wagner roles of Flosshilde and Siegrune in Keith Warner’s production of DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN.
A seasoned interpreter of Wagnerian repertoire, Ms. Castle has appeared at the Bayreuth Festival (Wellgunde and Grimgerde DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN), Bavarian State Opera (Flosshilde DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN), Florence’s Maggio Musicale (Siegrune DIE WALKÜRE, conducted by Zubin Mehta), Opera North (Flosshilde DAS RHEINGOLD), and State Opera of South Australia (Flowermaiden in the Australian premiere of PARSIFAL, conducted by Jeffrey Tate). Concert performances she has performed Siegrune DIE WALKÜRE with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra conducted by Donald Runnicles for her BBC Proms debut, Waltraute DIE WALKÜRE with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, and both PARSIFAL and Waltraute DIE WALKÜRE with the Hallé Orchestra. She continues her foray into Wagner with Flosshilde DAS RHEINGOLD & GÖTTERDÄMMERUNG and Siegrune DIE WALKÜRE for Opera North’s Ring Cycles (2016) and Waltraute DIE WALKÜRE in concert with the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Jaap van Zweden.
Ms. Castle’s repertoire embraces the work of living composers, both in the opera house and the concert hall. On the operatic stage she has performed the title role of Tan Dun’s MARCO POLO (Netherlands Opera), Elektra in Manfred Trojahn’s OREST (Netherlands Opera) and the First Secretary in John Adams’ NIXON IN CHINA (San Diego Opera). In the concert hall, she has performed Michel van der Aa’s SPACES OF BLANK (Amsterdam) and Mark Anthony Turnage’s TWICE THROUGH THE HEART (with Manchester’s Psappha Ensemble).
In the classical operatic repertoire, Ms. Castle continues to enjoy success for her committed portrayals of male and female characters from all walks of life. Her repertoire of trouser roles include the heroes of the Baroque and Classical literature (Nerone L’INCORONAZIONE DI POPPEA, title role Handel’s TESEO, Teseo ARIANNA IN CRETA, Ruggiero ALCINA, Sesto GIULIO CESARE, Andronico TAMERLANO, Idamante IDOMENEO, Annio LA CLEMENZA DI TITO) and the passionate young men of the Romantic repertoire (Smeton ANNA BOLENA, Siebel FAUST, Nicklausse LES CONTES D’HOFFMANN, Stephano ROMÉO ET JULIETTE, Komponist ARIADNE AUF NAXOS, Beppe L’AMICO FRITZ). Her female portrayals include such varied women as Purcell’s Dido, Olga EUGENE ONEGIN, Emilia OTELLO, Lola CAVALLERIA RUSTICANA, Madame Dangeville ADRIANA LECOUVREUR, Marchesa Melibea IL VIAGGIO A REIMS, title role of LA CENERENTOLA and the title role of CARMEN.
Ms. Castle has appeared with many of the major opera companies and orchestras of Europe (Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Bayreuth Festival, Opera di Firenze’s Maggio Musicale, Bolshoi Theatre Moscow, Grand Theatre Warsaw, Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie, Opéra de Lausanne, Teatro Real Madrid; BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Hallé Orchestra, Dutch Radio Philharmonic,Edinburgh International Festival, La Chapelle Royale), the United States (San Francisco Opera, Seattle Opera, Opera Company of Philadelphia, San Diego Opera, the Spoleto Festival USA), Asia (Hong Kong Philharmonic, Singapore Symphony Orchestra), Oceania (Opera New Zealand, New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Auckland Philharmonia, Opera Australia, Opera Queensland, State Opera South Australia) and Israel (Israeli Opera).
Recent and upcoming engagements for Ms. Castle include a return to Opera New Zealand to sing the title role in LA CENERENTOLA, a production seen in Auckland and Wellington, Emilia OTELLO with the Auckland Philharmonic, Waltraute DIE WALKÜRE with the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Jaap van Zweden, Flosshilde DAS RHEINGOLD & GÖTTERDÄMMERUNG and Siegrune DIE WALKÜRE for Opera North’s DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN, and a return to the Royal Opera House Covent Garden as Flora LA TRAVIATA. She performed the role of Portia in the posthumous Polish premiere of André Tchaikovsky’s MERCHANT OF VENICE with the Polish National Opera and reprised this role in the work’s British premiere with Welsh National Opera (autumn 2016) and its ensuing premiere at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden in the summer of 2017.