SARAH ASMAR – soprano
Exciting young soprano Sarah Asmar has been hailed for "her crystalline soprano" by the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, while The Daily Record says, "she is headed for the leading opera houses." In 2014 she makes her Hawaii Opera Theater debut in Candide and later returns to Opera Southwest as Musetta in La Boheme.
Ms. Asmar made several role and company debuts in 2011 and 2012. She appeared for the first time with Opera Southwest as Desdemona in Rossini's rarely performed version of Otello. Other notable engagements included debuts with Opera Idaho as Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, Connecticut Lyric Opera as Olympia in Les contes d'Hoffmann and her first Frasquita in Sarasota Opera's production of Carmen. While in Sarasota, she also covered the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor.
In 2010-2011, Ms. Asmar sang Zerlina in Don Giovanni and covered both Musetta in La bohème and Giselda in I Lombardi with Sarasota Opera. Of her Zerlina, The Palm Beach Arts Paper said her performance was "wonderful" while going on to say, "she struck the right attitude, never letting the Don overwhelm her, and winning back Masetto's love in a very fine Batti, batti. Her cajoling was a joy to watch." In addition, she appeared as soprano soloist in Messiah with the New Haven Symphony for a second year and made her debut with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra as a soprano soloist in Mendelssohn's Symphony #2 (Lobgesang).
She began the 2009-2010 season as Miss Rose in Lakmé with Connecticut Concert Opera before appearing with the New Haven Symphony as soprano soloist in Messiah. She continued on to join Sarasota Opera's Studio Artist Program where she sang the role of Zweite Dame in Die Zauberflöte and covered Gretel in Hansel and Gretel. In the spring of 2010, Ms. Asmar covered Lucia in Commonwealth Opera's production of Lucia di Lammermoor.
In the winter of 2009, she was seen as Pamina in The Magic Flute with Boston Lyric Opera for Young Audiences. On the concert stage, she appeared as the soprano soloist in both J.S. Bach's St. John Passion with The Cathedral of St. Joseph's Schola Cantorum and Mendelssohn's Symphony #2 with The Farmington Valley Chorale and Orchestra.
In 2007, Ms. Asmar appeared as Emily Webb in the Upper Midwest premiere of Ned Rorem's Our Town with Skylark Opera, where her portayal "was the emotional heart of the production, conveying the innocence and the strength of the character." (Minneapolis Star-Tribune) Ms. Asmar has appeared with Opera North as Pamina and Papagena in Die Zauberflöte and Boston Lyric Opera as Crobyle in Thaïs. She spent the summers of 2005 through 2007 with the Ohio Light Opera where she was seen as Adele in Die Fledermaus, Ottilie in White Horse Inn, Marie Antoinette in the world premiere of Robert Ward's A Friend of Napoleon, Josephine in H.M.S. Pinafore, Geraldine in The Firefly, Jane Bennet in the world premiere of Pride and Prejudice, Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, and Kathie in The Student Prince. In addition, she can be heard on OLO's recording of The Firefly. The production is due for release on DVD as well. Ms. Asmar is honored to have collaborated with friend and composer Richard Wargo on "From the Bards of Ireland" (a program of his Irish inspired music).
Originally from West Simsbury, Connecticut, Ms. Asmar began her musical studies as a violinist. She attended Boston University where she received her Bachelor's Degree in violin performance in 2001. She returned to Boston University to study vocal performance in 2002 (MM 2004). While attending BU, Ms. Asmar performed the role of Norina with the Boston University Opera Institute. Her other solo appearances in Boston include Pergolesi's Stabat Mater with the Boston Orpheus Ensemble, Messiah Part 1 with The Boston University Symphony Orchestra and Mozart's Requiem with the Newburyport Choral Society. In 2005, she appeared as Coryphée in Opera Boston's production of Alceste.
Ms. Asmar was a New England Regional Finalist in the 2008 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. In 2006, she was awarded First Prize and the Roger Wertenberger Audience Choice Award in The Harold Haugh Light Opera Vocal Competition.