Rising young soprano Madison Leonard is a 2018 winner of the Metropolitan National Council Auditions, at which she sang arias from Rigoletto and Hänsel und Gretel with Bertrand de Billy conducting. In the 2020-21 season, she makes a return to Seattle Opera as Adina in a filmed version of L’elisir d’amore and makes her international, role, and house debut with Garsington Opera as Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier. In the 2021-22 season, she will make her debut with Utah Opera as Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance; return to the role of Chrisann Brennan in Bates’ The [R]evolution of Steve Jobs with Austin Opera and Lyric Opera of Kansas City.
Her first Pamina in Die Zauberflöte with North Carolina Opera, debut with The Dallas Opera as Eurydice in Orfeo ed Euridice, and the title role of Emmeline with Tulsa Opera last season all fell prey to the pandemic. In the earlier part of 2019-20, she debuted the role of Gilda in Rigoletto with Seattle Opera and returned to the role with Austin Opera; her performance later was named one of the Top Ten Joys in Dance and Classical Music by the Austin Chronicle. She also joined the Jacksonville Symphony for Handel’s Messiah and returned to the Florida Orchestra for Stravinsky’s Pulcinella and Mahler Symphony no. 4.
Ms. Leonard has a close relationship with Seattle Opera, having first joined the company as Chrisann Brennan in Bates’ The [R]evolution of Steve Jobs for her debut and then as Frasquita in Carmen. She recently returned to Wolf Trap Opera for two role debuts: Ilia in Idomeneo and Juliette in Roméo et Juliette following previous performances as Madeline in Glass’ The Fall of the House of Usher and the Daughter in Glass’ The Juniper Tree. She is a former Cafritz Young Artist of Washington National Opera, at which she sang Morgana in Alcina, the High Priestess in Aida, the Rose in Portman’s The Little Prince, and Little Zegner Sister in Mazzoli’s Proving Up. Other recent highlights for the soprano include Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro and Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Inland Northwest Opera, Adele in Die Fledermaus with Opera Idaho, and Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro with Amarillo Opera.
On the concert stage, she has twice joined the National Symphony Orchestra: her debut with Gianandrea Noseda conducting Stravinsky’s Pulcinella as part of the SHIFT Festival followed by an immediate return soloist in Vaughan William’s Symphony No. 3 (A Pastoral Symphony) under the baton of Sir Mark Elder. She is a frequent guest of the Florida Orchestra, having previously joined the institution for Orff’s Carmina Burana, Haydn’s Creation, and a concert of opera favorites. She sang her first performances of Fauré’s Requiem with the Apollo Orchestra in Washington, D.C., joined the New York Festival of Song for a program of music from the British Isles at Caramoor and Merkin Hall in New York City, and offered a solo recital at Washington Adventist University.
She is a previous first place winner of the Houston Grand Opera Eleanor McCollum Competition. Additionally, she received the Women’s Voice Fellowship from the Luminarts Cultural Foundation and scholarships from the Lynn Harvey Foundation and the Musicians Club of Women. The soprano earned her Master of Music degree from Northwestern University and her Bachelor of Arts from Pepperdine University. She is a former participant of the Merola Opera Program in association with San Francisco Opera at which she sang Monica in Menotti’s The Medium and a former young artist of Des Moines Metro Opera.