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Winner of the Prix Lyrique from the Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyriques, French-Canadian Julie Boulianne has been acclaimed for the agility and expressive power of her dark-hued mezzo-soprano in a wide repertoire, with a special focus on the music of Mozart and Rossini. Possessing a voice The New York Times calls “subtle and pure,” she distinguished herself in the role of Isolier in Rossini’s "Le Comte Ory" while still a member of the Juilliard Opera Center. In the summer of 2012, Julie Boulianne makes her role debut as Miranda in a new production by Robert Lepage of Thomas Adès’s modern masterpiece "The Tempest," under the baton of the composer at the Festival Opéra de Québec. She also makes her Japanese debut at the Saito Kinen Festival in Honegger’s "Jeanne d’Arc au bûcher," and her Mostly Mozart Festival debut in Haydn’s “Lord Nelson Mass,”

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Winner of the Prix Lyrique from the Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyriques, French-Canadian Julie Boulianne has been acclaimed for the agility and expressive power of her dark-hued mezzo-soprano in a wide repertoire, with a special focus on the music of Mozart and Rossini. Possessing a voice The New York Times calls “subtle and pure,” she distinguished herself in the role of Isolier in Rossini’s Le Comte Ory while still a member of the Juilliard Opera Center.

In the 2014-2015 season, the mezzo-soprano debuts with the Dutch National Opera as Aloès in Laurent Pelly’s new production of Chabrier’s comedic opera L’Étoile, and performs Annius in Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito at Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, and Marguerite in Berlioz’ La Damnation de Faust with the Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse at the San Sebastián Music Festival opposite Bryan Hymel.  Ms. Boulianne returns to Vancouver Opera for a role debut as Prince Orlofsky in Johann Strauss’ Die Fledermaus and debust at New Orleans Opera as Cherubino in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro.  Orchestral engagements include a debut with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra in Mozart’s Mass in C minor, Honegger and Ibert’s L’Aiglon with Kent Nagano at the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Haydn’s Harmoniemesse with the Orchestre Symphonique de Québec, and the Mozart Requiem with the San Antonio Symphony, conducted by Sebastian Lang-Lessing.

During the 2013-2014 season, Julie Boulianne made her return to the Metropolitan Opera singing the role of Kitchen-Boy in Rusalka alongside Renée Fleming. She also appeared as Rosina in a concert version of The Barber of Seville with Orlando Philharmonic. Ms. Boulianne made her Carnegie Hall debut performing Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s under the baton of Sir Roger Norrington. She also made her debut with Cleveland Orchestra singing in The Cunning Little Vixen conducted by Franz Welser-Möst, and with the Baltimore Symphony singing Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Marin Alsop.  Other season highlights included performances of Handel’s Messiah with the Colorado Symphony, Haydn’s Theresienmesse with Les Violons du Roy in Québec City, a return to Festival Opéra de Québec in a role debut in Berlioz’ La Damnation de Faust, the title role in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges with Opéra de Québec, Mahler’s Symphony No.2 with Orchestra Iowa and St. Matthew Passion with Orchestre Métropolitain in Montréal.

In 2012-2013 Ms. Boulianne returned to the Metropolitan Opera as Ascanio in Francesca Zambello’s production of Les Troyens, conducted by Fabio Luisi, which was seen internationally as part of the Met Live in HD cinemacast series. She also appeared at the Met as Siébel in Faust, directed by Des McAnuff, and returned to the Opéra de Rheims as Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi. Her concert calendar included her debut with Charles Dutoit and the Boston Symphony in L’enfant et les sortilèges, as well as Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with Pinchas Zukerman and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa.

Julie Boulianne recently made her role debut as Miranda in a new production by Robert Lepage of Thomas Adès’s modern masterpiece The Tempest, under the baton of the composer at the Festival Opéra de Québec. Also in 2012, she made her Japanese debut at the Saito Kinen Festival in Honegger’s Jeanne d’Arc au bûcher, and her Mostly Mozart Festival debut in Haydn’s “Lord Nelson Mass,” conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin at Lincoln Center.

Career highlights include appearances at the Metropolitan Opera as Diane in Stephen Wadsworth’s production of Iphigénie en Tauride, conducted by Patrick Summers, as well as Stéphano in Roméo et Juliette, under the baton of Plácido Domingo; her New York City Opera debut as the wily Lazuli in L’Étoile, directed by Mark Lamos; Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro at Vancouver Opera and at Opéra de Montréal; the title role in Massenet’s Cendrillon at Opéra de Montréal and at l’Opéra de Marseille; Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia for her debut at Minnesota Opera; and the title role in La Cenerentola at Aspen Opera Theater, Florida Grand Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, and Pacific Opera Victoria; and Fragoletto, the young hero of Offenbach’s Les Brigands, at both Opéra de Toulon and Opéra Comique in Paris.

Equally at home in symphonic repertoire, she has sung Ravel’s Shéhérazade with Emmanuel Villaume and the Utah Symphony, Berlioz’s Les Nuits d’Été with Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Orchestre Métropolitain, Messiah and Bach’s Mass in B minor with the Atlanta Symphony, Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 with the Calgary Philharmonic, and Mozart’s “Coronation Mass” with the Cincinnati Symphony, and is a regular guest of symphony orchestras including L’Orchestre de la Francophonie Canadienne, the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, the Nashville Symphony Orchestra, the Quebec Symphony Orchestra, the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, and Les Violons du Roy. She has recorded for Chaîne Culturelle de Radio-Canada, Radio France, and on the Naxos label.

In March 2009, Naxos Records released a recording of Shéhérazade and L’enfant et les sortilèges featuring Julie Boulianne and the Nashville Symphony, which was nominated for the Grammy® Award for Best Classical Album. Ms. Boulianne can also be heard on a 2011 ATMA Classique release of Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen and Kindertotenlieder.

Julie Boulianne has appeared frequently at Opéra de Montréal, Opéra de Québec, and McGill Opera, in roles such as Rosina, Stéphano in Roméo et Juliette, Nicklausse in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Zerlina in Don Giovanni, Cherubino and Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro, and the title roles in Hänsel und Gretel and Dido and Aeneas. She has also performed extensively in France, including Barbarina and the Second Lady in Die Zauberflöte at L’Opéra de Reims, Zerlina at L’Opéra d’Avignon, and Barbarina at L’Opéra de Tours. She made her U.S. debut in 2006 at Nashville Opera in L’enfant et les sortilèges, and subsequently sang Isolier in Le Comte Ory and Mrs. Soames in the New York premiere of Ned Rorem’s Our Town at the Juilliard Opera Center.

A graduate of McGill University’s Schulich School of Music, Julie Boulianne won the First Prize in both the Canadian Music Competition and the Joy of Singing Competition in New York. She has also been awarded the International Vocal Arts Institute’s Silverman Prize, and in 2007, the Prix de la Chambre des Directeurs for Most Promising Career at the Concours International de Chant de Montréal.

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Reviews

"But it’s French-Canadian mezzo-soprano Boulianne who is the one to watch – Rossini’s endless coloratura is a killer, yet she rips through ornamentation like a carving knife. Her voice has both sweetness and bite, with hints of darker and deeper notes to come, all boding well for meatier roles down the line."

Paula Citron, Toronto Globe and Mail

"Julie Boulianne made Angelina a girl of honesty and spirit, ready to battle for her right to go to the ball and to forgive her obnoxious family. Her warm, flexible mezzo came into its own in her final, triumphant rondo."

Heidi Waleson, The Wall Street Journal

"Julie Boulianne, a mezzo-soprano, brought a rich, beautifully rounded tone to a duet and an aria (‘Adieu, fière cité’) from the Berlioz, and to a moving, wrenchingly characterized account of ‘When I am laid in earth’ (and the scene preceding it) from the Purcell."

Allan Kozinn, The New York Times

"Boulianne’s refined and elegant vocalism suited the put-upon Cinderella. Boulianne brought a touching intimacy to her opening aria ‘Una volta c’era un re’ and displayed facility with the coloratura bravura of the concluding ‘Non più mesta.’ Physically, the petite mezzo looked the part completely, with a waifish, vulnerable presence that underlined Cinderella's melancholy. She later assumed the throne with quiet, self-possessed dignity."

Lawrence A. Johnson, The Miami Herald

"The mezzo-soprano Julie Boulianne gives a beautifully understated performance as his dying wife [in Ned Rorem’s Our Town]."

Anthony Tommasini, The New York Times

"The one compelling reason to see ‘La Cenerentola,’ the Aspen Opera Theater Center’s first offering of the summer, is the mezzo-soprano singing the title role. Beg, borrow or steal to get a ticket for Julie Boulianne’s final performance at 7 p.m. Sunday in the Wheeler Opera House. She is the real deal… she sailed through her moments, big and small, and created a character sweet and innocent enough to justify the subtitle Rossini and his librettist, Jacopo Ferretti, appended to this very Italian version of the Cinderella story: ‘Or Goodness Triumphant.’ Boulianne has the presence to command the stage without histrionics, often by standing there with a gentle smile. She opens her mouth and the sound comes out unforced, ‘Nacqui all’affano’ in the final act. In interacting with the other singers, she seems a model of generous attention and consistently conjures up a feeling of reality. Only a first-year student at Juilliard, the French Canadian already has sang starring roles at l’Opéra Montréal—Rosina in Rossini’s ‘Il Barbiere di Siviglia’ and Annio in Mozart’s ‘La Clemenza di Tito.’ Aspen is fortunate to be hearing her at this stage of her career, much as audiences might remember fondly the likes of Renée Fleming and Susanne Mentzer when they sang here before becoming stars."

Harvey Steiman, Aspen Times

"As Isolier, Julie Boulianne displayed a truly lush lyric mezzo-soprano with a formidably large and secure top."

Fred Cohn, Opera News

"Julie Boulianne, as the page Isolier, who loves the countess, also sang with a round fullness."

Anne Midgette, The New York Times

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Discography