Chen Reiss



Soprano Chen Reiss has established a strongly-acclaimed and distinctive career, enchanting audiences with “one of the most perfect Strauss voices one could wish for” (Classical Source), “a voice of silver brightness and clarity” (Bachtrack) with “immaculately produced and enticing tone matched by superb musicianship” (Opera News, USA).

Born in Israel, she came to prominence as a member of the ensemble of the Bavarian State Opera under the music directorship of Zubin Mehta, and has for a number of years been a resident artist at the Vienna State Opera. She has also performed leading parts at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, Teatro alla Scala, Semperoper Dresden, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Netherlands Opera, Wiener Festwochen, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Opera Company of Philadelphia and the Israeli Opera.

Recent highlights include the title role in Cavalli’s La Calisto at Teatro alla Scala, Milan, Ginevra (Ariodante) at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, her role debut in the title role of Mozart’s Zaide in her debut at the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, and her role debut as Liu (Turandot) with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. She gave her first performances of Strauss’s Four last Songs, Schumann’s ‘Das Paradies und die Peri’, Bruckner’s Mass in F minor and Dvorak’s Stabat Mater, and appeared in concert with signature repertoire including performances of Mahler’s Second and Fourth symphonies with the Munich Philharmonic and Gustavo Dudamel, the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Zubin Mehta, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and Daniele Gatti, and the Vienna Symphony Orchestra under Lahav Shani, as well as at an Israel Philharmonic gala performance to mark Zubin Mehta’s farewell after 50 years as the orchestra’s Music Director. She debuted with the Berlin Radio Symphony under Vladimir Jurowski (Haydn Die Jahreszeiten), the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia under Antonio Pappano (Brahms Ein Deutsches Requiem), the Berlin and Czech Philharmonics under Semyon Bychkov (Mahler Symphony No.4) and the Filarmonica della Scala (Mozart arias with Zubin Mehta).

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Recent News

Pappano, Finley & Reiss Return The Royal Opera House Autumn 2020!

The Royal Opera House has announced a thrilling an wide-ranging new line-up for its autumn programme. The performances will be performed in front of a live, socially-distanced Covent Garden audience and live streamed to audiences at home. Soprano Chen Reiss and...


“Both eyes and ears are captured by soprano Chen Reiss. With her luscious voice and warm spirit she brings a firm clarity to the songs, sensitively orchestrated by Tal-Haim Samnon, and displays her delicious timbre in piece after piece with a conviction and a sense of drama that find their peak in a superb “Die frühen Gräber” and especially in “Hero und Leander”. This dramatic scene opens a window onto what an opera composed by Fanny could have been. History decided otherwise, alas!”

Hugues Rameau-Crays

Classique c'est cool !

“In the keystone finale, Chen Reiss brings to the child’s vision of heaven a reading as searchingly poignant as it is sweetly pretty with an appreciable lightness of touch and due sense of wonder.”

Michael Quinn

Limelight Magazine

“Chen Reiss declaims Mahler 4 with all the poetry and irony necessary. The voice has a communicative warmth. The timbre, like a ripe vintage, blessed with a perfect balance of sweet and sharp. Her technique and breath control allows her detailed attack and phrasing, and high-lying pianos with the most beautiful effect.”

Yannick Boussaert

“Soprano Chen Reiss brings vocal radiance, elegance, compelling emotional commitment, and stunning technique to Stravinsky’s magical (but also fiendish) vocal writing.”

Ken Meltzer

Fanfare Magazine

“Despite the complexity of the expanded harmonic language and their technical difficulty, Chen Reiss’s performance [of Berg’s Sieben fruhe lieder] was sublime from the first to the last piece. With a timbre both powerful yet soft at the same time, her voice was full of liveliness and a nuanced pliancy ideal for the repertoire, perfect German diction and a magnificent expressive articulation of the text. Chen Reiss’s voice shone on stage and enhanced the beauty of these songs even more. Particularly beautiful were ‘The Nightingale’ and ‘The Loving Ode’, in which she demonstrated a great melodic sense put at the service of the poet’s lyrics.” 


Granada Hoy

“Chen Reiss brought us all the accuracy and purity of her singing. Very flexible and lyrical throughout the range, she showcases her colours at the highest end of the vocal spectrum, always with excellent command of the text, impeccably pronounced, traced perfectly towards the final phrases of the song.”

Vincent Guillemin

The Israeli soprano Chen Reiss takes on the role of the protagonist with sensuality and grace. Her light soprano voice resounds exquisitely and with a beautiful clear and luminous timbre, silvery and bright in the high notes; her interpretation is sympathetic and sensitive, credibly outlining a heartfelt nymph and, when necessary, in love. 

Stefano Balbiani

Chen Reiss was a Calisto of lyrical voice with airiness at the top, singing with intelligence and a richness of inflection and accent, giving full characterization of the character in the arias.

gF. Previtali

Soprano Chen Reiss pleased us with a middle register characterized by a beautiful lyrical colour, which expands with softness and naturalness in the high register, well supported and ringing. The voice is expressive and bends well to the interpretative needs of the character of Calisto, a role that passes from the initial imperturbability of the nymph, to the joys of the discovery of love, to then arrive at the sad and dignified resignation in accepting her celestial destiny.

Marco Faverzani

“The performance of Israeli soprano Chen Reiss, whose interpretation of Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms, conducted by John Axelrod, rates as the best I have ever heard. […] Chen Reiss’s voice exactly met Bernstein’s demands – she sounded innocent, heavenly, pure, and very youthful. Chen Reiss acted as if praying while singing, and phrased beautifully with her beautiful voice. […]”

Markéta Vejvodová

Chen Reiss, making her Royal Opera debut at this performance, made Zerlina a character of both charm and guile, matched by a voice of silver brightness and clarity.

Matthew Rye


Here it was the Israeli soprano Chen Reiss, making her house debut in this role (she is a regular with the Vienna State Opera). Here is a Zerlina that is no innocent, stripping for the Don and realizing the power she has over the male libido. The duet ‘La ci darem’ was all the more delicious for Reiss’ slight depth to her voice: this is no soubrette Zerlina.

Colin Clarke

Seen and Heard International

Chen Reiss fields a supple, vernal lyric-coloratura that soars without strain or hardness into the stratosphere. […] she can spin a pure legato and always phrases musically, with rubato growing naturally from the curve of the line and the flux of the harmony. The florid melismas and high tessitura of Krenek’s ‘Die Nachtigall’ – and the tricky, vaulting leaps of the Berg songs are negotiated with effortless grace.

Richard Wigmore


More Reviews

Royal Festival Hall – Philharmonia Orchestra/ Lahav Shani

Strauss – Orchestra Lieder.

Mahler – 4th Symphony

“The sequence of six Richard Strauss songs was drawn from right across his career. Quite frankly Chen Reiss has one of the most perfect Strauss voices one could wish for – think Lisa della Casa – conveying that radiant, soaring ecstasy so characteristic of the composer’s love-affair with the female voice. ‘Morgen!’, topped and tailed by superb violin solos, was especially memorable.

When we reached the concluding child’s vision of Heaven Chen Reiss – now in the simplest gown rather than the sumptuous one she had worn for the Strauss – rose from within the orchestra, a particularly elegant solution to introduce the singer without disrupting the music’s flow. Reiss’s voice may be almost too beautiful and sophisticated for this faux-naif music but far better that than some less-impressive vocalists one has heard.”


Vienna State Opera: Strauss: Der Rosenkavalier (Sophie)

The dark-haired, distinctively beautiful young singer never offers the flittery, breathy soprano, which one often hears as Sophie; she presents a substantial, radiant, bright voice with the necessary heavenly high notes in Piano and in Forte. Linguistically perfect, she plays Sophie as confused, yet sympathetic, lively and with a strong personality.

Der neue Merker

Bayerische Staatsoper – Rigoletto (Gilda)

Chen Reiss was a stunning Gilda, her immaculately produced voice and enticing tone matched by her superb musicianship; she was able to reach out emotionally to the audience.

Opera News Online, USA