A winner of the 2014 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, 2015 George London Award, 2015 Elizabeth Connell prize for aspiring dramatic sopranos, and recipient of a 2015 Sara Tucker Study Grant, soprano Julie Adams has been praised by the New York Times for possessing a voice that is “rich, full and slightly earthy in an expressive way.” The 2018 – 2019 season sees Ms. Adams’ house debut with Arizona Opera as Anna Sorensen in Silent Night by Kevin Puts, and her house debut with Des Moines Metro Opera as Mimì in La Bohème. Orchestral engagements include Beethoven’s Symphony Number 9 with the Phoenix Symphony conducted by Tito Muñoz, and a concert version of West Side Story with the Oakland Symphony.
The 2017 – 2018 season saw Ms. Adams return to San Francisco Opera as a guest artist in Francesca Zambello’s production of Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, singing Freia in Das Rheingold and Gerhilde in Die Walküre. Additional engagements included her house and role debut as Countess in le Nozze di Figaro at Michigan Opera Theatre, conducted by Stephen Lord and her house debut at Opera Idaho as Blanche in Previn’s A Streetcar Named Desire.
Highlights at San Francisco Opera include Mimì in La Bohème, conducted by Carlo Montanaro, First Lady in the Jun Kanako production of Die Zauberflöte, Kate Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Kristina in Makropulos Case, Cesira in the world premiere of Marco Tutino’s La Ciociara, and covering both Eva in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg and the title role in Jenůfa.
Additional operatic highlights include appearances as Mimì in La Bohème and Anna Sørensen in Silent Night with Opera San Jose, her role debut as Blanche DuBois in A Streetcar Named Desire as part of the 2014 Merola Opera Program, Lia in Debussy’s L’Enfant Prodigue at the International Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, and Magnolia Hawks in Show Boat and Rose in Street Scene with the Oakland East Bay Symphony. Additional roles include Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, Blanche in Les Dialogues des Carmélites, and Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
On the recital stage Ms. Adams was featured as part of the Schwabacher Debut Recital series with John Churchwell, which the San Francisco Chronicle praised her “combination of plush tone and seeming effortless vocal power.”
Orchestral works include Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915 with Contra Costa Wind Symphony, and a chamber concert with San Francisco Opera musicians as part of SF Opera Lab’s Chamberworks Concerts, with repertoire including Morgen! by Strauss, Previn’s Vocalise, Eternamente by Ponchielli, and Chausson’s Chanson Perpetuelle. Haydn’s Mass in C Major with Oakland East Bay Symphony, Brahms Requiem and Vivaldi’s Gloria with Ventura College Orchestra, and a set of five Joseph Marx Lieder with the San Francisco Conservatory of Music Orchestra.
A native of Burbank, California, Ms. Adams holds both Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music where she was awarded the Phyllis C Wattis Memorial Scholarship.
As his love interest, and essentially the only female role, Julie Adams was the radiant diva Anna Sorensen. Her rich, creamy, agile soprano was of the highest quality, the kind that prompts excited “who-is-she?” intermission chatter (and beyond). Ms. Adams is entrusted to deliver a beautifully judged battlefield prayer, and boy, deliver it she did with heart-stopping effect. You read it here: We will be hearing much more from her.
“The soprano Julie Adams, from California, impressed me as the most mature of the winners with her elegant account of an aria from Debussy’s lyric cantata “L’ Enfant Prodigue” and an affecting performance of Mimi’s “Donde lieta uscì” from Puccini’s “La Bohème.” Her voice is rich, full and slightly earthy in an expressive way.”
“In more than 25 years of covering this event, I’ve never seen a Merola finale as swamped by outsize talents as Saturday night’s was by soprano Julie Adams and tenor Casey Candebat. When these two took the stage just before the end of the program to blaze their way through the Act 2 duet from Mascagni’s “L’Amico Fritz,” the entire undertaking leapt to a new level.”
“She is one hell of a Blanche. Her voice is plush and supple. She slides up to whispered apex notes, pierces them, then slithers back down. In Act 2, she sings an aria titled “Soft people have got to shimmer and glow,” where her voice reflects the iridescent colors of the orchestration. It’s lovely to hear.”
“As Blanche, Julie Adams gave a riveting performance that combined an apt air of unhinged fragility with a radiant, richly colored soprano that rose to diaphanous high notes in the arias “I Want Magic” and “I Can Smell the Sea Air.”
“Yet perhaps the most striking aspect of Adams’ artistry was her combination of plush tone and seeming effortless vocal power. Especially in the more expansive and dramatically charged parts of her recital, she lofted potent, long-breathed melodic lines that seemed to swell and fall with cunning naturalness. Climactic high notes landed firmly and without an edge; arching phrases surged and then subsided beautifully.”