American mezzo-soprano Kristin Gornstein brings her vibrant stage presence and supple voice to a diverse and eclectic repertoire ranging from Handel’s Messiah to improvisational modern and electronic music. Drawing from her varied performing experiences, Kristin is equally at home on the operatic, musical theatre, and recital stages.
In 2011/2012 Ms. Gornstein performed extensively in Europe. While living in Stockholm, Sweden, Kristin was a member of the Extended Opera program for young professionals at Sweden's Operahögskolan. In this group, Kristin and four other young artists performed both traditional and new operatic music in technologically enhanced situations at venues such as the Swedish Royal Opera, Stockholm's Folkoperan, and the OperaDagen Rotterdam festival. In the US, Kristin sang on the concert stage with the Grammy-nominated group Seraphic Fire in Miami, Florida, as the Alto soloist in Handel's Messiah in Boulder, Colorado, and as the mezzo-soprano soloist with the historic Marble Collegiate Church's Advent Concert in New York City. This Spring, Kristin is a music session finalist in one of New York City's oldest and most loved competitions, the Joy in Singing competition, held in the New York Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. She will be an Apprentice Artist with Caramoor Bel Canto this summer.
The 2010/2011 season saw Ms. Gornstein performing the title role in La Tragèdie de Carmen for Indianapolis Opera where she was singled-out by critics and described as "a perfect embodiment of the strikingly beautiful, suave, sultry Carmen” (NUVO Magazine, Indianapolis). In this same season, she sang the roles of Pitti-Sing in The Mikado, and Annina in La Traviata, also for Indianapolis Opera. Kristin performed with the well known Opera New Jersey and Indianapolis Opera Young Artists Programs where she was featured in several concerts with performances throughout Indiana and Michigan and covered the role of Flora in La Traviata.
In 2009/10 Kristin performed in Colorado as Hansel in Hansel and Gretel and in the title role of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Princess Ida. She also appeared multiple times throughout the state with the Boulder Opera Quintet, an ensemble that was founded by Ms. Gornstein to explore and present selections from the standard operatic repertoire. It was with this group that Ms. Gornstein created a work entitled OperApocalypse! that was featured at the 2010 Boulder International Fringe Festival and included operatic improvisation intertwined with arias and scenes from traditional opera.
Previous seasons include performances as the leading role in Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen, Maria in West Side Story, Kitty Hart in the modern American opera Dead Man Walking by Jake Heggie, and Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro. Other musical theater and operetta performances have included Mrs. Segstrom in Sondheim’s A Little Night Music and Edith in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance.
An enthusiast of modern music, Kristin recently appeared as guest soloist with the New World Music Festival singing in Heitor Villa-Lobos’ Praesepe. Ms. Gornstein has performed in a staged version of Miss Donnithorne’s Maggot, by Peter Maxwell Davies with the new music ensemble FusionChamber, and she sang George Crumb’s song cycle Apparition, honoring his 80th Birthday and of which Crumb himself wrote, “Brava! A beautiful performance!” She has also performed with Pendulum New Music as well as Colorado’s Mahlerfest.
Kristin received her Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Colorado at Boulder and her Bachelor of Music degree, also in Vocal Performance, from Butler University in Indiana. Additional training includes improvisation and performance technique work with Ann Baltz, extensive training in movement and several styles of dance, and strong skills with Italian language. Kristin resides in New York City.