Jenni Bank

Jenni Bank

M E Z Z O - S O P R A N O

As a standout among both seria and buffa roles, Jenni Bank’s voice has been praised as “lush” by The Wall Street Journal, and The Baltimore Sun recently referred to her singing as “deep, dark, penetrating tone…that can extract Verdian richness.”

The Johannesburg, South African born mezzo-soprano was raised in Binghamton, NY and received musical training at an early age. In a production of Unsuk Chin’s Alice in Wonderland with the Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Opera News described her performance of The Duchess in its American premier as “a standout”, proclaiming she possessed a “luscious, dramatic voice and plenty of stage humor”. She was a semi-finalist for the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.

Upcoming and within the season: She traveled to Korea to make her debut with the Seoul Philharmonic in selections from Alice in Wonderland; is Emilia in excerpts from Rossini's Otello at Bard Music Festival; makes her Hawai’i Opera Theater debut 2018 as the Marquise in La fille du Regiment; reprises Die Dritte Dame with Florentine Opera and returns to Baltimore Concert Opera as Mrs. Lovett. In the 2016-17 season she sang Ruth in The Pirates of Penzance with Knoxville Opera; Die Dritte Dame in Die Zauberflöte with Seattle Opera; and, covered the same role at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Last season she was Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd with Tri-Cities Opera; appeared in concert with the Birmingham Symphony; and, returned to Opera Theatre of St. Louis as Firdaus Noman in the world première of Jack Perla’s Shalimar the Clown based on a novel by Salman Rushdie.

In the 2014-15 season she returned to Florentine Opera as Mary in Der fliegende Holländer and reprised the role of The Duchess in Alice in Wonderland with the LA Philharmonic and at the Barbican Centre in London with the company and debuted in the same role with the Bergen Filharmoniske Orkester in Norway with performances in Bergen and Oslo. Ms. Bank was a member of Wolf Trap Opera that season singing Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro and Samira in The Ghosts of Versailles.

Ms Bank has performed the roles of The Witch in Hänsel und Gretel with Opera in the Heights; the Old Lady in Candide with Amarillo Opera, Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro with Florentine Opera, Filippyevna in Eugene Onegin with Opera Company of Middlebury, Little Buttercup in HMS Pinafore and Katisha in The Mikado with the Young Victorian Theatre Co. in Baltimore. During the 2013-14 season she was a guest artist with the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic as The Duchess in Alice in Wonderland; was Mrs. Peachum in The Threepenny Opera with Amarillo Opera; and sang the role of Golde in Fiddler on the Roof with Ash Lawn Opera.

She has performed the role of Azucena in Verdi’s Il trovatore with Opera in the Heights in Houston and Martha in Faust with Baltimore Concert Opera. Prior performances include Dame Quickly in Falstaff, Dryad in Ariadne auf Naxos, Frugola in Il tabarro, La Zia Principessa in Suor Angelica, Zita in Gianni Schicchi, Giulietta and La voix de la mère in Les contes d’Hoffmann, Miss Todd in The Old Maid and the Thief, Petra in A Little Night Music, Third Lady in The Magic Flute, Ruth in Pirates of Penzance, Buttercup in H.M.S. Pinafore and the Fairy Queen in Iolanthe. She has participated in numerous prestigious Young Artist programs, among them; Seattle Opera, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Des Moines Metro Opera, and Opera New Jersey.

Comfortable in concert and oratorio repertoire, she has sung Argento’s Casa Guidi song cycle with full orchestra and soloed in the Verdi Requiem, Mozart Requiem, Bruckner Te Deum, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. Additionally, Ms Bank has been featured on public television as an up-and-coming artist and has sung recitals in her birth country of South Africa.

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“Verdian technique of the highest caliber and agility to cover the scale with strength and, yes, subtlety…Bank is her own force of nature and achingly conveyed her obsessed gypsy heart through masterful command of her stupendous voice. Thrilling to behold, it's like hearing the waves of the sea.”
Houston Press