Karan Armstrong

Karan Armstrong is one of the most distinctive and highly regarded opera singers. Born in Montana, USA, Armstrong finished her training as a pianist in 1963, thereafter continuing her singing studies with Lotte Lehmann, Fritz Zweig, Tilly de Garno and Dean Verhines. She was engaged by the Metropolitan Opera New York and later became a member of the New York City Opera and performs in many large houses in the US, such as Houston, San Francisco, Santa Fé, Pittsburgh, San Diego, Cincinnati and Baltimore. In 1974 she debuted as Salome in Strasbourg, a role that marks the starting point of her European career. Her performances in the roles of Melisande, Katja Kabanova, Emilia Marty in The Makropulos Affair, Marie in Wozzeck and Lulu are among the most outstanding to be seen in opera houses from Stuttgart to Paris, Vienna to Berlin, Los Angeles, London and Tokyo. She portrayed a great variety of roles, as Violetta and Mimi, Elsa and Sieglinde, Leonore in Fidelio and Cassandra in Les Troyens as well as the Marschallin in Der Rosenkavalier. At the Finnish National Opera in Helsinki she appeared regularly as Brünnhilde in the Ring cycle.

Armstrong has taken part in numerous first performances such a Lou Salomé by Giuseppe Sinopoli, Un Re in ascolto by Luciano Berio and Desdemona und ihre Schwestern by Siegfried Matthus. Since her debut at the Town Hall, New York in 1976, Karan Armstrong has given many distinguished concert performances and made numerous recordings and participated in many film and television productions.

In 2001/2002, she started to establish herself also in roles like Begbick in Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny, Kabanicha in Katja Kabanova, Herodias in Salome and Klytemnestra in Elektra. She obtained an outstanding success with her first Kostelnica in Jenůfaat Komische Oper Berlin in a new production by Willy Decker and conducted by Kirill Petrenko. Projects of recent years include her performance of the Queen of the hearts in Unsuk Chin`s Alice in Wonderland at the Grand Théatre de Genève.