Get to Know Karen
American Mezzo-Soprano, Karen Kelley, is originally from Jefferson City, MO. Recently recognized as an Encouragement Award winner in the National Laffont Competition sponsored by the Metropolitan Opera, Karen has quickly established herself as an up and coming artist to watch. With her rich and stentorian voice, Karen is quickly making moves in the operatic world with immense vocal dexterity and a commanding stage presence. In the 2022-2023 season, Karen made several role and house debuts. At the start of the season, Karen made an appearance at the Chandler Opera Company as a featured soloist, presenting works ranging from Wagner to Gilbert & Sullivan. Following this appearance, she debuted as an Apprentice Artist with Sarasota Opera in Sarasota, FL. During her residency, she performed the role of La Madre in Puccini's Madama Butterfly under the baton of Maestro Victor Derenzi. To conclude the season, Karen was accepted into the prestigious Santa Fe Opera as an apprentice artist for their 2023 summer festival. During her apprenticeship, she covered the role of Mary in Wagner's Der fliegende Holländer and was also the second cover for the role of Messaggera in Monteverdi's L'Orfeo. In the 2023-2024 season, Karen joins Opera Idaho as an Emerging Artist. She will be making her mainstage debut in their productions of Le nozze di Figaro and Roméo et Juliette. Karen has a Master of Music in Opera Performance from Arizona State University.