Acclaimed for having “summoned up sonorities that were rich, warm, dark, and comforting” (San Francisco Examiner) and for her “elegance of technique” and “vivid vocalism” (Baltimore Sun), mezzo-soprano, Janna Critz, is a rising artist within the early music, operatic, and concert arena. With her specialization in Baroque repertoire, Ms. Critz has been recognized for her versatility of style and subtle nuance.
Winner of the 2014 biannual Bethlehem Bach Vocal Competition, Critz has already begun to establish her skill in Baroque performance practice. In January 2014, she founded the ensemble, Bel pianto, a Baroque concert series that presents Italian, French, and German vocal music from the early 17th to mid-18th centuries.
For two consecutive years, Critz has been a featured soloist with the American Bach Soloists Festival and Academy performing works such as J. S. Bach’s Mass in B Minor, Alessandro Scarlatti’s Marc’Antonio e Cleopatra, and Heinrich Biber’s Missa Salisburgensis. Under the direction of Lyle Nordstrom, she has made multiple appearances with Mountainside Baroque, a concert series located in Cumberland, Maryland, along with the Eastman Viol Consort. Most recent performances include The Sorceress from Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, and selected works by Claudio Monteverdi featuring "Lamento della Ninfa" and "Presso un fiume tranquillo." In 2013 Critz made her soloist debut with the Richmond Symphony Orchestra in their production of Mozart’s Requiem, and in 2012 was the alto soloist for Voices of Light, a modern oratorio, by Richard Einhorn with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Marin Alsop.
Other operatic roles include Ottavia from Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea, Cornelia from Handel’s Giulio Cesare, Zerlina from Mozart’s Don Giovanni, and Mallika from Delibes’s Lakmé. Over the past few years she has performed with The Peabody Opera Department including their production of Rake’s Progress by Igor Stravinsky.
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