Praised for her “plush mezzo” and “lively presence on stage”, British mezzo Julia Riley is in demand on both the operatic stage and concert platform.
An associate of the Royal Academy of Music, from 20012-2016 Riley was a company principal at Opernhaus Zürich, where her roles included Charlotte in Calixto Bieto's groundbreaking production of Zimmerman’s Die Soldaten; Sonyetka Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk; Dinah Trouble in Tahiti; Alisa Lucia di Lammermoor; Tebaldo Don Carlo under Fabiola Luisi; 2nd Niece Peter Grimes; Fidalma Il Matrimonio Segreto; Tisbe La Cenerentola; and Zweite Dame Die Zauberflöte. Recent highlights include Flora in Jonathan Dove’s The Enchanted Pig, Giovanna Rigoletto, Zweite Dame Die Zauberflöte, and 2nd Magd Elektra at Opernhaus Zürich, and her South American debut as Charlotte Die Soldaten at the Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires.
Engagements elsewhere include Nancy Albert Herring for the (Opéra Comique; Opera de Rouen; Glyndebourne on Tour); Zweite Dame Die Zauberflöte for (Théâtre du Capitole, Toulouse; Glyndebourne on Tour); Cherubino Le nozze di Figaro (Glyndebourne on Tour); Alessandro Eliogabalo (Grange Park Opera); and Donna Elvira Don Giovanni, Giovanna Seymour Anna Bolena, Sesto La Clemenza di Tito and Xerxes (English Touring Opera); and Dorabella Così fan tutte (Opera Holland Park), for which she garnered high critical acclaim “This Dorabella, really rather a nasty piece of work, is sung with great flair and rhythmic rigour by the glowing mezzo of Julia Riley” - The Times.
Winner of the Mozart Singing Competition, Riley’s recent concert highlights include performances with La Scintilla - Opernhaus Zürich Baroque Orchestra - under Laurence Cummings; Verdi Messe da Requiem with the London Philharmonic Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall; and her BBC Proms debut in Vaughan Williams Serenade to Music under Sir Andrew Davis. She has also performed at London's Barbican and Cadogan Hall, Birmingham Symphony Hall; St. David’s Hall, Cardiff for the BBC Welsh Proms; London Bach Festival; with the Academy of Ancient Music under Richard Egarr at the Auditorio Nacional de Música, Madrid; and at the Teatro Nacional de São Carlos, Portugal.
In the 2017/18 season she will make her company debut at the Teatro Real, Madrid as Charlotte in Zimmerman’s Die Soldaten.