Often referred to as “sultry,” “elegant,” and “compelling,” mezzo-soprano Janara
Kellerman has made a name for herself among opera lovers and critics alike. Hailed by Opera News for her “keen dramatic instincts” and “voluptuous tone,” Ms. Kellerman is delighting audiences throughout the world.
In the 2017-2018 season Ms. Kellerman debuted at Lincoln Center’s David Geffen Hall as the Alto Soloist in BEETHOVEN NINTH SYMPHONY and VAUGHAN WILLIAMS SERENADE TO MUSIC. She also joined Orchestra Iowa as the Alto Soloist in BEETHOVEN NINTH SYMPHONY, the Taghkonic Chorale and Maestro Steven Fox as the Alto Soloist in ROSSINI PETIT MESSE SOLENNELLE, and the Princeton Festival as SUZUKI (MADAMA BUTTERFLY). She returned to New Amsterdam Opera for a concert performance of ORTRUD in the Act II duet from LOHENGRIN.
Other recent engagements include SANTUZZA (CAVALLERIA RUSTICANA) with Musica Viva Hong Kong, AMNERIS (AÏDA) and FENENA (NABUCCO) with New Jersey State Opera, PREZIOSILLA (LA FORZA DEL DESTINO) with New Amsterdam Opera, LITTLE BUTTERCUP (HMS PINAFORE) with Opera Saratoga and Lyric Opera San Antonio and AZUCENA (IL TROVATORE) with the Westfield Symphony. In previous seasons she debuted with Opera Delaware as a Featured Artist in their Inside the Opera Studio/Ladies Night Concert Series and covering the role of ARSACE (SEMIRAMIDE), with Union Avenue Opera as MRS. HERRING (ALBERT HERRING) alongside renowned American soprano Christine Brewer as Lady Billows, with Indianapolis Opera as MRS. PEACHUM (THREEPENNY OPERA), with MidAtlantic Opera in the title role in DIDO AND AENEAS , with Fresno Grand Opera as the OLD LADY (CANDIDE) and with New York City Opera covering IRAS (ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA) and MALCOLM (LA DONNA DEL LAGO).
Ms. Kellerman also recently returned to Cedar Rapids Opera as MAMMA LUCIA (CAVALLERIA RUSTICANA) after singing the title role in CARMEN with them in 2014. Ms. Kellerman is gaining critical attention for her portrayal of CARMEN after making her debut in the role with Des Moines Metro Opera. She has since performed the role with Northern Lights Music Festival, Ballet Tucson, August Opera and Opera Columbus, and covered the role for New York City Opera. The Des Moines Register writes: “When Janara Kellerman struts on stage and launches into the famous Habanera’s slinky chromatic descent, it’s easy to forget everyone else. Her voice is simultaneously agile and strong…With her thick black hair, smoldering gaze and brazen swagger, Kellerman casts a spell more potent than any cloud of smoke. She deftly combines her character’s dramatic sense of abandon with the score’s demand for vocal control.”
A sought-after concert artist, Ms. Kellerman made her Carnegie Hall debut as the Mezzo Soloist in the New York première of PAULUS TO BE CERTAIN OF THE DAWN. With the Topeka Symphony she was the Alto Soloist in the world première of Robert Aldridge’s grand oratorio PARABLES, and later reprised it with Montclair State University, where she also stepped in last minute to sing SHARON FALCONER (ELMER GANTRY). She was the Alto Soloist for the New Jersey Symphony’s VERDI REQUIEM under the baton of Maestro Jacques LaCombe with soloists Marianne Fiset, Russell Thomas and Peter Volpe, which was released as a commercial recording in 2015. Other New York City area concert performances include the Alto Soloist in DURUFLÉ REQUIEM, BACH B MINOR MASS and MENDELSSOHN MAGNIFICAT, and a return engagement with Mineola Choral Society as the Alto Soloist in MENDELSOHN ELIJAH.
Artist Website: www.janarakellerman.com
Suzuki - MADAMA BUTTERFLY
Janara Kellerman brought a resounding mezzo voice, clear diction and convincing passion to the role of Suzuki. Her Puccini sounds like Verdi and Wagner, in the best sense of the comparison. - Opera Today
Janara Kellerman as the ever-present Suzuki acted the servant role to perfection. - outinjersey.net
Verdi - REQUIEM
Kellerman consistently displayed poise and gave an expressive and ultimately chilling account of the “Liber Scriptus,” describing the book in which the world is judged. - Star Ledger (with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra)
Mrs. Herring - ALBERT HERRING
Janara Kellerman as his overbearing mother had a voice and swagger even bigger than Brewer's which made Albert's submission to her thumb totally understandable - St. Louis Today
Also appearing are Janara Kellerman whose formidable Mezzo-soprano dominates Britten's score as powerfully as Lady Billows rules over the denizens of Loxford" -ladue news
Dido - DIDO AND AENEAS
Of the cast, Janara Kellerman’s Dido emerged as strongest, with an agile, plangent mezzo-soprano. She gave a dynamic, polished and impassioned rendition of "Dido’s Lament" (or "When I am Laid in Earth"), the work’s best-known selection. - Star Ledger
Azucena - IL TROVATORE
... She was sung with burning intensity by mezzo-soprano Ms. Kellerman, who imparted just the right amount of crazed vengeance to the chilling final scene. - The Westfield Leader
Amneris - AIDA
“But the show really belonged to Janara Kellerman as the jealous, amorous Amneris. Her rich, velvety mezzo voice wrapped itself around every emotion, from anger to charm to pity. She clearly was the finest actor on stage as well, compelling in every scene.”
Cedar Rapids Gazette
Carmen - CARMEN
These three principals ooze chemistry in their physicality and splendor in their vocal instruments. Kellerman is every inch the manipulative wench with a seductive richness to her sound, whether singing the instantly-recognizable "Habanera" ("Love obeys no laws") to a heart-crushing duet with Don Jose as he crumples over the flower she tossed to him that fueled his passion while they were apart. - Cedar Rapids Gazette (Production with Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre)
DMMO has been quietly nurturing Janara Kellerman in previous seasons, her pungent mezzo and keen dramatic instincts gracing such roles as Antonia’s mother in Hoffman and Rigoletto’s sultry Maddalena. Toss in her considerable dark beauty, and a try at Carmen seemed inevitable; the current season saw her take on Bizet’s Gypsy, in an impressively nuanced role debut. The habanera was voluptuous of tone, and Kellerman’s intelligently shaded Seguidilla purred erotically. Carmen is one of opera’s iconcic characters, of course, and Kellerman is a developing artist, but this was a highly promising assumption
that will bear watching closely in seasons to come. - Opera News
When Janara Kellerman struts on stage and launches into the famous habanera’s slinky chromatic descent, it’s easy to forget everyone else. Her voice is simultaneously agile and strong, like a big game cat that prowls through the underbrush pouncing on its prey. With her thick black hair, smoldering gaze and brazen swagger, Kellerman casts a spell more potent than a cloud of smoke. She deftly combines her character’s dramatic sense of abandon with the score’s demand for vocal control.
Des Moines Register
Soloist - Dvorak Stabat Mater
Mineola Choral Society
Soloist - Mahler Symphony #2
April 6, 2018