Possessing a voice praised by the San Francisco Chronicle for its “effortless precision and tonal luster,” Jessica Rivera is established as one of the most creatively inspired vocal artists before the public today. The intelligence, dimension, and spirituality with which she infuses her performances on the great international concert and opera stages has garnered Ms. Rivera unique artistic collaborations with many of today’s most celebrated composers including John Adams, Osvaldo Golijov, and Nico Muhly, and has brought her together in collaboration with such esteemed conductors as Bernard Haitink, Sir Simon Rattle, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Robert Spano, and Michael Tilson Thomas.
Ms. Rivera was heralded in the world premiere of John Adams’s newest opera, A Flowering Tree, singing the role of Kumudha, in a production directed by Peter Sellars as part of the New Crowned Hope Festival in Vienna. Since then, she has performed A Flowering Tree for her debut with the Berliner Philharmoniker with Sir Simon Rattle and, under the composer’s baton, with the San Francisco Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Lincoln Center, and the London Symphony Orchestra at the Barbican Centre. The London performances were recorded and are now commercially available on the Nonesuch Records label.
The artist made her European operatic debut as Kitty Oppenheimer in Peter Sellars’s acclaimed production of John Adams’s Doctor Atomic with the Netherlands Opera, a role that also served for her debut at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, and she joined the roster of the Metropolitan Opera in a past season for its new production of Doctor Atomic under the direction of Alan Gilbert. She gave concert performances of Doctor Atomic with Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and her portrayal of Kitty Oppenheimer was captured in Amsterdam and is commercially available on DVD on the BBC/Opus Arte label.
Ms. Rivera’s 2015-2016 season features performances of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with Giancarlo Guerrero and the Nashville Symphony, excerpts from Canteloube’s Chants d’Auvergne with Josep Caballé-Domenech and the Colorado Springs Philharmonic, a pops concert with Richard Kaufman and the Pacific Symphony, Strauss’ Four Last Songs with Richard Sowers and the Anderson Symphony Orchestra, Joshua Roman’s song cycle “we do it to one another” with Town Hall Seattle, Strauss’ Orchesterlieder with Johannes Stert and the Orquestra Sinfónica Portuguesa in Lisbon, Villa-Lobos’ “Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5” with Marcelo Lehninger and the Grand Rapids Symphony, and Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem with Alexander Shelley and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, and with Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra with performances in Atlanta and at New York’s Carnegie Hall. She will also join the Teatro Nacional de São Carlos in Lisbon as Kumudha in John Adams’ A Flowering Tree, a role she created, under the baton of Joana Carneiro.
Highlights of Ms. Rivera’s 2014-2015 season included performances of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with Peter Oundjian and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Brahms’s Ein deutsches Requiem with Robert Spano and the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Falla’s Siete Canciones Populares with Nicholas Carter and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, a concert celebration of “Día de los Muertos” with Donato Cabrera and the San Francisco Symphony, Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with Laura Jackson and the Reno Philharmonic, Theofanidis’s Creation Oratorio with Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Handel’s Messiah with Norman Mackenzie and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, a New Year’s Eve concert with David Robertson and the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, the world premiere of Gabriela Lena Frank’s La Centinela y la Paloma with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and Mozart’s Mass in C Minor with Marcelo Lehninger and the New West Symphony. She also reprised her critically-acclaimed portrayal of Kitty Oppenheimer in John Adams’s Doctor Atomic for a debut at the Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville, Spain.
Highlights of recent seasons include performances of El Niño with David Robertson and the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, the San Francisco Symphony and at the Edinburgh International Festival with James Conlon and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Nixon Tapes with the Pittsburgh Symphony under the direction of John Adams, Górecki’s Symphony No. 3 (“Symphony of Sorrowful Songs”) with Gustavo Dudamel and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Mahler’s Fourth Symphony with Franz Welser-Möst for a debut with the Cleveland Orchestra, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with Sir Roger Norrington and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Carnegie Hall, with Bernard Haitink and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and with Michael Tilson Thomas and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Britten’s Spring Symphony with Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Carmen with Bramwell Tovey and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Poulenc’s Gloria with Mr. Haitink and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, which she also sang with Grant Gershon at the Hollywood Bowl, and Ravel’s Shéhérazade with Mr. Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony.
Committed to the art of recital, Ms. Rivera has performed in concert halls in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Santa Fe. In a national recital tour, Ms. Rivera was joined by mezzo-soprano Kelley O’Connor and pianist Robert Spano for concerts at Carnegie Hall, Cal Performances, Berkeley, Kennesaw State University, Pepperdine University, and at Cincinnati’s Constella Festival. In past seasons, to support a recital disc on the Urtext Records label that examines works for soprano, clarinet, and piano, Ms. Rivera toured North America with concerts in Los Angeles, New York (Carnegie Hall), Las Vegas, Oklahoma City, and Chicago (Ravinia Festival). She also has given a recital program at the Amelia Island Festival accompanied at the piano by Robert Spano. She was deeply honored to have received a commission from Carnegie Hall for the world premiere of a song cycle by Nico Muhly called The Adulteress given on the occasion of her Weill Hall recital performance. See more on Grammys.com