Helen Zhibing Huang

Chinese-born soprano Helen Zhibing Huang brings her “immaculate coloratura chops and nuanced acting” (Boston Globe) to a wide range of repertoire, spanning from Baroque to the present day. In 2021-2022, she will sing the role of Amour in Gluck’s Orphée with Washington Concert Opera, and she will take part in Bard’s China Now Music Festival, performing Josephine in Huang Ruo’s An American Soldier, with performances at Jazz at Lincoln Center. She also makes her Kentucky Opera debut singing Setsuko in Perla’s An American Dream.

In the 2020-21 season, Helen returned to the Glimmerglass Festival as Pamina in The Magic Flute, and joined Opera Theatre of Saint Louis as a Richard Gaddes Festival Artist performing La Ciesca in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi and The Queen (Cover) in Mackey’s Moon Tea. She was a participant in Carnegie Hall’s SongStudio program led by Renée Fleming and earned a place in the finals of the Lotte Lenya Competition.

In the 2019-2020 season, Helen made her operatic debuts in Europe at the Deutsche Oper Berlin. As a Nashville Opera Mary Ragland Emerging Artist, she performed the role of Flora in The Turn of the Screw. There she was also slated to perform the roles of Countess Ceprano and the Page and cover Gilda in Rigoletto before the production was cancelled due to COVID-19. Other scheduled appearances altered due to the pandemic include Huang’s debut with Opera Parallèle as Henrietta Wong in Harvey Milk and the role of Almirena in Handel’s Rinaldo as a Young Artist with the Glimmerglass Festival. She was also set to reprise her role as Singa Loh in I Am a Dreamer Who No Longer Dreams with Resonance Works Pittsburgh, a “challenging role” that Opera News declared Huang performed “brilliantly” in its premiere at White Snake Projects in 2019.

Huang’s other operatic credits include Baby Doe in The Ballad of Baby Doe, Clorinda in Rossini’s La Cenerentola, Amor in Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice, Serpetta in Mozart’s La finta giardiniera, La fée in Massenet’s Cendrillon, Poppea in Handel’s Agrippina, and Carolina in Cimarosa’s Il matrimonio segreto. A strong advocate for new music, she has participated in workshops for operas including Paola Prestini’s Gilgamesh, Julian Wachner’s REV. 23, and Leanna Kirchoff’s Friday After Friday. Her concert credits include Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s Creation, Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn and Symphony No. 4, and Earl Kim’s Where Grief Slumbers.

Huang has earned recognition from competitions such as the Astral National Auditions (2021 winner), the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions (2018 Oregon District Encouragement Award, 2017 Upper Midwest Region Finalist, 2016 Nebraska District Winner), Jensen Foundation Competition (2019 Finalist), McCammon Voice Competition (2018 Finalist), Orpheus Vocal Competition (Handel Award 2020), and the National Opera Association Vocal Competition (2015 Second Place). She has held young artist residencies at Portland Opera, Central City Opera, Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute, and Songfest.

Huang holds degrees from the New England Conservatory, Bard Vocal Arts Program, the Eastman School of Music, and the University of Rochester (B.A. Economics). She is a founder of Wear Yellow Proudly, an initiative that aims to bring awareness to Asian culture and strengthen the ties within the global community through music, poetry and culture. In her spare time, Helen enjoys cooking and eating traditional Chinese dishes.