Melisa Bonetti

Mezzo-Soprano, Melisa Bonetti, has been hailed by Opera Today as “a warm, supple mezzo that struck all the right impressions” and as “commanding a wonderful presence in the lower middle voice but also easily soaring heavenward with a well-schooled top.” Ms. Bonetti’s 2018-2019 operatic season includes Olga Olsen in Street Scene and Zerlina in Don Giovanni; both productions with Virginia Opera. “Melisa Bonetti as the peasant Zerlina is a standout, vocally and in her charismatic characterization.” -Richmond Times Melisa also continues to perform new works and is excited to be in Virginia Opera’s new Variation Series and featured as Johanna in Breaking, Autumn in Service Provider, and Eva in An American Dream. Melisa is excited to revisit the role of Tyler in Three Way with Shreveport Opera which she premiered with Nashville Opera. Melisa is also looking forward to revisiting the role of Mercedes, this time alongside Denyce Graves as Carmen, with the Richmond Symphony. Melisa’s engagements last summer prove her versatility as a singer including a dream role of hers from the musical theatre repertoire; Anita in Bernstein’s West Side Story with the Brott Music Festival (Ontario), a rock opera premiere; The Bradbury Tattoos with Concert: Nova (Ohio), her first Russian role of Marta in Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta with Queen City Opera (Ohio), and her first and very anticipated time in Italy with the International Voice Masterclass Ebe Stignani program in Imola. Melisa will return to Italy this season to sing as a festival soloist in the Emilia Romagna Festival. Although her last name is Italian connecting her to some Sicilian ancestry, she is a first generation American from a Dominican family.

Recent performances include Alisa in Lucia di Lammermoor with Virginia Opera, Die Knusperhexe in Hansel und Gretel with Union Avenue Opera (St. Louis), Mercedes in Carmen with Nashville Opera & Opera Columbus, Maria Maddalena in Galileo Galilei with Des Moines Metro Opera, Emilia in Otello with Dayton Opera, Flora in La Traviata with Kentucky Opera, Marcellina in Le Nozze di Figaro with Kentucky Opera, Isabela in La Hija de Rappaccini with Des Moines Metro Opera, Federico Garcia Lorca in Ainadamar with the Lexington Philharmonic, and Maddalena in Rigoletto with the Queens Symphony Orchestra. Opera premieres include Tyler in Three Way with Nashville Opera and American Opera Projects (NYC), Lilith in Dracula; Bloodlines with the Dayton Performing Arts Alliance, Clare in A Woman in Morocco with Kentucky Opera, and Emelda in Champion (workshop) in collaboration with Cincinnati Opera.

Previous concert engagements include Das Knabe Wunderhorn selections with the Richmond Symphony, Mozart’s Requiem with the Dayton Philharmonic & Cincinnati Collegium, Handel’s Messiah with the Dayton Philharmonic, a Naxos recording of Granados Tonadillos selections arranged for wind symphony and El Amor Brujo with the Queens Symphony Orchestra.

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Current & Upcoming Performances

2
March
2019
Tour
Concert Artist
Emilia Romagna Festival
Bologna, Italy
Teatro Ebe Stignani Imola
2
March
2019
Tour
Concert Artist
Emilia Romagna Festival
Bologna, Italy
Teatro di Correggio
4
April
2019
"An American Dream" by Jack Perla
Eva
Virginia Opera
Richmond, VA
Dominion Energy Center – Rhythm Hall
18
May
2019
Carmen
Mercedes
Richmond Symphony
Richmond, VA
Carpenter Theatre
20
July
2019
Porgy and Bess
Anita
Cincinnati Opera
Cincinnati
Music Hall

Past Performances

9
February
2019
"Three Way - Masquerade" by Robert Paterson
Tyler
Shreveport Opera
Shreveport, LA
Central ArtStation
11
January
2019
"Breaking" by Michael Gilbertson
Johanna
Virginia Opera
Richmond, VA
Dominion Energy Center – Gottwald Theatre
11
January
2019
"Service Provider" by Christopher Weiss
Autumn
Virginia Opera
Richmond
Dominion Energy Center – Gottwald Theatre
10
January
2019
"Breaking" by Michael Gilbertson
Johanna
Virginia Opera
Norfolk, VA
Harrison Opera House
10
January
2019
"Service Provider" by Christopher Weiss
Autumn
Virginia Opera
Norfolk, VA
Harrison Opera House

“Melisa Bonetti as the peasant Zerlina is a standout, vocally and in her charismatic characterization. Her “can’t we make up?” aria sung to Masetto is a high mark.” -Richmond Times-Dispatch

“And the Witch! Melisa Bonetti blesses this role with remarkable comic gifts, both vocal and physical. She can shift timbre instantly and has a deliciously witchy cackle.” -Broadway World

“Melisa Bonetti is possessed of a warm, supple mezzo that struck all the right impressions, first as a self-assured Scribe, and later as a rather imperious Maria Maddalena.” – Opera Today

“Mezzo Melisa Bonetti is especially active as the saucy and flirtatious Zerlina, playfully crawling during the suggestive aria
“Batti, batti o bel Masetta” and growing sensual and affectionate during “Vedrai carino.” Vocally, Bonetti offers a vibrant, even timbre.” -WHRO.org

“Bonetti brought a pleasant quality to her singing and delightful characterization of innocence.” -Virginia Gazette

“Mezzo-soprano Melisa Bonetti (Zerlina) and baritone Evan Bravos (Masetto) are an equally well-matched duo. The adorable pair is endearing, and their vocal performance suffers nothing for the physical demand of their roles. They are by far the most active and yet maintain outstanding control.” -Broadway World

“Mezzo Melisa Bonetti camped it up as the Witch; she has an excellent voice” -STL Today

“His betrothed is the fabulous Melisa Bonetti… is a strong singer and a spry and lovely actress.” -Paul Kuritz