Katie Bray

Mezzo-soprano

"The most strikingly successful element of the evening was Katie Bray’s fresh-faced and ingenuous Charlotte. Her olive-toned mezzo projects cleanly... Here is a name to remember."

Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph

"Yet it is the bright young mezzo Katie Bray who really impresses here, showing both the emotion and colour of voice to support Rosina’s challenging range..."

Alfred Hickling, The Guardian

"Katie Bray’s mezzo is richly spiced and colourful in potent performances of the Zemlinsky."

Hugo Shirley, Gramophone

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Consistently earning praise for her outstanding stage presence and vocal performances, British mezzo-soprano Katie Bray has fast established herself as an artist to watch.

Recent roles for Opera North include Hansel Hansel and Gretel, Rosina Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Nancy Albert Herring and she has also sung for English National Opera (Daughter Akhnaten and The Way Back Home), Scottish Opera (Lucilla La Scala di seta), Garsington Opera (Zulma L’Italiana in Algeri and Zaida Il turco in Italia), Opera Holland Park (Mallika Lakmé), English Touring Opera (Minerva Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria and Satirino La Calisto) and at the Grimeborn Festival (Charlotte Werther).

Equally at home on the concert platform, Katie Bray has performed in prestigious venues such as the Wigmore Hall, Cadogan Hall, and the Holywell Music Room and she appears regularly in the London English Song Festival, where she directed concerts at Wilton’s Music Hall, as well as at the Oxford Lieder Festival for which she recently recorded a disc of Schumann songs with Sholto Kynoch. She is particularly noted for baroque repertoire and has appeared with Barokksolistene and Bjarte Eike, Monteverdi Choir and Sir John Eliot Gardiner, La Nuova Musica, Ludus Baroque and Spira Mirabilis.

Katie Bray graduated as a Karaviotis Scholar from the opera course at the Royal Academy of Music, and was awarded the Principal’s Prize and won First Prize in the Richard Lewis Singing Competition.

Highlights of the 2017/18 season include a return to Opera North as Louis XV Chair/Female Cat/Owl L’enfant et les sortilèges and Lola Cavalleria Rusticana, Effigies of Wickedness at the Gate Theatre, Notting Hill in collaboration with English National Opera, her debut with Welsh National Opera as Zerlina Don Giovanni and concerts with the Aalborg Symphony Orchestra.

This biography is for information only and should not be reproduced.

Cavalleria Rusticana / L'enfant et les sortilèges

Opera North - Little Greats Season (Autumn 2017)

There are sharp cameos from Rosalind Plowright as the cynically watchful Mamma Lucia and Katie Bray as Lola.

Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph

Mezzo Katie Bray’s lovely dark tones fitted the part of Lola.

Richard Wilcocks, Bachtrack

vividly characterised multitasking performances from John Graham-Hall, Ann Taylor, Fflur Wyn and Katie Bray.

Richard Morrison, The Times

Quirijn de Lang and Katie Bray make a stunning pair of cats.

Tim Ashley, The Guardian

Il Turco in Italia

Garsington Opera (July 2017)

Katie Bray sings the role of Zaida with style and warmth, a perfect foil to Tynan

Anna Picard, The Times

I’d defy anyone to name a more complete singing actress than Sarah Tynan, except perhaps Katie Bray. Here we get them both…as the gypsy Zaida, the every-changing Bray – who never ceases to astonish – lent her irresistible stage presence along with her rich, penetrating mezzo to a performance of scene-stealing delight

Mark Valencia, What's on Stage

Katie Bray, as Selim's former lover Zaida, had perhaps an easier job to make her character sympathetic as the wronged innocent, but Bray really made Zaida count. She combined a vivacity with warmth of tone, and created a real sense of character.

Robert Hugill, Opera Today

Hansel and Gretel

Opera North (Spring 2017)

Katie Bray and Fflur Wyn could scarcely be bettered as the eponymous brats.

Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph

Katie Bray’s Hansel and Fflur Wyn’s Gretel sing with a light, spontaneous ease that overcomes the disconnect of a pair of pre-teens expressing themselves with mature, adult voices. The famous duet in which they sing themselves to sleep is breathtaking.

Alfred Hickling, The Guardian

Katie Bray as Hansel is ideal in all respects, having clearly studied how young boys move and what expressions they adopt. She has a lovely voice, too, and the opening scene for the two is ravishing musically.

Michael Tanner, The Spectator

...in Bray’s case, as good an impersonation of a boy as you’ll ever see from a young woman. Only her floridly gorgeous mezzo gives her away.

Mark Valencia, What's on Stage

Ulysses’s Homecoming / La Calisto

English Touring Opera (Autumn 2016)

Katie Bray declaims Minerva's injunctions with irresistible authority and panache

Rupert Christiansen, Telegraph

Katie Bray - the performer of the season - once again shows her quality as Minerva

Alexandra Coghlan, The Spectator

Katie Bray's Satirino bubbled with dynamics, colour and unstoppable comic energy

Yehuda Shapiro, Opera Magazine

Katie Bray repeated her tremendously spirited performance of the previous evening, surmounting the high-lying line with panache as a commanding Minerva whose rulings and instructions must be obeyed

Claire Seymour, Opera Today

L'Italiana in Algeri

Garsington Opera (July 2016)

Her attendant, Zulma, was the vivacious and vibrant Katie Bray.

Claire Seymour, Opera Today

Barber of Seville

Opera North (October 2015)

Katie Bray is a delightfully sparky and sympathetic Rosina; when it was revealed that her penniless admirer was actually a count, Bray beamed as if all her Navidads had come at once.

Neil Fisher – The Times

Yet it is the bright young mezzo Katie Bray who really impresses here, showing both the emotion and colour of voice to support Rosina’s challenging range. The finest Rosinas must alternately resemble both a flute and a clarinet: Bray’s voice has scope to develop further, but she’s not far off that scale.

Alfred Hickling, The Guardian

Zemlinsky’s Sechs Gesänge

Royal Academy of Music Soloists Ensemble (Linn CKD481)

Katie Bray’s mezzo is richly spiced and colourful in potent performances of the Zemlinsky.

Hugo Shirley, Gramophone

Lakmé

Opera Holland Park (July 2015)

Bray and Dickinson excel in their company debuts.

Anna Picard, The Times

Vert-Vert

Garsington Opera (June 2014)

Naughty girlie chums Katie Bray (a super mezzo) and Raphaella Papadakis are scrumptious in their opening pranks.

Roderic Dunnett, The Arts Desk

L’Étoile

New Sussex Opera (November 2013)

Lazuli was sung with panache by Katie Bray.

Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph ****

The character who might be said to have been born under a lucky star, Lazuli, was personified with great charm by Katie Bray, who delivered her solos in a firmly rounded mezzo-soprano and her dialogue in clear-cut tones.

Margaret Davies, Opera Magazine

The magnetic Katie Bray was an itinerant beautician Lazuli.

Robert Thicknesse, Opera Now

Werther

Grimeborn Festival

The most strikingly successful element of the evening was Katie Bray’s fresh-faced and ingenuous Charlotte. Her olive-toned mezzo projects cleanly... Here is a name to remember.

Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph

Emperor of Atlantis

English Touring Opera

Musically it's terrific, with not a weak performance anywhere, though Katie Bray’s warmongering Drummer and Callum Thorpe as the multiple voices of reason and technology that Ullmann simply calls Loudspeaker, are particularly outstanding.

Tim Ashley, The Guardian

Katie Bray’s mezzo was outstanding. Her punch performance as the thigh-bone wielding Drummer combined vocal athleticism with physical vigour on stage.

John-Pierre Joyce, Music OMH

Katie Bray was outstanding.

Opera Now

World Premiere of Kommilitonen, Sir Peter Maxwell-Davies

Royal Academy of Music

Wu is sung with the luxurious mezzo-soprano of Katie Bray, a sound of compassion, plangeant but not abject or begging. This is the most convincingly operatic performance, Bray characterising Wu with the quality of sound. Consequently it’s, for me, the most gripping account of a maligned individual of the evening.

Royal Academy of Music

Die Dreigroschenoper

Royal Academy of Music

Vocally, the undisputed star was Katie Bray as Polly. Bray gave us wonderful feel for Weill's melodic lines and for every mood, whether lyrical in her Farewell Song, waywardly self-willed in the Song of Yes and No or rapid-fire in her Jealousy duet with Runette Botha's Lucy

David Karlin, Bachtrack

Béatrice et Bénédict

Royal Academy Opera

Katie Bray’s Béatrice is sparkily acted and warmly sung

Richard Morrison, The Times

The Béatrice of Katie Bray was stunningly brilliant

Michael Tanner, The Spectator

Katie Bray Opera Repertoire

BERLIOZ

Béatrice et Bénédict (Béatrice)

BERNSTEIN

Candide (Paquette)

BIZET

Carmen (Carmen)

BRITTEN

Albert Herring (Nancy)
The Rape of Lucretia (Lucretia)
A Midsummer Night's Dream (Hermia)

CAVALLI

La Calisto (Satirino)

CHABRIER

L'Etoile (Lazuli)

DELIBES

Lakmé (Mallika)

GOUNOD

Faust (Siebel)

HANDEL

Xerxes (title role)

HUMPERDINCK

Hansel and Gretel (Hansel)

MASCAGNI

Cavalleria Rusticana (Lola)

MASSENET

Werther (Charlotte)

MAXWELL-DAVIES

Kommilitonen! (Wu)

MONTEVERDI

L'Incoronazione di Poppea (title role)
Ulysses' Homecoming (Minerva)

MOZART

Cosi fan tutte (Dorabella)
Don Giovanni (Zerlina)
La Clemenza di Tito (Sesto / Annio)
Le nozze di Figaro (Cherubino)
Die Zauberfloete (Second Lady)

RAVEL

L'enfant et les sortilèges (L'enfant/Louis XV chair/Female cat/owl)

ROSSINI

Barber of Seville (Rosina)
Il Turco in Italia (Zaida)
La Cenerentola (Angelina)
L'Italiana in Algeri (Zulma)

ULLMANN

Der Kaiser von Atlantis (Drummer Girl)

WEILL

Die Dreigroschenoper (Polly Peachum)
Die Sieben Todsünden (Anna)

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