"a first-class spitfire and a stunning virtuoso of coloratura"
As for Sutphen—a first-class spitfire and a stunning virtuoso of the coloratura art form, it was hard to take your eyes or ears off of her, even for a moment. With such a vivacious and vigorous sound at every single moment. Her technique was unmatched, as her clean melismas and flexibility had little to no weight. Sutphen helped the audience understand the story with her engaging acting, which never felt too much. Her usage of the stage was also fantastic, taking any and every opportunity to pull focus in clearly deliberate manners so as to provide a nice counterbalance to the dull nature of the production.
“Impressive coloratura soprano” (The New York Times) Elizabeth Sutphen has garnered praise for her sparkling voice and her ability to “soar deftly through stratospheric trills and arpeggios” (Financial Times). Praised as “Exquisite” by The Guardian, Ms. Sutphen enjoyed an exciting 2022-23 season, which included a return to the role of Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier at the Salzburger Landestheater, and a company debut with Detroit Opera as Atalante in Handel’s Xerxes. The 2021-22 season included her Palm Beach Opera debut as Valencienne in The Merry Widow and her debut with the Atlanta Opera as Chrisann Brennan in The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs by Mason Bates and Mark Campbell. Ms. Sutphen has performed leading roles in houses around the world, including Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier with the Glyndebourne Festival and Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos with both the Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse and Oper Frankfurt, and Faustina in Tarik O’Regan and John Caird’s The Phoenix with the Houston Grand Opera. Most recently, Ms. Sutphen was praised by Schmopera for her “impeccable comedic delivery” and “ability to sing flawlessly…with dexterity and finesse” for her Des Moines Metro Opera debut as the delightfully zany La Folie in Rameau’s Platée. She looks forward to debuts with The Glimmerglass Festival and Arizona Opera in the 2023/24 season, as well as her first engagement with the Metropolitan Opera.
The beginning of Ms. Sutphen’s 2019-2020 season saw her debuts as Gilda in Rigoletto with the Houston Grand Opera, as the Rossini heroine Lisetta in La gazzetta with Oper Frankfurt, and as the soprano soloist in Bach’s Weihnachts-Oratorium with the Tiroler Festspiele. She was also slated to sing Philine in Thomas’s Mignon with Oper Frankfurt, debut with the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Singer 1/Witness 1/Woman 1 in George Benjamin’s Lessons in Love and Violence, debut with The Dallas Opera as il voce dal cielo in Don Carlo under the baton of Maestro Emmanuel Villaume and directed by the late, unparalleled Edward Berkeley, and cover Cleopatra in Handel's Giulio Cesare with the Metropolitan Opera, all sadly cancelled due to COVID-19.