Praised by Opera News for her “relish and energy,” mezzo-soprano Max Potter is an up-and-coming artist celebrated for her warmth of tone and dramatic presence.
This season, Max performed the world premiere of Constantine Caravassilis’ song cycle Epiphany for mezzo-soprano and cello, and returned to The Muse’s Creative Artistry Project for a concert series of opera classics and a gala performance at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion for Governor Asa Hutchinson. Max joins the Opera Santa Barbara Chrisman Studio Artist Program in 2021, where she intended to make her debut as Meg in Adamo’s Little Women (canceled due to COVID-19) and will perform the role of Flora Bervoix in Verdi’s La Traviata.
On the concert stage, she was contracted to make her symphonic debut as the Alto Soloist in Mendelssohn’s Elijah at The Washington National Cathedral (performances rescheduled for the 2021-22 season), to return to The Phoenix Ensemble for performances of Ned Rorem’s song cycle Ariel (canceled due to COVID-19), and to present Elgar’s Sea Pictures for the Duban Recital Series (canceled due to COVID-19).
In the 2019-20 season, Max Potter was set to make company debuts with Maryland Lyric Opera as La Ciesca in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi and The Chautauqua Opera Company as Jenny Reefer in Virgil Thompson’s The Mother of Us All. She was to make her feature film debut as La Ciesca in Gianni Schicchi, with Mark Delavan starring as the title role. Unfortunately, due to the global pandemic, these events were canceled or rescheduled for later seasons.
Max began the 2018-19 season with Opera Southwest, where she starred as Clarina in Rossini’s La Cambiale di Matrimonio, and covered Ortrud and sang Dritte Edelknabe in Wagner’s Lohengrin. Following this engagement, she joined Salt Marsh Opera for Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte as Second Lady and Papagena. The season also included the world premiere of City Life, a collection of songs by New York-based composer and poet Steve Bloom. Max made her company debut with Bare Opera as Damigella in L’incoronazione di Poppea and her role debut as Dorabella in Mozart’s Così fan tutte for The North Shore Music Festival.
Highlights from past seasons include covering the role of Sister Helen Prejean in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking. Honing her craft at Aspen Opera Center, Max performed classic roles such as Romeo (I Capuleti e i Montecchi), Dorabella (Così fan tutte), L’enfant (L’enfant et les sortileges), and Zerlina (Don Giovanni). She covered Meg Page in Verdi’s Falstaff and the Beggar Woman in Sweeney Todd. Further highlights include Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni and Tebaldo in Verdi’s Don Carlo with Vocal Productions NYC; Charlotte in Massenet’s Werther with the Martha Cardona Opera; and Second Lady (Die Zauberflöte) for Festival of the Arts BOCA. Other roles include Mercedes (Carmen), Concepcion (L’heure espagnole), Flora Bervoix (La Traviata), and Zita (Gianni Schicchi).
Equally at home on the concert stage, Max is passionate about collaborating with composers and bringing their new works to audiences. With New Camerata Opera, she was featured in The Sacred Feminine, an innovative performance piece celebrating the work of Emily Dickinson through spoken word and art song. At Des Moines Metro Opera, Max sang Heggie’s The Breaking Waves in recital for the composer. She has been a featured soloist at the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts, the Washington National Cathedral, Festival of the Arts BOCA, and the Oklahoma International Mozart Festival. Additional concert highlights include Ravel’s Shéhérazade, Mozart’s Requiem and Vesperae solennes de confessore, Haydn’s Sancti Nicolai Messe, Monteverdi’s Vespro della Beata Vergine, and Carissimi’s oratorios, Jepthe and Jonas.
She is an alumna of The Aspen Opera Center, Des Moines Metro Opera Apprentice Program, CoOPERAtive, The Opera Southwest Apprentice Artist Program, and New York’s International Vocal Arts Institute. She is a recipient of awards from the Metropolitan Opera National Council, The Young Musicians Foundation, and Westminster Choir College’s CoOPERAtive Program. Max has been a semi-finalist for The Annapolis Opera Vocal Competition, The Premiere Opera International Vocal Competition, The Paris Opera Competition, the Mildred Miller International Vocal Competition, and the MIOpera Vocal Competition.
Max Potter holds a Masters Degree from Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, and a Bachelors of Music from Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music.