Erin Morley is one of today’s most sought-after coloratura sopranos. She has stepped into the international spotlight in recent years with a string of critically acclaimed appearances in the great opera houses of the world.
She has been praised for the “silken clarity of her voice and the needlepoint precision of her coloratura” (The New York Times). A recipient of the Beverly Sills Award and a graduate of the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, she has garnered huge critical acclaim worldwide; she regularly appears on the greatest opera stages such as Wiener Staatsoper, Bayerische Staatsoper, Opéra National de Paris, Glyndebourne Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Los Angeles Opera and the Metropolitan Opera, where she has now sung more than 100 performances and has been featured in five “Live in HD” broadcasts.
In the 2022-23 season, Morley makes a double appearance at the Metropolitan Opera as Sophie in Robert Carson’s production of Der Rosenkavalier and Pamina in a new production of Die Zauberflöte, conducted by Nathalie Stutzmann, and at Wiener Staatsoper as Gilda in Rigoletto. Engagements on the concert platform include Morgana in a tour of Alcina with Les Musiciens du Louvre Grenoble, conducted by Marc Minkowski; Poulenc’s Gloria with the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Lorenzo Viotti and Beethoven’s Missa solemnis with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, under Riccardo Muti.
Highlights of the previous season included her debut in the title role in Matthew Aucoin’s Eurydice, which premiered at the Metropolitan Opera; her Teatro alla Scala debut with one of her signature roles, Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos; a role and company debut as Isabelle in Robert le Diable, under Marc Minkowski at the Opéra National de Bordeaux, which was recently released as an audio recording by Palazzetto BruZane; her debut at Staatsoper Berlin as Gilda in Rigoletto, which she also performed at the Metropolitan Opera; a critically acclaimed debut in one of the most iconic coloratura roles, Lakmé, with Washington Concert Opera, and a return to Glyndebourne Festival with another new role, Norina in Don Pasquale.
The breakthrough moment in Morley’s career came when she stepped in at the last-minute to sing Sophie in an entire run of Der Rosenkavalier at the Metropolitan Opera during the 2013-2014 season; it was hailed by critics as “a major success.” Since then, Met audiences have seen her as Sophie in Robert Carsen’s new production of Der Rosenkavalier; as Olympia in Les Contes d’Hoffmann; as Constance in Dialogues des Carmélites, and as Pamina in The Magic Flute, among others.
Equally at home on the concert platform, Morley has performed with leading orchestras such as Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Staatskapelle Dresden and Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra. She has appeared on tour with Harry Bicket and the English Concert, Louis Langrée and the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and with the Met Chamber Ensemble in Zankel Hall.
Her many recordings include Sophie in the Met’s Grammy-nominated Der Rosenkavalier on DVD/Blu-ray for Decca; Sandrina in La Finta Giardiniera with Emmanuelle Haïm in Opéra de Lille’s production for Erato; Woglinde in Götterdämmerung in the Metropolitan Opera’s Grammy Award-winning Ring Cycle for Deutsche Grammophon; Marguerite de Valois in Les Huguenots, live from Bard SummerScape with the American Symphony Orchestra; Carl Nielsen’s Symphony No. 3 (Espansiva) with Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic for Da Capo Records, and Sylvie in Gounod’s La Colombe with Sir Mark Elder and the Hallé Orchestra for Opera Rara.
Morley spent her early years studying violin and piano, and often collaborated with her mother, a violinist. As an undergraduate of the Eastman School of Music, she went on to earn her master of music degree from the Juilliard School and her artist diploma from the Juilliard Opera Center in 2007, where she received the Florence and Paul DeRosa Prize. She also trained at the Opera Theatre of St. Louis as a Gerdine Young Artist, the Ravinia Festival Steans Institute and the Wolf Trap Opera Company as a Filene Young Artist.
She won first prize in the Jessie Kneisel Lieder Competition in 2002, first place in the Licia Albanese Puccini Foundation Competition in 2006, third place in London’s Wigmore Hall International Song Competition in 2009 and received the Richard Tucker Career Grant in 2013.