Elaine Bonazzi Carrington BM 51


The career of mezzo-soprano Elaine Bonazzi Carrington has been an extraordinary one. Called “a fantastically gifted actress and singer” by The Washington Post, Bonazzi earned a singular reputation for her vivid and memorable portrayals on the opera stage. As an oratorio and orchestral soloist, she was one of the leading mezzos of her generation and was equally at home on the recital and concert stage.

Bonazzi made her debut in Santa Fe in 1958 in the role of Meg Page in Falstaff. In Santa Fe, over the next 35 years, she sang everything from the title roles in Carmen, Regina, and The Grand Duchess of Gerolstein, to important roles in the American premieres of Berg’s Lulu and Hindemith’s News of the Day (with Hindemith conducting). It was at Santa Fe that she began her long association with Igor Stravinsky, when she played Baba the Turk in The Rake’s Progress in a production supervised by the composer. She was subsequently chosen by Stravinsky for a number of premieres, including The Requiem Canticles, which she recorded, and Le Rossignol at The Washington Opera, which she also recorded. At New York City Opera, Bonazzi made her debut in Ned Rorem’s Miss Julie, and she was cast by Stephen Sondheim as Mrs. Lovett in his Sweeney Todd, and Madame Armfeldt in A Little Night Music. Other American companies with which Bonazzi appeared included the Metropolitan Opera at the Forum, and the companies of Boston, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Houston, Minnesota, Cincinnati, Wolf Trap, Seattle, Dallas, and Houston. She can be heard on more than 25 recordings on the Columbia, CRI, Vox Candide, Vanguard and Nonesuch labels.

Elaine Bonazzi Carrington is now Performing Artist in Residence, and teaches Voice, Vocal Repertory, and Acting for Singers at the Department of Music, State University of New York at Stony Brook. Before coming to Stony Brook, Bonazzi taught at Peabody Institute of Music, and she has presented master classes all over the world.

The Eastman School of Music honored Elaine Bonazzi Carrington with its Alumni Achievement Award in 1972.

-From Bridge Records and Bach Cantatas Web sites, 11/7/05