Born: Feb 13, 1969 in Prairie Village, KS
Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato began her career with a string of critically acclaimed debuts, including at La Scala and Covent Garden. She thus rose from virtual anonymity in 1999 to international stardom by 2002. And her triumphs extended onto the concert and recital stages, as well, often in repertory of Handel, whose operas she has also shown a predilection for: she has appeared on-stage to great acclaim as Alcina, Ariodante, Dejanira (Hercules), Elmira (Floridante), and Sesto (Giulio Cesare). She has also sung many Mozart roles, including Cherubino (The Marriage of Figaro) and Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), and while she has steered clear of Verdi and Puccini, her repertory includes Berlioz, Bellini, Rossini, and contemporary composers like Michael Daugherty (Grace Kelly in Jackie O) and Jake Heggie (Sister Helen in Dead Man Walking). Her recital repertory takes in a range of works, from Handel duets to Spanish songs to Faure's Melodies to Bernstein's and other American songs. DiDonato's recordings are available on Virgin Classics, EMI, Hyperion, Naxos, Avie, and TDK.
Joyce DiDonato was born February 13, 1969, in Prairie Village, KS. She studied at Wichita State University, with the intention of teaching voice. By her 1992 graduation she had become interested in a career in opera and thus enrolled at the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia and had further training through programs at the opera companies in San Francisco, Santa Fe, and Houston.
DiDonato had a string of successes in competitions, including a victory at the 1998 George London Competition, after which she gave her major debut at the Houston Grand Opera (1999) as Katerina Maslova in Tod Machover's Resurrection.
Then came her spectacular 2000 debut at La Scala as Angelina in Rossini's La Cenerentola. There followed her stunning Rosina (Rossini's The Barber of Seville) at the Opera Bastille in 2001, and her equally sensational Glyndebourne debut in 2003 as the Fox in Janacek's The Cunning Little Vixen.
DiDonato's first major Handel recordings soon appeared to acclaim: the 2005 EMI Radamisto and 2007 Archiv Produktion Floridante. DiDonato debuted at the Met in 2005, singing Cherubino in Mozart's Le nozze, and she continued to woo international audiences with her 2006 debut at Madrid's Teatro Real as the Composer in Richard Strauss' Ariadne auf Naxos. DiDonato's 2009 Virgin Classics recording Furore, with conductor Christophe Rousset, has consistently drawn rave reviews while climbing high on the sales charts.
-Robert Cummings (All Music Guide)