In a Messiah with the Newfoundland Symphony, soprano Mary Bella "seemed to light up every time she sang, exuding enormous warmth and brightness said the Evening Telegram, When it comes to Handelian airs, she's just what the doctor ordered she made it seem effortless."
An avid concert and recital artist, highlights include her debut with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir in Brahms' Requiem, Haydn's Nelson Mass and the world première of Imant Raminsh's Te Deum with Chorus Niagara, and Mozart's Exultate Jubilate, Requiem and Vesperae Solennes, Haydn's Mass in Time of War and Beethoven's Mass in C with Toronto Classical Singers.
In recital, Mary has appeared for the Aldeburgh Connection, the Toronto Arts and Letters Club, Trinity St. Paul's Church Recital Series, the Toronto Wagner Society, the Toronto Mozart Society, the University of Regina and Montréal's Debut series at La Chapelle Historique du bon-Pasteur. In addition, she has contributed her talents to the prestigious Toronto Opera Ball, and was a semi-finalist at the Jeunesses Musicales International Competition in Montreal. Mary also enjoys performing in a series of duet recitals with her husband, tenor Michael Colvin - they were engaged for Hart House Concert Series' 600th Concert Gala as well as North York Performing Arts Association's Fabulous Fridays series.
On the opera stage, Ms Bella has toured with the Canadian Opera Company (COC) singing The Queen, Papagena and the First Lady inThe Magic Flute and was the Second Lady in The Magic Flute with Manitoba Opera. A regular with the COC chorus, Ms Bella also performed in a workshop presentation of Dean Burry's new opera The Brother's Grimm with the Canadian Opera Company, and performed the role of Cis in Britten's Albert Herring with the COC young artists ensemble. Other opera credits include Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro for the Orford Arts Centre, Tiny in the Canadian première of Benjamin Britten's Paul Bunyan and Serpetta in Mozart's La finta giardiniera, conducted by Mario Bernardi. Her McGill Opera performance in L'incoronazione di Poppea was described by critics as "simply outstanding. She sang wily Poppea with so rich a voice and so much seductive vocal beauty that the title of empress seemed the least she deserved for such art" (The Montreal Gazette). Ms Bella has also performed in several French Baroque Opera pastiches with the period dance troupe La Belle Danse.
Ms Bella is featured on A Classical Kids Christmas CD, which has met with great critical acclaim and been broadcast repeatedly on local and national radio stations. Ms Bella also recorded a short film soundtrack for Bravo Television, a new work by Canadian composer Dean Burry called Grace.
Born in Edmonton, Alberta, Mary Bella holds a Masters in Music Performance and an Opera Diploma from the University of Toronto, as well as a Bachelor of Music with honours from Memorial University of Newfoundland. She also studied on exchange at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, England, and McGill University, and attended Britten-Pears School in Aldeburgh, England for two summers. Ms Bella has been the recipient of numerous awards and scholarships, including the prestigious Eaton Graduating Scholarship from the University of Toronto.
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