• Born 1979
Often appears with
Lyric soprano Kate Royal has taken her time to understand her voice and find the music that fits it, as well as find a working schedule that allows her to be at her best when she is performing.
Her father wrote and sang songs for TV in the 1970s, while her mother was a model and dancer who ran her own studio, so it was assumed that either Kate or her sister would end up performing for a living. Royal was introduced to classical music in high school and found it suited her voice better than the songs of musical theater. She attended the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the National Opera Studio. It wasn't long after graduating and winning the Kathleen Ferrier Award in 2004 that others began to see her talent. She was an understudy at Glyndebourne and a member of its touring company, singing Mozart and Britten in those couple of years before she signed an exclusive contract with EMI in the fall of 2006. Her self-titled solo debut recording -- featuring songs and arias by Debussy, Stravinsky, Rodrigo, and others, and backed by the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields -- was released in 2007. Since then, she has been a part of Graham Johnson's Schumann series on Hyperion, a featured artist on Ian Bostridge's Great Handel album, and released two more solo discs: Midsummer Night (2009) and A Lesson in Love (2011). As for her live performances, she has appeared on stage and in choral performances with conductors such as Simon Rattle, Myung-Whun Chung, Esa-Pekka Salonen, and Yannick Nézet-Séguin. Her roles have included Marschallin in Der Rosenkavalier, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, Miranda in The Tempest, Handel oratorios, and Mahler symphonies. Royal sets aside five months of every year to do song recitals. She has learned that structuring her work this way gives her the time she needs to fully prepare for opera roles and to focus on her family.