After making her acclaimed Metropolitan Opera debut this past spring, 2024 Grammy-winning American classical singer Julia Bullock gives two summer recitals with pianist Bretton Brown. The first is at Minnesota’s Lakes Area Music Festival on August 9, where she is already a firm audience favorite, and the second at London’s Bold Tendencies on August 24, where, as “one of today’s smartest, most arresting vocalists in any genre” (NPR), she makes her house debut with a thoughtfully curated program of songs by Alban Berg, Elizabeth Cotten, Marian Anderson, Kurt Weill, Rodgers & Hammerstein, Connie Converse, Odetta, and Bob Dylan.

Since making her debut at Minnesota’s Lakes Area Music Festival in 2009, Bullock has returned many times to the festival stage. In 2012, she starred in its first operatic production, and today her association with the Brainerd festival is even closer, for this season marks the third that her husband, conductor and pianist Christian Reif, will be its Music Director. By contrast, the Bold Tendencies performance represents Bullock’s first at the arts nonprofit, which occupies the top floors of a disused multistory car park in south-east London. “As a thriving, if grimy arts space, it thrums with youthful energy,” writes the New York Times, while The Guardian notes the venue’s success in fostering “a genuine sense of connection with the local community.” Bullock makes her house debut with a genre-straddling program that draws on an eclectic mix of songwriters and composers, many of whom also featured in her recital at New York’s Park Avenue Armory last fall.

This prompted the Observer to declare: “Rarely have I attended a recital during which a singer wielded such a spellbinding array of vocal colors, which she accessed with astonishing ease. … Bullock’s genuinely lovely and impressively wide-ranging soprano is always used in service of her piercing intelligence.”

Among the featured singer-songwriters is Connie Converse, whose One by One may be heard on Bullock’s solo album debut, Walking in the Dark. Released in December 2022 by Nonesuch Records, the recording was not only recognized with both Opus Klassik and Edison Klassiek awards, but also won the 2024 Grammy Award for Best Classical Solo Vocal.

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