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BIOGRAPHY

Michaela Chiste is a newly emerging classical singer who specializes in opera, oratorio, art song, and musical theatre.

Michaela Chiste is a soprano hailing from Okotoks, Alberta. Originally trained as a stage actor, she spent most of her life studying and performing in the dramatic arts and musical theatre before crossing over to the world of classical singing in 2013. She completed her Bachelor of Music under the tutelage of John Tessier at the University of Alberta in 2017. She completed her Master's degree in Vocal Literature and Performance at the University of Western Ontario under soprano Jackalyn Short in 2022.

She has performed as a concert soloist and recitalist both internationally and across Canada. She has served as soloist in works such as Benjamin Britten's Rejoice in the Lamb and A Ceremony of Carols, and Bernstein's Chichester Psalms. Her most notable work as a chamber musician is her premiering of The Dream, a cantata for soprano and pianoforte by Anders Muskins at the Alberta Mozart Festival in 2016. Michaela is passionate about contemporary music and has premiered several new art songs and operas, including Ronald Beckett's song cycle Songs of Fracture (2019) and Bouquet (2022), for which she authored the poetry. 

Michaela received praise for her debut portrayal of Mimì in Puccini's La Bohème with Mercury Opera. Opera Canada described her performance as "a fine balance of fragility and hopefulness".  She was also described as "effective... a great actress" (I Don't Get It), and that she "rises to the occasion" (Daze Magazine) and "more than holds her own among the seasoned cast" (Edmonton Journal).

Other notable roles include Alcina (Alcina), Adina (L'elisir d'amore), Fiordiligi (Così fan tutte), Principal (.Gabriel), Frasquita (Carmen), Gustave (Pomme d’Api), and The Boy (Der Jasager). Michaela is an alumna of Arcady's Emerging Artist Program and former roster singer for Cowtown Opera.

Michaela is a SSHRC-funded scholar, which enabled her to present a research-based lecture-recital on the topic of Men Writing Women in 2021. Michaela was funded by Canada Council for the Arts in 2023 to pursue an audition tour in Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands. She received another award from Canada Council in 2023 supporting her training at L'Institut Canadien d'Art Vocal.

Along with pianist Theodore Chow, Michaela co-founded the voice-piano duo Echo North. Their debut EP, La Solitaire (releasing in 2024), features Xavier Leroux’s rarely performed song cycle of the same name. Echo North is the first ensemble to record two of the three songs in the set despite its existence for over 130 years.

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