Performance Year: 2022, 2023, 2024
A soloist in the GRAMMY-winning album Duruflé: The Complete Choral Works, Cecilia Duarte has been praised by the New York Times as “a creamy voiced mezzo-soprano.” Born in Chihuahua, Mexico, she is a versatile singer who has performed around the world in a variety of music styles, especially early and contemporary music.
Cecilia has been greatly recognized for creating the role of Renata in the first mariachi opera, Cruzar la Cara de la Luna, with Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán, commissioned by Houston Grand Opera in 2010. Cecilia has taken this opera to the stages of the Houston Grand Opera (2013, 2018), the Châtelet Theater in Paris, Chicago Lyric Opera, San Diego Opera, Arizona Opera, the Fort Worth Opera, Teatro Nacional Sucre in Ecuador, New York City Opera, and El Paso Opera. Since then, she has created other roles for world premieres of chamber operas and new works, such as Jessie Lydell in A Coffin in Egypt (Houston Grand Opera and the Wallis Annenberg Center in L.A.), Gracie in A Way Home (Houston Grand Opera and Opera Southwest), Harriet/First Responder in After the Storm (Houston Grand Opera), Alicia in Some Light Emerges (Houston Grand Opera), and Alma in “Boundless,” the first episode of Houston Grand Opera’s web opera series Star-cross’d, which received a Telly Award.
Her experience in early music includes performances with Ars Lyrica Houston, Mercury Houston, and The Bach Society Houston as well as the Festival Ensemble in Stuttgart, the Festival de Música Barroca de San Miguel in Allende, México, the Boston Early Music Festival, and most recently the Bach Collegium San Diego with which she made her debut singing Handel’s Messiah in a complete Spanish-language adaptation. She is also a vocalist in the Kaleidoscope Vocal Ensemble, performing both early and contemporary music.