Performance Year: 2018, 2022
Grammy Award-winning mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke has been called a “luminous standout” (New York Times) and “equal parts poise, radiance and elegant directness” (Opera News). Ms. Cooke appears frequently singing Mahler, whose works she has sung to great acclaim on four different continents. Sought after by the world’s leading orchestras, opera companies, and chamber music ensembles for her versatile repertoire and commitment to new music, Ms. Cooke continues to deliver world premiere performances and unique artistic collaborations.
In the 2021-22 season, Ms. Cooke returns to the Metropolitan Opera for her role debut as Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro, under the baton of Yannick Nézet-Séguin. On the concert stage, she joins the Boston Symphony Orchestra first for performances of Janáček’s Glagolitic Mass, conducted by Jakub Hrůša, and then again as Margret in Wozzeck, both in Boston and on tour at Carnegie Hall under the baton of Andris Nelsons. She also joins the Minnesota Orchestra for Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen and subsequently for Mahler’s Symphony No. 8, the latter conducted by Osmo Vänskä. Additionally, she performs Michael Tilson Thomas’ Meditations on Rilke with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, conducted by the composer; scenes from Nadia Boulanger’s Faust et Hélène with the Houston Symphony, led by Fabien Gabel; Berlioz’s Les nuits d’été with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Karina Canellakis; Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra; Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with the Oregon Symphony; Jake Heggie’s The Work at Hand and Elgar’s Sea Pictures with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, led by Gemma New; and a holiday concert with the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra. Finally, she gives a solo recital alongside pianist Myra Huang at the Tucson Desert Song Festival where she premieres a new work by Jennifer Higdon.
The season also marks the release of Ms. Cooke’s new CD, How Do I Find You, on the Pentatone label. The recording, which features songs by Caroline Shaw, Nico Muhly, Missy Mazzoli, and Jimmy Lopez, among others, is intended as a tribute to both the struggles and hopes of artists who have been affected by the pandemic. Ms. Cooke performs the world premiere with pianist Kirill Kuzmin on January 30th, 2022, as part of the San Francisco Symphony’s Great Performers Series, before giving subsequent recitals at the Shriver Hall Concert Series and elsewhere.
Ms. Cooke’s past seasons have included opera performances of Hänsel und Gretel at the Seattle Opera andthe world premiere of Mason Bates’s The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs at the Santa Fe Opera. Recent orchestral engagements included the Chicago Symphony Orchestra with Riccardo Muti leading Prokofiev’s Ivan the Terrible, Bernstein’s “Jeremiah” Symphony with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra as well as the Philadelphia Orchestra conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin at Carnegie Hall, and a staged version of Verdi’s Requiem with Houston Grand Opera under Patrick Summers.
On DVD, Ms. Cooke can be seen in a new production of Hansel and Gretel at the Metropolitan Opera and the Grammy Award-winning production of Doctor Atomic under conductor Alan Gilbert. Ms. Cooke’s recordings can be found on the Hyperion, Naxos, Bridge, Yarlung, GPR, and Sono Luminus labels.
A graduate of Rice University and the Juilliard School, Sasha Cooke also attended the Music Academy of the West, the Aspen Music Festival, the Ravinia Festival’s Steans Music Institute, the Wolf Trap Foundation, the Marlboro Music Festival, the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, and Seattle Opera and Central City Opera’s Young Artist Training Programs.