Ashley Dixon

Ashley Dixon

Mezzo-soprano Ashley Dixon, a Grand Finals winner of the 2018 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, is quickly establishing herself as one of the most exceptional artists of her generation. Possessing a “robust instrument full of beguiling vocal colors, as well as formidable technical command” (The San Francisco Chronicle), she is at home in a repertoire spanning three centuries. In spring of 2020, Ms. Dixon made her critically acclaimed debut with the Los Angeles Opera, stepping into a run of performances as Sara in Roberto Devereux alongside bel canto veterans Ramon Vargas and Angela Meade. Of these performances, she was praised as having “an exquisite gentleness… Dixon inhabits her persona, remains likable, inured to any judgment. With her melodious and precise voice, Dixon navigates her character’s dilemmas with sure-fire finesse (LA Excites).”

Ms. Dixon continued to perform this last season as a featured guest artist with Opera San Jose.  In addition, she joined Atlanta Opera for performances as the title role in Carmen, West Edge Opera as Doris in Elizabeth Cree, and appeared in San Francisco Opera’s Holiday Gala.

Calendar

Event Date
Feb 18
to
Feb 20
The Tragedy of Carmen
Carmen
Hawaii Opera Theatre
Honolulu, Hawaii

Artist Bio

Mezzo-soprano Ashley Dixon, a Grand Finals winner of the 2018 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, is quickly establishing herself as one of the most exceptional artists of her generation. Possessing a “robust instrument full of beguiling vocal colors, as well as formidable technical command” (The San Francisco Chronicle), she is at home in a repertoire spanning three centuries. In spring of 2020, Ms. Dixon made her critically acclaimed debut with the Los Angeles Opera, stepping into a run of performances as Sara in Roberto Devereux alongside bel canto veterans Ramon Vargas and Angela Meade. Of these performances, she was praised as having “an exquisite gentleness… Dixon inhabits her persona, remains likable, inured to any judgment. With her melodious and precise voice, Dixon navigates her character’s dilemmas with sure-fire finesse (LA Excites).”

Ms. Dixon continued to perform this last season as a featured guest artist with Opera San Jose.  In addition, she joined Atlanta Opera for performances as the title role in Carmen, West Edge Opera as Doris in Elizabeth Cree, and appeared in San Francisco Opera’s Holiday Gala.  Future engagements include the title role in Lucrezia for Opera Louisiane and Carmen in Hawaii Opera Theatre’s production of The Tragedy of Carmen.

A 2019 alumna of San Francisco Opera’s Adler Fellowship, Ashley Dixon made her SFO mainstage debut in Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s It’s a Wonderful Life as an Angel First Class. During her two-year tenure, she was heard as Mércèdes in Carmen, the Third Wood Sprite in Rusalka, the Italian Singer in Manon Lescaut, and the Sandman in Hansel and Gretel. In “The Future is Now,” the end-of-season concert featuring the Adler Fellows, she performed a duet from Massenet’s Cendrillon and Dopo notte, the glittering final aria from Handel’s Ariodante, which was hailed as a “phenomenal performance” by San Francisco Classical Voice.

Ashley Dixon has cultivated a passion for French repertoire ranging from Baroque to Berlioz, with roles including Gluck’s Orphée, Cendrillon, Marguerite (La damnation de Faust) and Carmen. Additional roles in her formidable arsenal include the title roles of Ariodante, Giulio Cesare, and La cenerentola, as well as Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Dido in Dido and Aeneas.

As a two-year participant in the Merola Opera Program, Ms. Dixon saw performances as La Ciesca in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi, Mrs. Nolan in Menotti’s The Medium, Popova in William Walton’s The Bear, and ended her summer season on the stage of the War Memorial Opera House, singing an aria from Massenet’s Cendrillon as part of the Merola Grand Finale concert.

Additional recent engagements include her debut with Michigan Opera Theatre in Copland’s The Tender Land as Mrs. Splinters, Ravel’s Shéhérazade at the Ravinia Festival, Linda Larsen in the workshop for Laura Kaminsky’s Hometown to the World: Postville, San Francisco’s “Opera for all Voices.” At Ann Arbor’s Hill Auditorium, she has performed the mezzo-soprano solo in Mozart’s Requiem, Schubert’s Ständchen with the University of Michigan Men’s Glee Club, and the title role in a concert performance of Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas. Ashley Dixon earned her Bachelor of Music at the Louisiana State University and holds a Master of Music from the University of Michigan, where she performed the title role of Handel’s Giulio Cesare and Sister Helen Prejean in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking.

Updated September 1, 2021.

Press

"....a robust instrument full of beguiling vocal colors .." – San Francisco Chronicle

“Dopo notte” from Ariodante – “But let’s begin with the program’s most newsworthy selection — mezzo-soprano Ashley Dixon’s phenomenal performance of the aria “Dopo notte” from Handel’s opera Ariodante. After two years as an Adler, Dixon is far from an unknown quantity, yet this was the first time she had ever sung anything here from the Baroque repertoire. It turns out she’s a master at it. She’s got a robust instrument full of beguiling vocal colors (OK, that we knew), as well as the formidable technical command to unleash streams of glittering coloratura with precision and panache. From her throaty low register to her commanding high notes, all of it was delivered with equal assurance. This would have been a showstopper under any circumstances, but the fact that Dixon’s Handelian wizardry was such a well-kept secret only added to the jolt. It was like watching an ordinary person walk into a phone booth and emerge with a hitherto unsuspected superpower.”

"...appealing, technically solid..." – The New York Times

Merola Grand Finale concert – "The appealing, technically solid mezzo-soprano Ashley Dixon, 26, excelled in arias from Gluck’s Orphée et Euridice and Massenet’s Cendrillon.”

"...brings an exquisite genuineness..." – LA Excites

Roberto Devereux – “Ashley Dixon… brings an exquisite genuineness to Sara, who finds herself miserably caught between allegiances – to her best friend Elizabeth, to her husband the Duke, and to her amore Robert. Sara, in part because of the appropriate frailty with which Dixon inhabits her persona, remains likable, inured to any judgment. With her melodious and precise voice, Dixon navigates her character’s dilemmas with sure-fire finesse.”

"...a demure, flowing liquidity...” – San Francisco Classical Voice

Merola Grand Finale concert – “Mezzo-soprano Ashley Dixon dazzled first in “Dopo notte”, a fiendishly decorated trouser-role aria from Handel’s Ariodante. The percolating vocal line and abundant ornaments came off without a show of strain or effort. Dixon was in an evening gown; by the foaming final measures, a listener could easily imagine her character in costume on the stormy seas Ariodante was recollecting. Later on, as Massenet’s Cinderella, Dixon rendered the hopeful ball-goer’s infatuation with Price Charming (the admirable tenor Christopher Oglesby) with a demure, flowing liquidity.”