Donna Olson (Mezzo Soprano) recent Instructor of Voice at Saint Marys College of CA , The Vocal Studio and Pease Conservatory. Originally from Boston, she received her Music Degree from the Boston Conservatory of Music. In addition to working as a lecturer at SMC, Donna is a professional opera singer and teaches in her private studios in Oakland and Pease Conservatory in Sacramento
Ms. Olson’s most recent roles include Mrs Bertram in the San Francisco Bay Area's Premier of Jake Heggie's opera "The End of the Affair" to critical acclaim and marked the best in the Bay Area 2014 with West Edge Opera! Marcellina (Figaro) with Sacramento Opera and Mother & Grand Mother in Seymour Barab’s (Little Red Riding Hood) with Merced Opera. IShe sang with RuthAnn Swensen, et al on the 30th Anniversary Fund Raising Program for the Berkeley Opera. Other roles include Marcellina (Figaro) and Dorabella (Cosi fan tutte) with Mendocino Music Festival, Mary (Flying Dutchman), Mrs. Peachum (The Threepenny Opera) and Mamma Lucia (Cavalleria) with West Bay Opera, Public Opinion (Orpheus in the Underworld) with Pocket Opera and her first Verdi Requiem with Tulare County Symphony. She sang Flora (La Traviata) with Sacramento, Martinez and Nevada Opera Companies, and Mistress Quickly (Falstaff) and Magdalena (Die Meistersinger) with Berkeley Opera. Ms. Olson was a resident artist with Opera San José for two seasons and sang the roles of Meg Page (Falstaff), Dorabella (Così fan tutte), Suzuki (Madama Butterfly), Rosette (Manon, Tisbe (La Cenerentola), Siébel (Faust), and Second lady (Die Zauberflőte). In the same season she sang Ulrica (Un ballo in maschera) and a solo engagement at the Fundraiser Concert with West Bay Opera. To critical acclaim, Ms. Olson sang the seven roles in David Schiff’s original composition Vashti, with The Old Church Opera in Portland, OR where she staged and helped conceive the creative concepts. With Washington East Opera, she sang Second Lady (The Magic Flute) and was invited back to perform in their “Greatest Hits” concert, singing excerpts from Carmen, Rigoletto, Werther, and La traviata, under the baton of Dean Williamson. Ms. Olson has performed Prince Orlofsky (Die Fledermaus) with the Columbia Symphony, Marquise of Berkenfeld (The Daughter of the Regiment and Flora (La Traviata) with the Nevada Opera, where she was invited back for their “Members’ Choice” concert, singing excerpts from Rigoletto and Tales of Hoffman. With the Portland Chamber Orchestra, she performed the role of Ramiro (La finta giardiniera). Ms. Olson made her Northwest debut with the Portland Opera as Karolka (Jenůfa); Eugene Opera as Third Lady (The Magic Flute); and with Opera Idaho as Mercédès (Carmen). Donna can be heard on CD recordings of The Messiah, Vashti, and Mozart’s Requiem.
A popular “artist of great expression” in recital as well as opera, Donna is a frequent performer of oratorio and recital work. She performed with the Fremont Symphony’s production of Handel’s Messiah, and two performances of Mozart’s Requiem with the San Francisco Midsummer Mozart Festival under the Baton of George Cleve. Ms. Olson sang Duruflé’s Requiem and Handel’s Messiah with both the Seattle Northwest and Bravo Vancouver Symphonies, performances she repeated with the Los Gatos Symphony in California. Soon after arriving in Portland, she worked with the Oregon Symphony performing Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and Handel’s Messiah. Donna was the Metropolitan Opera National Council District Winner and Regional Finalist. She won finalist position in the Ellen Faull Gordon Vocal Competition. Ms. Olson has also performed with Boston Children’s Opera, Boston Conservatory Opera Theater, Pioneer Opera, Stockton Opera, Sierra Opera, and Auburn City Opera singing roles in La nozze di Figaro, Die Fledermaus, The Magic Flute, Help! Help! The Globolinks, Il signor Bruschino, Amahl and the Night Visitors, and L’enfant et les sortilèges. See www.singdonna.com for more information and check the Performing Arts Website for further performance details www.stmarys-ca.edu/arts/.