Canadian Soprano Avery Lafrentz bounded onto the Toronto music scene in 2017 with her work in the world premiere of Michael C. Rose’s Canadian opera Northern Lights Dream as “the gender-neutral, sexually ambiguous Robin (Goodfellow - aka Puck) that stole the show. Her comedic timing was understated and hilarious” (Schmopera). The training she received at the Second City Training Centre in Toronto helped the young soprano originate this comedic role under the direction of Summer Opera Lyric Theatre’s Guillermo De Silva.
In June 2019, Avery attended the prestigious art song festival SongFest (held at the Colburn School in Los Angeles) as a Professional Fellow on a partial scholarship from SongFest's advisory board, with an additional grant awarded to her from the Art Song Foundation of Canada. She performed in 8 concerts and had the opportunity to work with James Conlon (L.A. Opera), mezzo Susan Graham, Graham Johnson (Schubert Historian) in public master class. Avery also prepared and performed repertoire with composers Jake Heggie, John Musto and Libby Larsen. A truly unforgettable summer.
In the summer of 2018, Avery attended the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria on the Irma Cooper Memorial Scholarship. She performed in master classes taught by soprano Linda Watson and conductor Lukas Beikircher. She also participated in multiple concerts hosted throughout the city and was named a semi-finalist in the annual Meistersinger Competition. In addition to her experience in Austria, Avery was a Studio Artist with Opera on the Avalon in St. John's, Newfoundland where she participated in community outreach initiatives, a symposium series, as well as performing in concerts throughout the community culminating in OOTA's full scale production of Tosca, in which she was an opera chorus member. While in St. John's, she also participated in the workshop of Yvette Nolan and Dean Burry's Shawnadithit - the story of Shawnadithit, last living member of Newfoundland's lost Indigenous tribe the Beothuk.
Avery has sung with choirs conducted by Robert Cooper, Hilary Apfelstadt and David Fallis. In spring 2018, she performed with the MacMillan Singers at the Lincoln Centre in New York City, NY. 2018 also marked Avery's first nod to collaboration as a vocal technique consultant with Vox Populi (latin for the voice of the people), an inclusive LGBT+ choral project fostered by social justice aimed to celebrate diversity by giving the voice back to the people.
Originally hailing from Southeast Saskatchewan, Avery holds two Bachelor degrees from the University of Toronto in Anthropology (BA, 2014) and Performance (BMus, 2019). She studied voice in the studio of soprano Elizabeth McDonald and graduated from her Bachelor of Music with the Douglas Bodle - St. Andrew’s Award. In her spare time, she draws and paints, as well as dabbles on self-taught ukulele to an audience of the many exotic house plants she has rescued with her green thumb.
This fall (2019) she will begin her Masters of Music in Performance at McGill University in Montreal, QB in the studio of Dominique LaBelle. She will be starring as Vitellia in Mozart’s Clemenza di Tito directed by Michael Mori, general and artistic director of Tapestry Opera, in Opera McGill’s November production.