With her "brilliant and richly coloured sound" (Die Welt), Elizabeth Hagedorn has made a name for herself through multi-faceted character portrayals in the spinto soprano repertoire.
The American soprano completed music degrees in her home state of Wisconsin and at the University of Colorado. Winning first prize in the Denver Lyric Opera Guild competition enabled her to continue her education with a stipendium to the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria.
Established in Germany, Elizabeth Hagedorn performed a wide repertoire, including Violetta, Konstanze, Donna Elvira, Mimi, Rusalka, Marie (The Bartered Bride), and classical German Operetta repertoire. Various world and European premieres of contemporary operas included the first Austrian performance of Michael Nyman's "The Man who mistook his Wife for a Hat." Her extraordinary stage presence and acting talent were displayed to advantage in guest appearances at the State Opera in Prague, where she sang all three roles (Olympia, Antonia and Giulietta) in Offenbach's "Les Contes d'Hoffmann".
Following her debut as Salome, OPERNGLAS wrote "this young singer could be predestined for the jugendlich-dramatic, neurotic-hysterical roles of Strauss and Wagner". Moving into the spinto and jugendlich-dramatic soprano repertoire, Elizabeth Hagedorn discovered a strong affinity for the roles of the German Expressionists.
Strauss' Salome soon became a central part of her repertoire. She has sung the role in seven productions, including Philadelphia, Karlsruhe, Dusseldorf, Weimar, and Mainz. Other noteworthy Strauss interpretations came with debuts as Ariadne ("played with nerve-wracking intensity", Opernwelt), Diemut in "Feuersnot" for the Richard Strauss Festival in Munich and Chrysothemis in Elektra ("a very individual interpretation, beyond all conventions", Opernnetz) in a production nominated for Best Staging 2007 in Opernwelt and for the German Theater Prize in 2008. In 2010, she repeated the role at the Teatro Massimo di Bellini in Catania, Italy, performing with conductor Will Humburg, and singers Janice Baird and Gabrielle Schnaut.
With equal enthusiasm and passion, Elizabeth Hagedorn enjoys performing the complex characters of Italian Verismo composers: following Suor Angelica came highly acclaimed debuts as Tosca ("powerful, dramatically ardent vocalism", Frankfurt), Giorgetta in Il Tabarro and as Maddelena in Giordano's Andrea Chenier.
Ms. Hagedorn debuted in the Wagner repertoire as Elsa in Lohengrin in Mainz and soon afterwards repeated the role in the prestigious Aalto Theater in Essen. Elsa was also the role of her Italian debut at the Festival dei due Mondi in Spoleto, Italy, with Gian Carlo Menotti as stage director.
Roles in the dramatic repertoire have proved equally successful, whether as Senta ( Der Fliegende Holländer), in the title role in Max von Schillings rarely performed opera Mona Lisa ("acting perfection ...impeccably beautiful singing", ÂÂVienna), Ellen Orford in Peter Grimes, or as Beethoven's Leonore in Fidelio in the staging of Christine Mielitz ("pure emotion", Opernnetz). Elizabeth Hagedorn's debut as Marie in Alban Bergs Wozzeck in June of 2009 was an important addition to her repertoire. Premieres in the 2015-2016 season included Mirabella in Der Zigeunerbaron in Austria, and Alma March in Mark Adamo's opera Little Women for Madison Opera in Wisconsin. Concert appearances include the Mahler Ruekert Lieder, Respighi's Il tramonto, and Wagner's Wesendonck Lieder.
Residing in Vienna since 2011, she has performed Lieder Recitals, and returned to the United States to conduct University masterclasses in Colorado and Wisconsin. Her " Wien.Oper.Intensiv. " performance workshops in Vienna are providing experience in music theater acting techniques for young professionals in Austria.
In Summer 2013, she was on on the faculty of "AIMS in Graz", the program which enabled her own first experiences in Europe. As Visiting Associate Professor of Voice, she joined the faculty of the University of Wisconsin - Madison for a three-year appointment in 2013.