Endowed with a remarkable musical sensibility, Susan Graham shines with her exceptional voice and has developed a very distinct taste for French music.
Music has been at the heart of Susan Graham’s life since her teenage years and if she started with playing the piano, singing was already her favorite medium. Dropping off her economics degree in Texas Technical University, she decided to enroll in the Manhattan School of Music. Her interpretation of Massenet's Cherub enabled her to make her stage debut, both at the Metropolitan Opera in 1991 and in Covent Garden in 1994. Among many others, she has favoured the French repertoire and serves with exemplary diction (Les Troyens of Berlioz). Her size and scenic presence allow her to play male roles with great truth (Cherub in Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, Octavian in Richard Strauss's The Knight of the Rose).
If she approaches all repertoires from Monteverdi and Purcell to contemporary creations (An American tragedy by Tobias Picker), her heart pours out to Handel, Gluck and Mozart’s operas
She has developed strong bonds with French melody since her vocalist studies, and her recorded recitals, where she defends Berlioz, Debussy or Reynaldo Hahn’s repertoires, are particularly lauded both by the public and by critics.
Six landmark dates in the life of Susan Graham:
1987: Debut in the role of Cherub by Massenet at the Manhattan School
1994: Launched her international career in Covent Garden
1998: Released La Belle Epoque, a recital dedicated to Reynaldo Hahn melodies
2001: Knighted at the Order of Arts and Letters
2004: Performed Didon in Berlioz's Les Troyens at Théâtre du Châtelet
2008: Doctor Honoris Causa at the Music School of Manhattan
Biography from Radio France’s Musical Documentation, January 2014