“Plush” soprano Sara LeMesh (New York Times) resides in her birthplace of San Francisco where she impresses audiences with her “theatrical timing, tone, and technical control, especially in the highest register”(San Francisco Classical Voice). She has performed throughout the United States with many prestigious music festivals, including the Music Academy of the West, Aspen Music Festival, Tanglewood Music Center, and American Bach Soloists. LeMesh was also recognized during several Bay Area vocal competitions; she received an Encouragement Award in the James Toland Vocal Arts Competition and Fourth Place in the East Bay Opera League Scholarship Competition.
A skilled technician and riveting actress, LeMesh is a highly sought-after performer of both traditional and also contemporary operatic works. Recent roles include Norina in Rossini’s Don Pasquale with the Mendocino Music Festival and Juno in Marais’ Sémélé with the American Bach Soloists. In August 2019, LeMesh will portray Bess in Missy Mazzoli’s award winning chamber opera, Breaking the Waves, with West Edge Opera.
In addition to opera, LeMesh is passionate about song and chamber music. She regularly appears with the Bard Music Festival which explores the world of one contemporary composer each year. Her 2017 performance of three arias from Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre received praise from the San Francisco Classical Voice: “If this performance is representative, she’d be the star of any cast.” During the 2018 festival, she sang a chilling version of Crumb’s Apparitions; SFVC described her vocal line as “droop[ing] slowly and delicately, like a browned leaf floating to the ground.”
Outside of her performances in concert halls and theaters, LeMesh brings classical music to isolated people and institutions with Bay Area nonprofit, Bread & Roses Presents. She has performed volunteer recitals in rehab clinics, prisons, nursing homes, and other facilities since 2003. She also operates a startup in San Francisco called Ayuda Care which provides an online marketplace for senior-friendly activities and events.
LeMesh studied with mezzo-soprano Susanne Mentzer at Rice University where she earned her Bachelor of Music Degree. She continued her studies at the Bard Graduate Vocal Arts Program where she coached with soprano Dawn Upshaw and received a Master of Music Degree in Vocal Performance. LeMesh resides in San Francisco with her partner and mischievous rescue dog, Rosie.