- Anya Laurence
(b Oct 13, 1950). American mezzo-soprano. Her sister was the singer Kristine Ciesinski. After studying voice while growing up in Delaware, Katherine attended Temple University and the Curtis Institute of Music, where her teachers were Margaret Harshaw and Dino Yannopolous. She gained a great deal of recognition early in her career, winning the Gramma Fischer Award at the Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions (1974), first prize in the WGN Auditions of the Air (1975), first prize at the Geneva International Music Competition (1976), and first prize at the Concours de Chant de Paris (1977).
She made her professional debut with orchestra at the age of 16; her first operatic success came at the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence in 1976 in Giuseppe Verdi’s La Traviata. In 1978, she performed at the Spoleto Festival USA, as Erika in Samuel Barber’s Vanessa. She has appeared as a soloist with, among others, the Cleveland, Minnesota, Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, Houston, San Francisco, Berlin, and Vienna Philharmonic orchestras. She has recorded many operas, including the title roles in ...