A shimmering soprano with enchanting stage presence, Heidi Grant Murphy is one of the outstanding vocal talents of her generation. A native of Bellingham, Washington, she began vocal studies while attending Western Washington and Indiana Universities. Her graduate studies were interrupted when she was named a winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and engaged by Maestro James Levine to participate in the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program. Today, Ms. Murphy has established a reputation not only for her musicianship and impeccable vocal technique, but also for her warm personality and generosity of spirit. “Ms. Grant Murphy was beautifully, serenely and wonderfully consistent. And she, too, shone. She produced phrases that were finely sustained, and yet each note seemed to have a shape of its own, floating out from or into silence.” (The New York Times)
Heidi Grant Murphy has appeared with many of the world's finest opera companies and symphony orchestras, notably the Metropolitan Opera, Salzburg Festival, Frankfurt Opera, Netherlands Opera, Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie, Opera National de Paris and Santa Fe Opera. She has been engaged as soloist with the Vienna, New York and Los Angeles Philharmonics; Cleveland, Philadelphia and Minnesota Orchestras; and Chicago, Boston, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, Atlanta, Saint Louis, Cincinnati, Houston, Montreal, National and Dallas Symphonies. Ms. Murphy has worked with such esteemed conductors as Roberto Abbado, Herbert Blomstedt, Christoph Eschenbach, James Levine, Reinbert de Leeuw, Lorin Maazel, Kurt Masur, Kent Nagano, Seiji Ozawa, Sir Simon Rattle, David Robertson, Leonard Slatkin, Robert Spano, Jeffery Tate, Michael Tilson Thomas, Edo de Waart, Christoph Von Dohnányi, David Zinman, Bernard Haitink, Pinchas Zukerman and the late Robert Shaw.
The 2009-2010 season marked the 20th anniversary of Ms. Murphy’s Metropolitan Opera debut in the 1989 production of Die Frau Ohne Schatten, which has since led to numerous roles in that prestigious opera house, notably Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, Sister Constance in Dialogues of the Carmelites, Servilia in Clemenza di Tito and Nanetta in Falstaff. European highlights have included the roles of Anne Truelove in the Netherlands’ Opera production of The Rake’s Progress and Celia in Lucio Silla at both the Salzburg Festival and Frankfurt Opera; and Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Adina in L’Elisir d’Amor and Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier at the Opera Nationale de Paris.
Following a radiant performance of Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with the Atlanta Symphony and Maestro Robert Spano, Ms. Murphy participated in the 2012 Cincinnati May Festival, singing Carmina Burana, Poulenc’s Gloria and Carissimi’s Jephte in three separate performances. The 2012-2013 season finds Ms. Murphy giving the world premiere of Roberto Sierra’s Christmas Cantata with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Leonard Slatkin, as well as a performance of Mozart’s Exsultate, jubilate and Orff’s Carmina Burana with baritone Nmon Ford and the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Raymond Harvey. She sings Mozart’s Mass in C minor with The Canticum Novum Singers under Harold Rosenbaum at the Church of St. Jean Baptiste. In July 2013, Ms. Murphy joins Frederica von Stade and Katie Van Kooten for the 20th-Anniversary Gala concert of the Bellingham Music Festival in Washington.
Heidi Grant Murphy most recently appears on disc with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France under conductor Eliahu Inbal for Thierry Lancino’s Requiem on Naxos, as well as Roberto Sierra’s Missa Latina with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra.With Maestro Lorin Maazel and the New York Philharmonic, Ms. Murphy is soloist on a live recording of Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 and a separate recording of Augusta Read Thomas’s Gathering Paradise on New World. For Koch Records, Ms. Murphy has recorded Sueños de Amor, a disc of Latin love songs; a holiday disc entitled The Gifts of Christmas; Times Like This, for which the Seattle Times noted that the “gleaming purity and warmth of tone make Ms. Murphy’s voice the aural equivalent of candlelight;” Dreamscape: Lullabies from around the world; a recording of Sir John Tavener’s To a Child Dancing in the Wind paired with Sir Harrison Birtwistle’s Sappho Fragments; and Lullabies & Nightsongs, based on the children’s book illustrated by Maurice Sendak. The Delos label released her recording of Mahler’s Symphony Nos. 2 and 4 with Andrew Litton and the Dallas Symphony. Ms. Murphy’s album on ArabesqueRecords, Clearings in the Sky, featuring Lili Boulanger and Rachmaninoff works, was praised by Gramophone Magazine: “Murphy’s crystalline soprano and expressive generosity prove an ideal combination to bring this varied repertoire together.” Also released on Arabesque were the recital disc Twilight and Innocence and Wedding Gifts: Bach Wedding Cantatas. For the Deutsche Grammophon label, Ms. Murphy has recorded Schumann’s Das Paradies und die Peri with the Staatskapelle Dresden, as well as Idomeneo (Ilia) and Le Nozze di Figaro (Barbarina), both conducted by James Levine. Additional recording projects include Vincent Youmans’s Through the Years for PS Classics; Hansel and Gretel (Gretel) with Andreas Delfs and the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra; an XM Satellite Radio compilation of Sondheim classics; and the Grammy-nominated Sweeney Todd (Johanna) for the New York Philharmonic’s private label.
In August 2011, Heidi Grant Murphy was appointed to the faculty of Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music as an adjunct professor of practice. She has been a featured guest on NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered, A&E’s Breakfast with the Arts and BBC Radio 3. In October 2005, Ms. Murphy received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Western Washington University, where she pursued a bachelor’s degree in music performance. Ms. Murphy resides in Bloomington, Indiana with her husband Kevin Murphy and their four children.
“Heidi Grant Murphy has one of those immaculate silvery, youthful voices that make the listener start with pleasure and scan the program to find her name.” – New York Newsday
“Heidi Grant Murphy was a vocally exquisite and endearing Susanna. She is a lively musician and a perky actress.” – The New York Times
“Heidi Grant Murphy’s opening phrase alone was worth the price of admission: in control, in gracefulness, in ornamentation.” – The New York Sun
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