French-Dutch soprano Barbara Kits studied at the Conservatorium of Amsterdam and recently returned to Europe after completing her Master’s Degree at Mannes School of Music in New York where she was a member of Mannes Opera Young Artists under the leadership of Maestro Colaneri.
In 2019, Barbara was a finalist at the International Competition Nuits Lyriques of Marmande in the category Mélodie Française and won the Gonçalo Santos Prize for Special Talent of the CantoFest vocal competition.
She appeared on WQXR/s Young Artists Showcase, where her rendition of Bernstein’s La Bonne Cuisine was reviewed a « five star performance ».
Barbara has been invited several times to take part in the International Vocal Arts Institute in Canada, Israel and in the USA. She has performed at the Israeli Opera House with the Israeli Chamber Orchestra for the IVAI Gala Concert, conducted by Metropolitan Opera conductor Paul Nadler.
Barbara portrayed Marcellina during a production of Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro with dutch acteur Bram van der Vlugt under the bâton of Stijn Berkouwer at the Conservatorium of Amsterdam. Other Opera experiences include the role of Donna Anna in Don Giovanni and Soeur Mathilde in Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites at the Academia Europa dell’Opera in Italy, conducted by Oliver Gooch.
Her frequent collaboration with young composers, such as Kaveh Vares and Raphael Fraga, has given Barbara the opportunity to premiere several works in Europe and in America. She participated in the recording of Eira composed by Rafael Fraga and conducted by Konradin Herzog.
A frequent recitalist, Barbara has performed at the Ukrainian Institute and the Tishman Auditorium in NYC, the Rotterdam Operadagen Festival and the Opera aan Zee Festival. Passionate about song repertoire, Barbara has participated in master classes with Udo Reinemann, Dalton Baldwin, Ken Noda, Jeff Cohen and Rudolf Jansen. Her performed song répertoire includes Ravel’s Shéhérazade, Berg’s Sieben frühe Lieder, Debussy’s Ariettes oubliées, Bernstein’s La Bonne cuisine, Barber’s Hermit songs and Schumann Frauenlieben und Leben.
She was the proud recipient of a Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds study grant and the Dean’s Merit Scholarship from Mannes College of Music.