Toronto-born mezzo-soprano Maria Soulis made her Pacific Opera Victoria debut as Flosshilde in Das Rheingold. She returns in 2017 as the Mayor's Wife in POV's production of Leoš Janáček's Jenůfa
Recent highlights for Maria include Elgar’s Sea Pictures with Orchestra Toronto, a concert of Brahms, Heggie and Theodorakis songs with Canadian Sinfonietta, and the role of Clara in the world première of Oksana G with Tapestry Opera in 2017.
Maria enjoys an exciting career in both Canada and Europe. She began her European career as a principal artist with the Regensburg Opera in Germany, later performing the roles of Adalgisa (Norma), Rosina (Il Barbiere di Siviglia), Nicklausse (Les contes d'Hoffmann), the title roles in Orfeo and La Périchole, Dido (Dido and Aeneas), Mrs. Grose (The Turn of the Screw), Néris (Médée), and Dryade (Ariadne auf Naxos) in theatres throughout Germany, France, and the United Kingdom.
A familiar artist on many European stages, Ms. Soulis has sung the roles of Madame de la Haltière in Massenet's Cendrillon and Olga (Eugene Onegin) with the Orquestra Gulbenkian in Lisbon, as well as Third Lady (Die Zauberflöte) in Montpellier. She enjoyed the opportunity to celebrate her Greek heritage when she appeared as soloist in Theodorakis's ballet Zorba in Metz, Toulon and Nice.
As a concert singer in Europe, Ms. Soulis has interpreted many of Gustav Mahler's great orchestral song cycles: Rückert Lieder, Das Lied von der Erde, and Symphony No. 8 with the Philharmonisches Orchester Regensburg as well as Kindertotenlieder with the Mährische Philharmonie.
In Canada, Maria has appeared as a soloist in Bach's Christmas Oratorio, (Kingston Symphony and Windsor Symphony), Dvořák's Requiem (Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony), Mendelssohn's Elijah (Chorus Niagara) and an Opera Gala with the Elora Festival. The 2012 season marked her debut with Thirteen Strings as Cornelia in Handel’s Giulio Cesare.
As a Composition graduate of the Faculty of Music at the University of Toronto Ms. Soulis is highly valued as an interpreter of contemporary works, notably with Tapestry Opera as Clara in The Enslavement and Liberation of Oksana G. (Gervais/ Murphy). Most recently Ms. Soulis sang several roles in a concert performance of Laura Secord: an Opera, composed by Mark Richards for Music Niagara.
An avid recitalist, Ms. Soulis has an extensive song repertoire that spans the English, French, Spanish and German languages. Her love of chamber music inspired her to form the Maria Soulis Trio, with guitarist William Beauvais and violinist/violist Julian Knight. Their inaugural programme, From Greece to Granada – pathways in song, was warmly received at Heliconian Hall in Toronto.
Maria Soulis can be heard on the Juno-nominated Naxos CD Vivaldi – Sacred Music with Kevin Mallon and Aradia Ensemble.
The real proof of the kind of production I was witnessing was the Rhine maidens—in what are after all minor parts—who were fabulous, singing their roles as well as I've ever heard them sung, and acting with panache as well ... Betty Waynne Allison, Lucia Cesaroni, and Maria Soulis were superb.
Harvey De Roo, Vancouver Classical Music, Review of Das Rheingold at Pacific Opera Victoria, 2014
Maria Soulis as Carmen was sensuous and mocking, totally in control, her voice full of warmth and drama, with a thrilling freedom of phrasing and excellent diction. Poor Don Jose never stood a chance.
Birmingham Post, England
Maria Soulis, a beautiful, deep mezzo soprano, almost a conralto, absolutely stole the show (Donizetti Linda di Chamounix). Beautiful presence, fabulous voice, you're going to hear a lot about her.
Paula Citron, CFMX Radio, Toronto