Soprano Mara Bonde has thrilled audiences in diverse venues throughout the United States and Europe with her electric stage presence and musical artistry. Her voice has been described as having “sweet purity of tone” (Boston Herald) and “ravishing” (The Boston Globe). Equally at home in both classical and popular styles, Mara is no stranger to the world of “symphony pops” and returns to the SFSO stage.
She has been the guest artist for “Holiday Pops” with the Boston Pops, the Naples Philharmonic, the Syracuse Symphony, the New Haven Symphony, and the Charlotte Symphony. She has been the guest artist for “Holiday Pops” with the Boston Pops, the Naples Philharmonic, the Syracuse Symphony, the New Haven Symphony, and the Charlotte Symphony.
She made her Boston Pops debut under the direction of Keith Lockhart in “Brush up your Shakespeare”, which was nationally televised on PBS’s Evening at Pops. Mara made her debut with the Baton Rouge Symphony singing “Holiday Pops” in 2011 and returned for encore holiday performances in 2013.
On the concert stage, she has sung with the Utah Symphony, the San Diego Symphony, the Stamford Symphony, the Ridgefield Symphony, the Nashua Symphony, the Handel & Haydn Society, and Boston Baroque. Mara is a featured soloist on Robert Shaw’s Telarc recording Appear and Inspire.
She performs and records regularly with Boston Musical Theater (specializing in the “Great American Songbook”), both here and abroad, and has toured with them in South Korea, Russia and Belgium. A very special recording project is the newly released Sound Spectrum (Navona Records) featuring Mara collaborating with her father, composer and pianist Allen Bonde.
Mara’s recent opera debuts include Hanna in The Merry Widow with Imperial Symphony Orchestra; Adina in L’elisir d’amore with Sarasota Opera; and Echo in Ariadne auf Naxos with Boston Lyric Opera. She was seen as Kathie in “Remembering Romberg” at the Historic Asolo Theater with the Artist Series of Sarasota.
She has also graced the stages of Opera Omaha, Glimmerglass Opera, Utah Opera, Light Opera Oklahoma, Opera Company of North Carolina, National Opera Company (Raleigh), and the Lake George Opera Festival, in works ranging from Mozart to Mollicone, and Sullivan to Sondheim.
Mara was a National Semi-Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions (First Place Winner Rocky Mountain Region), and the First Prize winner in the Bel Canto Vocal Scholarship Awards. Current engagements include a return to Boston Lyric Opera for Le vin herbé. Mara holds a Master of Music in vocal performance from Boston University where she was invited to join the Opera Institute.
She earned a Bachelor of Arts in French from Mount Holyoke College, studied at the Sorbonne in Paris and at Tanglewood Music Center. She was a Fellow at the Aspen Music Festival and one of 12 singers selected to study at the Britten-Pears School in Aldeburgh, England, with Richard Bonynge and Joan Sutherland.