J’nai Bridges, a Lakewood native, has been selected to represent the United States of America as a semi-finalist for the 2015 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition. She will compete among nineteen singers for the grand prize and title.
The British Broadcasting Company Cardiff Singer of the World competition (known as Cardiff Singer of the World from 1983–2001 and BBC Singer of the World in Cardiff in 2003) is a competition for opera and art singers held every two years. The competition will take place from June 14-21, 2015.
A native of Lakewood, Washington, J’nai earned her master of music degree from the Curtis Institute of Music (2012), where her operatic credits include Carolina Kirchstetten (Henze’s Elegy for Young Lovers), Idamante (Mozart’s Idomeneo), Carmen (Bizet’s Le tragedie de Carmen), Teresa (Bellini’s La Sonnambula), Iras (Barber’s Antony and Cleopatra) and Baba the Turk (Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress). During this time, she also appeared as the Madrigalist in Puccini’s Manon Lescaut with the Opera Company of Philadelphia.
Ms. Bridges received her bachelor of music degree in vocal performance from the Manhattan School of Music, where she appeared in the U.S. premiere of Xenakis’s Oresteia, conducted by Steven Osgood and as Polly (Britten’s The Beggar’s Opera) to rave reviews from The New York Times. Other appearances in the New York area include the role of Mlle. Dangeville (Cilea’s Adriana Lecouvreur) with the Opera Orchestra of New York. J’nai Bridges currently resides in Chicago, Illinois.
The competition was begun by BBC Wales in 1983 to celebrate the opening of St David’s Hall in Cardiff, Wales, home of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. Auditions are held throughout the world in the autumn before the competition, with singers being selected to take part in Cardiff the following June. Each singer represents their own country.
In Wales is there a competition to select the national representative. The winner of the Welsh Singers Competition represents Wales in BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition.
The competition is judged by a panel of distinguished singers, musicians and music professionals. In 2003 an audience prize was also introduced for the primary competition; in 2011 it was renamed the Dame Joan Sutherland Audience Prize to mark the passing of the legendary singer who was the competition’s first patron.