Described as a singer with an "attractive, ample voice" (Beckmesser.com) & a "superb dramatic instinct", (El País) mezzo-soprano/alto, Melissa Zgouridi, is quickly making a name for herself both in Europe & in her native USA. The young Brazilian-American singer recently joined the ensemble member of the Saarländisches Staatstheater in Saarbrücken, Germany, where her roles for the 2021/2022 season will include Ruggiero in Alcina, Dryade in Ariadne auf Naxos & Mercédès in Carmen.
Melissa is the winner of various prizes & awards. She most recently received the Eva Kleinitz Award at the 2021 Concorso Lirico Internazionale di Portofino & was selected as a recipient of the 2021 Bayreuth Scholarship by the International Richard Wagner Association. Other awards include the 5th prize & the extraordinary prize “Mercedes Viñas” at the 57th International Tenor Viñas Competition, 2nd place in “The American Prize” competition in the “Women in Art Song & Oratorio” category, the Young Talent Award at the Immling Festival’s International Singing Competition, 1st place in the Friends of Eastman Opera Vocal Competition. She was a District Winner in the 2020 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions & was the recipient of a 2015-2016 Fulbright Grant.
Some of Melissa’s performance highlights include the Alto Solo in Messiah with Scratch Muziekdagen Leiden in the Netherlands, performing as a Lehrbuben in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg conducted by Christian Thielemann & directed by Jens-Daniel Herzog at the 2019 Salzburg Easter Festival & singing the role of Roßweiße in a concert version of Die Walküre with the Staatstheater Augsburg in Germany.
Additional opera roles in her repertoire include Olga in Eugene Onegin, Dame Quickly in Falstaff, Bradamante in Alcina, Augusta Tabor in Douglas Moore's The Ballad of Baby Doe, Mère Jeanne in Dialogues des Carmélites, Amastre in Xerxes & Miss Todd in Menotti's The Old Maid & the Thief.
A passionate oratorio & concert performer, Melissa has been heard as a soloist in Händel’s Messiah, Rossini’s Petite messe solennelle, Bach's St. Matthew Passion, Maher’s Symphony No. 2 and Symphony No. 3, Vivaldi’s Magnificat, Haydn’s Paukenmessen, Mozart’s Coronation Mass, Requiem, and Mass in C Major 'Piccolomini'. At the 2017 St. Gellert Festival in Szeged, Hungary, Melissa sang the alto solo in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9.
Prior to the pandemic, Melissa was scheduled be a featured Festival Artist with Opera Saratoga (USA) & a Britten-Pears Young Artist at the Aldeburgh Festival (UK). At Opera Saratoga, Melissa would have made her role debut as Suzuki in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, performed the Alto Solo in Rossini’s Petite messe solennelle & covered the role of Ruth in The Pirates of Penzance by Gilbert & Sullivan, & at the Britten-Pears Young Artist Program, she would have participated in the "French Mélodie & Scandinavian Song" course with Anne Sofie von Otter & Malcom Martineau.
Melissa graduated with distinction from the Universität Mozarteum Salzburg (Austria) in 2018 with a master’s degree in Lied & Oratorio performance, where she studied Lied with Thérèse Lindquist & voice with Michèle Crider. Melissa holds a bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York (USA), where she studied with Dr. Robert McIver. She is an alumnus of the Janiec Opera Company at the Brevard Music Center (USA) & has participated in various training courses and masterclasses with notable musicians such as Brigitte Fassbaender, Hedwig Fassbender, René Massis, Graham Johnson, Norbert Schmittberg, Yamina Maamar & Elisabeth Werres.
In addition to singing, Melissa is the founder of her own small business. Melissa Zgouridi Studios is a creative studio with a focus on photography & web design services for musicians & artists.