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Vocal Performance Program Alum Debuts with Metropolitan Opera

Headshot of Zoie Reams, 2010 graduate of Shattuck-St. Mary's School
  • Alumni
  • Arts

Opera singer and 2010 graduate of the SSM Vocal Performance Program makes her big debut at the Met. 

Professional opera singer and graduate of the SSM Vocal Performance Program Zoie Reams ’10 made her Metropolitan Opera debut in New York city this fall, singing the role of Lily in a production of Porgy and Bess.

This marks yet another milestone achievement in Ms. Reams’s operatic career thus far. She attended SSM from 2006-2010, where she had leading roles in many SSM theater productions and performed with Project Opera in Minneapolis. Since graduating from SSM and earning both a Bachelor of Music and a Master of Music degree, she has performed with numerous operas and orchestras all over the country. Additionally, in the spring of 2021 she made her role debut as Nancy in the Minnesota Opera’s production of Albert Herring. Despite such a busy schedule, she was still able to return to Faribault in the winter of 2019 to sing with local choir Beau Chant and work with VPP students on campus.

Landing a role with the Metropolitan Opera marks an entirely new level of success for Ms. Reams. The excited singer wrote to her fans on social media, “I’m stoked to say the least! This is a house and role debut for me and I’m so honored! I’m ready to be with my fellow black artists in this amazing production! Catch me in the big apple until the end of this year!”

Written by George Gershwin, Dubose Heyward, and Ira Gershwin, and originally premiering in 1935, Porgy and Bess takes place in a fictionalized black neighborhood in Charleston, South Carolina in the early 20th century, based on real places like Cabbage Row. Widely considered one of Gershwin’s most impressive and ambitious musical works, the music draws from the Gullah music of Tidewater, Carolina, jazz, and Gershwin’s Eastern European Jewish roots.

“Zoie’s debut at the Met is a testament to her hard work, artistry, and sheer brilliance,” said Director of VPP Peter Schleif. “To know that her love of singing began during her time in the VPP is one of the greatest testaments to the development of this program over the last 10 years. We are all proud of her, and so inspired by the trajectory of her career. Her impact on this program will be felt for many years. Toi, toi, toi!!”

Porgy and Bess will run through December 12, 2021, and we encourage the SSM community to show their support! Learn more about Ms. Reams’s visit to SSM in 2019 and the distinguished alumni award she received from her university in 2020 on our website. 

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