Applauded by OperaWire for her thrilling performance, and by the Barre Montpelier Times Argus for her lovely warm soprano voice and heart-wrenching lyricism, Laura Soto-Bayomi is quickly establishing herself as a versatile performer who strives for honesty, whether on the operatic or concert stage. Soto-Bayomi recently completed her residency with Opera Colorado, where she performed as Berta in Il barbiere di Siviglia on the mainstage, as well as Gretel in Hansel and Gretel, and Micaela in Carmen, in touring productions around the state. She has been seen recently performing in Jordan Hall, Teatro Petrarca in Arezzo, Italy, Chautauqua Institution, and Ellie Caulkin's Opera House, among others.
During her 2019-20 Artist in Residence with Opera Colorado, in addition to performing on the mainstage and bringing opera to new audiences around the state, she also performed many recitals and concerts throughout the Colorado community in versatile locations such as schools, nightclubs, libraries, breweries and community centers, integrating opera and the Colorado culture.
A lover of pasta and travel, Laura was thrilled to spend the 2018 summer season in Italy performing at the Arezzo Opera Festival. Under the baton of Maestro Ari Pelto and the direction of Kristine McIntyre, Laura performed the role of Magda in Puccini's La Rondine at the historic Teatro Petrarca, and additionally performed a series of concerts around the medieval Italian city.
Laura has enjoyed many summers at Chautauqua Institution’s Chautauqua Opera Company. She made her debut during the 2015 summer season, appearing as the Third Apparition in Macbeth. After receiving an encouragement award at the end of the season, Laura gratefully accepted the invite to return the following summer. During the 2016 season, Laura appeared in Missy Mazzoli’s Song from the Uproar and Peep Bo in The Mikado, both under the baton of renowned maestro Steven Osgood. Because she couldn’t quite get enough of the Chautauqua magic, Laura returned a third summer in a row to make her debut as Norina in Donizetti's comic masterpiece Don Pasquale, directed by David Schweizer and conducted by Steven Osgood. OperaWire applauded her rendition of So anch’io la virtu magica... as “thrilling.”
In her first year of the Graduate Vocal Arts program at Bard College, led by renowned soprano Dawn Upshaw and collaborative pianist Kayo Iwama, Laura performed the pivotal role of the Governess in The Turn of the Screw, in which she “portrayed a conflicted character with expert conviction.” -The Millbrook Independent. Laura’s studies also included many recitals and outreach events. Among one of her favorites is Eve in Handel’s Die Schöpfung with the Bard Orchestra led by Leon Botstein. During a special concert at Bard Conservatory, Laura was the soprano soloist in Mozart’s Requiem under the baton of Maestro Ádám Fischer.
Laura received her Bachelor of Music degree from New England Conservatory of Music in 2013 where she first began study with Patricia Misslin. While at NEC, she performed as the soprano soloist in De Falla’s El Sombrero de Tres Picos (The Three-Cornered Hat) with guest conductor Steven Lipsitt. She also performed selections from Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn with the New England Conservatory Symphony under the direction of Hugh Wolff in Jordan Hall. Some highlights from Laura's studies at NEC include Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus, Climene in Cavalli’s L’Egisto, and Dido in Dido and Aeneas. As if Laura wasn't already busy enough as a graduate student, her passion for theatre led her to direct a student-production of Sondheim’s Into the Woods, which she had a blast with.
In 2012, Laura first traveled to Italy, where her love of pasta and wine was affirmed, and where she studied the language and the Italian style at the Bel Canto Institute in Florence. Receiving an award from the program, she was invited to perform a selection of Italian arias with the Vermont Philharmonic.
Laura, originally from New Jersey, started performing as a child as a competitive figure skater. She followed this passion, until she began voice and piano lessons, and enrolled at Mannes Preparatory to study voice, flute and piccolo with Mary Barto. When she's not performing, Laura enjoys spending time with her turtle, Honey, knitting things, laughing, and making sarcastic jokes.