B I O G R A P H Y
Lesley Zlabinger is a versatile lyric coloratura soprano. In the early music world, she has performed as a soloist in several Bach cantatas, Handel's Messiah, Buxtehude’s Membra Jesu Nostri, and Vivaldi’s Gloria, in addition to singing numerous choral works from the canon. Equally at home on the opera and musical theater stage, Lesley has performed roles and scenes from the Baroque era through the 21st century, including Virtù in Monteverdi’s L’Incoronazione di Poppea, Belinda in Purcell’s Dido & Aeneas, the Countess in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, Sophie in Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier and Blanche in Poulenc’s Dialogues of the Carmelites. Lesley has also originated roles in three new operas: Cupid in Cupid & Psyche and Parisatis in Alexander the Great, or the Rival Queens, both by Matthew Pittsinger; and Soprano Soloist in Brian Schober’s Dance of the Stones, produced by neXus Arts. More recently, Lesley appeared in the off-Broadway premieres of PipeDream Theatre’s 3 Ghosts and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King.
A seasoned chorister, Lesley has sung with a variety of touring, recording, and professional choirs. She was a member of the professional choir for nine years at Corpus Christi Church in Manhattan, the choir-in-residence of the Music Before 1800 concert series. She also sang with the Queens College Vocal Ensemble on its recording Selected Partsongs of Hamish MacCunn (2010), some of which had never previously been recorded. Additional choral credits include the Bel Canto Voices, Minneapolis, MN; Grinnell Singers, Grinnell, IA; and the Studentenkantorei, Freiburg, Germany.
Lesley is also an accomplished recitalist. Past recital repertoire includes Debussy’s Quatre chansons du jeunesse, Argento’s Six Elizabethan Songs, selections from Wolf’s Italienisches Liederbuch, Handel's Lucrezia, and Schubert’s Der Hirt auf dem Felsen. In addition, she has performed themed recitals featuring sacred and secular Baroque duets, supernatural art songs and arias, and solos by scorned female characters.
Lesley holds an M.A. in Vocal Performance from Queens College / CUNY, an M.S. in Elementary Education from Hunter College / CUNY, and a B.A. in German from Grinnell College. She was also a Teaching Artist with the Metropolitan Opera Guild and a private voice teacher.