The Salt Lake Tribune praises Melinda Whittington for her "performances of emotional resonance along with their powerhouse vocals” in recent performances as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni. In her home state, she makes her debut with North Carolina Opera as Ada in Higdon’s Cold Mountain and sings the Contessa in Le nozze di Figaro in the 2017-18 season. She makes role debuts as Juliette in Roméo et Juliette with Opera Birmingham and as the title role of Arabella with Pittsburgh Festival Opera, sings further performances of the Contessa in Le nozze di Figaro with Opera Grand Rapids, and returns to Wolf Trap for a birthday concert celebration honoring composer John Corigliano. Last season, she returned to Arizona Opera for the title role of Rusalka in addition to joining Utah Opera as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni, Greensboro Opera as Micaëla in Carmen, and the Lyric Opera of Chicago for its production of Eugene Onegin. Next season, Melinda will be revisiting the role of Juliette with Pensacola Opera and making her role debut as Tatyana in Eugene Onegin with Opera Carolina.
Among the soprano’s other recent performances are debuts with Arizona Opera as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni, Ash Lawn Opera as Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, Kentucky Opera as the Contessa in Le nozze di Figaro, Green Mountain Opera as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, and both Zweite Dame in Die Zauberflöte and Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi with Opera Carolina. She sang Marie Antoinette in Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles and Micaëla in Carmen during her two summers at Wolf Trap Opera. Also while a Filene Young Artist at Wolf Trap, she presented a recital in collaboration with the Phillips Collection, pairing art songs and popular songs with art from the museum. Ms. Whittington is a former Resident Artist of the Academy of Vocal Arts, at which she sang Marguerite in Faust and Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte. While in Philadelphia, she joined Opera Philadelphia for an exciting evening of new opera with Opera Philadelphia and their composers in residence, Lembit Beecher and Missy Mazzoli. On the concert stage, she has sung Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Philadelphia Sinfonia, Orff’s Carmina burana with the Back Bay Chorale, and excerpts of Juliette in Roméo et Juliette with the Charlotte Symphony.
She is the 2017 third place winner in Pittsburgh Festival Opera's Vocal Competition, 2016 third place winner in Fort Worth Opera’s McCammon Voice Competition, 2015 first place winner of the Opera Birmingham competition, a 2013 semi-finalist of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, winner of the Charlotte Opera Guild Competition, and an encouragement award winner in the Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition. She is a former participant in the prestigious Merola Opera Program in association with San Francisco Opera at which she performed scenes as the title role in Donizetti’s Anna Bolena, Barber’s Vanessa, and Bizet’s Le jolie fille de Perth. She holds a Master of Music degree from the University of North Carolina Greensboro and a Bachelor of Music from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She was in residency with the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia from 2013 - 2015. In addition to pursuing her operatic career, Melinda is a skilled and experienced performer and teacher of contemporary vocal styles, including jazz, musical theater, and pop. When not performing or teaching, Melinda enjoys photography, vintage shopping, yoga, cooking, hiking, and traveling. She lives with her husband, Dr. Phil Bugaiski, in Charlotte, NC.