Biografie: Irish-Canadian mezzo, Wallis Giunta, was named “Young Singer of the Year” in the 2018 International Opera Awards, and in the same year both “Young Artist of the Year” by The Arts Desk and “Breakthrough Artist in UK Opera” in the What’s On Stage Opera Awards. She has been praised by OPERA NEWS for her “delectably rich, silver-toned mezzo-soprano, with a beautiful sense of line and effortless, rapid runs”, with her performance as Mozart’s Sesto for the Canadian Opera Company celebrated as “a triumph…remarkable in its combination of intelligence and beauty”.
Wallis's 20/21 season now looks quite different than expected, but as it stands she is Maria de Buenos Aires at Opera de Lyon, and Anna I in Weill's The Seven Deadly Sins in a live-streamed new production at Opera North. She was to have made debuts with the Kyoto Symphony Orchestra/Maestro John Axelrod in Mahler's Symphony No. 2 (POSTPONED), with the London Philharmonic Orchestra/Maestro Vladimir Jurowski in Wagner's Ring Cycle (POSTPONED), with the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (TBA/POSTPONED), with Israeli Opera in Handel's Alcina (POSTPONED), with the Bochumer Symphoniker in Wagner's Götterdämmerung (CANCELLED), and with the Academy of Ancient Music in J.C. Smith's Paradise Lost (CANCELLED). She also had planned returns to the Deutsche Oper am Rhein for Alcina (POSTPONED), and to the Edinburgh Festival in Mahler's Das Klagende Lied (CANCELLED).
The 2019/20 season included Ms. Giunta's debuts with Seattle Opera and The Royal Swedish Opera as Rossini’s Cenerentola, with Boston Lyric Opera as Sesto in Handel’s Giulio Cesare (CANCELLED), with the Deutsche Oper am Rhein as Bradmante in Handel’s Alcina, and with the Melk Baroque Festival as Purcell’s Dido (POSTPONED), along with concert debuts for the London Philharmonia Orchestra and Esa-Pekka Salonen, singing Mahler’s Das Klagende Lied (CANCELLED), and at the Sydney Opera House and the Concertgebouw (POSTPONED) in recital. She debuted at the Adelaide Festival, reprising her role of Dodo in the acclaimed 2019 Scottish Opera/Edinburgh Festival production of Mazzoli’s Breaking the Waves, and would have returned in the same role to the Brooklyn Academy of Music with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and Maestro Yannick Nezet-Seguin (CANCELLED).
Highlights of Wallis’s 18/19 season were her BBC Proms Festival debut in a program celebrating Leonard Bernstein, debuting with the Grange Festival as Cherubino at The Barbican, with the MDR Sinfonieorchester as Haydn’s Berenice, and with the Royal Opera House Muscat in La Traviata. She also debuted the title roles in Carmen and Der Rosenkavalier, along with Rossini’s Rosina for Oper Leipzig, and Idamante for Toronto’s Opera Atelier.
She began the 2017/18 season with two role debuts for Opera North, the title role in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortiléges, and Dinah in Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti, both to great critical acclaim. She returned to Oper Leipzig as Cenerentola, Cherubino, Rossweise & Wellgunde, and debuted Prince Orlofsky in Die Fledermaus and Der Gymnasiast in a new production of Berg’s Lulu. She also returned to the Munich Radio Orchestra, Toronto’s Koerner Hall and the Music & Beyond Festival in concert, and debuted at the Oregon Music Festival as Anna I in Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins.
The 2016/17 season saw her debuts with Opera North, performing the title role in Rossini’s La Cenerentola, with Teatro Communale di Bolzano as Cherubino, and with the Munich Radio Orchestra, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, and Symphony Nova Scotia in concert. Wallis returned to Opera Atelier to debut the title role in Purcell’s Dido & Aeneas, and to both the Toronto Symphony and the Real Orquesta Sinfónica de Sevilla for new productions of Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins. The 2015/16 season saw her make several major European debuts, including for Teatro dell’Opera di Roma (Adams’ I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky), Oper Frankfurt (Carmen), Oper Leipzig (La Cenerentola, Le Nozze di Figaro, Faust, Der Ring des Nibelungen), the Hamburg Symphony (Candide), and the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in concert. She also returned to the Edmonton Symphony for Messiah and had her first experience teaching, with a series of masterclasses for Toronto’s Tapestry New Opera.
Early in 2015, she returned to The Metropolitan Opera as Olga in their new production of The Merry Widow, directed by Susan Stroman. Other recent highlights include returns to the Canadian Opera Company as Dorabella in Atom Egoyan’s new production of Cosí fan tutte (2014), to Opera Lyra Ottawa as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro (2015), and to Opera Atelier as Bradamante in a new period-production of Alcina (2014), along with debuts at Madison Opera (2014) and the Taipei Symphony Orchestra as Annio in La Clemenza di Tito (2013). In June 2014, she recorded her first album with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra in Dublin (NAXOS), of a new work by American composer, William Perry. Wallis also debuted in 2014 with Toronto’s 21C Music Festival in Louis Andriessen’s one-woman-opera, Anaïs Nin, and brought her acclaimed recital program of Kurt Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins to Miami, New York, Toronto and Ottawa. She had a whirlwind 2012/13 season, making her Metropolitan Opera debut in Rigoletto, debuting the roles of Sesto & Annio in La Clemenza di Tito with the Canadian Opera Company, making her Paris debut with Le Théâtre du Châtelet as Tiffany in John Adams’s I Was Looking at the Ceiling…, and singing Dorabella in the Met + Juilliard production of Cosí fan tutte at Lincoln Center. She also made debuts with Fort Worth Opera, L’Opéra de Montréal, the Edmonton, Seville and Nuremberg Symphonies, the Stuttgart Festivalorchester, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra.
Wallis is a passionate recitalist, and has recently performed for the Aspen, Caramoor, Banff, Luminato, Music & Beyond, and Ottawa Chamber Music festivals. She is the grateful recipient of the 2016 Bernard Diamant Prize from the Canada Council for the Arts, the 2013 Novick Career Advancement Grant, the 2013 Sylva Gelber Music Foundation Career Development Award, and multiple prizes from the George London Foundation. Wallis is a 2013 graduate of both the Metropolitan Opera Lindemann Young Artist Development Program & the Juilliard School’s Artist Diploma in Opera Studies, and a 2011 graduate of the Canadian Opera Company Ensemble Studio.