The American mezzo-soprano, Krista River, began her musical career as a cellist, earning her music degree at St. Olaf College. She was winner of the 2004 Concert Artists Guild International Competition. Krista River possesses a "shimmering voice…with the virtuosity of a violinist and the expressivity of an actress" (The New York Times). These distinctive qualities, combined with her natural musicality and stage presence, led to her selection as the first female vocalist in thirteen years to be chosen at the CAG Competition, where she was also awarded numerous performance prize engagements.
Highlights of Krista River’s 2004-2005 season included her critically acclaimed New York Recital debut on the CAG Series at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, concert engagements including The Messiah with the Santa Fe Symphony & Chorus, Antonio Vivaldi’s Gloria with the Concord Chorus and George Frideric Handel’s Israel in Egypt and Robert Schumann’s Genoveva with Emmanuel Music, recitals at the Saco River Festival in Maine and on the Bravi! Vermont series, and an opera performance with Prism Opera as Annio in La Clemenza di Tito, for which she was lauded by The Boston Globe as "superb … singing with firm, well-placed tone and acting with imagination and conviction". Her summer 2005 schedule includes her debut performance as Rosina in Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia at the Crested Butte Music Festival in Colorado, as well as Bach's solo alto Cantata BWV 170 and Peter Lieberson's Rilke Songs at John Harbison’s Token Creek Chamber Music Festival.
Krista River has also appeared as a soloist in de Falla's El Amor Brujo with the Boston Symphony, Mozart’s Sparrow Mass with the Handel and Haydn Society, J.S. Bach’s Magnificat (BWV 243) and Christmas Oratorio (BWV 248) with Emmanuel Music, and Georg Philipp Telemann’s St. Matthew Passion with the Pittsburgh Bach and Baroque Ensemble. Previous opera appearances include the Mother in Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors with the Santa Fe Symphony, Nancy in Albert Herring with the Red House Opera, Hansel in Hansel and Gretel with Opera Southwest and Sally in A Hand of Bridge with Intermezzo Opera, in addition to her portrayal of Zerlina in Don Giovanni with Opera Aperta, which was described by Opera News as “seductive and energetic.” A contemporary music advocate, she has given the world premieres of several new works by composers such as John H.Wallace, Toni Lester and Paul Preusser. In May 2004, she created the role of Genevieve in Brian Hulse’s chamber opera, The Game, at the Kennedy Center, as part of their Millennium Stage series.
Krista River’s featured orchestral performances in 2005-2006 include The Messiah with the Handel & Haydn Society, Schubert Mass in A-flat with the Santa Fe Symphony & Chorus, Dvorak's Requiem with the Florida Orchestra, Mozart Requiem with the Harrisburg Symphony and a number of performances with Boston's Emmanuel Music. Notable recital appearances this season include the critically noted series centered around Lorenzo DaPonte presented by Columbia University's Italian Academy in New York.
She resides in Boston and is a regular soloist with Emmanuel Music’s renowned Bach Cantata Series led by music director Craig Smith.