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Angela Young Smucker (Mezzo-soprano, Contralto)

Born: Southern Illinois, USA

The American mezzo-soprano and contralto, Angela Young Smucker, holds a Master of Music degree in voice from the University of Minnesota and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Valparaiso University.

Angela Young Smucker is a critically acclaimed singer who has been praised for her “show-stopping” voice (The St. Paul Pioneer Press), as well as her “touching simplicity and molten tone” (The Santa Fe New Mexican). Her performances in oratorio, concert, and stage works have taken her throughout the USA and Europe. She has performed such operatic roles as Zita in Gianni Schicchi, Augusta in The Ballad of Baby Doe, Marcelina in Le nozze di Figaro, and Queen of the Fairies in Iolanthe.

Angela Young Smucker has dedicated much of her career to singing the works of J.S. Bach. She made her European debut in 2007 as alto soloist in J.S. Bach’s Johannes-Passion (BWV 245) with the Leipzig Baroque Orchestra and Valparaiso University Chorale. While in Germany with the Valparaiso University Chorale, she presented a “profoundly expressive” performance (Thüringer Allgemeine - Mühlhausen, Germany) of Aaron Copland’s In the Beginning, which be heard on the Valparaiso University Chorale’s newest recording, “Amazing Day”. Other concert appearances have included Antonio Vivaldi’s Gloria, Felix Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Georg Frideric Handel’s Messiah, J. Haydn’s Creation. William Bolcom’s Songs of Innocence and of Experience, as well as J.S. Bach’s Magnificat (BWV 243), Mass in B Minor (BWV 232), St. Matthew Passion (BWV 244), and several cantatas. She has been featured on NPR’s A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor, and sang the role of Herod in the VocalEssence world premiere performance of Francis Grier’s The Passion of Jesus Christ. She also sang in the USA premiere of Siegfried Matthus’ Te Deum.

As a choral artist, Angela Young Smucker has been a member of several professional choral ensembles including Conspirare, Chicago Symphony Chorus, Grant Park Music Festival Chorus, VocalEssence Ensemble Singers, Oregon Bach Festival Chorus, Santa Fe Desert Chorale, VOX 3 Vocal Collective, Bach Choir of Valparaiso University, Heartland Chamber Chorale, and Festival Ensemble Stuttgart. Through such collaborations, she has had the privilege to work with such renowned conductors as Helmuth Rilling, Hermann Max, Craig Jessop, Christopher M. Cock, and Philip Brunelle. She has also performed with orchestras such as the Oregon Bach Festival Orchestra, Leipzig Baroque Orchestra, Bach Collegium San Diego, Louisville Bach Society, and the Bach Institute at Valparaiso University.

The 2010-2011 season’s highlights include two performances of J.S. Bach’s Mass in B Minor (BWV 232), first with the Chicago Chorale followed by a return appearance with the Bach Collegium San Diego; a lecture recital collaboration with her husband, Peter CW Smucker, exploring the vocal works of Elliott Carter; a recital of J.S. Bach’s transcription of Giovanni Battista Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater (BWV 1083), and a concert including the first parts of G.F. Handel’s Messiah and J.S. Bach’s Christmas Oratorio (BWV 248) with the Bach Institute at Valparaiso University.

Angela Young Smucker began conducting and teaching voice at Valparaiso University in the Fall of 2008.

Source: Programme notes to concerts of J.S. Bach’s Mass in B minor, performed by Bach Collegium San Diego conducted by Ruben Valenzuela (June 2008); Angela Young Smucker Website
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (December 2010)

Recordings of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works




Ruben Valenzuela

Soprano & Alto

Aria from BWV 170; BWV 232

Ruben Valenzuela


Member of Bach Collegium San Diego:
BWV 153

Links to other Sites

Angela Young Smucker (Valparaiso University: Depatment of Music)

Angela Young Smucker, mezzo-soprano (Official Website)

Biographies of Performers: Main Page | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
Explanation | Acronyms | Missing Biographies | The Sad Corner


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