Ailyn Pérez


Hailed by the New York Times as “a beautiful woman who commands the stage” and “a major soprano,” Ailyn Pérez is increasingly in demand at the world’s leading opera houses and cultural capitals. 

Ailyn Pérez  is winner of both the 2012 Richard Tucker Award, thereby becoming the only Hispanic recipient in the award’s 35-year history, and the 15th annual Plácido Domingo Award. As Opera News observes, “The phrase ‘an embarrassment of riches’ might have been invented to describe the combination of talents that belong to Ailyn Pérez, … who truly seems to have it all.”

Engagements in the 2016-17 season include returns to the Metropolitan Opera as Mimi La bohème; Violetta La Traviata and Mimi La bohème for Teatro alla Scala and Violetta for Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin. Ailyn will also give recitals in Chicago, at the Three Palaces Festival Malta and Wolf Trap Foundation USA. Further ahead Ailyn will return to the Bayerische Staatsoper Munich, Houston Grand Opera and Metropolitan Opera, will make her house debut at Netherlands Opera, and will make her role debut as Fiordiligi Cosi fan tutte.

Ailyn's album-recital debut Poème d’un jour, a program of French and Italian songs on the Opus Arte label, was released to rave reviews; the UK’s Independent awarded it a full five stars, while International Record Review confessed: "Every so often, a singer comes along who completely bowls you over."

This is for information only. Please contact Camilla Wehmeyer for an up-to-date biography.

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News & Features



I Capuleti e i Montecchi (Giulietta)

Carmen (Micaëla)
Les pêcheurs de perles (Leila)

Don Pasquale (Norina)
L'elisir d'amore (Adina)

Faust (Marguerite)
Romeo et Juliette (Juliette)

Manon (Manon)

Così fan tutte (Fiordiligi)
Die Zauberflöte (Pamina)
Don Giovanni (Donna Anna)
Idomeneo (Ilia)
Le nozze di Figaro (Countess)

Les Contes d'Hoffmann (Four Heroines)

La voix humaine
Les dialogues des Carmelites (Blanche)

La bohème (Mimi)
La rondine (Magda)
Le Villi  (Anna)
Suor Angelica (Angelica)
Turandot (Liu)

Guillaume Tell  (Mathilde) 

Eugene Onegin (Tatyana) 

La Traviata (Violetta)
Otello (Desdemona)
Simon Boccanegra (Amelia)


Ein Deutsches Requiem



Symphony no.2
Symphony no.4
Symphony no.8


Carmina Burana




Stabat Mater

Mass no.5

Vier letzte Lieder


Bachianas Brasileiras

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Interview in Santa Fe Reporter - March 2016

"Achtung, lieder-lovers. Fans of French mélodie, listen up. Aficionados of canciónes Españoles, get ready. Mark your calendars for Santa Fe’s premier vocal recital of the season when soaring lyric soprano, Ailyn Pérez, sings a multilingual concert with pianist Gary Matthewman in a program sponsored by the Santa Fe Desert Chorale. The event takes place Tuesday, March 29, at the Lensic.

She’s a jewel, beguiling and pathetic by turns. Can Pérez float a note? Don’t even ask. Her voice gleams with expression, making coloratura seem effortless. Above all, there’s personality in her technique. She combines feeling and power with the deft phrasing that characterizes everything she sings.

Wait a minute. Doesn’t that last paragraph sound familiar? Yes! It’s plagiarized! Busted! SFR published those self-same words in a review of Pérez singing Marguerite in the Santa Fe Opera’s 2011 opening-night Faust. The byline?

Well, mine. Is self-plagiarism such a horrendous sin? Handel got away with it, plenty of times. Why should the present writer be given an exception? Especially since recent hearings do absolutely nothing to amend his opinion of that glowing soprano voice.

Pérez’ vocal career has been in powerhouse mode since her memorable Marguerite, notably as winner of the ultra-prestigious 2012 Richard Tucker Award for young singers. She’s performed at all the leading opera houses: La Scala, Zürich, Hamburg, Glyndebourne, Barcelona’s Liceu, the Royal Opera House, and stateside at Houston, San Francisco, Dallas and the Met."

Full interview

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La bohème (Mimi)

The Metropolitan Opera

"Ailyn Pérez, an American soprano who previously sang the flighty Musetta in this production, proved a worthy foil as the ailing Mimi, effectively veering between vulnerability and surging strength." Anthony Tommasini, New York Times, 29 Sept 2016
" turned to the touching and musically idiomatic inflections of Ailyn Pérez as Mimi, whose judicious use of sliding attacks and portamento gracefully conveyed the Italian text while steering clear of the "operatic" conventions Puccini himself was puncturing in this intimate drama." David Wright, New York Classical Review, 29 Sept 2016
"Ailyn Pérez brought a warm timbre and refined musicality to Mimi, Rodolfo’s frail-yet-beguiling lover. She capped lush phrases with radiant top notes that soared over Puccini’s tender melodies, and her understated physicality made her elegant portrayal an endearing one." Christopher Browner, Classical Source, 28 Sept 2016


Roméo et Juliette (Juliette)

Santa Fe Opera

"In recent years Pérez has been honored with some of the opera world’s top awards. It is easy to understand the acclaim when, on learning that the lad she loves is a member of the rival family, she renders her line “Ah! Je l’ai vu trop tôt sans le connaître” (Too early seen unknown and known too late) with luxuriant tone and affecting emotion" James M. Keller, Santa Fe New Mexican, 18 July 2016
“We know Ailyn Pérez from her 2011 debut here as Marguerite in that, um, other Gounod opera, a shimmering presence. She radiates grace and personal charm here as well, with a confidence that moves her Juliette from the shy and kittenish to self-knowing maturity … Vocal highlight of the evening, sans doute, goes to Pérez’ account of the punishing “poison aria,” her fearful self-debate—to drink or not to drink Friar Laurent’s potion. Gounod and his librettists, Jules Barbier and Michel Carré, vastly improve upon Juliette’s rattletrap Shakespearean soliloquy. The aria, “Amour, ranime mon courage,” presents its own fearful challenges, such that Caroline Carvalho, originating the role in 1867, declined to sing it, and for years, the piece went unheard. But Pérez makes it her own, the expressive coloratura and trills and high-flying bravura perfectly intact, plus a characterization that remains totally convincing.” John Stege, Santa Fe Reporter, 20 July 2016
"Ailyn Pérez has the whole package. She is at the entryway of a great career. She can sing with power and restraint as the need presents. She has a rich lyric soprano that is completely under her control. Everything she did was touched with brilliance. No soprano I can think of could do better and I’m not sure that any other singer now active could equal her Juliette." Neil Kurtzman, Medicine & Opera, 17 July 2016
"Juliette, sung beautifully by Ailyn Pérez, enters from the rising rear stage, trips down the steps with her nurse, as her wide light blue dress billows. She is every bit an innocent seventeen-year-old girl. Her voice is as eager and pure as her expressions." ... 

"The balcony scene changes Juliette from a perky young girl into a mature woman, ready to sacrifice all for the love of her life. Pérez has the delicate touch necessary for this instant transformation."

Susan Hall,, 18 August 2016


La bohème (Musetta)

The Metropolitan Opera

“… the Met has lined up an exceptional cast headlined by its two leading ladies … In the role of Musetta, Ailyn Pérez, who recently won the Beverely Sills Award, returned to the Met in one of the most charismatic and show-stopping Musetta’s in recent Met seasons. From the moment she entered the Met stage her Musetta bristled with lots of energy. She flirted with the towns people, with the soldiers and at the same time made sure to put the pressure on Alcindoro, destroying plates and throwing menus. In her famous waltz “Quando Me’n vo’,” Pérez relished the moment as she sat in between soldiers, seducing each one. Her lush soprano voice caressed each phrase making it evident that she was easily having fun with the role. There was a sensual feel to her rubati throughout the aria and the gentle approach to some of the phrases.

In the third act, Pérez showed some more comedic timing as she danced and tripped her Marcello. But this was all combined with vocal fireworks as her soprano soared in the climax to the famed quartet “Dunque Propio e finito.” In the final act, Pérez dispatched the monologue “Madonna Benedetta,” with subtle intensity almost as if she was speaking. This was a heartwarming moment that showed another side to Musetta. Pérez and her Macrello, Levente Molnar, added a sense of urgency as they began making a remedy for the sick Mimi. This simple action helped flesh out her character and added a sense of kindness and commitment often missing in other portrayals.”
Francisco Salazar, Latin Post, 4 May 2016
“Ailyn Pérez’s Musetta is like gold. She shines by nature, and her voice gives echoes to the great Maria Callas. This is high praise but well-deserved. You cannot stop watching her every move as a physical comedienne, while, as an opera singer, you smile at her every note. Her playful relationship with Marcello, played by Levente Molnár, is the comic relief throughout the play because both are larger than life personalities that use emotional chess to both win and lose to each other.” Diandra Rivera, NY Theatre Guide, 25 April 2016


Manon (title role)

Winspear Opera House, Dallas Opera

"As the eponymous flibbertigibbet-turned-courtesan-turned-ruin, Ailyn Pérez ... was fully engaged, putting every bit of her powerful, pliant soprano to use." Scott Cantrell, Dallas News, 5 March 2016
"Pérez is magnificent as the ill-fated Manon—vocally and dramatically. The character is usually portrayed as too beautiful for her own good and a victim of her desires. She abandons true but penniless love for the life of luxury offered as a courtesan, then back to her distraught student when she was bored and finally leading both of them to ruin by her insatiable desire for riches.

Pérez, on the other hand, is a woman who knows her own power. Her actions, while sometimes incorrect, are always motivated by trying to make the best of the situations in which she finds herself. She sincerely loves the heartbroken Des Grieux, the young student who rescued her from a life in a convent, but Pérez’s Manon is deeply conflicted about what to do when she learns that his father is going to intervene. Unless she accepts the very generous offer from the wealthy nobleman, she would be a 16-year-old woman alone in the world. Unlike others in the role, Pérez shows us her despair at such a choice. Through it all, her deep love for Des Grieux never falters—and we know it.

When Manon learns that Des Grieux is about to take his vows of priesthood, most Manons seek him out and seduce him to run off with her and live a life on the edge. Pérez plays it differently. She realizes that if he takes his vow, she will never be able to repair the damage she did to him and rebuild the life she sacrificed. While the end result is the same, her so-called seduction is something else: a desperate attempt to remind him of the joys they once shared.

Their final ruin is, indeed, her fault for suggesting a life of gambling to support themselves, but Pérez makes it clear that this is an act of desperation in the face of bankruptcy rather than her desire for finery. Their final meeting, a short visit her brother arranged with a corrupt prison guard, is almost too devastatingly sad to watch. There is little left of Pérez’s Manon, only her overwhelming regret. She musters the energy needed to express this to the distraught Des Grieux and expires in his arms.

Vocally, she is amazing. She has a glorious voice, moving to spinto territory, with secure high notes and remarkable flexibility. She is equally impressive at full volume or when floating a super soft sound. But she is doing more than just singing. Every note is part of a phrase that communicates the words and the emotions behind them. It reminds of the stage presence of someone like Maria Callas."
Gregory Sullivan Isaacs, North Texas Performing Arts News, 6 March 2016
"Foremost, Ailyn Pérez as the eponymous Manon sang the high notes with ease, then slipped gracefully into the lower register. Pérez, whose hilarious performance earlier this season as the scheming understudy in Great Scott highlighted her lighter side, here showed her versatility as a young woman growing from naïveté to worldliness and then despair. She inhabited each iteration of her character, running the gamut from ingenue to temptress to conniving sphinx and in spite of her flaws, you can’t help but love her. Pérez's performance of the aria "Adieu, notre petite table" was heart-wrenching."  Monica Hinman, Dallas Observer, 6 March 2016

Jake Heggie

Great Scott (Tatyana Bakst)

Winspear Opera House, Dallas Opera

“Ailyn Pérez delivers a glorious performance as an up-and-coming Eastern European soprano in "Great Scott," which had its world premiere Friday night at the Winspear Opera House.”

“The vocal stars of the show are Pérez, with a brilliant and glorious soprano, and Costanzo, with an astonishingly powerful and well-focused countertenor.”
Scott Cantrell, The Dallas Morning News, 31 October 2015
"soprano Ailyn Pérez, in an aptly attention-grabbing performance" Joshua Kosman, SF Gate, 31 October 2015
"Tatyana Bakst, a wildly talented young soprano, well on her way to the top, who is cast in the female secondary role. She hails from Eastern Europe and has been unleashed on her first assignment in America. She is bold, brash, carefree and clueless. Much of the hilarity comes from her antics and her interactions with the other members of the company. She is being portrayed by a wildly talented soprano well on her way to the top, Ailyn Pérez — who definitely is not clueless." Gregory Sullivan Isaacs, Theater Jones, 29 October 2015
"In the first act, Arden worries that the young seconda donna, Tatyana, will “sing her off the stage.” Sure enough, soprano Ailyn Pérez — game, vibrant and thrilled to toss out easy high D’s — did just that, and not only in her diva moment, when she sang the National Anthem, recast as a florid bel canto showpiece, at the Super Bowl." Heidi Waleson, The Wall Street Journal, 2 November 2015

"Letters from Russia"

New Century Chamber Orchestra, San Francisco

"Ailyn Pérez shows off star power with New Century ensemble

Just a few short years ago, soprano Ailyn Pérez was in the Merola Opera Program, and now she’s an international star. How’d that happen so fast?

The obvious answer — remarkable vocal talent, combined with radiance and charm — was on display in Berkeley’s First Congregational Church on Thursday night, when Pérez joined the New Century Chamber Orchestra for a first-rate season-opening program. Listening to her sing music of Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky, one couldn’t help but be amazed, and a little awestruck, at the expressive and tonal splendor on display.

The entire evening, for that matter, was short but wonderfully satisfying, and a reminder of the artistic rewards that have continued to accrue from the appointment of Nadia Salerno-Sonnenberg as the string ensemble’s music director. The programming was mostly venturesome and canny, and the execution impressively lithe, with the ideal chamber blend of precision and rhythmic freedom.

Still, it was Pérez who stole the show on this occasion with her ripe, chestnut-tinted vocal colorations and seemingly effortless phrasing. In Rachmaninoff’s “Vocalise,” the endless skein of melody — arching, falling, rising again to a new crest — sounded at once luxuriant and purposeful. Each turn of phrase and each harmonic shift had somewhere concrete to get to, but the artists were content to let us linger en route just enough to savor the sheer beauty on display.

Even more gripping was the Letter Scene from Tchaikovsky’s “Eugene Onegin,” with a string accompaniment arranged by Clarice Assad. Pérez’s performance superbly tracked the emotional ups and downs of this fraught episode, infusing the composer’s expansive lyrical phrases with a blend of reflectiveness and urgency, and turning the character’s moments of heightened anxiety into something poignant and true. Salerno-Sonnenberg and the ensemble played like an opera orchestra in the making."
Joshua Kosman, SF Gate, 18 September 2015
" helps to have a glamorous guest artist on hand to transform an opening concert into a special event. With soprano Ailyn Perez as vocal soloist, Thursday’s program - which launched the ensemble’s 24th season - yielded the kind of performances that make the leap from the stylish to the sublime. This was especially true in the program’s centerpiece, a performance of Tatiana’s “Letter” aria from Tchaikovsky’s opera “Eugene Onegin.” Perez - who made an indelible impression as Violetta in San Francisco Opera’s 2014 production of “La Traviata” - once again combined vocal luster, emotional expressiveness and dazzling top notes in a performance of considerable dramatic urgency . . . Perez also sounded gorgeous in Rachmaninoff’s “Vocalise,” delivering the composer’s “song without words” in an exquisite reading." Georgia Rowe, San Jose Mercury News, 18 September 2015
“This haunting introduction set the stage for a most beautiful and moving performance of Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Vocalise. Soprano soloist Ailyn Pérez, sang the wordless melody with pure, heartfelt emotion. Pérez glowed on stage and lent the orchestra a calming elegance . . .” Be'eri Moalem, San Francisco Classical Voice, 24 September 2015



The Metropolitan Opera

[Roberto Alagna] had a more energetic, focused partner in the rising soprano Ailyn Pérez, making her Met debut as Micaëla.

A confident, forthright presence in a role that can fade into merely demure, Ms. Pérez has a penetrating, settled voice. Her tone [is] clear and articulate, and she uses it with intelligence and a sense of purpose.
The New York Times, 8 February 2015



Houston Grand Opera

As Desdemona, Otello's unjustly accused wife, soprano Ailyn Perez sang with a fullness, warmth and poise that exuded Desdemona's good-heartedness.  Steven Brown, Houston Chronicle, 25 Oct 2014
Ailyn Pérez, a soprano with an exceptionally brilliant vocal color, was the ideal Desdemona: effortlessly beautiful, pure, and sympathetic. Her back-to-back “Willow Song” and “Ave Maria” in the last act conveyed an astounding fragility and transporting splendor.
Sydney Boyd, Houstonia Magazine, 27 Oct 2014

'Love Duets' CD

Warner Classics

Love is in the aria for opera's new It couple

If Roberto Alagna and Angela Gheorghiu were the Richard Burton and Liz Taylor of opera (on again, off again, divorce), husband and wife Stephen Costello and Ailyn Pérez are the Jay Z and Beyoncé. They’re modern, they’re hot and their marital status is taking them beyond opera’s heartland into Vanity Fair, The Huffington Post, and YouTube ubiquity that includes the gushy mini-doc An Operatic Love Story.

Labelled opera’s reigning It couple and a power couple, in person “Pérello” are charmingly low-key. We meet in an Italian restaurant round the corner from the Royal Opera House. A squeaky dumbwaiter makes the place a bit Fawlty Towers but it’s a favourite post-show haunt of Covent Garden’s artists; signed photos of Pavarotti, Joseph Calleja and opera’s ultimate power couple, Bob and Ange (Alagna and Gheorghiu), line the walls. The opera-loving owner, Pino, has eyes for petite Pérez; Costello barely gets a look-in. The duo, both in their early thirties, don’t command attention from other diners, but you sense that’s only a matter of time.

Their album, Love Duets, is released today, full of beautiful singing and glossy pictures. Tomorrow they open in La traviata at the ROH. They have sung together on stage once before in London — in January 2012, Pérez jumped in for soprano Ermonela Jaho opposite Costello for one performance of Verdi’s opera — but this is an entire performance run. Not only that, the ROH has chosen it to be its first opera streamed free and globally online, and relayed live to BP Big Screens nationwide. The pair have also just announced a live concert of love duets at the Barbican, London, in January.

Under that kind of spotlight, what’s it like to bring opera’s greatest romances to life with your other half? Is it a cauldron of onstage chemistry? Unbridled passion?

“In something like Traviata it’s extremely difficult,” says Costello. “In our first scene it’s the first time the two characters meet. And it’s hard to recreate the first time you’ve met somebody when you’ve spent the past five years living together.” The pair met at Philadelphia’s Academy of Vocal Arts, brought together by music and trust as they navigated a tough business. They married in 2008.

“What makes it easy is that I know Ailyn as an artist. I’ve seen her sing Traviata a million times . . . I know what she likes to do where. It makes me more comfortable, especially in a duet.”

“What’s most exciting when I’m working with Stephen is there’s a part of me that relaxes a little,” says Pérez. “I know I can count him. He serves the music and the scene, and he’s not unfocused. Sometimes artists go crazy when press happens. It’s me, me, me . . . I don’t get that with him.”

Both say that on stage they sing to the character, not the partner, though Costello concedes he may indulge himself in a recital. “When you’re just doing sections of a piece you . . . have to bring something. And something comes out in me and says: ‘I’m proud to be here with my wife.’ I think the audience can see that.”

If anything, they have to operate as individual performers on stage. “You have to detach to personally do your very best,” says Pérez. “Like, I can’t be worried about how Stephen’s feeling that night, because I have to perform. We’ve learnt not to be so intense.”

If Roberto Alagna and Angela Gheorghiu were the Richard Burton and Liz Taylor of opera … husband and wife Stephen Costello and Ailyn Pérez are the Jay Z and Beyoncé

Pérez and Costello both have blossoming independent careers. Pérez is a Royal Opera favourite, wowing this year as Massenet’s coquettish Manon and in Puccini’s Turandot, with her “luscious, fruity timbre” (The Times). Costello had a phenomenal Metropolitan Opera debut aged 26 in 2007, promoted by maestro James Levine on the season-opening night of Lucia di Lammermoor from singing Arturo to the male lead, Edgardo. He spans from bel canto to contemporary opera and has a wonderful Italianate surety.

Accepting criticism from your nearest and dearest is always a challenge, and there is little room for it in this relationship. “In all honesty, you don’t ask questions if you want an honest answer,” says Costello.

“No, that’s not true,” counters Pérez. “I’m sorry . . . you want support. You want affirmation. We’ve been down that road and . . .”

“It’s not productive,” finishes Costello.

The bread and butter of the soprano and tenor is romantic tension, which brings another mind-bending challenge: watching your partner cavort onstage with another singer. “In Valencia, I watched Ailyn sing Manon with Vittorio Grigolo [an Italian tenor with Rat Pack good looks]. He’s reading the letter [of marriage] between her legs and she’s wearing this nightgown thing. I’m like: ‘I can’t watch this,’ ” says Costello.

He is equally uncomfortable when the tables are turned. “He’s kicked me out of the theatre before,” says Pérez, who seems to handle the eye candy more coolly.

The Mexican-American Pérez and Irish–American Costello both hail from large families and would like children. Now, however, is not the time to disrupt their career momentum. “We have a dog [called Tequila] and she’s really special, like a child,” says Costello.

“We’re young, we’re still proving ourselves and that’s the edge that we have in our shows,” says Pérez. “It’s not like we’ve arrived. We’re not in our Tosca days.”

For now, there’s the album to promote. Love Duets is an enjoyable listen; a mix of operatic favourites (La bohème, La traviata, Faust et al) and some musical theatre (Tony and Maria’s One Hand, One Heart from West Side Story, If I Loved You from Carousel) all accompanied by the BBC Symphony Orchestra. The pair grew up loving musical theatre, and its inclusion is also a conscious nod to broadening opera’s appeal.

That’s a tough job made harder, Costello feels, by lack of support. If only Jay Z would go to the opera, he says, a generation would follow. In March he was singing in Moby-Dick at the Washington National Opera, “and the president didn’t come to the opera once”, he complains.

“And Moby-Dick was one of Obama’s favourite novels,” points out Pérez. “These people who are in the press all the time — the president or pop stars — they don’t support the other arts. How are we going to get young people interested?”

Essentially, Costello and Pérez are managing three careers: their individual work and the Pérello brand, which is increasingly centre stage. “At first it can bother you but it’s helping us get more jobs,” says Costello. The pair collect their joint production posters, framed at home in Chattanooga. “It’s always great to work together . . . and we’re getting paid twice!”

No, they don’t have a Bob and Ange rate (allegedly two for the price of three rather than an operatic BOGOF for joint appearances). They don’t believe the power-couple hype, either.

“It’s not really true. The Royal Opera aren’t going to hire us both to sing in the same cast just because we’re married,” says Costello. “If they didn’t like one of us, they’d only hire one of us.”

“And we’re not trying to be exclusive,” says Pérez.

“Demanding that we would only work together,” explains Costello. “That’s terrible. That causes a lot of problems. We wouldn’t do that.”

Who’s demanded that? “No comment,” they both reply.

Opera is eager to find another celebrated on-stage partnership with the chemistry of Callas and Di Stefano, Freni and Pavarotti, or Netrebko and Villazón. With their added offstage romance, Pérez and Costello are joining that elite, generating a tangible on-stage frisson. Do they feel it or is it just part of the job?

“Oh, I still feel it,” says Pérez.

“I hope there’s chemistry,” says Costello. “If there isn’t, that would suck. That would be a long night.”

 - Emma Pomfret

The Times, May 5, 2014, Emma Pomfret

'Ailyn Perez and Stephen Costello sing Love Duets' Presto News, 5 May 2014

The Sunday Times review The Sunday Times
The Guardian review Fiona Maddocks, The Observer, 11 May 2014
Mail On Sunday - Album of the Week David Mellor, Mail on Sunday, 11 May 2014



Royal Opera House Covent Garden

"her tone is brightly focused and winning...By the time she got to the gambling den of the Hotel de Transylvanie...she had found her stride, a glamorous demi-mondaine to the life, standing out of the crowd. And her waif-like appearance and plangent singing on the road to Le Havre were truly heart-rending. With Emmanuel Villaume bringing authentic French flavour to Massenet's score and coaxing idiomatic performances from his American principals, this was altogether a more satisfactory and enjoyable performance than the 'international' star-studded initial run two seasons ago" Hugh Canning, Opera, April 2014



Royal Opera House, Covent Garden

"There’s a distinguished role debut from Ailyn Pérez as Liu: her luscious, fruity timbre is perfect for Puccini and you completely succumb as her voice tingles up the stave." Neil Fisher, The Times, February 19, 2014
"Ailyn Perez made a sensational role debut as the slave girl Liu. Using her diminutive physique to her advantage, she cut a tragic figure on stage and used her bright and agile soprano voice to telling effect. As is often the case with this role, she was awarded the biggest ovation of the evening." Keith McDonnell, What's on Stage, 18th February, 2014
"Yet, not for the first time, the show was stolen by the petite lyric soprano as the adorably self-sacrificing slave girl Liu. Ailyn Perez is currently a house favourite, and one could see why: she combines a limpid yet glowing voice with an attractive stage personality and aside from a tiny glitch at the end of “Signore, ascolta”, she floated pianissimi above the stave with spine-tingling ease." Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, 18th February 2014
"Ailyn Pérez sings with caressing warmth and stylishness as the self-sacrificing slave girl Liù." Warwick Thompson, The Metro, February 18th 2014

Wall Street Journal article about Stephen and Ailyn

Ailyn and Stephen interview

New York

Wall Street Journal article Elisabeth Braw, 23 January 2014

Tucker Gala

Avery Fisher Hall

"The soprano Ailyn Pérez gave a tastefully restrained rendition of Charpentier’s “Depuis le jour,” from “Louise,” in which subtle changes in intensity created a watercolor-like effect. In a deliciously comic scene with her husband and fellow Tucker Prize recipient, Stephen Costello, she showed her sassy side, as Norina played hard to get in “Esulti pur la Barbara,” from “L’Elisir d’Amore.” Each revealed a perfect grasp of comic timing in acting and singing." Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim, New York Times, 18 November 2013


Falstaff - Alice Ford

Glyndebourne Festival Opera

"The American soprano Ailyn Pérez, who won the 2012 Richard Tucker prize, was making her Glyndebourne debut as Alice Ford, and her creamy, lustrous tone and confident stage presence were ideally suited to this part, as indeed they would be to any of Verdi’s great lyric soprano roles; expect to hear much more from this already very polished artist." OMH review, May 2013
"Ailyn Perez’s feisty Alice is a joy, and her voice combines beautifully with Lucia Cirillo’s Meg" The Arts Desk, May 2013
"Standing out from this fine ensemble, though, was the Alice Ford of Ailyn Pérez, a simply glorious Verdian soprano whose star quality at Glyndebourne proved mesmerising even in the moments when she sang from the wings. Pérez’s soaring, bejewelled lines will live long in the memory and the prospect of following her career in years to come is something to savour." Mark Valencia, Classical Souce, May 2013

CD: Poeme d'un jour (Opus Arte)

Rosenblatt Recital Series

Poème d’un jour
Ailyn Pérez, soprano; Iain Burnside, piano (Opus Arte)
"Countless women sing the repertoire that Ailyn Pérez performs in opera houses: Mimì in "La Bohème," Violetta in "La Traviata," the Countess in "The Marriage of Figaro." But only a few who bring something extraordinary to those roles achieve recognition that goes far beyond the typical opera sphere. Pérez, who won the 2012 Richard Tucker Award, should be next on that list.

On a recording of French and Spanish music, Pérez displays a powerful, distinctive tone that is both deep and rosy. She can evoke the feeling of breathless spontaneity and then slip easily, magically up to a soft, exquisitely controlled high note. Two arias from Massenet’s "Manon" show a role to which she is well-suited. The lushness of her voice fits romantic songs by Reynaldo Hahn and the title set by Gabriel Fauré, which she sings sensitively. She also brings character, agility and rich colorings to songs by Joaquin Turina, Fernando Obradors and Manuel de Falla. Iain Burnside provides lively, proficient accompaniment throughout."

Ronni Reich, New Jersey News
International Record Review Mark Pullinger, June 2013
"There’s a hint of Victoria de los Angeles in the programming and the style of this lovely young American soprano, currently lighting up the stage as Alice Ford in Falstaff at Glyndebourne. Any singer who begins a recital with Hahn’s exquisite neo-baroque A Chloris gets my vote, especially when she sings it with such artless affection. Her Fauré group, Poème d’un jour, is delectably suggestive. Perez’s Spanish sounds entirely idiomatic in Obradors, Turina and Falla. In the Seven Popular Spanish Songs, she rivals de los Angeles with her alternately seductive and anguished manner. Better, though, to have tracked the delicious Manon excerpts as encores." 

Ailyn Perez (soprano), Iain Burnside (piano)
Opus Arte OACD9013D

HC, The Sunday Times, 2 June 2013



La Maison Symphonique de Montréal

"Soprano Ailyn Pérez (a replacement this evening) was given her chance to shine in the Libera me which brings this work to a close. When she sang alone with the chorus, it was absolutely captivating – such sweet, delicate expressiveness perfectly suited the close of this work. When the final notes died away Nézet-Séguin waited in hushed reverence – was it fifteen seconds or five minutes?"

Andrew Crust


La Traviata - Violetta

Cincinnati Opera

"A strikingly beautiful woman, Perez is eminently suited to Violetta, not only physically but vocally. Her dark tinged voice conveys tragedy, and she has the flexibility to bring off "Sempre libera" which she capped with an E-flat on opening night. It was in the subsequent acts, though, that she particularly excelled, spinning out a thread of sound in "Dite alla giovine" and summoning powerful desparation in he pleas to Alfredo that he love her. Perez's voice took on a appropriate pallor in the final act, regaining vibrancy in the imagined recovery of her final movements"


Opera News, October 2012


La Traviata - Violetta

Royal Opera House, Covent Garden

"The latest cast change, heralding a run of performances over the Christmas period, is first-rate, with an ideal Violetta in Ailyn Perez. The bewitching young American soprano puts her heart into every twist of the drama, from the impetuousness of her love for Alfredo - the world-class Polish tenor Piotr the febrile emergency of her death...her performance was glorious, the quiet passages magical."

The Observer, November 2011
"Poplavskaya is a hard act to follow, but Pérez was tried and tested in the Royal Opera’s tour to Japan just over a year ago, and she has now made the part very much her own...The intense joy and the heavy grief of her music is embodied in a soprano that is supple and strong enough to sustain long passages in the most eloquent and perfectly controlled half-voice...Piotr Beczala, her personable and powerful Alfredo." The Times, November 2011

Placido Domingo Gala

Royal Opera House, Covent Garden

"an entrancing Gilda (Ailyn Perez, in a deserved Covent Garden debut)." The Sunday Times, November 2011


Romeo et Juliette - Juliette

Opera Company of Philadelphia

"But the chief attraction is the casting of America's fastest-rising husband-and-wife opera stars in the title roles: tenor Stephen Costello and soprano Ailyn Perez. Young, attractive singers who are proud alumnae of the Academy's training program, they made the performance a memorable one...
Perez's lyric soprano is pure and honeyed in tone, and she deploys it with elegance and tenderness...
In the four duets Gounod wrote for the star-crossed lovers, her voice blended together beautifully with Costello's.
Perez is also a natural actress, embodying both Juliette's girlish high spirits and her growing maturity under the influence of love."
Associated Press, February 2011

"Pérez captured the persona, with insouciance and glamor. Her voice has coloratura brightness (she was an excellent Lucia when she was a student at the Academy of Vocal Arts) and richer color than ever before."

Opera Critic, February 2011



Poème d’un jour

Hot on the heels of winning the prestigious Richard Tucker Award, “huge star in the making” Ailyn Pérez releases her debut solo CD for Opus Arte. 

This debut solo CD for Opus Arte, Poème d’un jour, comprises a mixture of studio and live recordings from Ailyn Perez’s memorable London Rosenblatt Recital in March 2012. Accompanied by Iain Burnside at the piano, Ailyn presents Spanish and French art song (including music by Hahn, Obradors, De Falla and Faure) as well as arias from Massenet’s Manon, a role which she performs at Covent Garden next season. The CD goes on sale internationally on April 23 and in the U.S. on May 28.
Opus Arte