B i o g r a p h y
"Powerhouse mezzo" (Albert Williams, The Chicago Reader) Caitlin McKechney has made a name for herself as a dynamic singing actress, which was on display at the beginning of 2019 when she performed the role of Dinah in Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti in a co-production with Miami Orchestra and Magic City Opera (read Lawrence Budman's review here). Caitlin has also been performing extensively with her two bands, beginning with an exciting tour of the Texas panhandle with the Opera Cowgirls. March was filled with performances with the Galway Girls, an irish trio of women that mixes authentic Irish music with the folk traditions of the states, performed all over Pennsylvania and NYC celebrating St. Patrick's Day at theaters like the Bucks County Playhouse and Hedgerow Theater. Caitlin traveled to Oklahoma in May of 2019 to reprise her interpretation of opera's most notorious bad girl in Painted Sky Opera's Tragedie de Carmen, and continued on to Opera North that summer to play Ruth in Pirates of Penzance.
Like most artists, some of Caitlin's projects have been sidelined in 2020, but the end of the pandemic promises exciting productions of The Irish and How They Got That Way (Bucks County Center for the Performing Arts) and Pirates of Penzance (Delaware Valley Opera). Virtually, Caitlin participated as a vocalist for the July 2020 workshop of Letters That You Will Not Get: Voices of Women from the Great War with The American Opera Project, for which she is also an associate producer. She and the Opera Cowgirls also began recording their sophomore album, Pearlsnaps and Pearls, which is slated for release in the summer of 2021!
Caitlin's 2018 season started off with a fantastic production of Carmen with Tacoma Opera. April brought about her Carnegie Hall debut as the alto soloist in Mozart Missa Solemnis in C Major with MidAmerica Productions, and in June she returned to New York City Opera to cover Lureen in the North American premier of Brokeback Mountain. She performed the role of Lilli Vanessi in Kiss Me Kate twice in 2018, both at North Street Playhouse and again at the Broadway Theater of Pitman in October and November opposite Robert Newman.
Caitlin's 2017 season proved quite varied, spanning from the title role in Offenbach's La Perichole with Tacoma Opera (described as "marvelous, a lush mezzo with low notes like pools of water and just the right mix of long-suffering and flirty..." - Rosemary Ponnekanti, The News Tribune) to playing guitar and belting out U2 at the Bucks County Center for the Performing Arts for Frank McCourt's The Irish and How They Got That Way. Caitlin rounded out 2017 as Maddalena in Rigoletto with Opera Connecticut and the Jacksonville Symphony's Holiday Pops.
Caitlin returned to Opera Memphis in April of 2016 for Peter Brook's Tragedie de Carmen, for which she was hailed by John W. Sparks of the Commercial Appeal for her "captivating vocals and powerful expressions that flash with mischief, anger, joy, confidence and sadness, vividly showing vulnerability and intelligence." Later that month, Caitlin returned to New York City to take on the role of Virginia Woolf in a staged version of Dominik Argento’s From the Diary of Virginia Woolf with The Secret Opera.
In the 2014/15 season, Caitlin returned to Nashville Opera for Phillip Glass's Hydrogen Jukebox and was also the soloist in Manuel de Falla's ballet, El sombrero de tres picos, with the Tulare County Symphony. She performed role of Inez Serrano in Andy Vores's operatic treatment of Sartre's existential masterpiece No Exit and made her role debut as Suzuki in Puccini's Madame Butterfly with Florida Grand Opera. Additionally, Caitlin was seen as Flora in La Traviata with Opera North while also covering Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady. As a part of the prestigious Florida Grand Opera Young Artist Program, Caitlin covered the role of Fenena in Nabucco and performed the role of Myrtal in Thais.
Other credits include Tisbe in La Cenerentola and Third Lady in The Magic Flute with Nashville Opera, Maddalena in Rigoletto with Opera Memphis, the title role in Carmen with New York Lyric Opera (described as "excellent" by Stephen J. Dubner of "Freakonomics"), Lola in Martha Cardona Theater's Cavalleria Rusticana, Cousin Hebe in HMS Pinafore with Opera New Jersey, and Hansel in Amore Opera's production of Hansel and Gretel.
An experienced cross-over artist, Caitlin has been seen as Sarah Brown in Guys and Dolls, Lilli Vanessi in Kiss Me Kate, the Witch in Into the Woods and Tessa in The Gondoliers.
Caitlin is currently a member of Hotel Elefant, a New York City based ensemble that focuses on performing the works of living composers, with which she has performed the works of Chinary Ung, Paola Prestini, Kirsten Volness and Leaha Villareal. She is also the guitarist and leader of the Opera Cowgirls, a “band” that reinvents opera in a very fun way!
Caitlin can be heard on the recordings of Thomas Sleeper's "Einstein's Inconsistency" (Albany Records) as well as Opera Cowgirls' album, "Always Unplugged."