Arts

Georgia’s Jamie Barton Awarded Prestigious Opera Prize

Jamie Barton is the latest recipient of the Richard Tucker Award.
Jamie Barton is the latest recipient of the Richard Tucker Award.
Credit Fay Fox

In a “City Lights” interview with executive producer Noel Morris, Jamie Barton explains how she's “glad to see the social media age come back to this ancient art form … I do this because I relate to it.”

Jamie Barton, the Georgia-raised mezzo-soprano and one of the rising stars in opera, has received one of the highest honors in her field.

She is the latest recipient of the Richard Tucker Award, which includes a $50,000 prize.

The award is named after the noted tenor. Barton joins a group of luminaries that includes Renee Fleming, Lawrence Brownlee, Stephanie Blythe, David Daniels, Angela Meade and Joyce DiDonato.

Barton is currently performing the role of Fricka in Richard Wagner’s “Die Walkure” with the Houston Grand Opera.

“I don’t think I’ve ever been as speechless as I was when Barry Tucker called me to give me the news that I’d won the Richard Tucker Award,” Barton said in a statement. “I’m overwhelmed with happiness and gratitude. The Tucker Foundation has been a musical family for me for years now, and to be given its top prize is an absolute honor.”

Barton, who was raised in Rome, Georgia and attended Shorter College (now Shorter University), is a winner of the 2013 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition, what she has described as the “Olympics of the Opera.”

This summer she will debut in the role of Azucena in “Il Trovatore” with the Cincinnati Opera and also will appear with the Seattle Opera, the Pittsburgh Symphony and the Toronto Symphony.Jamie Barton says she's drawn to bel canto singing “because there's so much you can toy with,” but admits it's “freakishly hard” music to perform.