Mezzo-Soprano, Melissa Piantedosi, is described as having a “rare, darkly hued, shimmering voice that is engulfed with drama”. Melissa performs a wide range of repertoire from early music to new music and has a special interest in lesser known works, particularly those written by female composers. She is enthusiastic about making classical music accessible to all through performing and teaching.
Melissa was the co-producer along with tenor Nicholas Metzger, of “Liebesgarten: A celebration of Robert and Clara Schumann’s life told in song and prose”, a concert of compositions showcasing well-known and lesser known works by both composers. Melissa and Nicholas secured a grant from Elgin Cultural Arts Commission to perform this program at the Elgin Art Showcase in Elgin, IL and also received funding from Fox Valley Lyrical Productions to perform at The Morton Grove Public Library in Morton Grove, IL.
Melissa has performed with Song Set Chicago, New Brew Chicago, Opera on Tap Chicago, and South Shore Opera Company (SSOC). With SSOC she was a soloist in the concert “Opera at the Movies”. She sang arias with orchestra including Una voce poco fa and Quando m’en vo, at the South Shore Cultural Center. M.L Rantala, classical music critic from Hyde Park Review, described her performance as “solid”. Also with, SSOC at the South Shore Cultural Center, Melissa performed as an abolitionist in the ensemble of the opera “Harriet Tubman, When I Crossed That Line to Freedom” by Nkieru Okoye.
Her operatic roles include the sassy duchess “Fanette” in Milton Granger’s comic opera Bluebeard’s Waiting Room at Roosevelt University’s Murray-Green Library. She also performed as goddesses “Venere” and “Pallade” in Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea at the Studebaker Theatre, Chicago, IL with Chicago College of Performing Arts.
In collaboration with composer Felicity Mazur-Park, Melissa will be performing art songs by all finalists in the competition Festive Call for Scores. Past new music projects include performing songs by New York based composer Ellen Mandel with New Brew Chicago at Heartland Cafe’s Redline Tap; performing songs by Felicity Mazur-Park and Patrick Greene in Seully Hall at Boston Conservatory at Berklee College of Music.
Melissa has relocated to her home state of New Hampshire. Her education includes a Master’s Degree at Chicago College of Performing Arts and a Bachelor’s Degree at Boston Conservatory at Berklee College of Music. She has also attended OperaWorks, Granada Hills, CA and Opera Viva in Verona, Italy.
When Melissa is not performing, she teaches private music lessons and gathers inspiration from nature during long runs. She regularly runs marathons and completed her first 50 mile ultra marathon in 2017, during the Chicago Lakefront 50/50 race. Melissa is also trained in many forms of dance, including ballet, tap, jazz, modern, African dance, and samba.