Soprano Kelly Ballou made her professional debut in 2009, performing J.S. Bach’s Matthäus-Passion with Bourbon Baroque and the Choral Arts Society in Louisville, Kentucky, where she received critical acclaim for her “big, creamy voice.” Quickly becoming an in-demand artist, Ms. Ballou has made numerous other concert appearances in works such as Orff’s Carmina Burana, Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Mozart’s Requiem and J.S. Bach’s Cantata 51 “Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen.” Her operatic credits include Sister Constance in Poulenc’s Dialogues of the Carmelites, Susanna in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, La Paix in Charpentier’s Les Arts Florissants, Yum Yum in Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Mikado and Amahl in Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors. As a young artist with Opera Lafayette in Washington, D.C., Ms. Ballou also covered the role of Clémentine in Grétry’s Le Magnifique in February 2011, and is covering the role of Betsy in the upcoming production of Monsigny’s Le Roi et le Fermier. She has also received three first place awards from regional NATS competitions and the Rossini Award at the 2008 Orpheus National Vocal Competition, and was a finalist in the 2010 Bach Vocal Competition in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
Kelly began her musical studies in Louisville, Kentucky, receiving her B.M. in voice performance from the University of Louisville in 2009. While in Louisville, she worked closely with many local groups, including Bourbon Baroque, the Louisville Orchestra and Kentucky Opera. After completing her undergraduate work, Ms. Ballou moved to Cincinnati to pursue a M.M. in voice performance from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where she studied with Professor Karen Lykes; she completed her degree in June of 2011. Kelly has also participated in several young artist training programs, including the Franz-Schubert-Institut, the Amherst Early Music Festival and the Baroque Opera Workshop at Queens College.