2018 Sullivan Foundation Award Recipient“I have been present at each of Korean soprano Pureum Jo’s last three operatic assignments…Her vocal performances in Houston had impressed me. Her assumption of the lead female role in “Red Chamber” confirmed that she is in the early years of a major career as a lyric soprano.” — Opera Warhorses
Her tone and presence described as “riveting,” “mesmerizing,” and “ravishing” by Opera News, the New York Times, and Time Out New York, soprano Pureum Jo is an alumna of Houston Grand Opera’s Studio Program, where she captivated audiences as Pamina and Papagena in Die Zauberflote, and Barbarina in Le nozze di Figaro. Equally at home in contemporary music, Ms. Jo appeared with the company as the Rose in Rachel Portman and Nicholas Wright’s The Little Prince, Becca in the world premiere of Gregory Spears and Royce Vavrek’s O Columbia, and as Miss Frayne in the latest world premiere by the legendary Carlisle Floyd, Prince of Players. In the current season, Jo returns to Houston Grand Opera as Merab in Saul.
Recent engagements include Jo’s return to Houston Grand Opera as Musetta in La bohéme, her role in the world premiere of Beauty and Sadness, her first season with The Glyndebourne Festival for the their production of Giulio Cesare; joining the roster of Lyric Opera of Chicago for Orphée & Eurydice; and her San Francisco Opera debut as Dai Yu in the world premiere of Bright Sheng’s Dream of the Red Chamber. Additionally, she returned to the Sarasota Orchestra for an evening of Mozart concert arias with Music Director Anu Tali, sang Micaëla in Carmen with Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra, and made her role debut as Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro with Opera Naples and Music Director Ramon Tebar.
In the 2016-2017 season, Ms. Jo made her San Francisco Opera debut in the company’s latest commission as Dai Yu in the world premiere of Bright Sheng’s Dream of the Red Chamber, which also traveled to the Hong Kong Music Festival in the Spring. Additional performances included her fourth appearance with New York City’s Voices of Ascension in performance of Mozart’s Esultate Jubilate and Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, her debut with Sarasota Orchesta in performances of Mozart’s Requiem, and as Pamina with Opera Naples under the baton of Music Director Ramon Tebar.
In the 2017-2018 season, Ms. Jo joins Lyric Opera of Chicago for the first time in their production of Orphée & Eurydice. She also returns to the Sarasota Orchestra for an evening of Mozart concert arias with Music Director Anu Tali, returns to Opera Naples for her role debut as Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, and sings Micaëla in Carmen with Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra. Additionally, she will be heard in recital in San Antonio, TX with baritone Michael Sumuel.
Ms. Jo appeared in the title role in Toshio Hosokawa’s Matsukaze with the Lincoln Center Festival and the Spoleto Festival U.S.A., a performance for which Opera News wrote, “You could take neither your eyes nor your ears off her.” She recently sang with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra as Zerlina in Don Giovanni and made her San Francisco Symphony debut in their 16th annual Chinese New Year Concert. She has performed regularly at the Aspen Music Festival as Juliette in Roméo et Juliette, Micaëla in Carmen, the High Priestess in Aida, and most recently as Musetta in La bohème. Other roles include Blanche in Dialogues des Carmélites, Fraarte in Radamisto, and Sandrina in La finta giardiniera.
An accomplished concert soloist and recitalist, Ms. Jo has appeared in recital with Houston Grand Opera, Alice Tully Hall, and the Aspen Music Festival. She sang in “A Concert of Comic Operas,” co-presented by The Metropolitan Opera and the Juilliard School and conducted by James Levine, and was the soprano soloist in Mozart’s Requiem Mass and Coronation Mass, Haydn’s Mass in Time of War, and in a concert of Mozart and Mendelssohn oratorio arias with New York City’s Voices of Ascension. Additionally, she has performed at Carnegie Hall in Marilyn Horne’s The Song Continues. Originally from South Korea, Ms. Jo holds two degrees from the Juilliard School.