Award-winning coloratura soprano Kirsten Ashley Wiest is firmly committed to the continuous evolution of classical vocal music. Her “bright, dazzling vocal technique” (San Diego Story) has captured the attention of composers worldwide, resulting in numerous world premiere performances and premiere recordings including works by Lei Liang (CN/US), James Erber (UK), Veronika Krausas (CA/US), Gérard Pape (FR), Rand Steiger (US), Jeffrey Holmes (US), and Annie Hsieh (AU), among many others.
Kirsten has sung with the GRAMMY-winning Partch ensemble, Bang on a Can All-Stars, LA Phil's Noon to Midnight, San Diego Symphony, HEAR NOW Festival of New Music, the Industry, wild Up new music collective, La Jolla Symphony and Chorus, YMF Debut Orchestra, MiraCosta Symphony, kallisti chamber opera, Musica Vitale, and Joe Garrison and Night People, among many others. She has performed at venues including Walt Disney Concert Hall, REDCAT, Aratani Japan America Theater, Théâtre Le Palace (Perigueux, France), Autonomous University of Baja California, and the Moore Theater. Kirsten has given recitals on concert series' hosted by Harvey Mudd College, Chapman University, Tuesdays@MONK Space, UC San Diego's WED@7, and others. She was a featured soloist in the LA Philharmonic’s installation, Nimbus, and has recorded for several interactive operatic experiences and film scores.
Kirsten can be heard on recordings released by Sony Classical, Centaur Records, MicroFest Records, innova recordings, and Albany Records, among many others.
Kirsten holds a DMA in Contemporary Music Performance in Voice from UC San Diego, an MFA from California Institute of the Arts, and a BM cum laude from Chapman University’s Conservatory of Music. She founded UC San Diego's annual Undergraduate Opera in 2017, producing and directing full operas each Spring and a Fall scenes program comprised entirely of undergraduate Voice Majors. Kirsten currently lectures in Music at California State University San Bernardino and San Bernardino Valley College, and is Instructor of Voice at University of California Riverside.
"...extraordinary performance virtuosity."
"Ms. Wiest’s vocals were transparently pure of tone..."
"...impressive range and power."
"The audience demanded it to be repeated. Kirsten Ashley Wiest, the soprano at REDCAT, demonstrated why."
-Los Angeles Times
"unforgettable and decidedly surreal"
-San Francisco Classical Voice
"a bright, dazzling vocal technique."
-San Diego Story