Kirsten Ashley Wiest is a classically-trained coloratura soprano with a dedication to the advancement of opera, art song, and chamber music via the performance and recording of classical music for voice written by living composers. The “impressive power, control and range” (Sequenza 21) of her voice has captured the attention of composers worldwide, resulting in over 60 world premiere performances and premiere recordings including works by Lei Liang (CN/US), James Erber (UK), Veronika Krausas (CA/US), Gérard Pape (FR), and Jeffrey Holmes (US).
Kirsten has sung as a soloist with the GRAMMY-winning Partch ensemble, Bang on a Can All-Stars, and musicians of the Los Angeles Philharmonic; for film scores including The Unholy, Malignant, and the Conjuring series; and for recordings on Sony Classical and Centaur Records, among many others.
Equally at home with music of the past, Kirsten has headlined as "Mabel" in Gilbert and Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzance and Polly Peachum in Weill's ThreePenny Opera, and has appeared as soprano soloist in Vivaldi’s Gloria, Mozart’s Coronation Mass in C Major, K.317, and Orff’s Carmina Burana. She is currently preparing the roles of "Lucia" in Donizetti's Lucia di Lammermoor and "Queen of the Night" in Mozart’s The Magic Flute.
Kirsten holds a DMA in Contemporary Music Performance in Voice from UC San Diego, MFA from California Institute of the Arts, and BM cum laude from Chapman University’s Conservatory of Music. Alongside performing, Kirsten teaches at San Bernardino Valley College, and 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