Ying Fang (Chinese: 方颖; pinyin: Fāng Yǐng) is a Chinese operatic soprano. A principal soprano at the Metropolitan Opera, she won the Golden Bell Award at the Guangdong Singing Competition in China in 2009, first prize at the Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition in 2013, and the Lincoln Center Segal Award in 2015. Her performances have been featured on the television program Great Performances at the Met and in movie theaters for the Metropolitan Opera Live in HD. In 2015 Opera News stated that "Ying Fang sings with exquisite simplicity and directness. The twenty-eight-year-old soprano never forces her sound or indulges in coloratura 'flash.' She is incapable of vulgarity; her dignity is unshakeable, and her powers of persuasion are sovereign."
Life and career
Born in Ningbo, China, Ying earned a bachelor of music degree from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music where she was a pupil of Jingzu Bian. She went on to earn a master's degree and an artist diploma from the Juilliard School in New York City under the tutelage of Cynthia Hoffmann before becoming a member of The Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program. She performed in several operas at the Juilliard Opera Center, including portraying the roles of Fanny in Rossini's La cambiale di matrimonio (2012), The Spirit of the Boy in Britten’s Curlew River (2012), Zerlina in Don Giovanni (2012), Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro (2015), and the title role in Iphigénie en Aulide (2015, with conductor Jane Glover).
Ying has performed several roles with the Aspen Opera Theater, including Maria in West Side Story (2011) and Pamina in The Magic Flute (2012). In 2013 she made her debut at the Wolf Trap Opera Company as La Contessa di Folleville in Il viaggio a Reims, and returned there the following year as Cleopatra in Handel's Giulio Cesare. In 2014 she sang Konstanze's arias from Mozart's Die Entführung aus dem Serail under conductor James Levine for a concert co-sponsored by the Metropolitan Opera and the Juilliard School at the Peter Jay Sharp Theater. In 2015 she performed arias by Mozart, Massenet, and Donizetti in concert with The Florida Orchestra.
Ying made her debut with the Metropolitan Opera in "The Met's Summer Recital Series" in the Bronx's Crotona Park in July 2013, singing arias from Don Pasquale, Semele, Alcina, and The Pirates of Penzance among other works. The following September she made her debut on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera House as the Female Voice and Podtochina's daughter in Shostakovich's The Nose. She has subsequently appeared at the Met as Barbarina in The Marriage of Figaro (2014), the Dew Fairy in Hansel and Gretel (2014), and the Shepherd in Tannhäuser (2015). In 2016 she returned to the Met as Giannetta in L'elisir d'amore. In March 2017, she appeared at the Met as Ilia in Mozart’s Idomeneo.
In addition to her work as an opera singer, Ying also performs works from the concert repertoire. In 2013 she was the soprano soloist in Carl Orff's Carmina Burana with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts. In 2014 she performed Bach's Wedding Cantata and Heitor Villa-Lobos's Bachiana Brasileira No. 5 with the Santa Cruz Symphony. That same year she was the soprano soloist in Felix Mendelssohn's A Midsummer Night's Dream with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. In 2015 she was the soprano soloist in Gustav Mahler's Symphony No. 4 with both the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra at Benson Great Hall and with the Mediterranean Youth Orchestra at the Festival d'Avignon and Aix-en-Provence Festival. In 2016 she performed as the soprano soloist in Mahler's Symphony No. 2 with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the Ravinia Festival.
- Robert Turnbull (March 4, 2010). "China's First Lady of Opera". The New York Times.
- "Ying Fang". Chamber Music Society of New York. Retrieved November 13, 2015.
- Robin Pogrebin (February 9, 2015). "Lincoln Center Segal Awards Expand Field of Honorees". The New York Times.
- "Ying Fang: Soprano". Opera News. 80 (4). October 2015.
- Kathryn Shattuck (January 16, 2015). "What's on TV Friday". The New York Times.
- James R. Oestreich (April 26, 2015). "Review: I Fagiolini, Richard Goode and the Juilliard Opera in Concert". The New York Times.
- Anthony Tommasini (February 11, 2015). "Review: In 'Iphigénie en Aulide,' a Daughter's Ultimate Sacrifice". The New York Times.
- Zachary Woolfe (February 5, 2012). Rossini One-Act Operas, the Early Funny Ones. The New York Times.
- Vivien Schweitzer (April 27, 2012). "Threat of a Close Shave in Mozart's Lecher's Tale". The New York Times.
- Harvey Steiman (August 19, 2011). "Review: Aspen Opera Theater bites off a bit too much in 'West Side Story'". The Aspen Times.
- Stewart Oksenhorn (July 14, 2012). "Aspen opera center director dives into patriotic theme". The Aspen Times.
- Anthony Tommasini (February 12, 2014). "Young Talents Working With Those Comedians Stravinsky and Berlioz". The New York Times.
- Henry Adams (March 3, 2015). "The Florida Orchestra: March Concerts Offer Opera, Star Wars, Russian Favorites & More". The Osprey Observer.
- "Ying Fang". The Metropolitan Opera Performance Archives. Retrieved November 13, 2015.
- Anthony Tommasini (September 23, 2014). "Season Opens, and the Intrigue Is at Last Onstage: Metropolitan Opera Opens With 'Le Nozze di Figaro'". The New York Times.
- "Soprano: Ying Fang". Metropolitan Opera Artist Bios. Retrieved November 19, 2015.
- "Idomeneo: Cast for March 17, 2017".
- "NSO at Wolf Trap: Emil de Cou, conductor / Carmina Burana and Pictures at an Exhibition". kennedy-center.org. Retrieved November 16, 2015.
- Heather J. Morris (November 12, 2014). "Music review: Santa Cruz Symphony charms audiences with youthful exuberance". Play Monterey Bay.
- Tim Smith (May 30, 2014). "Baltimore Symphony, Folger Theatre present vivid 'Midsummer Night's Dream'". The Baltimore Sun.
- Opera News Desk (July 2, 2015). "Festival D'Aix-en-Provence Launches 2015 Season Today". BroadwayWorld.com.
- Rob Hubbard (March 13, 2015). "Review: SPCO's smaller Mahler offering showed composer's lighter side". St. Paul Pioneer Press.
- "Announcing the 2016 CSO Residency". ravinia.org. Retrieved November 13, 2015.