Soprano Rebekah Howell is making her mark with "plenty of high notes" (The Herald Times). This season, she made her role and company debut as Queen of the Night (The Magic Flute) in October with Opera Louisiane. She will also return to Chautauqua Opera as an Apprentice Artist this summer to make two role debuts - Zerlina (Don Giovanni) and Cunegonde (Candide).
In November 2015, Ms. Howell made quite an impression as Adele in Robin Guarino's new production of Die Fledermaus at Indiana University with "comic gusto." (The Herald Times) Later that season in April 2016, Ms. Howell also received praise for her portrayal of Ado Annie in Gabriel Barre's new production of Oklahoma! at Indiana University. Ms. Howell was hailed as "a hoot as the winsome Ado Annie," who "captures the spirit and comic aspects of her role." (Indiana Public Media, The Herald Times)
Ms. Howell has completed two seasons as a Studio Artist with Chautauqua Opera. Her first season with Chautauqua Opera was in 2014, when she sang the role of Samantha and covered the role of Sara (The Ballad of Baby Doe). Ms. Howell also performed the title role in their 2014 Operatic Review for Young Audiences (Alice & Alex in Operaland), and she performed as Zerlina (Don Giovanni) in the Studio Artists Scenes Program. At the end of the summer, Ms. Howell was a recipient of a Studio Artist Encouragement Award. In 2017, she covered the role of Norina (Don Pasquale) and performed scenes from the opera in the pre-show Operalogue performances. She also performed the world premier of composer in residence Gity Razaz's setting of Edward Lear's "The Broom, the Shovel, the Poker and the Tong." In the Studio Artists Scenes Program, she also performed as Olympia (Les contes d'Hoffmann). At the close of the season, she received the Jay Lesenger Returning Studio Artist Award, an invitation to join Chautauqua Opera once again in 2018 as an Apprentice Artist.
Recently Ms. Howell was the winner of the Mid Texas Symphony's 2016 Young Artist Competition. In May 2017, she made her professional symphonic debut singing “Par le rang et par l’opulence… Salut à la France” from La fille du régiment and “Glitter and be gay” from Candide under the direction of Maestro David Mairs.
An avid art song enthusiast, Ms. Howell performed as a Young Artist with SongFest in 2015, where she was one of the first recipients of the Ruth Williams Scholarship. During her time there, she worked with exceptional faculty artists including John Aler, Amy Burton, Jake Heggie, Graham Johnson, Martin Katz, Susanne Mentzer, Ann Murray, John Musto, and Dawn Upshaw.
In the summer of 2013, Ms. Howell performed with Opera in the Ozarks as a member of the Studio Program. During her time there, she covered the role of Mabel (The Pirates of Penzance) and performed in the outreach production as Clorinda and the Fairy Godmother (Cinderella). Ms. Howell also performed as Blondchen (Die Entführung aus dem Serail) in the Opera Scenes Program and was a featured soloist in one of the Taste of Opera gala events and the Chamber Ensemble Concert. At the end of the summer, Ms. Howell received peer-elected awards for Best Colleague and Best Female Performer in the Studio Artists Program.
Ms. Howell was awarded 2nd Place at the Bel Canto Vocal Competition in Chicago, IL in 2017. In 2016, Ms. Howell also won 2nd Place in the Student Division of the Orpheus National Vocal Competition and 2nd Place in the Scholarship Division of the National Opera Association Carolyn Bailey and Dominick Argento Vocal Competition. Ms. Howell was also the national winner of the Music Teacher's National Association 2014 Young Artist Vocal Competition. In the Texoma Region of the National Association of Teachers of Singing Competitions, Ms. Howell was a frequent finalist, winning both the Edward Baird Singer of the Year Award in 2014 and the Grady Harlan Award for Most Promising Professional Voice in 2013. In 2014, Ms. Howell was a finalist in the Dallas Opera Guild Competition, and in 2015 she received an Encouragement Award at the New Orleans District Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.
Currently based in Houston, Texas, Ms. Howell pursued her graduate studies in the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University where she studied with American soprano Carol Vaness. During her time at Indiana University, Ms. Howell served as an Associate Instructor of Voice. In 2016, Ms. Howell was awarded a Georgina Joshi International Fellowship, one of the Jacobs School of Music's highest honors, funding her studies abroad in Europe. Ms. Howell also worked as a dresser with the IU Opera & Ballet Theater's Costuming Team for the 2016-17 Season. Ms. Howell also holds a Bachelors of Music Degree in Voice Performance from Baylor University where she studied with Robert Best.