Described by The Times as offering “charming, sparkling, and exquisite singing,” Northern Irish soprano Aoife Miskelly is known for her extensive breadth of repertoire and versatility as a singing actress. She is an award-winning graduate and Associate of the Royal Academy of Music London.
After several seasons singing major roles as a principal soprano at Oper Köln, she is now a freelance soloist. Her career takes her across Europe and beyond, with appearances at major houses including the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, Hyogo Performing Arts Center, Japan and the Royal Opera House Oman, as well as with Irish National Opera, NI Opera, Nevill Holt Opera, Opera North and Welsh National Opera.
Blessed with perfect pitch, Aoife Miskelly’s contemporary experience includes Cecily Cardew in the Irish premiere of Gerald Barry’s The Importance of Being Earnest, Harey in the German premiere of Detlev Glanet’s Solaris and Sophie Scholl in the world premiere of Peter Maxwell Davies’ Kommilitonen!, alongside premieres by Donnacha Dennehy, Jonathan Dove and Mark-Anthony Turnage.
Her repertoire further includes Helena A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Female Chorus The Rape of Lucretia, The Governess The Turn of the Screw, Vixen Sharp-Ears The Cunning Little Vixen, Thérèse Les mamelles de Tirésias, Snegurochka The Snow Maiden and Gilda Rigoletto.
Working with conductors including Julia Jones, Laurence Cummings, Tomáš Hanus, Rafael Payare, Raphaël Pichon, Xavier Roth, Essa-Pekka Salonen, Yutako Sado, Markus Stenz and Peter Whelan, she has performed with orchestras including the Academy of Ancient Music, Britten Sinfonia, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, the Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia, the Irish Baroque Orchestra, the Irish Chamber Orchestra, the RTÉ Concert and National Symphony Orchestras, Ensemble Pygmalion, the Akademie für Alte Musik, Berlin, the Gürznich Orchester and the NDR Radio Philharmionie.
Her concert repertoire includes J. S. Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, St John and St Matthew Passions, Beethoven’s Christus am Ölberge, Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem, Handel’s Messiah and Saul, Mozart’s Mass in C Minor and Requiem and Poulenc’s Gloria. Her recordings include Ino in the Gramophone Award Nominated recording of Eccles’ Semele with the Academy of Ancient Music conducted by Julian Perkins.
Aoife Miskelly sang Idaspe in the Olivier Award winning production of Vivaldi’s Bajazet presented in collaboration by Irish National Opera and The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Her current engagements include Euridice L’Orfeo for Longborough Festival Opera, Musetta La bohème for Welsh National Opera, Bird Blond Eckbert for Potsdamer Winteroper, the St John Passion with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, Handel Laudate Pueri with the Akademie für Alte Musik, Berlin, and Messiah with the Ulster Orchestra, Elijah in Southwark Cathedral, Pierrot Lunaire with Belfast’s Hard Rain Ensemble and Tavener’s Schuon Lieder at the 2023 Temple Festival. At the 2022 Beverly Chamber Music Festival she appears in Dedication and Opus Alpha.
Please note that this biography is not to be used for programmes. Current information is available on request.
Idapse: Bajazet / Irish National Opera at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, 2022
“Aoife Miskelly possesses the most beautiful instrument in the cast, revealing an exquisite pearly soprano in her opening “Nasce rosa lusinghiera”. Miskelly’s “Anche il mar” dazzled with her consistency of tone and confident coloratura.”
“Aoife Miskelly was a lively Idapse, singing with tremendous precision, especially the turbulent aria ‘Anche il mar.”
Ino: Semele (Eccles) / Academy of Ancient Music CD 2021
“…Aoife Miskelly’s Ino, especially touching in her unrequited love for Athamas.”
Opera (CD of the Month)
Vixen Sharp-Ears: The Cunning Little Vixen / Welsh National Opera 2019
“Aoife Miskelly here joined a notable roll call of sopranos in the title role: a vibrant and sassy interpretation, both coy and knowing, the voice as lithe as her stage presence.”
“…sung by Aoife Miskelly with gleeful vitality.”
Susanna: Le nozze di Figaro / Nevill Holt Opera 2018
“Aoife Miskelly’s Susanna was vocally impressive and acutely characterised, the emphasis on charm and cunning rather than knockabout humour.”
Despina: Così fan tutte / Northern Ireland Opera 2018
“Aoife Miskelly’s Despina was a vivid creation bringing a vocal touch of knowing, street-savvy cynicism to bear.”
Snegurochka: The Snow Maiden / Opera North 2017
“Aoife Miskelly’s light, frothy soprano was perfect for Snegurochka, airy and agile in her coloratura entrance aria, fragile and affecting in the finale.”
“Aoife Miskelly sings the part of the Snow Maiden with a pleasing, flutey tone…”
“Miskelly was a touchingly lovelorn heroine, with a voice that’s capable of crystalline purity and tremulous ardour.”