Recognized for her grace and warmth of tone, soprano Catherine Ortega Spitzer is an accomplished performer currently based in South Florida. She is a versatile soloist of elegance and strength, comfortable performing in a variety of genres from opera, to oratorio, to musical theater.
Catherine most recently appeared as a Professional Artist In Residence with Gulfshore Opera performing in a number of concerts throughout Southwest Florida. Prior to that, she sang the role of Rosalinda in First Coast Opera’s New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day performances of Die Fledermaus. She was also featured as the soprano soloist in Handel’s Messiah with the Miami Oratorio Society.
Last seasons’s engagements included a performance with the Miami Oratorio Society as the soprano soloist in a concert of Easter selections from Handel’s Messiah as well as a concert performance with Vero Beach Opera in La Bella Italia “Remembering Sergio Franchi.” She she was also thrilled to sing selections from musical theater, operetta, and opera for Vero Beach Opera’s Valentine’s Day themed parlor concert.
After the pause in live performances in 2020, Catherine returned to the stage in the spring of 2021 singing the title role of Penelope Ann in “Penelope Ann’s Revenge,” a world premiere by First Coast Opera and A Classic Theatre with music by Curtis Tucker and lyrics by Nelson Sheeley.
Catherine was scheduled to make her New York City debut with Little Opera Theatre of NY in collaboration with New Vintage Baroque singing the role of Aminta in Mozart’s The Shepherd King in the spring of 2020. She was also set to return to her alma mater as a guest artist singing the role of Flaminia in Haydn’s Il mondo della luna. Unfortunately, those performances, along with many others were cancelled or postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
In January of 2020, Catherine sang with the Sunrise Pops Orchestra in their “Opera Extravaganza” concert, performing selections from favorite operas and operettas. Prior to that, Catherine returned to her alma mater as a guest artist, singing the role of Rosalinda in their annual opera production of Die Fledermaus.
Catherine made her mainstage debut starring in the role of Mimì in La Bohème with Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theater and sang with Chicago Opera Theater’s Young Artist program. During her time with COT, Ms. Spitzer covered the title role in The Clever One and Bubikopf in The Emperor of Atlantis. She also covered the roles of The Queen of the Night in Mozart’s The Magic Flute and Madeline Usher in The Fall of the House of Usher.
Awards and Honors
Past awards include an Encouragement Grant from the Schuyler Foundation for Career Bridges and the Edith Newfield Award in the Musicians Club of Women Annual Music Scholarship Auditions. Ms. Spitzer has twice been a semi-finalist in the Florida Grand Opera YPO Competition and has also been a two time finalist in the Union League Civic & Arts Foundation Annual Classical Music Scholarship Auditions.
A two time winner of the New World School of the Arts Concerto Competition, Ms. Spitzer has also received scholarships from the Music Club of Hollywood Florida, Florida Federation of Music Clubs, and Music Scholarship Society.
Her previous operatic credits include La Contessa di Folleville in Rossini’s Il viaggio a Reims, Die Königin der Nacht in Die Zauberflöte, Le Feu in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, Pamina in Mozart’s The Magic Flute, Fiordiligi in Così Fan Tutte, and Amelia in Menotti’s Amelia Goes to the Ball. She has been the soloist in Orff’s Carmina Burana, Handel’s Messiah, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Rutter’s Mass of the Children and Requiem.
Education and Training
She received her bachelor’s degree from the New World School of the Arts in Miami, FL and has also attended the Chautauqua Institution Voice Program. Ms. Spitzer earned both a master’s degree in voice performance and a professional diploma in opera in from the Chicago College of the Performing Arts at Roosevelt University where she has also taught as an adjunct professor of lyric diction.
In addition to her vocal training, Catherine has also studied the Meisner acting technique and is proficient in both Italian and Spanish. She has sung with a number of professional ensembles including the Grant Park Chorus, Chicago Symphony Chorus, Cathedral Schola Cantorum at Holy Name Cathedral, The Lakeside Singers, and UNUM Vocal Company.