Christina Hager has been gaining a solid reputation for her consistently rich voice and stunning high notes. Widely praised by audiences and critics alike for her “masterful interpretive and communicative abilities….and ability to captivate an audience,” the Wichita Eagle> recently called her performance "commanding."
Of her recent performance with New York City's Queer Urban Orchestra, she "showed warmth in voice and character, along with stunning high notes in 'Un bel di vedremo.' Her legato, color, and acting places her among the great sopranos famous for this role."
New roles to Ms. Hager's repertoire include the title roles in Suor Angelica, Manon Lescaut, Madama Butterfly, Mimi in La Boheme, Nedda in Pagliacci, and Liu in Turandot. Other favorite roles include Carmen, Composer in Ariadne auf Naxos, and Santuzza in Cavalleria Rusticana.
A champion of new music, she created the role of Sadie in Ricky Ian Gordon's Morning Star, and more recently the title role in Tamar da Timna with Garden State Opera in the world premiere of the production. Commissioned by the Assisi Music Festival to Fulvio Ghirardini, its Composer in Residence, is an interpretation of the biblical story of Tamar, Judah’s daughter in law, in Genesis 38.
Earlier this year, Ms. Hager created the title role of The Queen in the New York workshop of The Emperor and the Queen.
She was seen as Musetta in La Boheme with South Texas Lyric Opera, and joined Light Opera of New York for New Moon, where she was seen as Julie.
She also returned to her favorite role of Nedda in Pagliacci for her company debut with Amore opera.
In 2012-2013 season, Ms. Hager joined Opera Saratoga for Salute Italiana!, where she sang selected arias and scenes from Turandot, Pagliacci, La Boheme, and Adriana Lecouvreur alongside husband, tenor Neil Darling. At the end of the summer, she joined Salt Marsh Opera for their Broadway Night on the Lawn singing similar repertoire. She also debuted with New Jersey Light Opera, where she performed in Le nozze di Figaro as the Countess.
In the spring, she performed great opera hits with Queer Urban Orchestra in NYC, along with a series of performances with Opera on Tap and Brooklyn Wind Symphony, and joined American Lyric Theater in for their premiere of The Turing Project.
That summer she was seen in DiCapo Opera Theater’s extended run of Most Happy Fella as Cleo (cover).
In spring of 2011 she made her soprano debut with New York Lyric Opera singing Nedda in their concert of Pagliacci and later in the month, Santuzza in Cavalleria Rusticana with Martha Cardona Theater in NYC.
In 2011 Ms. Hager had an exciting return to Light Opera Oklahoma to sing the title role in Evita, of which The Tulsa World called her “Don’t Cry for Argentina” “perfect.
It's chilling, full of emotion, and easily the best thing she sings all night -- maybe even the best thing anyone sings all night." Last summer she successfully debuted with the company, performing the man-hating shrew Kate/Lilli in Cole Porter's Kiss me Kate.
In the fall of 2010, Ms. Hager made her debut with the Lyric Opera of Kansas City singing Mercedes in their acclaimed production of Carmen.
Before switching to spinto-soprano repertoire Ms. Hager successfully performed the roles of Dorabella in Così fan tutte, Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, Amneris in Aida, and repeat performances of Suzuki in Madama Butterfly.
In 2009-2010 season, Ms. Hager was re-engaged by Opera New Jersey for a series of highlight concerts where she sang the title role of Carmen. These concerts previewed their own production of the opera starring Kirstin Chávez.
She also returned to Wichita Grand Opera, where she sang Katisha in their production of The Mikado. She then made her debut with New York's Martha Cardona Opera Project, singing selections of Maddalena in Rigoletto and Zita in Gianni Schicchi in various staged concerts around the city.
2008-2009 was incredibly busy for Ms. Hager, started with her performance of Dorabella in Così fan tutte, directed with a contemporary spin by the extremely talented John de los Santos. Ms. Hager then revisited the character Suzuki in Madama Butterfly, and made her Wichita Grand Opera debut singing in H.M.S. Pinafore, where she recently returned to cover Amneris in Aida, a role she was invited to then sing with Center City Opera in Feburary of 2009.
In March, Ms. Hager returned to Shreveport Opera, where she performed Despina in March of 2009, conducted by Maestro Timothy Long. In April, she joined Skylight Opera as a Resident Artist, where she sang in several concerts of operatic hits and musical theatre favorites. Later that summer, Ms. Hager joined Opera New Jersey for their festival season.
Ms. Hager made her New York City debut in December of 2008 with a concert at the Lincoln Center Library. Additionally, she performed a series of holiday concerts with Opera New Jersey.
Equally at home in the classical repertoire and contemporary opera, created the role of Sadie in the world premiere of Morning Star, where she worked closely with the composer Ricky Ian Gordon, and was hailed by the composer for her “prowess…dramatic maturity, and specificity not often seen in singers her age.”
Drawing from a rich well of musical training and stage performance, Ms. Hager’s favorite musical theatre roles include Marguerite in The Scarlet Pimpernel, Smitty in How to Succeed in Business…, Carrie in Carousel, and both Virtue and Charity in Anything Goes. Her versatile training has also led her into the arena of choreography. As resident choreographer for the Shreveport Opera in 2007-2008, recent shows include Carmen and La traviata, as well as several Broadway reviews in the Ark-La-Tex area in conjunction with the Shreveport Opera.
A native of Kansas City, Ms Hager recited her Bachelor of Music degree at Texas Christian University, and regularly sang in the Fort Worth Opera. She went on to receive her Masters of Music at the University of Houston, under the tutelage of renowned tenor Joseph Evans.
A graduate of Seagle Music Colony, Shreveport Opera’s Resident Artist Program, and Sherrill Milnes’ VoicExperience, she had ample opportunities to showcase her stand-out stage presence, including as a soloist at Epcot Center in Orlando.
She has had the extreme honor to work closely with numerous mentors, including Jennifer Larmore, Tito Capobianco, Ricky Ian Gordon, and opera icon Sherrill Milnes.