Over the past few seasons, Jill Gardner made her Lyric Opera of Chicago debut performing Nedda in I Pagliacci and covering Mimi in La Bohème, her Florida Grand Opera debut as Musetta in La Bohème, her Boston Lyric Opera debut as Mimi in La Bohème, her Madison Opera debut as Marguerite in Faust, as well as performing Countess Charlotte Malcolm in Sondheim’s A Little Night Music in her debut at Hawaii Opera Theatre, where she returned as Helmwige in Die Walküre. In concert, she performed Beethoven’s 9th Symphony and Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music with the Syracuse Symphony, Verdi’s Requiem in Dallas, and a Puccini concert with the Washington Chorus.
Additional engagements from recent seasons include a return to the Glimmerglass Opera as Eurydice in Orpheus in the Underworld, Margaret Johnson in the first opera house performances of The Light in the Piazza with Piedmont Opera, Hanna Glawari in The Merry Widow with the Syracuse Opera, the title role in Susannah with New York Opera Projects, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni and Tosca with the Mercury Opera, and multiple performances with the Tri-Cities Opera including Cio-Cio San in Madama Butterfly, Violetta in La Traviata, and Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro. Ms. Gardner also performed the role of Madama Erlecca in Cimarosa’s Li Sposi per Accidenti at Studio Lirico in Cortona, Italy.
In the summer 2006, Ms. Gardner was a member of the Young American Artist Program at the Glimmerglass Opera, where she created the role of Madame Loiseau in the world premiere of Stephen Hartke’s The Greater Good, which was recorded on the Naxos Label. Also at the Glimmerglass Opera, Ms. Gardner added two new roles to her repertoire in cover assignments: Elle in Poulenc’s La Voix Humaine and the title role of Jenufa.
She has been the recipient of the Richard F. Gold Career Grant of the Shoshana Foundation-NYC, a Special Opportunity Award from the New York Foundation of the Arts, and an Emerging Artist Grant from the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Division of the North Carolina Arts Council. In February 2004, Ms. Gardner participated in the Public Masterclass on Puccini Style for the George London Foundation with Catherine Malfitano. She received a Master of Music degree in vocal performance from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance from Centenary College of Louisiana.