American Emily Martin, lyric soprano, stage director, producer, and Assistant Professor at Bucknell University in Pennsylvania, has regularly received acclaim for her “enchanting iridescence” (The Sarasota Herald Tribune) and has been called “dramatically energetic and skillful” (The Philadelphia Inquirer). Her “acting ability, seamlessly interwoven with her singing” (Charlotte Herald-Tribune) is apparent in her performances with such companies as the Santa Fe Opera (Peter Grimes), Palm Beach Opera (Thâis), Nevada Opera (Turandot), Chautauqua Opera (Cosi Fan Tutte), and Skylight Music Theatre (Midnight Angel, The Little Prince, Don Giovanni, and Rosina), among others.
As a founding member in 2016 of trio Women on the Verge (WOV), Emily joins Canadian soprano Elizabeth McDonald and Canadian pianist Kathryn Tremills to form a dynamic trio of female musicians that are experienced performers, teachers, and mentors.
Through musical performance, WOV focuses on the stories of women, both historical and fictional, that are relevant to contemporary culture to help create a dialogue about women’s experience. The trio is committed to commissioning new repertoire with future generations in mind: repertoire that expands the sonic possibilities of art song and questions the thin stereotypes that have restricted female characters in Classical music.
As stage director and producer, the 2019/2020 season finds Emily directing a workshop in NYC of Friday after Friday, with music by Leanna Kirchoff and libretto by Rachel Peters supported by Opera America’s Opera Grants for Female Composers program. As a producer, Emily has put in over a year of work into a week-long program in November at Bucknell University Dayeinu! Learning from the Holocaust. Dayeinu! will offer the Bucknell community, central PA community, and regional educators the opportunity to learn how to teach the Holocaust effectively, and how to apply the lessons of the Holocaust to contemporary concerns about rising nationalism and ongoing world conflicts. Musical performances, talks, workshops, and films will be offered to demonstrate how the arts have been used to commemorate, contextualize, and heal from widescale trauma. The week will culminate in a performance of Brundibar composed by Hans Krasa directed and produced by Emily with the Bucknell Opera Theatre.
As an advocate of social justice, Emily has found various ways to use her art to explore social equity. From beginning an opera education program introducing opera and music to the underserved communities of Central Pennsylvania, curating recitals around the world showcasing Syrian women’s poetry, to organizing and producing a week of nationally recognized Holocaust centered events, Emily is continually looking for new ways to intertwine the vocal arts with advocacy.
An experienced yoga and movement teacher, Emily is interested in combining movement with music-making to produce awareness of the physical body and optimum sound. With two yoga certifications, Emily has taught many musician-specific movement classes, including at the Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program, Mannes School of Music, Opera Colorado, Taos Opera Institute, and the University of Colorado. Emily’s primary focus is on teaching proactive strategies to prevent initial injury, rather than reactive responses once the injury has occurred. From yoga sequences, myofascial release, meditation, and wellness information, Emily strives to provide musicians with knowledge beyond what they receive in their applied lesson studio so they can be take-charge of their overall instrument in the practice room and on the performance stage. She has presented on her wellness research at the Performing Arts Medical Association National Conference, the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) National Conference, and the College Music Society (CMS) Wellness Webinars.