Two-time Grammy Award-winning Mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke has been called a “luminous standout” (New York Times) and “equal parts poise, radiance and elegant directness” (Opera News). She is sought after by the world’s leading orchestras, opera companies, and chamber music ensembles for her versatile repertoire. A devoted interpreter of new music, she has premiered works by composers Mark Adamo, Mason Bates, William Bolcom, Jake Heggie, Pierre Jalbert, Laura Kaminsky, Lowell Liebermann, Nico Muhly, John Musto, Marc Neikrug, Kevin Puts, Augusta Read Thomas, and Joby Talbot. Ms. Cooke has sung at the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, English National Opera, Seattle Opera, Opéra National de Bordeaux, and Gran Teatre del Liceu, among others, and with over 70 symphony orchestras worldwide frequently in the works of Mahler under leading conductors including Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Gustavo Dudamel, Bernard Haitink, James Levine, Edo de Waart, Trevor Pinnock, Harry Bicket, Michael Tilson Thomas, Riccardo Muti, and Sir Mark Elder.
During the 2020–21 Season, Ms. Cooke returns to the San Francisco Opera for Poul Ruders’ A Handmaid’s Tale and performs the world premiere of Joby Talbot’s The Diving Bell and the Butterfly at Dallas Opera. On the concert stage, she reunites with the Radio Filharmonisch Orkest for Das Lied von der Erde at The Royal Concertgebouw, sings Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 with the Minnesota Orchestra, performs Rilke Songs with composer and conductor Michael Tilson Thomas with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and returns to the Houston Symphony for Beethoven. Alongside Soprano Susanna Phillips, she makes recital debuts in Baltimore, Portland, and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
As a dedicated recitalist, Ms. Cooke was presented by Young Concert Artists in her widely acclaimed New York and Washington debuts at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall and the Kennedy Center. She has also appeared in recital at Alice Tully Hall, The Wigmore Hall, the Kennedy Center, and the 92nd St. Y. Her recordings can be found on the Hyperion, BIS, Chandos, Naxos, Bridge Records, Yarlung, GPR Records, and Sono Luminus labels. Most recently she appears on five recordings including L’enfance du Christ with Sir Andrew Davis and the Melbourne Symphony on Chandos, Bates’ The (R) evolution of Steve Jobs on Pentatone which won the 2019 Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording, Mahler’s 2nd Symphony with Osmo Vänskä and the Minnesota Orchestra on BIS, Berlioz’s Roméo et Juliette with Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony and Sasha Cooke live a collection of her performances from the Music@Menlo chamber music festival released on their label.
A graduate of Rice University and The Juilliard School, Sasha Cooke also attended the Music Academy of the West, the Aspen Music Festival, the Ravinia Festival’s Steans Music Institute, the Wolf Trap Foundation, the Marlboro Music Festival, the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, and Seattle Opera and Central City Opera’s Young Artist Training Programs. Ms. Cooke has given masterclasses throughout the United States and Canada. She lives near Houston, TX with daughters Evelyn and Julia and husband baritone Kelly Markgraf.