Courtney Ann Mills
Soprano, USA
Courtney Ann Mills is a native of Illinois and had the opportunity to study at the
world-reknowned Interlochen Arts Academy. It was there that she discovered her life-long love
of opera. While attending Indiana University, Ms. Mills studied at the Mozarteum in Salzburg,
Austria and Chautauqua during the summer. Ms. Mills then studied at Metropolitan Opera
Lindemann Young Artist Program, Verbier Music Festival Young Artist Program and Cardiff
International Academy of Voice. Ms. Mills is equally at home on the operatic stage and in the
concert hall. Recently Ms. Mills performed Amelia in Ballo in Maschera with Union Avenue
Opera in St. Louis. She has appeared at the Chautauqua Opera as First Lady in The Magic Flute
and the cover for the title role in Verdi’s masterpiece, Luisa Miller. While at the Metropolitan
Opera, she also made her debut as the High Priestess in Verdi’s Aida. Ms. Mills has appeared in
concert at the Auditorium du Louvre, Carnegie Hall, Auditorio di Zaragoza, Bruno Walter
Auditorium and Goethe Institute as well as other revered stages across the United Kingdom,
Austria, Switzerland and Italy. Ms. Mills has won awards and received recognition from the
Olga Forrei Foundation, Georg Solti Foundation  Montserrat Caballe Competition, Licia
Albanese Puccini Foundation, Giulio Gari Foundation and Gerda Lissner Foundation
Competition. Most recently, she was named the 2012 Nico Castel Master Singer by
Distinguished Concerts International - New York and New York Opera Studio. Future
engagements include a concert with Distinguished Concerts International of New York and New
York Opera Studio at Carnegie Hall.
New York Times Music Review | Shakespeare Society
The Immortal Bard and His Operatic Groupies
….. The final pairing was, fittingly, the strongest. First Anika Noni Rose and Ms. Emond
read Desdemona’s final scene from “Othello”; Ms. Rose even sang the “Willow” song
in a lovely, pure nonoperatic voice. Then came Verdi’s version, as sung by Courtney
Mills, a soprano with the Met’s young-artist program: a wonderful talent, with a voice of
size and beauty, as well as a dramatic commitment that made this excerpt a genuinely
moving performance.
WQXR:  Operavore  To Be a Good Singer, It Helps to Be
a 'Lissner'
Thursday, May 26, 2011 - 09:59 AM
By Fred Plotkin
…. On May 23 I attended a performance at Zankel Hall that featured an aria each by
thirteen of the top finishers in the Gerda Lissner Foundation Vocal Competition. The
money that is disbursed is a bequest from Mrs. Lissner, who was a subscriber to the
Metropolitan Opera for 77 years. The grants provide “encouragement and assistance
to young artists toward achieving their goals [and] are imperative for the continuation of
this demanding art form.”….
Thirteen Singers to Watch
… Courtney Mills… Many gave polished performances and most showed real
personality, character and sensitivity. They made you want to look at them as well as
listen to them…. The two Wagnerians, Courtney Mills and Issachah Savage, sang like
gods-in-waiting.. I heard Italianate potential in both of them and, if their voices evolve
as I think they might, these two could be the Desdemona and Otello we will listen to in
about a decade. Mills might even have bel canto potential. Remember, Joan Sutherland
was headed toward Wagner until Richard Bonynge changed her direction.
The Opera Insider:  
Another competition...
02-22-2012 – Meche Kroop
I confess I am a glutton for opera, following Friday’s George London Competition with
Saturday’s Nico Castel International Master Singer Competition, the second annual
one presented by Distinguished Concerts International New York and the New York
Opera Studio. Our hosts were Artistic Director Nico Castel, well-known diction coach
and scholar in the field and his wife Carol Castel, General Manager. Eight finalists were
judged on Oratorio and Opera by a panel of judges--Mr. Castel himself, conductor
Jonathan Griffith, composer/conductor Timothy Seelig and recording artist Clay Aiken.
Two first prizes were awarded, one to soprano Courtney A. Mills whose huge voice
made the very chandeliers tremble with Rossini’s “Inflammatus” during the Oratorio
Section and dazzled the audience with Verdi’s “Ritorna vincitor” from Aida, which she
sang with great passion and beautiful phrasing. This is a voice that makes you sit up
and take notice.
The Chautauquan Daily :    ‘Over-the-top musical pleasure’
August 7, 2011 by The Chautauquan Daily ‘Opera bids goodbye to 2011 Season with ‘fabulous
fun’ performance with CSO’                Anthony Bannon | Guest Reviewer
…And with that, and with a standing applause at 10:45 p.m. in the Amphitheater, the
season for the Chautauqua Opera Young Artists came to its end, hugs and tears offstage,
cheery good feelings from the community that received Chautauqua Opera’s annual pops
concert with the full Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra.
…. But the program sidestepped a bit from Broadway to include “Vilia” from Franz
Lehar’s 1905 operetta The Merry Widow. They got away with it, since Harnick did a
translation of the lyrics. And it was an opportunity to showcase Courtney Mills, with her
rich, luxurious — sumptuous — interpretation that brought down the house and brought
out Mills for another bow.
The gift of the evening was the opportunity to hear these rising stars in a variety of roles
— Mills, for instance, later playing for grins and heartfelts with a far smaller voice in
“What Makes Me Love Him?” from “The Apple Tree.”
All in all, the level of singing at this year's competition was higher than it's been at
some other recent competitions. There was some shouting and forcing, but there were
also a number of impressive turns. Among them: soprano COURTNEY MILLS, lending
her warm, generous tone to Dich, teure Halle...
-Opera News
"The best reason to buy a ticket to Union Avenue Opera’s production of
Giuseppe Verdi’s “Un ballo in maschera” ("A Masked Ball") is to hear the
remarkable voice of soprano Courtney Mills as Amelia.
This is a voice to be reckoned with, shot through with silver along with plenty of
steel, and big enough to effortlessly fill the auditorium on a pianissimo. Mills, a
native of Springfield, Ill., who seems destined for the hard-to-fill roles of Verdi
and Wagner, uses her gift well, communicating the drama through the words and
music". ~St. Louis Dispatch
The Union Avenue Opera production is beautifully sung, with a cast of impressive
voices headed by the ringing dramatic soprano of Courtney Mills as Amelia. Ms.
Mills provides a most believable characterization
KDHX Radio
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