Brilliant young Thai-American soprano Ariya Sawadivong is increasing demand for operatic and concert performances around the world.
A native of Asheville, North Carolina, Ariya graduated from the prestigious Academy of Vocal Arts (AVA) in Philadelphia where she studied with Ruth Golden. She previously earned her bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG), where she studied voice with Dr. James Bumgardner. While at AVA, she performed many leading roles including the title roles in Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta and Janácek’s Kat’a Kabanova, Tatyana in Eugene Onegin, Despina in Così fan tutte, Suzel in L’amico Fritz, Woglinde and Wellgunde in Das Rheingold, and Gilda in Rigoletto.
Ariya portrayed the role of Mimì in La bohème with Bozeman Opera in Bozeman, Montana. Amongst her frequent appearances on the concert platform, she has sung the soprano solos in Orff’s Carmina Burana with the Bucks County Symphony, and Vivaldi’s Gloria with the Asheville Symphony Orchestra.
The recipient of many awards and scholarships, Ariya placed second in the Palm Beach Opera Vocal Competition where she performed in the Grand Winner’s Concert with the Palm Beach Opera Orchestra under the baton of Maestro Kamal Khan. She has also received an encouragement award at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, placed third in the Mario Lanza Competition in Philadelphia and was a 2007 finalist in the Loren L. Zachary Society National Vocal Competition.
In 2011, Ariya joined the principal ensemble of Opera Australia and appeared as soloist with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra in their Puccini Gala singing opposite the renowned New Zealand tenor Simon O’Neill.
Recent engagements include Opera in the Arboretum (with Rosario La Spina and Milijana Nikolic), Something Wonderful (the music of Rodgers and Hammerstein) for Sydney Philharmonia at the Sydney Opera House and Verismo at Melbourne Town Hall for Logan Musical Events.
Ariya sang the role of Frasquita in Carmen for Opera Australia’s Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour in March and April, 2013. This production was released worldwide on CD and DVD. The following year she joined the touring production of the King and I and, in 2015, will appear in Singapore as soprano soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 8.