One of the most promising mezzos of her generation, she made her debut at the Rossini Opera Festival Accademy in Pesaro as Melibea in Viaggio a Reims in 2005 (she returned at R.O.F. in Italiana in Algeri, La Scala di Seta and La Gazzetta) and the same season she debuted at Teatro La Scala in Petite Messe Solennelle, and Dido and Aeneas.. Josè Maria Lo Monaco returned to La Scala then took part in the productions of Donna del Lago, Oberto Conte di San Bonifacio and recently in Le Comte Ory in 2014/2015 season, where she had a great personal success as Isolier staged by L.Pelly, with Juan Diego Florez as Comte.
She has been invited to perform at La Scala in Milan, Teatro Real of Madrid, Teatro Liceu in Barcellona, Opèra Ganier in Paris, Salzburg Festival, La Fenice in Venice, Rossini Opera Festival and Opèra de Lyon, collaborating with conductors such as Roberto Abbado, Fabio Biondi, Ottavio Dantone, Enrique Mazzola, Stefano Montanari, Riccardo Muti, Antonio Pappano, Evelino Pidò, Alberto Zedda, Donato Renezetti, Jean Christophe Spinosì, and directors such as Daniele Abbado (La Cenerentola in Bari), Robert Carsen (Rigoletto at Aix en Provence), Damiano Michieletto (Così fan Tutte, Nozze di Figaro, Gazza Ladra, Barbiere di Siviglia), Cesare Levi (Demofoonte at Opéra Paris/Salzburg, Pier Luigi Pizzi (Incoronazione di Poppea in Florence), Olivier Py (Carmen at Opéra de Lyon) and Graham Vick (Anna Bolena in Palermo).
The many roles sung include Angelina in La Cenerentola, Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Adalgisa in Norma, Giovanna Seymour in Anna Bolena, Elisabetta in Maria Stuarda, Dorabella in Così fan Tutte, Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, Orfeo in Orfeo ed Euridice; Cornelia in Giulio Cesare, Dido in Dido and Aeneas, Carmen in Carmen, Ottavia in Incoronazione di Poppea, Isolier in Le Comte Ory.
She graduated in piano at the Conservatory Vincenzo Bellini (Catania) and began studying singing with mezzo-soprano Bianca Maria Casoni in Milan. Soon afterward, she was invited by many Italian and French opera houses.
She made her debut at the Opéra de Paris and Salzburg Festival as Timante in Jommelli’s Demofoonte with Riccardo Muti, staged by Cesare Levi. More recently she debuted as Carmen at the Opéra National de Lyon. Her debut in La Cenerentola (title-role) was in Italy (Petruzzelli Bari, Reggio Emilia, Cagliari) with EvelinoPido, staged by Daniele Abbado. She performed the role again in 2015 in Rennes in the historical production of Jerome Savary and in 2016 in Rome Opera in a new production of Emma Dante.
Josè Maria Lo Monaco also performs in concert and recital. Very fond of Handel repertoire she recently sang Alcina, Ruggiero, in Madrid, Teatro Real and Serse, title role, at the Liceu in Barcelona.
She regularly collaborated with several important orchestra with original instruments: Vivaldi’s Tito Manlio at the London Barbican, Giuditta in Betulia Liberata in Bremen, Juditha in Vivaldi’s Juditha Triumphans in Krakow and Cornelia in Giulio Cesare, under the baton of Ottavio Dantone and Accademia Bizantina; Alceste in Handel’s Admeto and Ottavia in Incoronazione di Poppea with Alan Curtis and Complesso Barocco; Alcina in Vivaldi’s Orlando Furioso with J.C.Spinosi and Ensemble Matheus; Nerone in Handel’s Agrippina and Alessandro in Scarlatti’s Carlo Re d’Allemagna under the baton of Fabio Biondi and Europa Galante.
Last season she sang the recital Romanzas de Zarzuela at the Metz Arsenal with Edmon Colomer.
In the sacred repertoire, she has sung Rossini’s Stabat Mater at the Vatican under the baton of J. L. Cobos for S.S. Pope Benedict XVI and the president of Italian Republic, and recently Bach’s Magnificat with Antonio Pappano at Accademia di Santa Cecilia, Rome and Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis with Jean Christophe Spinosì.
In Monteverdi’s repertoire Josè Maria sang Messaggera and Speranza in Orfeo with Andrea Marcon, Jordi Savall, Claudio Cavina and Ottavia in Incoronazione di Poppea with Alan Curtis. She recorded for Glossa (with La Venexiana, Claudio Cavina) the trilogy as Messaggera in Orfeo (Gramophone Award 2008), Ottone in L’Incoronazione di Poppea and Penelope in Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria.
Highlights for the season 2015-2016 and beyond include: La Gazzetta in Pesaro, ROF; La Cenerentola at the ABAO in Bilbao; Musica et Messagiera in Monteverdi’s Orfeo at Opéra de Losanna with Ottavio Dantone in a new production of Robert Carsen; La Cenerentola in Bilbao, Abao; title role of Dido and Aeneas, Verona; Werther, Charlotte, in Bologna with Michele Mariotti. In 2017, highlights include Norma, Adalgisa, in Opera Royal de Wallonie Liége; Monteverdi’s Ritorno di Ulisse in Patria with René Jacobs in Bruxelles, Amsterdam, Koln; La Cenerentola, title role, in Santiago del Chile; Carmen, title role, in Sydney.