Mary Plazas made her operatic debut in 1992 with English National Opera as the Heavenly Voice Don Carlos, and was a former company principal. Roles have included Mimì (ENO/Opera North/Bregenz Festival/West Australian Opera/Royal Albert Hall), Anne Trulove (Bayerisches Staatsoper/New Israeli Opera), Donna Elvira (ENO/Glyndebourne on Tour/Valladolid), Cio-Cio-San, Nedda, Fiordiligi, Dorabella, Leila, Adina, Nannetta, Micaëla, Marzelline Fidelio, Lauretta, Oscar and the title role in The Cunning Little Vixen(ENO), Juanita in Weill’s Kuhhandel, Salud La Vida Breve, Susanna Le Nozze di Figaro and Elisetta Il matrimonio segreto (Opera North), Heavenly Voice (Royal Opera/BBC Proms), Angelic Voice Palestrina (Royal Opera in London and New York), Duchess Powder Her Face(Almeida/Aldeburgh/Channel 4/LSO at the Barbican), Mum Greek (London Sinfonietta at the Barbican), Mrs Coyle Owen Wingrave(Concertgebouw), Alexina Le Roi Malgré Lui (Grange Park) and Elisabetta Roberto Devereux, title role Lucrezia Borgia, Ismene in the Richard Strauss arrangement of Mozart’s Idomeneo and title role Maria di Rohan (Buxton).
She created two roles in operas by Jonathan Dove, Tina Flight (Glyndebourne) and Blue Fairy Pinocchio (Opera North). She sung Karin in the world premiere of Gerald Barry’s The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland), performed the title role in Peter Ëotvös’s Lady Sarashina (Opéra National de Lyon/Opéra Comique), sung the lead in the world premiere of Eleanor Alberga’s Letters of a Love Betrayed (a joint commission from the Royal Opera House and Music Theatre Wales) and created the role of Madame Piccard in Will Gregory’s Piccard in Space for the BBC at the Queen Elizabeth Hall.
Mary Plazas has given many recitals and concerts including solo recitals at the Wigmore Hall, Purcell Room, and the Karajan Centre in Vienna. Concerts include Mahler Symphony No 8 (RPO/Sinopoli), Mozart Requiem (Hallé/Skrowacewski), Brahms’ German Requiem(CBSO/Oramo), Shostakovich Symphony No 14 (Irish Chamber Orchestra/Maksymiuk) Schumann’s Paradies und die Peri (OAE/Elder), Canteloube’s Songs of the Auvergne (Hallé/Elder), Beethoven’s Symphony No 9 (BBCNOW/Daniel), Ravel’s L’Enfant et les Sortilèges(LSO/Previn), Saint-Saens’ The Promised Land (BBCNOW/Hickox), Bach’s Magnificat (BBC Philharmonic/Noseda), Janacek’s Glagolitic Mass (Philharmonia/Fischer) and Britten’s Les Iluminations (Britten Sinfonia/Poppen). She has recorded for Opera Rara, Deutsche Grammophon, and Sony Classical, and for Chandos Records the roles of Marguerite Faust, Adina, Zerlina, Liu Turandot and Micaëla
She studied at the Royal Northern College of Music and at the National Opera Studio. She won the 1991 Kathleen Ferrier Memorial Scholarship, and she has been supported by the Peter Moores Foundation.