Acclaimed for her “stylistic versatility, clarity, range” (Halifax Chronicle Herald) and “gorgeous operatic power” (Vancouver Sun), Vancouver BC-based soprano Heather Pawsey’s career encompasses opera, oratorio, symphonic, recital, chamber and contemporary music.
A First Prize winner of the Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition, she has performed across North America, Europe and Japan. Named an Ambassador of the Canadian Music Centre— one of only 50 performers and conductors “who have played exceptional roles in shaping the Canadian music scene and raising the profile of Canadian music”—she has premiered over 40 works, many of them written specifically for her.
Known for her creation of roles in new Canadian operas—Farshid Samandari’s Kayoi Komachi / Komachi Visited (Tomoe Arts); Neil Weisensel’s Stickboy (Vancouver Opera); Rita Ueda’s One Thousand White Paper Cranes for Japan (Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra; Prague Modern Orchestra, Czech Republic; UA Ensemble, Amsterdam, Netherlands; West Coast International New Music Festival, Fukuoka, Japan); Barbara Pentland’s The Lake / n’-ha-a-itk (Susan Allison; Astrolabe Musik Theatre/Turning Point Ensemble); and Leslie Uyeda’s Your Breath My Breath: Dialogue for a Mother and Daughter (Saskatchewn Festival of Words)—Heather is the producer and featured performer in the soon-to-be-released full-length opera documentary The Lake / n’-ha-a-itk, the first and only Canadian opera to be made into a feature film.
As a soloist she has performed with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Turning Point Ensemble (Vancouver, BC), Aventa Ensemble (Victoria, BC), Vancouver Island Symphony (Nanaimo, BC), Land’s End Ensemble (Calgary, AB), Emily Carr String Quartet (Victoria, BC), Music on Main (Vancouver, BC), Sonic Boom Festival (Vancouver, BC), Indian Summer Music Festival (Burnaby, BC), The Little Chamber Music Series That Could (Vancouver, BC), Music in the Morning (Vancouver, BC), Golden Apple Theatre (Regina, SK), and CBC Radio, among others, and was Guest Artist at Scotia Festival of Music (Halifax, NS). Born and raised in Saskatchewan, she performed a solo recital in honour of the province’s centenary for the Lieutenant-Governor at Government House, Regina.
In addition to her busy performing career, Heather is the Founding Artistic Director and General Manager of Astrolabe Musik Theatre.