Meet Dr. Regina Zona
Dr. Regina Zona is an award-winning singer in both opera and cabaret, a recording artist with three albums, one for the Naxos American Classics Label, and a master teacher of voice with over 34 years experience in the private studio and at several universities around the US. In August of 2021, she created Singer Savvy Academy, an online academy that seeks to transform singers into the confident musicians they want to be by offering courses in piano skills, music theory, sight singing, practice techniques, role preparation, audition techniques, and more.
As a singer, Regina Zona has been described as having the ideal voice for Strauss. Her performance abilities have earned her great success and acclaim throughout her career. Critics have claimed Regina is “nothing short of sensational” (Sarasota Herald Tribune) and have called her “the absolute rapture of the evening” (Rome News). Dr. Zona made her New York debut as the soprano soloist in an Evening of Mozart at Lincoln Center with the National Chorale. Since then, she has enjoyed a long history of performing with symphonies around the world in oratorio and concert works, including Knoxville: Summer of 1915 (Barber), Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Mahler’s Symphony No. 8, the Mozart Requiem, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Poulenc’s Gloria and the Vier letzte Lieder by Strauss. Some of her favorite performances include those with Tokyo Symphony, Orquesta Sinfónica del Estado de México, and the Buffalo Philharmonic. Regina’s operatic repertoire includes the heroines of Strauss and Mozart: Ariadne in Ariadne auf Naxos, Chrysothemis in Elektra, and Donna Anna in Don Giovanni, as well as some of the great 20th century divas including the title role in Vanessa. Additional roles performed include Odabella in Verdi’s Attila, Leonora in Fidelio, Vitellia in La clemenza di Tito, Alice Ford in Falstaff, and the title role in Tosca.
The soprano’s technical prowess and dramatic ability were evident from the start of her career; Regina received much critical acclaim for her portrayals of the Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflöte, a role she performed with Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Toledo Opera, Sarasota Opera, and Tulsa Opera, as well as performances in Philadelphia. The Toledo Blade exclaimed, “From her first hypnotizing entrance [Zona] never failed to portray the embodiment of unrepentant deception. And that, considering the coloratura vocal requirements, was no easy task.” Dr. Zona continued to impress, winning the highly distinguished Neue Stimmen International Vocal Competition in Gütersloh, Germany, and she also took First Place honors in the Mario Lanza Competition, Giargiari and Arturo Bel Canto Competition, and the Liederkranz Society of New York Competition.
In 2019, Regina made a pivot in her performing career embarking on a new journey in cabaret. Her debut cabaret, Becoming…the Queen 2.0, garnered praise from critics and audiences alike – “This show was more than a fine cabaret debut. It also documented a successful reinvention of self by a musical artist with deeply engrained instincts as an entertainer.” (Bistro Awards) – and resulted in Regina being awarded the coveted MAC (Manhattan Association of Cabarets) Award for Best Female NY Debut.
As a recording artist, Regina’s first album entitled Connection: Three Song Cycles, released worldwide in 2014 by the NAXOS American Classics label, features the song cycles of American composer, Jake Heggie. Critically acclaimed internationally, the work garnered praise from Heggie himself, proclaiming Dr. Zona to be a “truly phenomenal performer.” Her second album, Heart Songs: An American Medley, released in 2021, bridges her performing journey from classical singer to cabaret singer through songs in the American classical art song tradition and the Great American Songbook. Her third album, It Must Have Been the Mistletoe will be released in the fall of 2022 where she celebrates a jazzy Christmas with internationally acclaimed guitarist, Sean Harkness.
As a master teacher of voice, Dr. Zona has been teaching for over 34 years. She has held teaching and director positions at several universities in the U.S., including serving as the Opera Program Director at the University of Minnesota Duluth from 2008 to 2012 and as Artistic Director of the Sieur Du Luth Opera Training Program for young aspiring opera singers from 2008 to 2010. From 2006-2008, she was Assistant Professor of Voice and the Opera Scenes Director at Shorter College in Rome, GA. Dr. Zona’s students have appeared on the most prestigious opera stages across the world, Broadway, and regional theatres. She is an in-demand clinician at universities and training programs offering classes in vocal pedagogy, dramatic performance, opera history and appreciation, and audition techniques. Dr. Zona was a short-term substitute professor at the Juilliard School teaching English diction to Vocal Arts Masters students. She has also served as an adjudicator in several Regional, State, and local competitions.
Regina received her Doctorate of Musical Arts degree from the Manhattan School of Music, an Artist Diploma from the Academy of Vocal Arts, and a Bachelor of Music degree from Northwestern University. She currently resides in the New York area, where she offers voice and piano lessons and dramatic coachings.
For more on Regina’s singing career, visit www.ReginaZona.com.
For more on Regina’s teaching studio, visit www.theZonaStudio.com.
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