Cara Bender is a soprano hailing from Corning, New York. Most recently, Cara was an Apprentice Artist with Des Moines Metro Opera where she was heard in their digital season as Fiordiligi in the act one finale of Così fan tutte. She will return to Des Moines Metro Opera in the summer of 2021 as an Apprentice Artist, performing scenes as Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, Alice Ford in Falstaff, and Female Chorus in The Rape of Lucretia.
Recently, Cara has made role and house debuts as Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, a part of Luke A. Housner’s Summer Opera Workshop, the Witch and the Mother in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel with Due Donne Productions, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni with Oberlin in Italy, and La Bergère in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortileges with the Miami Summer Music Festival. Selected partial roles include Elettra in Idomeneo, Thaïs in Thaïs, Marguerite in Faust, La Contessa in Le Nozze di Figaro, Cio-Cio San in Madama Butterfly, and Alice Ford in Falstaff. Also a passionate champion of art song, Cara was a Young Artist at the 2019 Leeds Lieder Festival for her UK debut and regularly performed on The New England Conservatory’s Liederabend Concert Series.
A recent graduate of The New England Conservatory, Cara was heard as the Lady with a Cake Box in Argento’s Postcard from Morocco, Giunone in Cavalli’s La Calisto, and The Mistress of the Novices in Puccini’s Suor Angelica. During her undergraduate studies, Cara participated with the Oberlin Opera Theater, portraying Miss Jessel in Britten’s The Turn of the Screw and The Wife in Wargo’s The Music Shop. For her oratorio debut, Cara was the soprano soloist in Poulenc’s Gloria with Oberlin’s Musical Union and Arts and Sciences Orchestra and in 2018, she was selected as a finalist in the Oberlin Concerto Competition, performing Samuel Barber's Andromache's Farewell.
Cara earned her MM in Vocal Performance from The New England Conservatory of Music, under the tutelage of Jane Eaglen where she was a recipient of the Dean’s Scholarship and the Beneficent Society Scholarship. Cara also earned her BM in Vocal Performance at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music studying with Daune Mahy and receiving both the Dean’s scholarship and the Helen Hodam Scholarship in Voice.