The Leading Native American Soprano
Lauded as the leading Native American soprano in today’s classical music world, Dr. Kirsten C. Kunkle is a voting citizen of the Mvskoke Nation. She has been hailed as an outstanding singing actress with a voice that has been described as beautiful, ethereal, powerful, fiery, and bewitching. Kirsten commissioned and premiered sixteen original compositions, including one of her own, based upon the poetry of her ancestor and highly-acclaimed poet of the Native American Muscogee Nation, Alex Posey. Her recordings are collected at the Library of Congress, the National Museum of the American Indian at the Smithsonian Institution (NMAI), and the Merkel Area Museum in Merkel, Texas. Kirsten is included on the list of Classical Native American Artists and Musicians at the Smithsonian Institution’s NMAI and on the Molto Native Music list of performers. She was featured as a composer and soloist for the Circle of Resilience concert, with Intermountain Opera Bozeman in May, 2021.
An Artistic Director, Librettist, and Mother
Kirsten is the proud Co-Founder and Artistic Director of Wilmington Concert Opera, a grassroots women and minority led opera company in Wilmington, Delaware. Kirsten has spent the majority of her time during the pandemic recording new works, promoting the arts through Wilmington Concert Opera, writing opera libretti, and raising her young daughter. Upcoming events focus on feminist and Native American based projects, as well as continuing to bring opera to everyone through her work as an artistic director.
Kirsten's 2023-2024 Season Highlights
"A Real Luxury"
"[In the] role of Frau Arabella…we appreciate the rich tone, with the shimmering colors of the soprano Kirsten C. Kunkle, [a] real luxury for the character."
– Yonel Buldrini (France) for "Blindekuh" with Sofia Philharmonic/Naxos, February, 2019
Kirsten C. Kunkle performs "Hotgun on the Death of Yadeka Harjo" composed by Kirsten C. Kunkle, on the text of her great-great-great uncle, Muscogee Bard, Alexander Posey.
Performed at "Circle of Resilience" for Intermountain Opera Bozeman in Bozeman, Montana in May, 2021.
"Clear, Crisp Soprano"
"The soloists were all splendid, but Kirsten Kunkle's clear, crisp soprano cut through the orchestra and rang throughout the church."