With a voice and stage presence described as “warm and lyrical with a lot of dramatic power,”
by the Omaha World Herald, Karen Hughes Beacom is making a name for herself on the opera
and concert stage. Her career is crossing borders, with international performances at the
Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing, China as the soprano soloist in Bach’s Mass in B Minor
with the Tianjin Symphony and as the Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro under the baton of
Joseph Rescigno in Novafeltria, Bellaria and Sant’Archangelo, Italy. Closer to home, Karen
performs regularly with the Sault Symphony in Ontario, Canada, with highlights including
Handel’s Messiah, Mendelssohon’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Beethoven’s 9th
Symphony. Karen is also a frequent soloist with the Keewenaw Symphony in Houghton, MI, with
recent performances of Orff’s Carmina Burana, Mozart’s Requiem and Vivaldi’s Gloria and most
recently performed with GLCO on Violins of Hope as a soloist and harpist.
A Regional Finalist in the prestigious Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, this
versatile soprano has performed dozens of leading roles on the opera stage, with highlights
including Mimi in La Bohème, Violetta in La Traviata, Cio-Cio San in Madama Butterfly, Donna
Anna in Don Giovanni, Contessa in Le Nozze di Figaro, Fiordiligi in Cosi fan tutte, Rosalinde in
Die Fledermaus, Pamina and First Lady in The Magic Flute, Alexandra in O Pioneers!, and
Michaela in Carmen and Le Tragedie de Carmen, among others. Her opera credits include Des
Moines Metro Opera, Utah Festival Opera, Opera Omaha, Sun Valley Opera, DuPage Opera
Theatre, Soo Opera and Chautauqua Institution.
In addition to performing, Karen serves as the Artistic Director of the Soo Theatre in Sault Ste.
Marie, MI, and is the founder and director of the Soo Opera, bringing in professional artists from
around the country to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan for fully staged opera productions,
orchestra concerts and chamber music performances each summer. Karen is also the Director
of Music at Little Stone Church on Mackinac Island during the summer season and performs
regularly in concert and opera events on the island through the Mackinac Arts Council. Karen is
an active recitalist and solo performer in venues around the country.
Karen holds a Master’s Degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln
where she studied under Metropolitan Opera Mezzo-Soprano, Ariel Bybee. A student of Bybee’s
in New York City, Karen followed her mentor and teacher to earn her degree in the field of
opera. Karen previously earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Harp Performance from DePauw