The Swiss soprano Regula Mühlemann rose rapidly to prominence in the mid-2010s with a clear tone that was ideally showcased in lighter Mozart and Italian bel canto roles.
Mühlemann was born on January 7, 1986, in the tiny town of Adligenswil, near Lucerne. She studied in Lucerne, with Barbara Locher at the city's conservatory, and has continued to make her home in the city. Mühlemann began appearing in operatic productions while she was still a student, and an indication of things to come was given when she reached the finalist level at the 2008 Prix Credit Suisse Young Soloists competition. She finished her master's degree at the Lucerne Conservatory in 2010 and was soon taking a variety of roles at the city's opera house and beyond. In 2012 she appeared in Baden-Baden, Germany, as Nanetta in Verdi's Falstaff, with Rolando Villazón, and that year also saw her Salzburg Festival debut in a work by contemporary composer Peter von Winter. Later she returned to Baden-Baden for a new production of Mozart's The Magic Flute conducted by Sir Simon Rattle.
Mühlemann has been a major attraction on concert stages as well. A concert appearance with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under Manfred Honeck marked her U.S. debut. She has made several appearances at the Lucerne Festival in such works as the Petite Messe Solenelle of Rossini, and she recorded that work for the Sony Classical label in 2014. Signed to that label, she released an album of Mozart arias in 2016. The program, consisting of little-known concert arias and obscure operatic selections, with only Exsultate jubilate, K. 165, coming from the standard Mozart canon, showcases Mühlemann's voice intelligently. The album earned critical raves and won the coveted Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik in 2017, by which time the future looked bright for the young Swiss soprano. Mühlemann has appeared in an unusual film adaptation of Gluck's Orfeo, filmed on location in Prague. ~ James Manheim