Mezzo-Soprano Yolanda Y. Williams, PhD joined Really Spicy Opera in its 2017 season to play Balthasar in Amahl and the Night Visitors. A performer, educator, and scholar, her performance career has taken her throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, and Africa, performing Western Art Music, Jazz, and Gospel. Yolanda has performed both soprano and mezzo soprano repertoire with VocalEssence, Rochester Symphony, La Choeur Symphonique de Fribourg, Lundi Sept Heures, Ensemble de Cuivres Jurassien, the Montreux Symphony, and the Israel Philharmonic.
Ms. Williams serves on the faculties of the University of Minnesota, Pine Technical and Community College, and Minneapolis Community and Technical College where her teaching responsibilities include courses in African American music history, general music history, music theory, and performance. Yolanda’s scholarly work on the music styles and genres of the African Diaspora can be found in the Greenwood Encyclopedia of African American Folklore (2005) and the Encyclopedia of African American Music (2010).