PROJECTS HAE VOCES / OPERA CABAL / ORACLE HYSTERICAL
Highlights 'HECUBA' ALBUM RELEASE / 'PASSIONATE PILGRIM' ALBUM RELEASE / KQED 'WOMEN TO WATCH' / CONTRIVING THE CHIMES
EMAIL M@OPERACABAL.COM / FB MAJEL.CONNERY
Majel Connery is a vocalist, composer and recovering musicologist. Most recently, her vocal compositions appeared in the Radiolab series, "Gonads." She performs most frequently as one half of Bay Area duo Hae Voces (with Kristina Dutton), and with composer-performer collective Oracle Hysterical. Her first solo EP, co-created with drummer Dylan Greene and sound engineer Chris Botta, debuts in 2019.
With past lives as an opera singer, and a musicologist, vocalist & composer Majel Connery combines roots in classical opera with a devil-may-care embrace of influences from pop to indie-rock. Most recently Majel wrote and performed music for 5 episodes of the WNYC podcast Radiolab’s “Gonads” series, including a Radiolab Live performance at NYU Skirball Center. Former New York Times critic Steve Smith favorably compared her voice to Shara Nova/My Brightest Diamond and Joanna Newsom, and Peter Margasak, writing for Bandcamp Daily, describes her vocals as “expertly drawing upon a wide swath of approaches—British folk, madrigal, art rock.” While sporting a composition degree from Princeton, Majel’s writing is more influenced by the cassette tapes in her parents’ boombox circa 1982, which explains a compositional style that can sound simultaneously like Elvis Costello and Schubert (Wall Street Journal). In opera circles, she is best known as Artistic Director for avant-garde opera company, Opera Cabal, whose premiere of G.F. Haas’s ATTHIS at The Kitchen was described as “one of the most … searingly painful and revealing operatic performances in recent times (New York Times).
Majel left a music professorship at UC Berkeley in 2015 to launch a career as a solo artist with a focus on generating her own work. Since then, as Mohr Visiting Artist at Stanford (2017), she commissioned and performed Pulitzer Prize winner Caroline Shaw’s “Contriving the Chimes,” written for Majel and the St. Lawrence String Quartet, and staged by opera director Christopher Alden. In 2016, as Mellon Visiting Artist at Wellesley, she commissioned and performed Aeolus, a throat-singing rock opera by Rome- and Berlin Prize-winning composer Ken Ueno. When not working on the release of her solo album, Majel performs most frequently as one half of Bay Area vocals/violin duo Hae Voces (with Kristina Dutton). This spring 2019 she will co-teach a "Voice" seminar with poet Jeff Dolven at Princeton University. Majel is bi-coastal, based in both Brooklyn, NY and Berkeley, CA.
-SF CLASSICAL VOICE
“uninflected and vibrato-free, alternately borrowing from
the interpretive sophistication of jazz or musical theater
and the deliberate naivete of folk-rock.”
-Wall Street Journal
"CONNERY...HAS THE TEMPERAMENT OF A LION TAMER."
- SF CLASSICAL VOICE
“indie vocals floating atop poised, balanced, and beautifully textured Baroque accompaniments”
"A visionary!” -Sequenza 21