Samantha Hankey Wins Top Prize At Dallas Vocal Competition

By Francisco Salazar

Samantha Hankey has won the Dallas Vocal competition.

The Mezzo-soprano, who won the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, was awarded a $10,000 Grand Prize, presented by competition Co-Chairs Patsy and Bob Brooks.

Meanwhile, second place went to  Laura Wilde with a $5,000 Prize and third prize went to soprano Mane Galoya, who won $2,500. The $1,000 “People’s Choice Award” was awarded to baritone Kihun Yoon.

This nationally-recognized competition attracted 364 applicants from 35 states. Initially, 20 semi-finalists were chosen to compete. However, only six finalists went on to the finals. The other two finalists included mezzo-soprano Raehann Bryce-Davis and baritone Xiaomeng Zhang.

Hankey is quickly growing to be one of the most promising artists of her generation. The 24-year-old, currently doing her masters at Juilliard, has been acclaimed by Opera News and by the New York Times. She recently sang the title role in Händel’s “Agrippina” at Juilliard as well as Varvara in Janácek’s “Katya Kabanova.” She has performed roles including Diana and Giove in “La Calisto,” Marcellina in “Le Nozze di Figaro.”  She was also at the Aspen Music Festival as Dorabella in “Così fan tutte” and Mercédès in “Carmen.”

Recent awards and honors include a 2016 Sara Tucker Study Grant from the Richard Tucker Foundation, and prizes from the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation, and the Gerda Lissner Foundation, among others.She is next scheduled to sing the title role in Rossini’s “La Cenerentola” at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. She will also perform at the Merola Grand Finale.