Award-winning coloratura soprano, Kirsten Ashley Wiest, a part-time lecturer in the Cal State San Bernardino Department of Music, has released her debut solo album internationally as of Friday, Sept. 4.
“This project has been a labor of love since the beginning – starting back in 2016,” said Wiest. “Having my first self-produced album come out is a huge benchmark for me – I’ve produced live events and concerts for years, and even directed full operas before, but I had never before produced an entire CD, much less one consisting of works that have never been studio recorded or released before!”
The album, titled “Luminous,” is an album of four contemporary works performed by Wiest and pianist Siu Hei Lee.
“The album itself consists of three premiere recordings of works written for me by living composers from Southern California and the UK, plus my signature operatic aria,” Wiest said. “In 2018 I was fortunate to record the works on this album with the three living composers all joining me and the pianist in the studio in San Diego to co-produce their respective tracks. So we all ended up with a finished product we are very excited about!”
“It was a very big and long-term job, and one that I am proud to have accomplished,” Wiest said. “I feel this release builds another strong pillar into my output as an artist and music educator: performing, teaching, directing, and producing – not only live, but now also in permanence.”
Wiest holds a DMA in contemporary music performance in voice from UC San Diego, an MFA from the California Institute of the Arts, and a bachelor’s cum laude from Chapman University’s Conservatory of Music.