The English-born soprano, opera director and teacher, Lorna Marie Haywood, studied at the Royal College of Music in London, with Mary Parsons and Gordon Clinton, and at the Juilliard School of Music in New York, with Sergius Kagen and Beverley Johnson.
Lorna Haywwod made her debut at Juilliard as Katya Kabanova. She made her Covent Garden debut in 1966 in Die Zauberflöte and sang Jenůfa in 1972. She sang with the English National Opera from 1970, notably in Leoš Janáček's The Makropoulus Case and Katya Kabanova. In the USA her opera appearances include those with the Chicago Lyric Opera, the Boston Concert, the San Francisco Opera, the Dallas Civic, the Baltimore Lyric, and the Pacific Northwest Festival in Seattle, and the companies of New Orleans, Washington, D.C., San Diego, Forth Worth, Columbus, Toledo, Atlanta and Honolulu. In Europe she has sung frequently at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, the English National Opera, the Welsh National Opera, and the Scottish Opera. Regarded as a leading interpreter of the operas of Leoš Janáček, she has sung this repertory in London, New York, San Francisco, Johannesburg and Prague. She has also appeared as a guest in Brussels. Other roles include Marenka in The Bartered Bride, Mimi, Micaela in Carmen, Sieglinde, Elizabeth Zimmer in Elegy for Young Lovers. Mozart's Countess, Madam Butterfly, Ariadne, the Marchallin and Lady Billows in Billy Budd.
Lorna Haywood made her American debut as soloist with Robert Shaw. She has sung with most of America's major symphony orchestras, including the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Her orchestral and concert appearances in the UK include those with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Hallé Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, and City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Summer festival appearances include Blossom, Meadowbrook, Aspen, Tanglewood, Grant Park, Cincinnati, Glyndebourne, Aldeburgh, Edinburgh, and London's Promenade Concerts in the Royal Albert Hall. She sang with the Handel Society in Washington, D.C., the Music of the Baroque in Chicago, at the Baldwin-Wallace College Bach Festival (1998), and was soprano soloist with the Bach Aria Group for two years.
Recordings she has made include Wagner's Die Feen with the BBC Symphony Orchestra; Mozart's Requiem with Amor Artis, conducted by Johannes Somary (Vox Classics); Paul Paray's Mass with the Royal Scottish National Symphony Orchestra and Chorus (Reference Records); the Grammy award winning performance of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem with Robert Shaw and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra; and Menotti's opera Amahl and the Night Visitors with the Royal Opera Covent Garden Orchestra and Chorus.
After an operatic career that took her to numerous opera companies, Lorna Haywood is now in demand as an opera director. Acclaimed as a superb singing actress throughout her career, she now receives similar accolades for her innovative and imaginative direction. Her productions include La Traviata for Norway’s Opera Nordfjord; Le nozze di Figaro, La Traviata, La Boheme, Madama Butterfly, Il Trovatore, Romeo et Juliette, and Tosca for Madison Opera; La Traviata for Pensacola Opera; Tosca for Eugene Opera; La Traviata, La Boheme, Madama Butterfly, Il Trovatore, Die Fledermaus, and new productions of Le nozze di Figaro, Tosca and Don Giovanni for Opera San Jose’s new California Fox Theatre; Die Zauberflote and Fidelio for Atlanta Opera; Amahl and the Night Visitors and Tosca for Toledo Opera; Rigoletto and Madama Butterfly for Opera Birmingham; Le nozze di Figaro and Cavalleria Rusticana & Pagliacci with Virginia Opera. Upcoming productions for the 2007-2008 season include Rigoletto for Opera San Jose and Tosca for Tampa Opera.