Julia Migenes was born on the Lower East
Side of New York into a family made up
of a passionate mixture of Greek and
Irish-Puerto-Rican descent. Despite a
difficult and violent childhood, she
discovered her calling upon engagement
of the child role in “Madame Butterfly”
where she first experienced the power
and the emotion of music linked to a
A few years later, while studying at the
New York School for Performing Arts, she
was chosen by Leonard Bernstein to be a
soloist in his
"Young People's Concerts".
Julia then began her Broadway career:
she was part of the original casting of
"Fiddler on the Roof" with Zero Mostel
and she interpreted Maria in “West Side
However, she understood that her real
calling was to sing, leading her to a
cover contract at the New York
Metropolitan Opera. While substituting
for the leading role of Alban Berg's,
renowned for its technical difficulty,
she was cheered and acclaimed by the
public, launching her opera career.
Word of this new star crossed the
Atlantic where Maurice Béjart was
desperately searching for his Salomé to
be staged in Geneva. Julia Migenes
embodied the ideal combination for this
role: a world-class opera singer and a
While on stage in Geneva as Salomé, the
Italian film director Francesco Rosi was
casting for his up and coming film:
Carmen. The lead role required not only
an opera singer and dancer but also an
actress sensual enough to personify the
burning passion of Bizet's character.
The result was Julia Migenes
immortalized in a motion picture that
has since become a reference in the
filmed opera genre. The soundtrack not
only brought her a Grammy Award but even
more worldwide notoriety that allowed
her to access the greatest theatres in
To this day, Julia Migenes has recorded
more than 20 albums. Among the most
recent : "Vienna" conducted by Lalo
Schifrin, a Gold record six months after
its release ; in 1996, "Man of la Mancha"
("L'homme de la Mancha"), conducted and
arranged by Paul Gemignani, with Placido
Domingo, Samuel Ramey, Mandy Patinkin ;
in 1999, "Robert Stolz" and "The music
of Franz Lehar" for BBC and in 2000,
Donizetti's "Catarina Cornaro".
In 1998, Julia Migenes wrote "Diva on
the Verge", a one-woman-show mingling
monologue and opera often mocking its
rigid world, revealing her daring wit
and sense of humor. In 1999, she
performed this show in French in Paris
and throughout France and
French-speaking countries. She is
preparing a Spanish version of this show
for a tour in Spain and Latin America.
She continues to present the English
version in a tour throughout the US.
In 2000 Julia Migenes appeared in the «
Seven Deadly Sins » and « Happy End » in
Madrid (at the Zarzuela Theatre).
In May 2001 Julia Migenes created
"Passions Latines", a choreographed
recital in which she interprets a
repertoire of Latin music, both
classical and traditional, from
Granados, Villa Lobos, to flamenco,
tango and the great contemporary salsa
She presented this show at the Paris
Olympia in March 2002 followed by
several international summer festivals.
In July 2002, she created for the
Festival d'Avignon "La Argentina", a
tribute to tango accompanied by the
Argentinan quintet Tiempo Sur. An
international tour is currently taking
place and included a stop at the
prestigious Paris Théâtre du Châtelet in
In June 2003 Julia Migenes put together
a program dedicated to sacred songs
which premiered at the Fès Festival of
Sacred Music (Morocco).
She was also part of the cast together
with Barbara Hendricks of a new opera,
"Angels in America" by Peter Eötvös. It
was performed for the first time at the
Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris in November
In 2005 Julia Migenes recorded her new
jazz album "Alter Ego” (release early
In spring 2006 she appeared in A.
Schönberg’s Pierrot Lunaire staged by
Hans Peter Cloos in New York. Also in
2006 Julia Migenes’ first biography was
published by the Editions du Rocher in
France: "Mémoires d’un oiseau rebelle".
In November 2006 she premiered her show
"Alter Ego" staged by Philippe Calvario
at the Théâtre du Châtelet.
For the 7th edition of the "Open Air
Operas" in France, Julia Migenes was
asked to direct the staging of Gioachino
Rossini's "The Barber of Seville".
Amongst others a number of performances
took place at the Jardin du Sénat, the
Château du Champ de Bataille in Evreux
and the Château de Vaux le Vicomte.
In November 2007, Julia Migenes
completed a tour of classical recitals
for which she accompanied by Janine
Reiss (who was Maria Callas' vocal coach
for many years and who also coached
Julia Migenes for the "Carmen" film).
Following this, she also appeared in
“L'Heure Espagnole” in Clermont-Ferrand
(France). Currently she is working on a
new album project dedicated to Hollywood
Divas as well as on a theme show about