Indyana Schneider is an Australian mezzo soprano. She first fell in love with opera on the stage of the Sydney Opera House in the children’s chorus of La Bohéme and Werther. At 17 years old, she won the Opera Aria prize at the Sydney Eisteddfod and was a finalist in the Dame Joan Sutherland Memorial Vocal Scholarship. Indyana then returned to the Sydney Opera House stage as a soloist at 18 years old after topping the Higher School Certificate (Australian Final School Exams) in extension music (musicology, performance, and composition), where she performed in the esteemed ‘ENCORE’ concert.
Indyana followed her love of opera to the UK and completed a Bachelor of Music at Magdalen College, Oxford University. Her studies centered around singing, as well as musicology, analysis, and psychological perspectives on performance. Her undergraduate thesis focused on new spaces for opera in the 21st century, examining barriers to access and the economic models of UK-based opera companies.
Whilst at Oxford Indyana performed in operas and musicals ranging from Dido and Aeneas and The Faery Queen to Phantom of the Opera and Anything Goes. A highlight included playing the role of Feste in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, directed by Shakespeare Scholar Sir Jonathan Bate and Georgia Figgis, for which she also composed the music. Indyana’s performance was praised by BAFTA-Award winning Peter Kosminsky:
“For me, the standout performance was that of Indyana Schneider – a gloriously accomplished Feste. Her detached amusement at the increasingly ludicrous events playing out before her perfectly mirrored our own. Rarely can such a gifted singer have donned the mantel of Olivia’s fool, adding a glorious extra dimension to the characterisation.”
During the pandemic, she completed an MA (Oper) with a perfect score at the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien in Hannover, Germany, with Prof. Marina Sandel and Prof. Anne Champert.
Indyana has sung in masterclasses with: Katie Mitchell, Dame Emma Kirkby, Andreas Scholl, Steven Langridge, James Conlon, Dame Ann Murray, and Jonathan Swinard.
After graduating, Indyana began her professional career singing the title role in Carmen with Kentish Opera in 2018. This was followed by a series of Early-Music roles with New Chamber Opera, working closely with Michael Burden and Steven Devine. For her roles in Haydn’s Il Mondo della Luna and Händel’s Il Pastor Fidel, she was praised in Opera Magazine:
"A fabulous young mezzo, the voice full of crimson depth and character" (Il Mondo della Luna).
“The best of the singing came from Indyana Schneider with a clear creamy voice and lively expressive acting” (Il Pastor Fidel).
In 2019, Indyana moved to Vienna to join the Wiener Staatsoper Akademie, where she studied with Sylvia Greenberg and David Aronson. Highlights at the Wiener Staatsoper included singing Cashier in Olga Neuwirth’s new opera, Orlando, and with the Semichor in Händel’s Ariodante, conducted by Christophe Rousset with Les Talens Lyriques.
For her recent performance of Zita in the European Opera Centre’s production of Gianni Schicchi, (with the Liverpool Philharmonic, conducted by Domingo Hindoyan, directed by Bernard Rozet and with Sir Bryn Terfel in the title role), she was hailed by critics as ‘outstanding’ (Guardian), ‘superb’ (Northwestend), and ‘striking’ (Bachtrack).
Last season, she sang the title role in Carmen with Kent Chamber Opera, Mercedes in Carmen at the Theater für Niedersachsen, and Meg Page in HMTM’s Falstaff. This summer, she covered the Komponist in Garsington Opera's production of Ariadne auf Naxos, for which she won Garsington Opera's Helen Clarke Award. She is currently a member of the
International Opernstudio of the Opernhaus Zürich where she will sing Femme Grecque in Iphigénie en Tauride and Hermia in A Midsummer Night's Dream in their 2023/24 season.
During this season, she will also return to the Sydney Opera House to sing Zweite Dame in Die Zauberflöte and to cover Christophe Dumaux as Orpheo in Gluck's Orpheo ed Euridice.
Indyana maintains a busy concert and oratorio schedule alongside operatic singing, with repertoire including Verdi's Requiem, Bach's Johannes-Passion, Matthäus-Passion, and Weihnachtsoratoriumm, Händel's Messiah, Elgar's Sea Pictures, and Berlioz's Les Nuits d’été.
She loves performing Lieder in a duo with Clara Hyerim Byun.
She is forever indebted to her teachers: Helene Dahlberg, Nuccia Focile, Sylvia Greenberg, Anne Champert, and Marina Sandel.
PS - Off of the stage, Indyana loves studying languages and enjoys practicing karate and salsa dancing. She also reads a lot and sometimes writes books.