Danya Katok, originally from State College, PA, is an exceptionally versatile vocalist whose repertoire ranges from the pure straight tone of plainchant, to the lush soprano of the Romantic era, to the exciting belt of musical theater. She has performed in many of the country's top concert halls, including all three stages at Carnegie Hall, the State Theater and David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Kennedy Center, and Symphony Hall. She made her New York City Opera debut as Max in Oliver Knussen's Where the Wild Things Are, a role for which she was praised by The New York Times as being “superb." She has appeared as a soloist with The Boston Pops (“An Evening of Cole Porter," alongside Broadway legend Kelli O'Hara), Pennsylvania Centre Orchestra (Mahler's Symphony No. 4) Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Chamber Choir (Brahms' Ein deutsches Requiem), Mark Morris Dance Group (Thomson's Four Saints in Three Acts), and New York Symphonic Arts Ensemble (Mahler's Symphony No. 4 and Vaughan Williams' Serenade to Music). Musical theater and jazz credits include Anna (cover) in The King and I with Ash Lawn Opera Festival, jazz soloist with Mark Morris Dance Group at Jacob's Pillow, and Anne/Mae (cover) in O Night Divine at York Theatre Company (Off-Broadway). She has performed three cabaret shows at Don't Tell Mama and other cabaret venues: her solo shows, CATS!: a cabaret and I Wish It So; and From Charm City to the Big Apple, a duo show with Kat Guthrie.
A two-time Vocal Fellow at Tanglewood Music Center and first-ever New Voices in American Song Fellow at SongFest, Danya has worked closely with song and opera composers, including Libby Larsen, John Musto, Oliver Knussen, and Richard Hundley. She has enjoyed premiering new works by up-and-coming composers, such as Stuart Paul Duncan's Lament with the Cornell Festival Chamber Orchestra, Michael Strauss' Sassafras Dawn with members of the Mid-Atlantic Symphony, James Sproul's October, and David Bridges’ The Hill Wife, a "quartet for two people" where she played the violin and sang. She has received numerous awards in the contemporary music space, including the Phyllis Bryn-Julson Award for 20th/21st Century Music, Tanglewood’s Grace B. Jackson Prize, and the Ernst Bacon Prize for American Art Song. Other awards include Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions (Mid-Atlantic region), Winner of the Annual Teaneck Cabaret Competition, and Winner of the Baltimore Music Club Vocal Competition. She was a finalist in the 2016 Joy in Singing art song competition, led by Paul Sperry.
Danya's choral adventures have led her to perform with some of the world's best choirs and orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic (under Alan Gilbert, Bernard Labadie, and Bernard Haitink), Vienna Philharmonic (under Franz Welser-Möst), American Symphony Orchestra (under Leon Botstein), and San Francisco Symphony (under Michael Tilson Thomas). She regularly performs with Sacred Music in a Sacred Space(under K. Scott Warren) and Musica Sacra (under Kent Tritle) and can be heard in numerous recordings, including Essential Voices USA's recent Christmas and Hanukkah albums (directed by Judith Clurman) and the motion picture soundtracks to Noah; Hail, Caesar!; and Zoolander 2.
Danya received her DMA in Voice Performance from CUNY Graduate Center in 2016. Her dissertation, "The Versatile Singer: A Guide to Vibrato & Straight Tone," can be downloaded here. She finished her MM in Voice Performance & Pedagogy from Peabody Conservatory in 2009 and BAs in Music-Voice and Sociology from Penn State University in 2007. She sings regularly with the professional choirs of Temple Emanu-El and the Church of St. Ignatius Loyola, where she is also a member of the staff as Music Administrator. Danya has taught on the music faculties at Brooklyn College and Bronx Community College and currently teaches at Hunter College. She lives in Riverdale, Bronx with her architect-husband, Nick; her son, Joey; and their two cats, Dusty and Grace.