Samantha Renea Gossard (mezzo-soprano) recently graduated from the Cleveland Institute of Music (CIM) with a Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance under the tutelage of Vinson Cole. Ms. Gossard most recently made her Severance Hall debut, singing the alto solos in Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with the CIM orchestra and was praised for her “eloquent artistry” by Donald Rosenberg in The Plain Dealer. Earlier this year, Ms. Gossard performed in Washington D.C. at the Kennedy Center for the Conservatory Project. In CIM’s production of Massenet’s Cendrillon last fall, she sang the role of Madame de La Haltière, Cinderella’s stepmother. Other credits at CIM include the title role of Handel’s Xerxes, Ramiro in Mozart’s La finta giardiniera, and Carmen in the scenes production, earning high praise for all of her roles. For the past two summers, Ms. Gossard has been a New Horizon Opera Fellow with the Aspen Music Festival and School. There, she has performed the roles of Second Lady in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Hippolyta in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and as Suzuki from Puccini’s Madama Butterfly in a scenes program. She also appeared in several chamber music concerts as a soloist. Ms. Gossard holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in Church Music and Christian Worship from Indiana Wesleyan University, where she has been a guest alumna soloist in Handel’s Messiah.