This Gurnee native’s career has moved steadily forward, almost always on Chicago steppingstones—Northwestern University undergrad, the Lyric Opera’s Ryan Opera Center, a starring role in Chicago Opera Theater’s La Clemenza de Tito. In 2010, Majeski grabbed some early limelight in the big hall when she substituted for a bronchitis-stricken Anne Schwanewilms in the Lyric’s The Marriage of Figaro. “A lot of hard work and a lot of being in the right place at the right time” is how the 29-year-old soprano explains her success.

Her diligence scored her lead roles at the Lyric in last season’s Clemenza and in Die Meistersinger in the 2012–13 season. Now, even with résumé lines for Dresden, Frankfurt, Santa Fe, Philadelphia, and, next season, the Met, Majeski will stay connected to her hometown. At the announcement of the 2014–15 season, after touting Majeski’s star turn in The Passenger, the Lyric’s general director hinted that she’d be back several more times in seasons to come. You should be there, too.