American mezzo Ariel Bybee was born in Reno, Nevada on 9 January 1943. She studied at Brigham Young University, and later in New York. She was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and sang solos with the Tabernacle Choir. After teaching music at junior high school for five years in Utah and California, she began singing with the San Francisco Opera Company.
She appeared at New York Metropolitan Opera every season from 1977 until 1995, singing many leading roles, and first getting noticed as Jenny in Kurt Weill's The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny. She also performed abroad, taught singing and directed operatic productions.
Ariel Bybee died on 20 March 2018, aged seventy-five.