Richard Todd Adams is currently on the 25th anniversary national tour of Les Misérables, where he covers both the roles of Jean Valjean and Javert. Prior to this, he appeared in the world premiere of We Have Always Lived in the Castle at Yale Repertory Theatre, written by Todd Almond and Adam Bock. He has also traveled the country with the national tour of Phantom of the Opera, starring in the title role. On Broadway, he appeared in Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Woman in White and Schoenberg and Boublil's The Pirate Queen. Off-Broadway, he was seen in Michael John LaChiusa's Little Fish at Second Stage, and David Friedman's Listen to My Heart at Studio 54. Richard won the 2008 Jeff Award for his portrayal of Javert in Les Misérables at Chicago's Marriott Lincolnshire Theatre. Other regional highlights include Cervantes in Man of La Mancha (Hangar Theatre), the title role(s) in Jekyll and Hyde (John W. Engeman Theatre), Percy in The Scarlet Pimpernel (Virginia Musical Theatre), Father in Ragtime and Dickinson in 1776 (Seaside Music Theatre), Ravenal in Showboat (Village Theatre), and both Ted and Richard in 2 Pianos, 4 Hands at theatres all across the United States and Canada. He received his Masters in Music from The Juilliard School. www.rtadams.com
Robert Ariza is a senior musical theatre major at The University of Michigan. Originally from Queens, New York, Robert has been very active while at Michigan. UM credits include: Carner & Gregor Live (Featured Singer), Dance With Me (Featured Singer), Disney's Workshop of Bedknobs and Broomsticks (Radio Singer), Crazy for You (Bela Zangler), Sunday in the Park with George (Mr./Lee Randolph), and Spring Awakening (Hanschen). Robert has been a member of the resident company at Music Theatre of Wichita for the past two summers, performing in the US Premiere of Betty Blue Eyes (Francis Lockwood), Mary Poppins (Northbrook/Valentine), Les Misérables (Courfeyrac/Montparnasse), and Legally Blonde (Padamadan/Carlos). Robert was the recipient of the 2013 Roger Sturtevant Musical Theatre Award from the Actors' Equity Association. In 2012, he received the Emerging Talent Award from the Lotte Lenya Competition and is thrilled to participate in the finals this year.
A strong believer in vocal versatility and the importance of the text, soprano Alison Arnopp has studied both classical singing (Royal College of Music with Patricia Rozario) and musical theatre (Royal Academy of Music with Maureen Scott) at the post-graduate level in London, after initially training and working as a stage and television actress in her home city of Cork, Ireland. Credits include: Young Shepherd (cover) in Tim Albery's production of Tannhäuser (Royal Opera House); Babe in The Pajama Game and Nora in A Doll's Life (Royal Academy of Music); 2nd Lady, The Magic Flute (London Youth Opera); Cherubino, Le Nozze di Figaro (Royal College of Music); Alison, The Wandering Scholar (RCM, Opera Les Fauves); Soloist, Thursford Christmas Spectacular; Choir, Celtic Woman: Songs from the Heart US Tour; and Ensemble, My Land's Shore. She has also provided session vocals for folk, pop and funk bands as well as animations and short films. During her studies Alison has been supported by Ian Fleming Musical Theatre Award (MBF), Irish Arts Council, Josephine Baker Trust, and Lionel Bart Foundation. Recently, she was awarded third prize in the international Lotte Lenya Competition. This summer Alison appears as the villainous Mrs. Ophelia Van de Scab in the award-winning new musical Constance & Sinestra and the Cabinet of Screams at the Camden People's Theatre, London. www.alisonarnopp.com
Baritone David Arnsperger was born in 1982 in Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany. After early artistic experiences in the local circus project Harlekin and the Freiburger Students Big-Band FSJ, he studied Musical Theatre at the Berlin University of the Arts (UdK) where he graduated with honors in 2007. In 2005 he won the first prize at Germany's national singing competition, the 34th Bundeswettbewerb Gesang Musical/Chanson. Awarded a scholarship by the WestLB (West German State Bank), he continued his studies in 2007 at the Musical Theatre Department of the Royal Academy of Music London. Later the same year he applied for studies in Gesang/Musiktheater (classical singing) also at the UdK Berlin, where he received his Bachelor of Arts in the summer of 2010 after winning the second prize at the Lotte Lenya Competition. His engagements include Ché in Evita (Lloyd Webber), Bottom in A Midsummer Night's Dream (Britten) and Don Alfonso in Così fan tutte (Mozart), Munkustrap in the German-language European tour of Cats (Lloyd Webber), Joe Gillis in Sunset Boulevard (Lloyd Webber), Rocky (cv.) in Rocky – the Musical (Flaherty, Stallone), Jekyll in Jekyll & Hyde (Wildhorn) and Phantom in Phantom of the Opera (Lloyd Webber). www.davidarnsperger.de
Tora Augestad studied classical music and jazz voice in Oslo and Stockholm, graduating in cabaret singing from the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo. She has sung with the biggest orchestras and ensembles in Norway and at major festivals such as ULTIMA Festival and the Oslo Chamber Music Festival. She worked as an actress at Theater Ibsen and Riksteatret before moving to Berlin in 2007; in Berlin she worked with new music, jazz, cabaret and unique music-theater productions. She has sung Jenny in The Threepenny Opera with Ensemble Modern under the baton of HK Gruber in Athens and has toured with Ensemble Modern throughout Europe. She has worked with Klangforum Wien since 2008. On the opera stage, she has premiered many new works. Tora has collaborated with stage director Christoph Marthaler in Wüstenbuch, Meine faire Dame (a new take on My Fair Lady), Lo Stimolatore Cardiaco, and King Size at Theater Basel, and the Handel production Sale at the Zurich Opera. Meine faire Dame was presented in Naples, Avignon, and at the Edinburgh International Festival 2012 and will tour to the Odéon-Théâtre de l'Europe in Paris in December. Tora will perform in another new Marthaler production, Letzte Tage : Ein Vorabend, at the Wiener Festwochen 2013. In 2004, Tora founded the ensemble MUSIC FOR A WHILE, composed of renowned Norwegian jazz musicians. Shortly after the release of their CD Weill Variations, the soprano was awarded a prize at the Lotte Lenya Competition. In 2009, the ensemble was invited to the Kurt Weill Fest Dessau. Their highly acclaimed new CD Graces that Refrain was presented at the Oslo Chamber Music Festival 2012. Another CD release will follow in autumn 2013 with Tora’s trio BOA (clarinet, cello, voice).
Robin Bailey (London, UK): Roles include Rodolpho in the Olivier Award-winning OperaUpClose production of La bohème, Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, Tony in West Side Story (Grange Park Opera), Chevalier (cover) in Dialogues des Carmélites (Grange Park Opera), and Fenton in Falstaff (Iford Opera Festival). Robin has appeared with Polyphony, BBC Singers, the Gabrieli consort, and was a founding member of the award-winning Voces8. The recipient of the Young Artist's Prize at France's Les Azuriales Competition, Robin can also be heard on film track recordings of Dracula Untold, The Great Gatsby, Prometheus, and Dark Shadows. He completed his Bachelor of Music degree at the Royal Academy of Music and is working toward a Masters of Music/Opera at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Future engagements include extracts from Bellini's I Capuleti e I Montecchi at the Royal Albert Hall, Marco in The Gondoliers and Nanki-Poo in The Mikado for Buxton Festival Opera this summer.
A native of Santa Cruz, California, Natalie Ballenger earned a B.M. from the Eastman School of Music and an M.M. from the University of Southern California. Highlights from past productions include: Josephine (HMS Pinafore), Susie Trevor (Lady By Good), Sarah Brown (Guys and Dolls), Blanche (Dialogues of the Carmelites), Luisa (The Fantasticks), Wanda (The Grand Duchess of Gerolstein), Lori (Miss Springtime), First Lady (Magic Flute), Evelyn (A Connecticut Yankee), June (Gypsy), Princess Diana (Jubilee), and most recently a debut at Avery Fisher Hall in NYC with National Chorale. Discography credits include: Josephine in HMS Pinafore (Albany Records) and Lori in Miss Springtime (Albany Records). Upcoming productions include: Kitty in Orange Blossoms (Light Opera of New York), Eliza in My Fair Lady (Ohio Light Opera), Nancy in Dream City (Ohio Light Opera), and Anetta in The Little King (Ohio Light Opera). www.natalieballenger.com
A native of Los Gatos, California, Kyle is currently playing Raoul, Vicomte de Chagny in the 25th Anniversary Broadway cast of The Phantom of the Opera. He was a member of the long-running national tour, and played Raoul for both the Los Angeles and final San Francisco engagements. Regional credits include Cinderella's Prince in Into the Woods, Barrett in Titanic, Will Parker in Oklahoma!, and South Pacific at the Hollywood Bowl. Kyle co-created the lounge act parody A Touch of Vegas, which has played to sold-out crowds on both coasts. Named "Mr. USC" at his alma mater, the University of Southern California, he went on to study at the Manhattan School of Music and the Esper Studio, under master acting teacher Bill Esper. Kyle often performs the audience warm-up for LIVE! with Kelly & Michael, and is also a published food writer. facebook.com/KyleBarisich
Diana Rose Becker, a native of Long Island, NY, studied Vocal Performance and Music Education at the Eastman School of Music. Diana made her European debut at the Deutsche Oper Berlin playing Maria in the International Tour of West Side Story. Regional credits include April in Company, Marianne Beaunoir in The New Moon, Princess Margaret in The Student Prince, Laurey Williams in Oklahoma!, Missy in The Marvelous Wonderettes, Dinah in South Pacific, and Olive in The 25th . . . Spelling Bee, among others. She has also been a part of multiple productions of Sheldon Harnick and Joe Raposo's A Wonderful Life (Mary Hatch) and Lerner and Loewe's My Fair Lady (Eliza Doolittle). Diana most recently performed in the Al Hirschfeld Theater in Broadway Backwards, an annual performance produced by Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Diana currently lives in New York City. For more information, please visit www.DianaRoseBecker.com.
Jeffrey Behrens is currently in his second year with The Juilliard Opera Center in New York City. Recent engagements have included the Britten-Pears Programme, Chautauqua Institution, San Francisco Opera Center, Central City Opera, and Opera Omaha. Roles include Peter Doyle in the World Premiere of Miss Lonelyhearts, Rinuccio in Gianni Schicchi, Rodolfo in La Bohème, and Tom Rakewell in The Rake's Progress. Concert work includes Carmina Burana, and Mozart's Requiem. Jeffrey has been awarded prizes from the Lotte Lenya Competition and Opera Index Inc. Training programs include Music Academy of the West, Central City Opera, and Merola. Upcoming, Mr. Behrens will be a young artist with the Santa Fe Opera.
Praised by Opera News for his "rich, versatile voice" and "beautiful instrument," rising baritone Liam Bonner will create the role of Lieutenant Audebert in the world premiere of Silent Night with Minnesota Opera in the 2011–2012 season. He will also debut with Los Angeles Opera as Sid in Albert Herring under James Conlon, return to North Carolina Opera for his first performances of Il Conte di Luna in Il trovatore, as well as a return to the Opera Theatre of St. Louis as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte. Last season, Mr. Bonner sang his first performances of Pelléas in Pelléas et Mélisande with the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis in a new production by David Alden, a role which he also covered at the Metropolitan Opera, as well as the role of Raimbaud in the new production of Le comte Ory. He also sang his first performances of Zurga in Les pêcheurs de perles with New Orleans Opera, Ned Keene in Peter Grimes in a return to Houston Grand Opera, and Valentin in Faust with North Carolina Opera. In recent seasons, he made his Washington National Opera debut as the title role in Hamlet to great acclaim, returned to Houston Grand Opera for Belcore in L’elisir d’amore, and made his Metropolitan Opera debut as Morales in Carmen. Mr. Bonner was also seen at the Metropolitan Opera as Horatio in Hamlet in the worldwide HD broadcast and made his European operatic debut as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte at English National Opera. www.liambonner.com
Baritone John Brancy is rapidly garnering acclaim in the very early stages of his singing career. While still an undergraduate student, Mr. Brancy made his Carnegie Hall debut with Mid-America Productions as the Baritone soloist in Fauré's Requiem, Rutter's Mass For The Children, and Mozart's Coronation Mass. He has given recitals throughout Europe and North America, and has appeared frequently in concert with Steven Blier at the New York Festival of Song, and the Caramoor Festival. He was also the winner of the 2010 Juilliard School Honors Recital Competition, resulting in his New York solo recital debut. This season with Juilliard Opera, Mr. Brancy will be singing the role of Slook in Rossini's La Cambiale di Matrimonio, and covering the title role in Don Giovanni, as well as the role of James Meredith in Sir Peter Maxwell Davies' new opera, Kommilitionen! His most recent roles include Aeneas in Dido and Aeneas, and Theseus in A Midsummer Night's Dream at the Juilliard School, and Sid in Albert Herring with the Opera on the Avalon Festival. Mr. Brancy has already been singled out as an artist to watch. He received 1st Prize at the Classical Singer Competition, and the same year won the Gold award for Voice at the NFAA YoungArts competition. He was the 2nd Place winner in the Gerda Lissner and Liederkranz competitions, and has been a finalist in the Young Concert Artist and George London competitions. Mr. Brancy recently received his bachelors degree from the Juilliard school and will continue his studies there in the Masters of Music program, under the tutelage of Edith Wiens.
Hailed for her "unfailingly gorgeous" voice and exceptional dramatic abilities, soprano Rebekah Camm has clearly established herself as a "significant new voice in opera" (The Washington Post). Since making her operatic debut as Micaëla in Carmen with the Houston Grand Opera in 2005, Ms. Camm has performed with the Cincinnati May Festival, LA Opera, Fort Worth Symphony, San Francisco Opera and the National Symphony Orchestra. The 2009/10 season for Ms. Camm began with performances of Suor Genovieffa in Suor Angelica and Nella in Gianni Schicchi in her San Francisco Opera company debut. Future engagements include her role debut as Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro for LA Opera, a return to the Cincinnati May Festival to sing Mozart's C-minor Mass and Bach's St. Matthew Passion, and a role and company debut singing the title role in Suor Angelica with Lorin Maazel at the Castleton Festival. www.rebekahcamm.com
Education: BM in Voice from UNLV, MM in Voice from UCLA. Regional credits: Cable in South Pacific (Paper Mill Playhouse), Joey in The Most Happy Fella (Goodspeed, Dallas Lyric Stage), Lancelot in Camelot (Pasadena Playhouse), Curly in Oklahoma! (Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, Fullerton Civic Light Opera), Tony in West Side Story (Fullerton Civic Light Opera), Thief in See What I Wanna See (Blank Theatre), Prince in Cinderella (Civic Light Opera of South Bay Cities), Chris in Miss Saigon (Moonlight Amphitheatre), and Curtis in Summer of Love (Ogunquit Playhouse). New York theater: Mr. Darcy in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice (NYMF), Skip in Life Could Be a Dream (LADCC Winner, NYMF). Doug is the only singer to win both the American Traditions Competition (2011) and the Lotte Lenya Competition (2013). Upcoming: Rutledge in 1776 at Cape Playhouse.
The New York Times lauds American mezzo-soprano Christina Carr as "utterly convincing" and a "show-stealer." Ms. Carr is rapidly establishing her place as a formidable dramatic mezzo-soprano. Last summer she performed Maddalena in Rigoletto and Berta in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Cleveland's Opera Circle where she has also performed Amneris in Aida and Azucena in Il Trovatore. She participated in the Wagner Intensive headed by Jane Eaglen and Tim Mussard, performing scenes as Venus in Tannhäuser, Isolde in Tristan und Isolde, Kundry in Parsifal, Fricka and Schwertleite in Die Walküre. Recently she performed the role of Marquise de Berkenfield in La fille du régiment with Taconic Opera with whom she has performed Azucena in Il Trovatore, Madam Flora (Baba) in The Medium, La zia principessa in Suor Angelica, and La Frugola in Il Tabarro. She has also worked with various companies such as Opera Omaha and Central City Opera. An alumna of the Juilliard Opera Center, she has performed Mrs. McLean in Floyd's Susannah and Mother Jeanne in Poulenc's Dialogues of the Carmelites under the baton of Julius Rudel. She created the role of Berthe in Juilliard's commissioned work Heloise and Abelard by Stephen Paulus. As a graduate student at the Eastman School of Music, Ms. Carr performed Amastris in Handel's Xerxes, Lady Jane in Gilbert and Sullivan's Patience, and Maurya in Vaughn Williams' Riders to the Sea. Ms. Carr was the first-prize winner of the New York Vocal Artists competition, a second-prize winner of the Lotte Lenya Competition, and a regional finalist in the 2002 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.
Sarah Chalfy recently played the title role in Friedmann/Kellogg's world premiere, Stunt Girl. Off-Broadway: ADA (title role, world premiere); 27 Rue de Fleurus (world premiere). Regional: What to Wear (Madeleine X - Richard Foreman/Michael Gordon world premiere); I Love You, Youíre Perfect, Now Change (Jennifer/Woman 1); Carousel (Carrie); Camelot (Guenevere); The Mikado (Yum Yum); Music Man (Marian). Opera: Midsummer Night's Dream (Helena), Transformations (Anne Sexton), Hänsel and Gretel (Gretel), The Cunning Little Vixen (Vixen), Le nozze di Figaro (Susanna). Soloist/member: Newspeak, NOW, Alarm Will Sound. Recording: Michael Gordon's Van Gogh on the Canteloupe label. TV/Film: Leverage (Monica), Frame (Jane), Snapshots (Ellen). Top awards: Lotte Lenya, Rosa Ponselle, Canticum Dominum, Bach Society of Baltimore competitions. Fellow: Tanglewood Music Center, the Mozarteum, Academie internationale d'été de Nice. Degrees: Peabody Institute (BM), Manhattan School of Music (MM).
Leena Chopra, soprano, made her Seattle Opera debut as the Second Priestess in Gluck's Iphigénie en Tauride, and returned to play Babarina in Le nozze di Figaro. As a resident artist at Wolf Trap Opera, her roles included Echo in Richard Strauss's Ariadne auf Naxos, Oberto in Handel's Alcina, and the Bernstein roles of Paquette in Candide and Maria in West Side Story. Other credits include: L'Amour and Clarine in Rameau's Platée at Sante Fe Opera; Alexandra (Zan) in Marc Blitzstein's Regina at the Kennedy Center; and Young Heidi in Follies and Mrs. Segstrom in A Little Night Music on Broadway; Lauretta in Puccini's Gianni Schicchi, Ida in Johann Strauss, Jr.'s Die Fledermaus, and Esperanza in Osvaldo Golijov's Ainadamar with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Ms. Chopra earned both her bachelor's and master's degrees from the Juilliard School.
A graduate of the Manhattan School of Music (M.M) and the Eastman School (B.M.), Ms. Conlon has collaborated in various mediums during the course of her career, specifically classical, jazz and musical theater styles. Most recently in Coral Gables, FL she appeared as Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, L'écureuil, La Chat and La Libellule in L'enfant et les sortilèges and at the 2009 Festival Miami as Arietta in Dennis Kam's Opera 101. While at MSM, she participated in the American Musical Theater Ensemble's Cy Coleman Revue and sang in a master class with the late Anna Moffo. In 2002 while at Eastman, Ms. Conlon won the Lotte Lenya Competition. Soon after, she was featured in a winners' concert and sang Minny Belle in a concert version of Kurt Weill's Johnny Johnson, both at the Bruno Walter Auditorium in Lincoln Center. Additional scene and role performances include Donna Elvira, Pamina, Norina, Susanna, Zerlina, Despina, Maria (West Side Story), Julie (Carousel), and Ella Hammer (Cradle Will Rock). Her teachers include Ashley Putnam, David Malis and Florence Quivar. Lisa currently resides in Connecticut, maintains an active performing and teaching career and will continue her Doctoral studies in Vocal Performance in the fall of 2010. www.lisaconlon.com
Ms. Cooper recently made her debut with New York City Opera in Schwartz’s Séance on a Wet Afternoon, where she covered Lauren Flanigan in the role of Myra Foster. Just prior, she debuted the role of Titania/Hippolyta in the first known a cappella opera, Ching’s A Midsummer Night's Dream, at Opera Memphis. She also sang the NYC premiere of Mayer's A Death in the Family (cast recording Albany Records), and performed Musetta in Baz Luhrmann's acclaimed Broadway production of La Bohème. Jennifer has sung cabarets at the Firebird Café in NYC, concerts at Carnegie Hall, backup for Patti LuPone, and benefits with Neil Diamond, Jerry Herman, and Alan Menken. You may have heard Jennifer on NY's Power 105.1 weekly Hip Hopera segment, where she sang opera parodies of hip-hop hits with DJ's Ed Lover and Doctor Dre. Awards: Weill Foundation's Lenya Competition (First Prize), MacAllister Awards, Met Council Mid-South Regionals, Eugene Opera's Belle Voci Competition, the Orpheus Vocal Competition, Opera Birmingham's Competition, Mobile Opera's Palmer-Tensai Competition, and Shreveport Opera's Singer of the Year. Companies: NYCO, Glimmerglass, Opera Theater of St. Louis, Shreveport Opera, Opera Memphis, Orchestra of St. Luke's, Memphis Symphony, Omaha Symphony, Bowdoin International and Greenwich Music Festivals, Goodspeed Opera, North Shore Music Theater, Kansas City Rep/Arizona Theater Co., Theatre Memphis. B.M., New York University; M.M., Manhattan School of Music; DMA Candidate, University of Memphis. Ms. Cooper currently resides in Ohio with her husband, Bass Baritone Sean Cooper, their three children, and their hairless cat Bruce. www.jennifergoodecooper.com
Mezzo-Soprano Rachel Cordeiro is an opera singer with a theatre background and a passion for dramatic performance. She has appeared in both music theatre and drama productions as well as concerts and recitals. Highlights include being a featured vocalist at Carnegie Hall, Symphony Space, and Brooklyn Academy of Music's BAMCafé. Recent projects include MASKS--a solo performance art piece, and recital featuring danzas, the classical music of Puerto Rico. A member of Actors' Equity and a Latin Grammy Nominated musician, Rachel holds a Master of Music in Classical Voice from Manhattan School of Music and a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Performance from Marymount Manhattan College. She is a student of Patricia McCaffrey, under whose guidance she recently made the transition to Mezzo. This welcome change has afforded Rachel a new perspective and opened a brand new horizon of opportunities, the first of which is her move and subsequent start of an European career. www.rachelcordeiro.com
Bass-Baritone Paul Corona made his Metropolitan Opera debut in 2010 in Debussy's Pelléas et Mélisande and Strauss's Capriccio and was the Grand Prize Winner in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions a few years prior. Last season Mr. Corona completed his residency with the Lyric Opera of Chicago in the Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center and during his time there he performed many roles with the Lyric, including Jake Wallace in La Fanciulla del West, Doctor Grenvil in La Traviata, Pistola in Falstaff, the Bonze in Madama Butterfly and Sciarrone in Tosca. Other performances this season include a mainstage role debut as Bartolo in Le Nozze di Figaro with Kentucky Opera in the fall and in Mussorgsky's Khovanshchina with the Metropolitan Opera in the spring. With the Chicago Opera Theater Mr. Corona has also been fortunate to perform such roles as Osmin in The Abduction from the Seraglio and Somarone in Béatrice et Bénédict. During the 2011-2012 season he returns to this company to perform the role of Barabashkin in Shostakovich's Moscow, Cheryomushki. Mr. Corona has received awards from the Sullivan Foundation, Opera Index, Monastero Bel Canto Competition, Union League Civic and Arts Foundation, American Opera Society, Gerda Lissner Foundation and the Lotte Lenya Competition. He is a Chicago native and a graduate of Northwestern University.
Italian-American mezzo-soprano Ginger Costa-Jackson is a graduate of the Metropolitan Opera's Lindemann Young Artist Development Program and a Samling Scholar. Her roles with the Met include Smaragdi in Zandonai's Francesca da Rimini, Mercédès in Bizet's Carmen, Lola in Mascagni's Cavalleria rusticana, Myrtale in Massenet's Thaïs, Rosette in Massenet's Manon, Eine Theatergarderobiere/Der Gymnasiast/Ein Groom in Berg's Lulu, and Wowkle in Puccini's La fanciulla del West. Additionally, she covered Cherubino in Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro, Smeton in Donizetti's Anna Bolena, and Ascagne in Berlioz's Les Troyens. Ms. Costa-Jackson debuted in the title role of Carmen with Glimmerglass Opera, and has sung Lola with Barcelona's Gran Teatre del Liceu; Nancy T’ang in Adams's Nixon in China with the San Francisco Opera, a role she performed under the baton of the composer with the Met in 2011; Marie in Rossini's Moïse et Pharaon with the Collegiate Chorale at Carnegie Hall; Puss in the U.S. premiere of Montsalvatge's El Gato con Botas with the Gotham Chamber Opera; Celia in Gilbert and Sullivan's Iolanthe with the San Francisco Symphony; Dorabella in Mozart's Così fan tutte with the Verbier Festival Academy; and Nerone in Monteverdi's L'incoronazione di Poppea with the International Institute of Vocal Arts. Ms. Costa-Jackson's future engagements include La Marchesa di Poggio in Verdi's Un giorno di regno (King for a Day) with Glimmerglass Opera, and Metropolitan Opera performances of Così fan tutte (Dorabella), Falstaff (Meg Page), and Andrea Chenier (Bersi). www.gingercostajackson.com
The 2012 First Prize winner in Syracuse's Civic Morning Musicals Competition just completed a term as a Young Artist at Utah Festival Opera and was also a 2013 Studio Artist at Saratoga Opera. While a 2011 College Light Opera Resident Artist, Jordan appeared as The Conductor in On the Twentieth Century, Andrew Carnes in Oklahoma!, and Harrison Howell in Kiss Me, Kate. While a student at the Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam, Jordan performed with the Crane Opera Ensemble. Credits include: Dema (L’Egisto), Albert (Albert Herring), Gabey (On The Town), Ferrando (Così fan tutte), King Kaspar (Amahl and the Night Visitors), and Florville (Il signor Bruschino). The New Yorker is finishing his studies toward a Masters of Music in Vocal Performance at James Madison University this semester and will continue with his DMA in Vocal Performance, Pedagogy, and Literature in the Fall. www.jordandavidsontenor.com
Ben Edquist is a first-year graduate student at Rice University. Originally from Lake Jackson, Texas, Ben received his Bachelor of Music degree from Vanderbilt University last spring. Mr. Edquist's operatic roles include Sid in Albert Herring, Charlie in Three Decembers, Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, Him-Baritone in Trouble in Tahiti, and Sir John Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor. Ben was a member of the Wolf Trap Opera Studio this past summer and performed the role of Antonio while also covering the role of Baron di Trombonok in Il viaggio a Reims with the Wolf Trap Opera Company. He has performed many musical theater roles with Light Opera Oklahoma and Brazosport Center Stages, including Gaston in Beauty and the Beast, Roy in The Light in the Piazza, Barnaby Tucker in Hello, Dolly!, and Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls. This summer, he will play the role of Jigger in Carousel with the Glimmerglass Festival.
A native of New York, Maria Failla received her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from The Shepherd School of Music at Rice University in 2011. Maria made her European debut as Maria in West Side Story at Le Théâtre du Capitole in Toulouse, France. She performed various leads in The College Light Opera Company's 2011 season including: Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, Lady Katherine in The Vagabond King, Princess Maria in Call Me Madam and Antonia in Man of la Mancha. Other credits include: Anne in A Little Night Music, Sandman in Hansel and Gretel, Laurie in Oklahoma! and Fiona in Brigadoon. Maria recently joined the cast of the international tour of West Side Story as Rosalia, "Somewhere" Soloist and Maria understudy. www.mariafailla.com
The Nebraskan's credits include performances as Nicely Nicely in Guys and Dolls and Galahad in A Connecticut Yankee at Ohio Light Opera Company, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus at New York Opera Exchange and Jack in Into the Woods at Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre. Other performances include his Carnegie Hall debut in 2013 as the tenor soloist in Schubert's Mass in G presented by Manhattan Concert Productions. Adam is the 2012 winner of the Musical Theatre division of the Hal Leonard Vocal Competition. He holds both a Bachelors and Masters of Music from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he performed the title role in Candide, Nerone in L'incoronazione di Poppea, Lysander in A Midsummer Night's Dream and Romeo in Roméo et Juliette in UNL productions. Adam currently lives in NYC, but is planning a move to Minneapolis this summer to be closer to friends and family and join the city's thriving arts community.
Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Briana now calls Brooklyn home. Briana recently completed her undergraduate degree in Music at UCLA, where she performed Lillian Holiday in Happy End, Valletto in L'incoronazione di Poppea, and L’enfant in L’enfant et les sortilèges. She graduated as a theater major from the Interlochen Arts Academy, where she played Gertrude McFuzz in Seussical and Meg March in Little Women. Equally at home in musical and dramatic repertoire, Briana has been the recipient of the "Fine Arts Award" and "Maddy Summer Artist Award" from the Interlochen Center for the Arts, a "National YoungArts Foundation Award," and the second-place prize of the Walter Jurmann Vocal Competition. Briana’s voice can be heard on video-game, musical, and feature-film soundtrack recordings for companies including Sony Music Entertainment Japan, Hal Leonard, MTI Broadway Jr., Skywalker Sound, and Universal Pictures. www.brianasilvie.com
Margaret Gawrysiak, mezzo-soprano, recently performed the Mother and the Witch in Kevin Newbury's production of Hansel and Gretel for Virginia Opera. This past season she made her National Symphony and Wolf Trap Opera debut as Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd. Under the baton of Maestro Lorin Maazel, Margaret performed Frugola in Il Tabarro and Zita in Gianni Schicchi at the Castleton Festival. Maestro Maazel invited Margaret to return to the festival to reprise these roles and invited her to Tanglewood to sing the mezzo solo in Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Favorite opera performances include Madame de la Haultiere in Cendrillon with the Aspen Opera Theatre, a double bill of Gianni Schicchi and L'enfant et les Sortilèges with the Opera Company of Philadelphia, Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro with Eugene Opera, Berta in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre, and Mother Marie in the Dialogues of the Carmelites at the Eastman School of Music. In concert, she has performed the Mozart and Verdi Requiems with the Springfield Symphony, Haggadah shel Passach with the American Symphony Orchestra, Prokofiev's Alexander Nevsky with the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, Rochester Philharmonic, and the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra, and Mahagonny Songspiel with the Seattle Symphony. Upcoming operatic engagements include Baba the Turk in Rake's Progress with Wolf Trap Opera Center. Future seasons include her debut with Florida Grand Opera and a return to Virginia Opera.
Margaret's web page
A native of Connecticut, tenor Matthew Grills earned a B.M. from the Boston Conservatory and an M.M. from the Eastman School of Music. He was a winner in the 2012 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions; the same year he was awarded first prize in the Lotte Lenya Competition. Stage credits include Jenik (The Bartered Bride), the Balladeer/Lee Harvey Oswald (Sondheim's Assassins), Jamie (The Last Five Years), Ferrando (Così fan tutte), Prunier (La Rondine), Prince Charming (Massenet's Cendrillon) and the Prologue (Turn of the Screw). Matthew was a young artist at the Seagle Music Colony (2011), and is an apprentice with Santa Fe Opera for 2012, where he is featured as Frank Leverson in a workshop of Theodore Morrison's new opera Oscar starring countertenor David Daniels, based on the life of Oscar Wilde. Other upcoming engagements include the role of Goffredo in Handel's Rinaldo, Spoletta in Tosca, and the cover for Don Ottavio (Don Giovanni) and Fenton (Falstaff), all with Portland Opera. In 2013, he will make his San Francisco Opera debut in Les contes d'Hoffmann as Nathaniel and as the cover for Ferrando in Così. In April 2013, Matthew will be co-presented in a recital through Vocal Arts D.C. and the Washington Performing Arts Society in the Terrace Theatre of the Kennedy Center. Matthew would like to continue to make music, no matter the genre. www.matthewgrills.com
Cooper Grodin is currently staring as the Phantom in the new national touring production of The Phantom of the Opera. He was born and raised on the isle of Manhattan, where he attended LaGuardia High School of Music, Art and Performing Arts. Cooper earned his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Wisconsin Madison, and received his Master in Music from the Manhattan School of Music. He is an avid singer of all genres and an accomplished pianist, composer, and music director. On stage he has performed the roles of Danny in Grease, Javert in Les Misérables, Mr. Snow in Carousel, Junius in The Rape of Lucretia, the Count in A Little Night Music, Pharoah in Joseph, Billy in Carousel, and Rapunzel's Prince in Into the Woods. He was a member of the 25th Anniversary National Tour of Les Misérables and played the starring role in the international tour of Zorro: The Musical. Cooper has sung numerous concerts with the New York Philharmonic, Brooklyn Philharmonic, American Symphony Orchestra, and the Orchestra of St. Luke's, and has also performed in the New York premiere of Grendel at City Opera, directed by Julie Taymor, and Zaide as part of the Mostly Mozart Festival, directed by Peter Sellars. In 2006, Cooper made his Carnegie Hall debut in Paul McCartney's Ecce Cor Meum. He can be seen in such films as Music and Lyrics from Castle Rock/Warner Bros. and Salt from Columbia Pictures. In 2010 he was awarded a Lys Symonette Award for "Outstanding Performance of an Individual Number" in the Lotte Lenya Competition. Cooper is a member of Equity, AGMA, SAG, and is signed with About Artists Agency. His new debut original album "It's the Little Things" is available on iTunes. Visit www.coopergrodin.com.
Hailed by Opera News for his "exceptional" singing, and praised by The New York Times for his "impressive," "remarkable" and "elegantly lean" performances, GRAMMY-nominated baritone Christopher Dylan Herbert has also received commendation for his "consistently warm sound" and his "versatile dramatic abilities." This season Mr. Herbert reprises the role of Paul Watson in Jonathan Berger's The War Reporter at the Prototype Festival, debuts at Alice Tully Hall as a soloist with the American Classical Orchestra, remounts Winterize (an outdoor adaptation of Schubert's Winterreise for baritone and transistor radios), and tours with his critically acclaimed ensemble New York Polyphony, in addition to several other engagements throughout the United States and Europe. Performances in recent seasons included Henrik in A Little Night Music at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Winterreise at the Austrian Cultural Forum of New York and Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles, Kindertotenlieder with the Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra, Sid in Albert Herring with Opera Vivente, Il prigioniero in Il piccolo Marat at Avery Fisher Hall, and various recitals with pianists Thomas Bagwell and Timothy Long. Mr. Herbert has also performed with the Boston Pops and at Tanglewood, Wolf Trap, Music Academy of the West, and Central City Opera, and has won awards from the Sullivan Foundation, Gérard Souzay Competition and Kurt Weill Foundation. He holds a B.A. in Music from Yale University and an M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from Harvard University. He is the baritone in the acclaimed male classical vocal ensemble New York Polyphony.www.christopherdylanherbert.com
Arlo Hill is an actor and singer on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and in cabarets and theaters throughout New York City. A graduate of Harvard University, Arlo appears in the Broadway cast of The Phantom of the Opera and in the cabaret Jacques Brel Returns! at the Triad. He was recently seen in the Encores! production of The Most Happy Fella at City Center. Other credits include Little Me, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Where’s Charley? (Encores!), and the televised, Emmy-nominated Carousel with the New York Philharmonic. A resident artist with Sightline Theater, Arlo has devised and performed in Hold Music (Ars Nova; Culture Project), One Arm and a Leg (HERE), and that time . . . (Dixon Place). Regional work includes Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Henry Spofford) and Fiddler on the Roof (Fyedka). Arlo's solo cabaret, Asking for Trouble: Frank Loesser's Life in Songs, premiered in New York in 2013. www.arlohill.com
Berlin-based actor/singer Alen Hodzovic feels equally at home in straight plays, musicals, and operettas, as well as on the concert stage. A 2009 Lotte Lenya Competition First Prize winner, he first discovered the work of Kurt Weill as a student performing in a revue of his music titled Ladies in the Light at the Munich Prinzregententheater, directed by Helmut Baumann. Alen graduated both from the Bayerische Theaterakademie August Everding in Munich and the Royal Academy of Music in London. He won 1st Prize at the 1999 German National Singing Competition (junior category) and an H. L. Hammond Prize for Verse Speaking at RAM (adjudicated by Tony-winning director John Caird). Following his professional debut in Mozart! at the Theater an der Wien in Vienna, he played Raoul in The Phantom of the Opera in Stuttgart, Jack Seward in the European premiere of Frank Wildhorn's Dracula, and Bernhard Spyri in the world premiere of Heidi in Switzerland. Regional theatre credits across Europe include West Side Story, Cabaret, Sweeney Todd, A Little Night Music, Into the Woods, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Little Shop of Horrors, Sugar, Sweet Charity, The Last Five Years, and also straight acting parts in plays by Shakespeare, Schiller and Dario Fo. In 2007, he appeared as a background singer with Sir Elton John in the Concert for Diana at Wembley Stadium. In 2013, he completed a successful run as Ken, assistant to painter Mark Rothko, in John Logan’s play Red in Bern, Switzerland. www.alen-hodzovic.com
A native of Philadelphia, bass-baritone Justin Hopkins has established himself as one of the top performers among his peers on the opera stage. The 2013-2014 season included his debut with the Boston Pops singing the Vaughn-Williams Fantasia on Christmas Carols; Ceprano (Rigoletto) with Opera Memphis; Leporello (Don Giovanni) with Opera in the Heights and Nourabad (Les Pêcheurs de Perles) with Fort Worth Opera. The 2012-2013 season marked his Carnegie Hall debut, singing Sir Berkley (Der Vampyr) with American Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Leon Botstein, as well as his London debut with the BBC Concert Orchestra under the direction of Keith Lockhart singing A Stranger Here Myself: Kurt Weill on Broadway. That season also included performances of Astolfo (Lucrezia Borgia) with Théâtre Royal de Monnaie; Bartolo and Antonio (Le Nozze di Figaro) under the direction of Paul McCreesh; Berger and Médecin (Pelléas et Mélisande) under the direction of Charles Dutoit with Verbier Festival Orchestra in Switzerland as well as Lorenzo (I Capuleti e i Montecchi) with Opera in the Heights. The 2010-2011 season marked Justin Hopkins' European debut, performing the combined roles of Il Servo, Il Medico and Heraldo (Macbeth) with the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie; Colline (La bohème) with the Verbier Festival Academy and Cappadocian (Salome) under the direction of Valery Gergiev with the Verbier Festival Orchestra in Switzerland. Mr. Hopkins has sung for numerous dignitaries and heads of state, most notably a solo performance for His Holiness The Dalai Lama in San Francisco in 2009. www.justinhopkinsopera.com
Briana Elyse Hunter, born in Baltimore, MD, received her BA from Davidson College (NC) and MM at Manhattan School of Music. Previous credits include Cendrillon (Cendrillon), Die Fledermaus (Ida/Prince Orlofsky), Iolanta (Laura), Summer and Smoke (Rosa Gonzales), Ragtime (Sarah), and The Ghosts of Versailles (Woman w/ baby). She has worked under the direction of the Royal Shakespeare Company as both actress and vocal soloist in an original production, For Every Passion Something, that premiered at the Fringe Festival in Scotland. In addition to winning a Lys Symonette Award in the 2014 Lotte Lenya Competition, she was awarded 2nd Alternate in MSM’s Eisenberg-Fried Concerto Competition and was a semi-finalist in Opera Theater Pittsburgh's Mildred Miller Competition. She has been on the rosters of I SING BEIJING and Sarasota Opera, and looks forward to joining Music Academy of the West this summer as the title character in its production of Carmen. www.brianaelysehunter.com
Currently appearing in the Broadway revival of Godspell, Morgan was previously in the original Broadway casts of Frank Wildhorn's Wonderland (where she covered the role of Alice) and The Addams Family, starring Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth. Most recently she played Sarah Brown in Guys and Dolls at Barrington Stage Company, directed by Tony Award winner John Rando. As a solo artist, she has played to sold-out audiences throughout New York City with her seven-piece band, and is working on an album. Morgan was a featured soloist in Bernstein's Mass with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, performing at Carnegie Hall and The Kennedy Center, and can be heard on their Grammy-nominated recording (Naxos), and recently sang with the Utah Symphony conducted by Jerry Steichen. Her regional and concert credits include Arizona Theatre Company, Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Barrington Stage Company (The Human Comedy), Paper Mill Playhouse, Eugene O'Neill Theatre Conference, The Wilma Theatre, and Two River Theatre Co. In addition to her theatrical career, Morgan can be seen and heard in numerous commercials, voice-overs, and recordings, including the original cast recordings of Wonderland and The Addams Family, and is featured on "(Sorta) Love Songs," Paul Loesel and Scott Burkell; "Chasing the Day," music of Will Van Dyke; and "What I Wanna Be When I Grow Up," the music of Scott Alan. As a solo artist, Morgan has played to sold-out crowds throughout NYC including Birdland, Dominion, Joe's Pub, (Le) Poisson Rouge, and Rockwood Music Hall, and will be performing at the illustrious Dizzy's Club Coca Cola in December as a part of the jazz at Lincoln Center "After-hours" series. Morgan trained at The Juilliard School, and is a proud member of AEA and the SAG. www.morganjames.org
Zachary James has originated on Broadway in Coram Boy, the Tony Award winning revival of South Pacific at Lincoln Center and as Lurch in The Addams Family and Off-Broadway with Encores! as Pasquale in The Most Happy Fella and Mec in Irma la Douce. He has sung with London's English National Opera, Madrid's Teatro Real, Ash Lawn Opera, Knoxville Opera, Central City Opera, the New York Philharmonic, American Lyric Theater, Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and Symphony of the Mountains. He created the operatic roles Abraham Lincoln in the The Perfect American by Philip Glass, Oberon in Kristin Hevner's Il Sogno, Rebbe in Andy Teirstein's A Blessing on the Moon and Thomas Jefferson in Dana Wilson's The Wolf by the Ears. In the theatre world he has performed throughout the United States in roles including Sweeney Todd in Sweeney Todd, Miles Gloriosus in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Rapunzel's Prince in Into The Woods, Abner in Li'l Abner, Squash in Victor, Victoria, Petr in The Toymaker, and The Major General in The Pirates of Penzance among others, at theatres including The Bucks County Playhouse, The York Theatre, Theatre By The Sea, Pocono Playhouse, The Kitchen Theatre and Westport Country Playhouse. He has participated in the development of several musical workshops and readings including The Addams Family, Houdini, Big Fish, Treasure Island, Creation, The Unsinkable Molly Brown, Show People, The Golden Ticket, Murmurs and Incantations, Red Eye of Love, Faustus and more, and has appeared on TV and film as Carl on 30 Rock and Ballion in The Gift. Zach can be heard on the cast recordings of The Addams Family, South Pacific, Il Sogno and The Toymaker. As the Founding Director of Metropolis Opera Project, Zach collaborates with composers and librettists to develop and present new opera for a new audience and has produced several world premiere operas, festivals, and events in NYC. Zach is a graduate of the Musical Theatre program at Ithaca College, where he was recently awarded the 2011 Outstanding Young Alumni Award. www.ZachJames.com
Lauren Jelencovich, soprano, made her mainstage opera debut in 2009 at Tampa Opera as the lead roles of Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi and Suor Genovieffa in Suor Angelica. She made her Off-Broadway debut in Wallace and Allen Shawn's play/opera, The Music Teacher. Lauren won Ed McMahon's Star Search, was a finalist and received a Lys Symonette Award in the 2008 Lotte Lenya Competition, and received Andrea Bocelli's World Scholarship. Lauren has been involved with programs such as Sherrill Milnes' and Disney's "VOICExperience" and the International Vocal Arts Institute performing in Puerto Rico, Montreal, and Tel Aviv with Joan Dornemann. She graduated from The Manhattan School of Music in 2007 and performed in their productions of Gilbert and Sullivan's Trial by Jury as Angelina, The Plaintiff, and the American Music Theatre Ensemble. Lauren is a member of AEA and has studied with William Esper at the William Esper Acting Studio. She has performed at Carnegie Hall in New York, as well as the MGM Grand and Hard Rock Live in Las Vegas. Lauren has also been featured in People Magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People, and TEEN MAGAZINE.
Amy Justman's performances have spanned the worlds of musical theater, opera, and jazz. She is an original cast member of the 25th Anniversary Tour of Phantom of the Opera, where she performed both Carlotta and Madame Giry. Amy made her Broadway debut as Susan in Company, and can be heard on the Original Revival Cast Recording and seen on PBS' Great Performances DVD. She recently returned to the work of Sondheim and director John Doyle, playing Clara in Passion at Classic Stage Company. Her other New York credits include the Broadway production of White Christmas, Peep Bo in The Mikado at Carnegie Hall, covering Kelli O'Hara in Lucky to Be Me at New York City Opera, and three productions with City Center Encores!. Amy's other recent projects include Gluck's The Enchanted Tree for the inaugural season of the Fire Island Opera Festival, Cinderella and Rapunzel in Disney on Classic with the Tokyo Philharmonic, Maria in The Sound of Music at Arrow Rock Lyceum, and Shelby in The Spitfire Grill at Flat Rock Playhouse. Other theatrical credits include Heidi in Title of Show at Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Mary Turner in Of Thee I Sing at the Bard SummerScape Festival, and Claire in Ordinary Days at the Adirondack Theatre Festival. She has been a soloist with the Ravinia Festival, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (Bernstein's Mass, recording on Naxos), New York City Ballet, American Symphony Orchestra, the Kurt Weill Fest, Great Music in a Great Space, Riverside Choral Society, Musica Sacra, and Dance Brazil. Amy can be heard on the jazz recordings Songs for Pickles and Hoagy Carmichael: The Stardust Road. She received her MM from Manhattan School of Music and her BA from Yale University. www.amyjustman.com
As a New York City based singer, multi-instrumentalist, composer and producer, Langfelder's 2011 debut EP [Fe] has been celebrated as “brilliant” by Synth Pop veteran Vince Clarke (Erasure). Since its release, he has been playing various venues in support of [Fe]. Prior to establishing himself as a solo artist, Langfelder performed in various musical productions. He has been featured as a lead performer in a program of Marc Blitzstein's music at The Kennedy Center as well as a return performer with the Ravinia Festival. At Ravinia, Langfelder has been seen in Stephen Sondheim's Passion, Sunday in the Park with George, and Anyone Can Whistle with Patti LuPone, Audra McDonald, and Michael Cerveris. Nationally, he has toured with The Sound of Music (Herr Zeller/Von Trapp u/s). Langfelder gained a fondness for the Kurt Weill repertoire while performing in Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny as Dreieinigkeits Moses with the Moores Opera House. As a Lotte Lenya Competition award winner, Langfelder had the honor of performing in the premiere of Unsung Kurt Weill with Jen Goode, as well as the title role in a new reading of Johnny Johnson. www.langfelder.com
Analisa Leaming was a senior at the Eastman School of Music when she won second prize in the 2007 Lotte Lenya Competition. Most recently Analisa was seen Off-Broadway as Elizabeth Pujol in The Fartiste. Tours: Annie (Grace Farrell), The Sound of Music (Maria u/s, Sister Sophia). Regional credits include Marian in The Music Man (GeVa Theatre), The Game and Sweeney Todd (Barrington Stage Co.), Yum-Yum in The Mikado, Blanche Ingram in Jane Eyre, Elizabeth in Robert and Elizabeth, Princess Maria in Call Me Madam and Maria in The Sound of Music (Ohio Light Opera). Other roles include Lazuli in L'Etoile, Squeaky Fromme in Assassins, Carolina in Il Matrimonio Segreto, Cinderella in Into the Woods, and Hodel in Fiddler on the Roof. Analisa will be making her Broadway debut in Rebecca this fall. www.analisaleaming.com
ERIK LIBERMAN most recently appeared in the New York premiere of Kooman and Dimond's Dani Girl, and will soon appear in and co-direct the 50th anniversary gala concert of Fiddler on the Roof at Town Hall. Theatre highlights include: Harold Prince's LoveMusik (Broadway), Fiddler on the Roof (North American Tour), Mabou Mines Dollhouse (World Tour and Off-Broadway), Off-Broadway's For Elise and The Calamity of Kat Kat and Willie, Eric Schaeffer's revival of Merrily We Roll Along (Helen Hayes Award), Mark Lamos's revival of Into the Woods (CT Critics Circle Award), Somewhere in Time (Original Cast), Reefer Madness! (Original Cast; Ovation, Garland Awards), seasons at Sundance Theatre Lab and appearances as "Groucho Marx" in Off-Broadway Minnie's Boys and The Most Ridiculous Thing You Ever Hoid (NYMF Award) and at The White House. Rover, a feature film in which Erik appears, premiered at the 2014 Slamdance Film Festival, and Fog, a short in which he appears (and also co-produced), was recently picked up for worldwide distribution on the SHORTS Film Network. He is featured in the Actors' Equity Centennial book, Performance of the Century, and is a Def Comedy Jam and YoungArts winner. Find him on YouTube, @erikliberman or at www.erikliberman.org.
An alumna of San Francisco's 2014 Merola Opera Program, Talya returns this spring to the San Francisco Opera Center to make her recital debut as part of the Schwabacher Debut Recital series. This summer she will perform Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro as a Filene Young Artist with Wolf Trap Opera. She is currently pursuing her Artist Diploma at Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where she has been a two-time award winner in the Corbett Scholarship Competition. She recently appeared as Gretel in Hansel and Gretel at CCM and again with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Before studying voice, Talya completed a Master of Music degree in Trumpet Performance at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and a Bachelor of Arts degree with Highest Distinction in Linguistics at Duke University. She was born and raised in Queens. www.talyalieberman.com
Hailed as "a singer to watch" (Opera News, 2009) mezzo-soprano Rebecca Jo Loeb recently joined the Ensemble at the Hamburgische Staatsoper singing such roles as Rosina in Barbiere di Siviglia, Hänsel in Hänsel und Gretel, and Dryad in Ariadne auf Naxos. Next season she continues her list of impressive debuts with Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro, Orlofsky in Die Fledermaus, and The Countess of Essex in Britten's Gloriana, as well as covering the role of Marie in the premiere of Written on Skin at the Festival Aix-en-Provence. In the 2010-2011 season Rebecca debuted with The Deutsche Oper Berlin, Teatro Regio di Torino, and Dallas Opera. She has also brought her concert of Musical Theater and Kurt Weill songs to many notable German festivals including the Kurt Weill Festival in Dessau and the Brechtfestival in Augsburg, Germany. Other notable performances include her Ravinia debut in Mahagonny Songspiel under the baton of James Conlon, her Carnegie Hall debut in Bach’s B-Minor Mass, her Alice Tully debut singing Bolcom's Cabaret Songs with the Riverside Symphony, The Second Fairy in Mendelssohn's Midsummer Night's Dream with the New York City Ballet and the workshop of The Enchanted Island as Hermia with the Metropolitan Opera. Other operatic roles include Meg Page in Falstaff, Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro, Jenny in The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny, Paquette in Candide, The Second Witch in Dido and Aeneas. She has performed on Broadway in a program entitled "The Ladies Who Sing Sondheim" and with the Boston Pops both at Symphony Hall and on tour to critical acclaim. She has performed with The New York Festival of Song, Mark Morris Dance Company, The Moab Music Festival, The Kurt Weill Festival in Dessau, Germany, The Juilliard Opera Center, as a Young Artist with Glimmerglass Opera, a fellow at the Tanglewood Music Festival, and as a young artist with Central City Opera. She was the 2008 winner of the Kurt Weill Foundation's Lotte Lenya Competition, a 2009 Career Bridges grant winner, and a 2010 Curt Engelhorn scholarship winner with the Opera Foundation.
The First Place Winner of the 2014 National Music Theater Competition has appeared on the musical theater stage as Roger in A New Brain, Sky Masterson in Guys and Dolls, Man 2 in Songs for a New World, and Curtis Ricks in Wisconsin Death Trip. While an undergraduate at the Peabody Conservatory of Music, the singer-actor appeared in productions of Dominick Argento's Postcard from Morocco (Shoe Salesman), Manon (De Brétigny), Les mamelles de Tirésias (Presto), and L’enfant et les sortilèges (Le chat). The New Jersey native also performed the baritone in Phillip Glass’ Hydrogen Jukebox with the American Opera Theatre at Georgetown University. Michael's concert appearances have included the baritone solos in Handel's Messiah, Vaughan Williams' Five Mystical Songs, Beethoven's Symphony No. 9, Rossini's Petite messe solenelle, and Fauré's Requiem. Michael currently lives in New York City.
Hailed for her "strong, lustrous mezzo and theatricality," Megan Marino makes her Metropolitan Opera debut as a Voice of an Unborn Child in Die Frau ohne Schatten in the 2013-14 season. She also joins the company for its productions of Rusalka, Werther, and Rigoletto and in concert sings Handel's Messiah with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and debuts at Carnegie Hall with the New York City Chamber Orchestra. Summer 2014 includes Varvara in Káťa Kabanová at the Spoleto Festival U.S.A, Angelina in La cenerentola with Green Mountain Opera and Meg Page in Falstaff with Emerald City Opera. In coming seasons, she will join the roster of the Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera and return to the Metropolitan Opera. Ms. Marino is the 2014 1st place winner of the Marcello Giordani Foundation International Vocal Competition and the Lyndon Woodside Oratorio Society of New York Solo Competition, a recent 2nd place winner of the Fort Worth Opera McCammon Competition and the Denver Lyric Opera Guild Competition and 3rd place winner of both the Lotte Lenya Competition and the Shreveport Opera Mary Jacobs Smith Singer of the Year Competition. She is a recipient of career grants from the Kurt Weill Foundation, Allied Arts and the Katharine M. Mayer Award given by the Santa Fe Opera. www.meganmarino.com
Ms. Mathes is currently a Studio Artist with Portland Opera. Next year she will be singing the title role in Rinaldo and Meg Page in Falstaff with Portland Opera. She recently made her NYC Recital debut at the National Arts Club with a night of art songs and cabaret. Last year she performed with Encompass Opera, singing the role of Sister Dorothy Stang in the world premiere of Angel of the Amazon, which tells of the nun's life, death, and struggles in Brazil. Ms. Mathes has appeared as a young artist in the Merola Program (as Despina in Così fan tutte), Opera New Jersey, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, and Chautauqua Opera, and was a participant of the Opera Theatre and Music Festival of Lucca and Spoleto, Italy. She received her Bachelors of Music from Ithaca College and her Masters of Music and Artist Diploma from Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, where she has sung the roles of Idamante in Idomeneo, Ruggiero in Alcina, Lady with a Hat Box in Postcard from Morocco, and Ottavia in L'incoronazione di Poppea, among others. www.caitlinmathes.com
American baritone Timothy McDevitt has garnered recent acclaim on the operatic, concert, and competition stages throughout the United States and abroad. His sophisticated portrayals of new and obscure works have been widely praised by the New York Times, Opera News, NPR, and the Boston Globe. This season, Timothy creates two new roles; Richard in Paul Crabtree's The Ghost Train at the Carolina Chamber Music Festival and Guglielmo in Jonathan Dawe's Così Faran Tutti at the Italian Academy in New York. At the Festival Aix-en-Provence, he we will sing Le Mari in Les mamelles de Tirésias and again in Belgium. Additional engagements include Carousel with the NY Philharmonic (broadcast on PBS Live from Lincoln Center), Mozart's Zaïde with Michael Tilson Thomas conducting the New World Symphony, a pair of recitals in England, solo engagements with the Lysander Trio at the Harvard Club and Jewish Theological Seminary in New York, and as the opening recital of the Collomore Concert Series in Stamford. Last season saw his celebrated performance of Paul in Phillip Glass' Les Enfants Terribles with the North Carolina Opera, Four Saints in Three Acts with the Mark Morris Dance Group, Manning the Canon with the New York Festival of Song, Les mamelles de Tirésias and Gianni Schicchi with Central City Opera, and recitals in Atlanta and New York. Highlights from previous seasons include performances with Wolf Trap Opera, Central City Opera, Juilliard Opera, Albany Symphony, and the National Symphony. An active recitalist, he has been heard at the major New York halls including Carnegie, Alice Tully, and Merkin. Timothy was a 2011 finalist in the Competizione dell'Opera at the Bolshoi in Moscow, an Atélier Lyrique finalist at the Paris Opéra Bastille in 2011 and 2012, a New York District Winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council, and the Lys Symonette Prize winner at the Lotte Lenya Competition in 2010. He holds his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Juilliard and is a native of Reading, PA. www.timothymcdevitt.com
Michael Anthony McGee, a native of Dallas, TX, made his European debut singing Winston Smith in Lorin Maazel's 1984 conducted by the composer at the Palau de les Arts in Valencia, Spain. Additional roles include Don Geronio in Rossini's Il Turco in Italia, Snug in Britten's A Midsummer Night's Dream and the title role in Sondheim's Sweeney Todd, all with the Wolf Trap Opera Company; title roles in both Verdi's Falstaff and Puccini's Gianni Schicchi with the Seattle Opera Young Artist Program; Morales in Bizet's Carmen, Marcello in Puccini's La bohème and Star of the Future Recital at Maazel's Castleton Music Festival; Fauré's Requiem with the Seattle Symphony; Orff's Carmina Burana with both the Seattle Symphony and the Pacific Northwest Ballet; Britten's War Requiem with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, Solo Recitals at Merkin Concert Hall, Weill Hall, the Trinity Church Wall Street, The Philips Collection Washington, DC, and Nordstrom Hall Seattle. He is the recipient of the 2009 Sullivan Foundation Award, 1st Place 2009 Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition, and 2010 recipient of the George London Award from the George London Foundation for Singers. www.michaelanthonymcgee.com
Peter McGillivray, a native of Saskatchewan, followed his success at the 2003 Lotte Lenya Competition with wins at the CBC/Radio-Canada Young Performers, Montreal International, and Queen Sonya of Norway singing competitions, as well as Germany's Schumann and Austria's Schubert Lieder competitions. In 2003, he joined the Canadian Opera Company where he made his professional debut in Dido and Aeneas, followed by subsequent performances in Albert Herring, La bohème, Faust, War and Peace and Gianni Schicchi. He has performed at many international festivals including Ravinia, Aspen, Aldeburgh and notably, Tanglewood, where he was Demetrius in an acclaimed production of A Midsummer Night's Dream. He has appeared with symphony orchestras in Ottawa, Quebec City, Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, Windsor, Regina, Kitchener-Waterloo, and Liverpool as well as the National Arts Centre, in repertoire ranging from Carmina Burana to Messiah. Recent operatic credits include performances with opera companies in Calgary (Carmen, Manon, Pagliacci, Moby Dick), Victoria (Madama Butterfly, Albert Herring), Ottawa (La bohème) and Hamilton (Die Fledermaus). He spent the 2010/11 season on the roster of New York's Metropolitan Opera in productions of Puccini's La bohème and Strauss's Capriccio. www.petermcgillivray.com
Michael "Tuba" McKinsey (Baritone) - A native of Battle Ground, WA, and graduate of the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY, Michael continues to be one of New York City's hardest-working actors. His ongoing project, The Nutty Professor, directed by legendary actor/comedian Jerry Lewis (music and lyrics by Tony Award Winners Marvin Hamlisch and Rupert Holmes) looks to grace a Broadway stage this fall. His NYC, National Touring and Regional credits include: Cameron Mackintosh's Oliver!, The Civil War at Ford's Theatre (Helen Hayes Award Nomination), Lucy Simon's Zhivago (directed by Des McAnuff), Secondhand Lions, For the Glory!, The Dirty Hippie Jam Band Project, The Full Monty, and Yeast Nation (by Tony winners Hollmann and Kotis). Also: Papermill Playhouse, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Perseverance Theatre, Gateway Theatre, and many others. In 2008, Michael was honored to sing for the President and First Lady in a Gala event at the National Theatre and the White House. Other performers/speakers included Maya Angelou, Hal Holbrook, Clay Aiken, Trisha Yearwood, and Larry Gatlin. Many thanks to Dr. Kim Kowalke and the Weill Foundation for their continued support and development of the Lotte Lenya Competition.
In the 2010-11 season Lucas Meachem performed as Count Almaviva in Il Barbiere di Siviglia at the San Francisco Opera, Dream/Demetrius in A Midsummer Night's Dream at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Orestes in Iphigenie en Tauride in Madrid, Mercutio in Roméo et Juliette at the Metropolitan Opera, and as Don Giovanni at the Glyndebourne Opera Festival. In the 2009-10 season he performed as Valentin in Faust at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Figaro in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Los Angeles Opera and Colorado Opera, and debuted with the Opéra National de Paris in the title role of Britten's Billy Budd, conducted by Jeffrey Tate, as well as Fritz/Frank in Korngold's Die tote Stadt with the Teatro Real de Madrid. In the previous few seasons, Lucas Meachem performed Fritz/Frank in Korngold's Die tote Stadt at San Francisco Opera and debuted with the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Aeneas in Dido and Aeneas. In addition, he appeared as Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro with the Bayerische Staatsoper, Valentin in Faust with Minnesota Opera, and the title role in Don Giovanni for the first time with the Santa Fe Opera and New Orleans Opera. He made his Metropolitan Opera debut in the role of General Rayevsky in Prokofiev's War and Peace, performed the role of Zurga in Les pêcheurs de perles at the Florida Grand Opera, and appeared as Valentin in Faust at New Orleans Opera. Mr. Meachem was an Adler Fellow with the San Francisco Opera and has appeared with the company in the title role of Eugene Onegin and Papageno in Die Zauberflöte. www.lucasmeachem.com
A finalist in the 2014 Lotte Lenya Competition, Lauren will make her Carnegie Hall debut this spring performing in the US Premiere of Kurt Weill's The Road of Promise with The Collegiate Chorale. A graduate of both The Juilliard School and UCLA, she has appeared internationally as Musetta in La bohème in Tel Aviv, Helena in A Midsummer Night's Dream at The Banff Center in Canada, and both Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi at Teatro Romano di Fiesole and Papagena in Die Zauberflöte at Teatro Malibran in Italy. As a participant in the Britten-Pears Programme, Lauren performed at Aldeburgh Music in England. The Californian is honored to represent the United States in the 2015 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World contest.
Praised for his "vocal mastery and theatrical panache" (San Francisco Chronicle), Jonathan Michie will return to the ensemble of Oper Leipzig in the 2014-15 season where he will debut as Silvio in a new production of Pagliacci, Hiram Otis in the premiere of Getty's The Canterville Ghost, Valentin in a new production of Faust, and Malatesta in Don Pasquale. He will also return to Los Angeles Opera as Fiorello in Il barbiere di Siviglia while covering the title role. Previous roles at Oper Leipzig have included Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Harlekin in Ariadne auf Naxos, and Schaunard in La bohème. Jonathan also recently returned to Florida Grand Opera for his first performances of Papageno in Die Zauberflöte and The Santa Fe Opera as Prince Paul in La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolstein. Other noteworthy performances include the Vicar in Albert Herring at both The Santa Fe Opera and Los Angeles Opera, Donald in Billy Budd at Los Angeles Opera, and Mercutio in Roméo et Juliette in a previous return to Florida Grand Opera. He sang his first performances of Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia as a member of San Francisco Opera's Merola Opera Program. He has also performed with the Chautauqua Opera, Spoleto Festival USA, Ravinia Festival, City Center Encores!, Opera Saratoga, and Ohio Light Opera. Recent concert performances include appearances with the Gewandhaus Orchester, Jerusalem Symphony, Slovenian Philharmonic, New World Symphony, National Chorale, Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus, and Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. www.jonathanmichie.com.
A native of Battle Creek, Michigan, Justin began his career as a Musical Theater major at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. While there, he studied voice with acclaimed soprano Shirley Verrett. Since then, Mr. Miller has sung both musicals and opera and can be heard on the new Decca recording of Porgy and Bess with the Nashville Symphony. He appeared in the national tours of Kiss Me, Kate and Strike Up the Band, and The Phantom of the Opera directed by Harold Prince. He has performed in various productions of Porgy and Bess around the world, this year with Atlanta Opera and the Teatro di San Carlo in Naples, Italy. www.justinleemiller.com
An accomplished singing actor, Ariela Morgenstern has gained recognition in musical theater, cabaret, and opera. Originally hailing from San Francisco, where she was a well-known cabaret singer who specialized in Weill's music, she was honored to win second place in the 2008 Lotte Lenya Competition. Morgenstern made her Carnegie Hall debut as a soloist in the premiere of Imant Raminsh's Symphony of Psalms. She is currently on tour with the new national tour of Flashdance the Musical. Off-Broadway credits include the award-winning new musical Adding Machine, Jenny in Marvell Rep's Drama Desk-nominated The Threepenny Opera, and Prospect Theatre's I Married Wyatt Earp. Other regional theater credits include The Light In The Piazza (Franca) with Arena Stage and Theatreworks, the most recent tour with Baayork Lee of The King and I, Man of La Mancha (Aldonza), and the title role in Carmen with the San Francisco Lyric Opera. She is also proud to be a Resident Artist with Studio 42, a New York company that triumphs in audacious new theatre. ariela-morgenstern.squarespace.com
Edward Mout is a tenor who has been praised for his entertaining stage presence and his "mellifluously youthful tenor." He joined the Staatsoper Hannover for the 2011-2012 season, where he performed the roles of Pedrillo in Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Gherardo/Tinca in Il trittico, and Mime in Das Rheingold. In 2011, Edward performed Tobias Ragg in Sweeney Todd with the Wolf Trap Opera and he returned to Lyric Opera of Chicago as Tanzmeister in Ariadne auf Naxos and Simpleton in Boris Godunov. In the 2010-2011 season, Edward made his debut with the Metropolitan Opera as Postiglione in La fanciulla del west. Edward is an alumnus of Lyric Opera of Chicago's Ryan Opera Center where in the 2007-2008 season he was seen in productions of La bohème and La traviata and stepped in as Count Almaviva for one performance of Il barbiere di Siviglia as well as performing the role in student matinee performances. For the 2008-09 season, he performed Shepherd in Tristan und Isolde and played Beppe in student matinees of I pagliacci. Edward was engaged as a Resident Artist with the Minnesota Opera from 2005-2007, where he performed Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni. He has also been an apprentice artist with various summer opera festivals, including Central City Opera, where he returned as Orpheus for the 2010 production of Orpheus in the Underworld. In Hannover's 2012-2013 season he will perform First Hoodlum/Kiss Me, Kate, Shabby Peasant/Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Knusperhexe/Hänsel und Gretel, and Kunz Vogelgesang/Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg.
Soprano Yannick-Muriel Noah triumphed as Madama Butterfly both with the Canadian Opera Company and the Staatsoper Hannover, a role she also covered with the San Francisco Opera. This COC Ensemble Studio graduate sang her first Aida and La Wally with Stadttheater Klagenfurt. With COC, selected credits include Tosca, Mona in Swoon and the Queen of the Night in The Magic Flute school tour. In the UK, she premiered Sante at the Aldeburgh Summer Music Festival. During the 2011-2012 season, Ms. Noah performs Aida and Ariadne auf Naxos in Heidelberg, Nedda in Pagliacci with Opera Lyra Ottawa, a touring Aida in Spain and returns to Hannover for Madama Butterfly. Her 2010-2011 engagements included Tosca with Edmonton Opera, Verdi's Requiem with Victoria Symphony Orchestra, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with l'Orchestre symphonique de Québec and Mefistofele in Valencia, singing Margherita opposite Ramón Vargas, conducted by Maestro Luisotti. Ms. Noah's numerous awards include several top prizes at the following international competitions: Jaume Aragall (Audience Prize, São Paulo Prize, Amics de l'Ópera de Sabadell Prize), Concours Musical International de Montréal (2nd Prize, Award for Best Canadian Artist), Palm Beach (1st Prize and Audience Favourite Award), Lotte Lenya (Lys Symonette Award), George London (Top Canadian Award), Brian Law (1st Prize), Sullivan Foundation (Theodor Uppman Award), Marmande (Opéra Grand Prix, 2nd Prize Operetta, Audience Prize), and the prestigious Hans Gabor Belvedere (2nd Prize Opera, 3rd Prize Operetta, Audience Prize, Morioka Prize and Teatro alla Scala Prize). This Madagascar native holds a Bachelor of Architectural Studies from Carleton University. www.yannickmurielnoah.com
Born in the German Rhineland, Florian studied at the Bayerische Theaterakademie August Everding in Munich, receiving the equivalent of a master's degree in Music Theater. He has performed the role of Mark in Rent in Berlin, Claude in Hair at Theater Trier and at the Nordharzer Stadtebundtheater, and Peter in Jesus Christ Superstar at the Staatstheater am Gärtnerplatz in Munich. He is currently performing Chevalier Danceny in a new musical version of Dangerous Liaisons in Munich. Florian has also performed Egon von Wildehagen in the operetta Der Vetter aus Dingsda in Berlin and created the role of Nahino in the opera Der Flaschengeist by Wilfried Hiller for the Munich world premiere.
Chicago native Elizabeth Reiter is currently a member of the ensemble at Oper Frankfurt, where her performances include Pamina and Erste Dame/Die Zauberflöte, Oscar/Un ballo in Maschera, Orasia in Telemann's Orpheus, and Helmwige and Ortlinde/The Ring Cycle (the latter available on DVD). In the United States, Ms. Reiter received international attention for her portrayal of Aphrodite in the American premiere of Henze's Phaedra with Opera Philadelphia, where she has also appeared as the title role/The Cunning Little Vixen, Blonde/Die Entführung aus dem Serail, and Amor/Orphée et Eurydice. Other notable operatic appearances include Zerlina/Don Giovanni under the baton of James Levine (Tanglewood Music Center), Pamina and Flora/The Turn of the Screw (Chicago Opera Theater), Adele/Die Fledermaus (Opera Memphis), La libellule/L'enfant et les sortilèges with Lorin Maazel (Castleton Festival), Amina/La Sonnambula, Corinna/Il viaggio a Reims, and Zerlina (Curtis Opera Theatre), and Susanna/Le Nozze di Figaro and Despina/Così fan tutte (Chautauqua Institution). On the concert stage, Elizabeth has performed Sofia Gubaidulina's Hommage à T.S. Eliot with Frankfurt's Ensemble Modern, Weill's Royal Palace with the American Symphony Orchestra, Vaughan Williams' Dona Nobis Pacem with the Chautauqua Music Festival Orchestra and Mahler's Symphony No. 4 with the Manhattan School of Music Philharmonia. As a recitalist, Elizabeth has collaborated with composer Libby Larsen on her Songs from Letters at the Ravinia Music Festival and with composer André Previn on his Sallie Chisum remembers Billy the Kid both at the Tanglewood Music Center and in a televised performance in Tokyo with the composer at the piano. www.ElizabethReiter.com
Winner of the Joy in Singing Competition (2008), and the Lotte Lenya Competition (2007), New Zealand tenor James Benjamin Rodgers has performed at the Kauffman Center, Lincoln Center, Riverside Church, Joe's Pub, The Ravinia Festival, Carnegie Hall, The Schwabacher Recital Series, New Music New Haven, Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church, The Japan Society of New York, Southern Opera, Southern Sinfonia and San Francisco Opera's Merola Opera Program. James' roles include: Tamino in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte; Monteverdi's L'Orfeo; Pluto in Offenbach's Orpheus and the Underworld; Sam in Kurt Weill's Street Scene; Britten's Albert Herring; Marco Polo in Cerrone's Invisible Cities; Billy in Weill's Mahagonny Songspiel; Nadir in Bizet's Pearl Fishers; The Baker in Sondheim's Into the Woods. Awards and honors include: Joy in Singing Competition, Lotte Lenya Competition, The Napier Computer Systems Aria, the PACANZ Award and the Wellington Newspapers Ltd. Aria. The Wellington Rotary Scholarship, Marie D'Albini Scholarship, Sir Henry Cooper Memorial Scholarship in Music, a grant from the Lankhuyzen/Whetu Kairangi Masonic Trust, a grant from the Malvina Major Foundation, Les & Sonia Andrews Cultural Foundation Scholarship, The Moyra Todd Scholarship, Orvis Foundation Scholarship, Janet D. Schenck Award. James currently resides in New York City. www.jamesbenjaminrodgers.com
Lauren Roesner, originally from Chicago, IL, holds a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where favorite roles include Polly Peachum in The Threepenny Opera, Mrs. Nordstrom in A Little Night Music, Bess in The Human Comedy, Sarah in Civil War and Rapunzel in Into the Woods. Shortly after winning Third Prize in the 2013 Lotte Lenya Competition, Lauren performed with her graduating class in their New York Showcase at the Alvin Ailey Theatre. From there, she went on to perform Irene Molloy in Hello, Dolly!, Judy Bernly in 9 to 5: the Musical, and Ensemble in Shrek the Musical and The Wedding Singer (Wagon Wheel Theatre); Ensemble/u/s Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady (STAGES St. Louis); and Ensemble in Gypsy (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre). Lauren will be returning to STAGES St. Louis this year to perform their entire summer season, including Queen Stephanie in Sleeping Beauty, Ensemble in How to Succeed and Mirala/Fruma Sarah in Fiddler on the Roof. For more information, please visit www.laurenroesner.com.
Brian Charles Rooney made his Broadway debut, in a performance that Entertainment Weekly said "ignited the stage," as the fabled Lucy Brown in The Roundabout Theater Company's 2006 revival of The Threepenny Opera. He won the Connecticut Critics' Circle Award for Best Actor in a Musical for his portrayal of Warhol superstar, Candy Darling in the world premiere of Pop!, at Yale Repertory Theatre. In 2012, he will reprise the role at City Theatre in Pittsburgh with Broadway's Anthony Rapp. In 2008, The New York Musical Theater Festival honored him with the "Outstanding Performance Award" for his portrayal of comic pop-star Dionne Salon in the new musical Bedbugs!!! He will reprise that role Off-Broadway in the Autumn of 2012. He has performed, to critical acclaim, in concert at The Zipper Theater & Joe's Pub, as well as in numerous plays and musicals in New York City. Other credits include: Tony in West Side Story (European Tour); Featured Soloist in The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber (North American Tour); Homer in Floyd Collins (Actors' Playhouse, Miami; Carbonell Award Nomination); the title role in Bat Boy! The Musical (Charleston Stage Co.); Younger Brother in Ragtime (White Plains Performing Arts Center); The Student Prince (Paper Mill Playhouse). Brian has sung with the Seattle Symphony and Oregon Symphony Orchestras, and for the last two years has appeared as a soloist in the Broadway Cares benefit,"Broadway Backwards," with such luminaries as Betty Buckley, Len Cariou, Alan Cumming, F. Murray Abraham, and Clay Aiken. www.briancharlesrooney.com
Grammy-nominated tenor Rodell Rosel recently made a successful Metropolitan Opera debut in the 2009-10 season as Valzacchi in Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier, and later as Nathanaël in Offenbach's Les contes d'Hoffmann, both broadcast live in HD in theaters nationwide, under the batons of Edo de Waart and James Levine, respectively. Among his most notable roles are Goro in Madama Butterfly, Prince/Manservant/Marquis in Lulu, Monostatos in Die Zauberflöte, Tanzmeister in Ariadne auf Naxos, and Ong Chi Seng in the world premiere of Moravec's The Letter. He has sung with the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, Florentine Opera, and Wolf Trap Opera Company (whose recording of John Musto's Volpone was nominated for Best Opera Recording in the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards). Mr. Rosel was a Grand Prize Winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, and has received top awards from the Palm Beach Opera Vocal Competition, the Lotte Lenya Competition, and the People's Choice Award from the Jose Iturbi International Music Competition. He is the recipient of scholarships from, among others, the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (NARAS), and the Opera Buffs Career Achievement Award. www.rodellrosel.com
Kyle Scatliffe, baritone, was born in Washington, D.C., and now resides in Westwood, N.J. He majored in theatre at Bergen County Community College prior to entering the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) in New York City, from which he graduated in March 2010. Last semester, Kyle was top musical theatre performer at AMDA in final demonstrations. Under the guidance of his voice teacher, Jacklyn Schneider, DMA, he entered the National Association of Teachers of Singing NYC Chapter competition in November 2009, winning first place in his musical theatre division. In his upcoming first professional engagement, Kyle will sing Mereb in Elton John's AIDA at the Arts Center of Coastal Carolina, Hilton Head, in April-May 2010.
Baltimore native Daniel Schwait has been described as having "a talent beyond his years" by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. His stage roles include Fred Graham/Petruchio (Kiss Me, Kate), the title role in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street and Terry Connor (Side Show) at Seattle's ArtsWest Playhouse, and Boy 2 (Trouble in Tahiti). He appeared as Kurt Weill in September Songs: The Life and Legacy of Kurt Weill at the Manhattan School of Music. He has performed in Beautiful Girls, a gala concert of music by Stephen Sondheim staged by Lonny Price, and with the Boston Pops in the annual Film Night at Tanglewood in a program of music composed and conducted by John Williams. Daniel has appeared in concert with The Manhattan School of Music Chamber Sinfonia, The Oratorio Society of New York, The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, and in solo recital.
Emma Sewell trained at Trinity College of Music where she studied voice with Laureen Livingstone. Emma is a very versatile singer and since leaving college has enjoyed success in the worlds of musical theatre, operetta and opera. Notable musical theatre work includes a national tour of The Sound of Music, understudying the role of Maria Rainer, and Into the Woods, where she undertook the role of Snow White and understudied the roles of Cinderella and Rapunzel. Recently she made her West End debut understudying the role of Opera Guild Lady in the musical Lend Me a Tenor at the Gielgud Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue. Her Gilbert & Sullivan roles have been Edith in Pirates of Penzance, Peep Bo in The Mikado, and Mad Margaret in Ruddigore. In April 2011 Emma travelled to New York to take part in the finals of the strongly contested Lotte Lenya Competition where she was awarded 2nd place and a cash prize. Emma is hugely grateful to the Kurt Weill Foundation for their continued support and encouragement. Most recently, she worked on Les Misérables for Pimlico Opera, their yearly prison project--an experience not soon forgotten, working alongside prisoners and professionals alike. This summer Emma in undertaking the role of Masha in Queen of Spades with Grange Park Opera, as well as appearing in their production of Eugene Onegin.
Soprano Hallie Silverston performs across North America as a back-up singer for Florence Henderson in her touring show All the Lives of Me and for "Rock Docs" which debuted at the Kennedy Center as part of the Milken Institute Faster Cures campaign. Roles include Johanna (Sweeney Todd), Julie Jordan (Carousel), Magnolia (Showboat), Anne Egerman (A Little Night Music), Adina (L'elisir d'amore), Sandrina (La finta giardiniera), Despina (Così fan tutte), Elvira (L'italiana in Algeri), Xenia (Boris Godunov), Lauretta (Gianni Schicchi), Belinda (Dido and Aeneas), and Papagena (Die Zauberflöte). Silver has performed with such companies as Utah Festival Opera, Indianapolis Opera, Pacific Opera Project, YardArts Opera, NYC Family Opera Initiative, Geva Theatre Center, and Mercury Opera Rochester, and has been featured in concert with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, and the Bay View Symphony. She has also been featured in readings of the new musical plays The Five Thousand Fingers of Dr. T and Poetic License. Silverston can be heard on the GPR Records 2012 release of Goodnight Moon, Runaway Bunny, and Babar (narrated by Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas). She recently debuted with members of the Greenwich Symphony as the soprano soloist in Handel's Messiah as part of the St. Catherine of Siena concert series, and will return to perform the soprano solos in the Bach Magnificat this season. Hallie is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music (M.M.) and the University of Oregon (B.M), and she resides in New York City. www.halliesilverston.com
Norwegian mezzo-soprano Maija Skille has a dramatic voice with promising range and a rare depth, agility and timbre. She graduated in December 2009 with the highest honors from the opera education at The Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland. The same year she won the 1st Prize in the prestigious Finnish Merikanto Singing Competition and in 2008 she was awarded the 3rd Prize in the Lotte Lenya Competition in New York. In July 2010 she made her international opera debut as Bradamante in Händel's Alcina at Teatro Municipal de Santiago in Chile, with conductor Federico Maria Sardelli and director Marcelo Lombardero. Her credits also include operatic roles such as Polinesso in Handel's Ariodante, Zita in Puccini's Gianni Schicchi, 3rd Lady in Mozart's The Magic Flute, Fidalma in Cimarosa's Il matrimonio segreto, and Sorceress in Purcell's Dido and Aeneas. Skille is a big fan of musical theatre and was a great success as Mrs. Lovett in Sondheim's Sweeney Todd in Trondheim, Norway, in 2011. She has also played Jessie in Mahagonny Songspiel in Bodø, Norway. In fall 2012, she is singing 3rd Lady in The Magic Flute at Komische Oper Berlin. Maija Skille is much in demand for the oratorio repertoire such as Verdi's Requiem, Handel's Messiah, Bach's Christmas Oratorio, Rossini's Petite Messe Solennelle and Pergolesi's Stabat Mater. www.maijaskille.com
Jacob Lewis Smith holds a Bachelor of Music Degree from Manhattan School of Music in New York City. He has recently completed recording Kurt Weill's One Touch of Venus, playing the role of Taxi with Tony Award winners Victoria Clark and Judy Kaye; filming the hit TV show Smash with Jennifer Hudson on NBC; completing work on the short film Diary of a Mulatto Bride and the new web series City of Dreams; and is the Co-Host of the new, upcoming CW magazine show On The Q. He has recorded with and co-written music for Kanye West and Jay Z on the Grammy-nominated album Watch the Throne. Past roles include The Emcee in Cabaret, Dick McGann in Kurt Weill's Street Scene at Chautauqua Opera, Chess at the Arvada Center, Cinderella's Prince in Into the Woods, Miles Gloriosus in A Funny Thing Happened in the Way to the Forum, Hair, And the World Goes Round, Lt. Wright in The Secret Garden, Mame, and Charlie in Brigadoon. Jacob will be singing the role of the Preacher/Leader in Kurt Weill's opera Down in Valley and in a cabaret in Germany this March.
Trained at The Juilliard School and at the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia, Noah Stewart's debut album for DECCA became a major success in the United Kingdom, topping the classical charts for 7 weeks. In Spring 2012, he made a critically-lauded debut at Covent Garden as Hassan in Judith Weir's Miss Fortune, a role he premiered at the Bregenzer Festspiele in the summer of 2011. A 2007-8 Adler Fellow, Noah's roles at San Francisco Opera include: Macduff and T. Morris Chester in the World Premiere of John Adams's Appomattox. Further North American engagements include: The title role of Faust at Atlanta Opera, Rodolfo at Florentine Opera and New Orleans Opera, the Prince (A Flowering Tree) at Chicago Opera Theater; Cavaradossi, Ismaele, Nadir and Rodolfo for Michigan Opera Theater; Luigi (Il Trittico) for the Castleton Festival; Rodolfo with Opera Carolina and with the Orlando Philharmonic; Narraboth at the Arizona Opera and Radames at the Glimmerglass Festival. Outside the United States, he has sung Don Jose in South Africa and at the Royal Albert Hall, Pinkerton at Opera North, and was part of Peter Sellars's acclaimed production of Purcell's Indian Queen at the Teatro Real Madrid and Opera Perm. Noah's future engagements include: La bohème at Michigan Opera Theater, Madama Butterfly at Nashville Opera, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with the Gulbenkian Orchestra as well as the Boston Symphony, and a return to the Royal Opera Covent Garden as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly. www.noahofficial.com
A native of China, Mrs. Sturgis won Second Prize in the 2011 Lenya Competition. She is a versatile performer who is equally at home on the opera and musical stage. Recent roles include Galatea in the BGSU production of Acis and Galatea and Paggio in a concert production of Rigoletto with Plácido Domingo at the Reignwood Theater in Beijing, China. In 2005, Ms. Lin joined the cast of Butterflies Musical in the leading role of Zhu Ying Tai under the musical direction of San Bao and stage direction of Gilles Maheu. She has performed with various musical companies in China, including: Poly Theater of China in Beijing, Dongguan Yulan Theater in Guan Zhou, and the Globe Theater in Harbin. She is also the recipient of the Ralph Appelman Award, a first place winner of the Great Lakes Regional NATS Competition, and the winner of the 10th annual Dr. Majorie Conrad Peatee Art Song Competition. Mrs. Sturgis hosts a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Performance from Remin University in Beijing and a Master of Music of Music degree under the tutelage of Myra Merritt from Bowling Green State University.
Originally from Atlanta, Georgia, Misty Ann Sturm moved to New York to attend the Eastman School of Music where she earned both her Bachelor's and Master's degrees in vocal performance. During her time in Rochester, Mrs. Sturm performed in many productions with Eastman Opera Theatre, including the roles of Clara in Passion, Miles in The Turn of the Screw, Cissie Woodger in Albert Herring and Laura in The Goblin Market. A specialist in the music of Kurt Weill, Mrs. Sturm sang the soubrette role in Mahagonny Songspiel at the Kurt Weill Festival in 1998. After winning first place in the Lotte Lenya Competition, Mrs. Sturm presented recitals of Kurt Weill's music in Bruno Walter Auditorium at Lincoln Center on several occasions. Equally proficient in oratorio, Mrs. Sturm has sung the St. Matthew and St. John Passions, Haydn's Lord Nelson Mass and the Haydn Harmonie Messe, Bach's Cantata 140, "Wachet auf," Mozart's Mass in C Minor and Requiem. Mrs. Sturm has performed the role of Lily in The Secret Garden at the Fulton Opera House and with the Atlanta Lyric Theatre. Mrs. Sturm sang the premiere of the Baseball Music Project, performing it with the Seattle and Houston Symphonies. Her voice can also be heard on several TV and radio commercials. www.mistyannsturm.com
Karim Sulayman is consistently praised for his sensitive musicality, vivid portrayals, and beautiful vocalism. With a vast repertoire that spans from Renaissance to contemporary music, the young tenor/haute-contre is establishing himself as a sophisticated and versatile artist of his generation and enjoys a busy calendar in opera and concert performances throughout the world. He was recently described as possessing a "lyrical, expressive and appealing tenor" (Washington Post), and was hailed for his "energetic and elastic performance" (Opera News) and "apt comedic gifts" (New York Times). Most recently he has debuted with Lincoln Center, Boston Lyric Opera, New York City Opera, Carnegie Hall, and the Casals Festival in Puerto Rico, as well as Opera Lafayette at the Kennedy Center. He has worked with many of today's leading conductors, such as Jane Glover, Yves Abel, Helmuth Rilling and Harry Bicket. In the summer of 2011 he completed his second summer residency at Marlboro Music Festival, and will be a part of the Musicians from Marlboro Tour in the 2012-13 season. His growing discography includes a critically acclaimed portrayal of Acis in Handel's Acis and Galatea with Mercury Baroque, and Philidor's Sancho Pança for Naxos. A future release of Grétry's Le Magnifique, also for Naxos, is scheduled in 2012. He holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music and Rice University, and was a featured young artist at Chicago Opera Theater and the Britten-Pears Programme in England. Additional honors include awards from the Kurt Weill Foundation, and fellowship invitations from Aspen Music Festival, Rice University, and the Steans Institute for Young Artists at the Ravinia Festival. www.karimsulayman.com
Originally from Michigan, Katie Travis is a versatile soprano equally at home in operetta and contemporary musical theater. Most recently, she was seen as Cosette in Les Misérables at the St. Louis MUNY with Norm Lewis and Hugh Panaro. She has performed principal roles with The Fireside Theater and Liederkranz Opera Theater. Favorite roles include: Hope Cladwell in Urinetown, Eileen Sherwood in Wonderful Town, Emma Carew in Jekyll and Hyde, Rosabella in The Most Happy Fella, Lily Craven in The Secret Garden, Yum-Yum in The Mikado, and Elsie Maynard in The Yeomen of the Guard. She cares deeply about global music education and has taught music throughout the world. Proud member of Actors Equity. www.katietravis.com
Amy Van Looy, soprano, is enjoying a career spanning the genres of opera, operetta, musical theatre and theatre. She has won numerous awards from companies all over the United States, including the Metropolitan Opera Guild, Houston Grand Opera, Portland Opera, Mobile Opera, Opera Birmingham, Connecticut Opera, Shreveport Opera, the Shoshana Foundation and the Kurt Weill Foundation. She has appeared with Opera Carolina, Greensboro Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Opera Omaha, Sarasota Opera, Chautauqua Opera, Concert Operetta Theater, Ohio Light Opera and The Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, to name a few. Past credits include La Contessa in Le Nozze di Figaro, Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Marguerite in Faust, Maritza in Countess Maritza, First Lady in Die Zauberflöte, Mimi in La bohème, Anne Sexton in Transformations, and The Governess in The Turn of the Screw. She received both her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the Eastman School of Music, and also studied at the Academy of Vocal Arts and Northwestern University. Ms. Van Looy currently resides in Berlin, Germany. To find out more, please visit www.amyvanlooy.com.
Soon after graduating from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, 2003 winner Siri Vik landed in her hometown of Eugene, Oregon, and started a family. She continues to perform the works of Kurt Weill and his ilk with some frequency in Eugene and the Northwest region. In May 2009 she presented an evening of Weill and Brecht songs, In the Measuring of Love, at the John G. Shedd Institute for the Arts, and produced a concert of the selected works of Jacques Brel and other French chansonniers in the fall of 2010 at the same venue, both of which were reprised for an extended runs in 2011. There in May 2012 she will present a retrospective of the songs and life of Lorenz Hart. In March 2011 Siri appeared with soprano Maria Jette on an evening of Faure melodie and with jazz instrumentalist Ken Peplowski this past February. With the Oregon Festival of American Music, Siri has appeared as Vera Simpson in Pal Joey, Glinda the Good Witch in The Wizard of Oz, as Morgan Le Fay in A Connecticut Yankee, and is a regular guest artist on the Festival jazz concerts. This summer she will open the festival with a retrospective of French chansonniers of the 1920s. Siri is mom to two and is on the Voice faculty at Lane Community College in Eugene. www.sirivik.com
Tenor John Viscardi is a third year resident artist at the Academy of Vocal Arts (AVA) in Philadelphia. At the Academy, he debuted as Fenton in Verdi's Falstaff and was recently seen as Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni. In Spring 2012, he essays the role of Pelléas in Pelléas et Melisande at the Academy, and also makes his Opera Company of Philadelphia debut as the Dancing Master and Lamplighter in Manon Lescaut. The summer of 2011 featured the tenor's role debut as Lenski in Eugene Onegin with the Russian Opera Workshop. A frequent concert performer, he made return appearances that summer with both the Ocean City Pops and Hudson River Performing Arts Association. In 2009, John Viscardi made his Lincoln Center debut as the Toy Soldier in Babes in Toyland at Avery Fisher Hall, and was also heard as Rinuccio in Rockland County Opera's Gianni Schicchi, and West Side Story's Tony in Celebrating Jerome Robbins at the Hudson Riverfront Performing Arts Center. He received his Masters in Opera and Bachelors in Vocal Performance from New York University, where he performed numerous roles, including Tamino in The Magic Flute, Camille in The Merry Widow, and Frederick in The Pirates of Penzance. Mr. Viscardi recently received the Liederkranz Foundation Competition's Bertha Koempel Award. In 2011 he was a recipient of the Lys Symonette Award from the Kurt Weill Foundation's Lotte Lenya Competition, and the 2nd Place Prize in the 2011 Giargiari Bel Canto competition. In 2010 John Viscardi was awarded 1st place in the Mario Lanza Scholarship Competition and 3rd place in the Giargiari Bel Canto competition.
Baritone Ethan Watermeier most recently performed the lead role of Darby in The New Old American Company's highly praised and historic revival of The Poor Soldier, a colonial comic opera by William Shield and John O'Keefe. Last year, he sang Bottom in A Midsummer Night's Dream with the Maryland Opera Studio, and performed Ralph and covered Fred/Petruchio in Kiss Me, Kate at Glimmerglass Opera. Favorite operatic and musical theater credits include: Javert and Factory Foreman/Combeferre (Les Misérables), Broadway National Tour; The Geographer/Hunter/Baobab (The Little Prince, World Premiere), Houston Grand Opera; Baron Douphol (La Traviata), Santa Fe Opera; Masetto (Don Giovanni), Théâtre Municipal, Castres, France; Lead Soloist (Bright-Eyed Joy with composer Ricky Ian Gordon), Hawaii Performing Arts Festival; Billy Bigelow (Carousel); Joe Harland (Later the Same Evening, an opera inspired by five paintings of Edward Hopper), World Premiere, Maryland Opera Studio; Ralph Follet (NY Premiere, A Death in the Family); Tarquinius (The Rape of Lucretia). Awards include: Winner, 2002 Lotte Lenya Competition; Winner, 2002 Anna-Case Mackay Grant. Ethan is a graduate of Northwestern University (BM), the Manhattan School of Music (MM), and is currently a DMA pre-candidate at the University of Maryland. He is a proud member of Actors' Equity Association, Children International, and Greenpeace.
Jacob Keith Watson is a native of Arkansas and currently resides in New York City. In the spring of 2014, Jacob made his Broadway debut in the Original Broadway Cast of Violet with Roundabout Theatre Company. Favorite roles from the past include Feste in Twelfth Night, Corin in As You Like It, Iago (Cover) in Othello, Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, Frederick in Pirates of Penzance, Rodolfo in La bohème, and Beppe in Pagliacci. Recent awards include Second Prize in the prestigious Lotte Lenya Competition, First Prize in the NATS National Music Theater Competition, Runner-up in NYMF's Next Broadway Sensation Competition and Regional Finalist/Best Stage Presence Award Winner in the Mid-South Regional Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. Jacob has performed in concerts celebrating Kurt Weill in New York City (Symphony Space) as well as in Germany for the Kurt Weill Festival conducted by Kurt Weill specialist, James Holmes. www.JacobKeithWatson.com
German-born singer/actor Dirk Weiler holds a degree in Musical Theatre from Folkwang University, Germany. From 1998 to 2008 he lived in New York, studied at Manhattan School of Music, City College and Brooklyn College (Masters of Music). He won second prize in the 1999 Lotte Lenya Competition and, as a founding member of the Kabarett Kollektif, the 2006 Nightlife Award for Unique Cabaret Performance. He has worked in dance, musical theater, opera, cabaret, and theater in Germany, New York, Australia, and London. He has taught tap dance internationally and in New York (Alvin Ailey, Steps on Broadway, Bridge for Dance, Folkwang University, Musikhochschule Leipzig) and has coached and choreographed for Hampstead Theatre in London. As a coach for song interpretation and a director he has worked at Meredith College, Brooklyn, Rutgers University, and the Folkwang University. Credits include: The Threepenny Opera (Macheath), Johnny Johnson, Le nozze di Figaro (Count), The Merry Widow (Danilo), La bohème (Schaunard), The Magic Flute (Papageno), The True Last Words of Dutch Schultz (Dutch), The White Horse (Dr. Siedler), Wicked (Frex/Ozian Official, Dr. Dillamond [u/s] and the Wizard [u/s]), The Full Monty (Harold Nichols), Chess (Anatoly Sergievsky), Blond Girl Undercover (Dr. No), Sister Act (Ernie-Ensemble, u/s Joey, u/s Monsignore O'Hara), and Jesus Christ Superstar (King Herod). This upcoming season he will be playing Albin/Zaza in La Cage aux Folles at the Opera in Bonn (Germany) and Bobby Child in Crazy for You at the theatre in Magdeburg (Germany). www.dirkweiler.com
Maren Weinberger, soprano, is a second year master's candidate at Manhattan School of Music, studying voice with Edith Bers. Maren has competed in a number of award and scholarship competitions, including, most recently, the prestigious Lotte Lenya Competition, where she received 2nd Prize. Also recently: The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, where she placed 1st in the district level and moved on to regionals; The Dallas Opera Guild Competition, placing second; The American Prize, receiving first place; and in 2011 she received the Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Houston's annual music scholarship for that year. Maren has recently become a young artist with NYC’s Opera Singers Initiative program where she will be mentored closely by Angela Blasi and will perform in various concerts throughout 2013. This year she performed the role of La Charmeuse in MSM’s fall production of Thaïs, where she was called a coloratura with "accuracy and sweet tone" by Opera News, and in MSM's Side By Side by Sondheim. In the summer of 2012 she was seen as Kate in Kiss Me, Kate at Seagle Music Colony, working with Ft. Worth Opera's general director Darren Woods, and this summer Maren will be returning to Seagle Music Colony to perform Miss Wordsworth in Albert Herring, Rose Maurrant in Street Scene, and Peggy Sawyer in 42nd Street. After this summer, Maren will be workshopping Libby Larsen's new opera A Wrinkle In Time as Mrs. Whatsit. The opera was commissioned for Ft. Worth Opera, and will premiere in 2015.
Maren's web site
From British Columbia, baritone Justin Welsh is a former member of the Canadian Opera Company Ensemble Studio. He was featured as Ari in the world premiere of the Ensemble production of Swoon and took the role of Fiorello in the mainstage production of Rossini's Il barbiere de Siviglia, conducted by Miguel Harth-Bedoya. He has been seen as Papageno in Die Zauberflöte in the Andrew Porter production for the COC Ensemble and covered the roles of Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, and Wagner in Gounod's Faust. In 2009-2010, he is featured by the Canadian Opera Company in Carmen (le Dancaire), Otello (Herald), and Madame Butterfly (Yakuside), and will sing Riccardo in I puritani for Opera in Concert and Messiah for the Mississauga Choral Society. Last season he was heard in Roberto Devereux for Opera in Concert, as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte for the COC Ensemble production, Fauré's Requiem with Choeur St. Laurent, Matthäus Passion with the Guelph Chamber Choir, Beethoven's Mass in C and Bach's Magnificat with the Regina Philharmonic Chorus, "Opera Briefs" with Tapestry New Opera Works and with the Ottawa Choral Society. Justin Welsh's awards include First Place in the Lotte Lenya Competition and an encouragement award from the Louis and Cristina Quilico Competition, as well as placing in the Metropolitan Regional Finals in Seattle. He holds a Master's of Music from the University of British Columbia and has also participated in young artist programmes in the Czech Republic and Germany, with Pacific Opera Victoria, and Opera Nuova where he sang the role of Sid in Albert Herring. At the C.O.S.I. programme in Sulmona, Italy, he was featured as the philandering Spanish count in Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro.
A native of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, Bray Wilkins received his degree from the University of Idaho. He is currently a Seattle Opera Young Artist, where he has sung Ferrando in Mozart's Così fan tutte, Lysander in Britten's Midsummer Night's Dream, and Lensky in Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin. Wilkins recently sang the role of Charlie in Weill's Mahagonny Songspiel at the Ravinia Festival. His operatic roles include Mr. Clayton in Stephen Schwartz's Séance on a Wet Afternoon, Luigi in Bolcom's Wedding, Basilio in Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro, Rinuccio in Puccini's Gianni Schicchi, Marco Palmieri in Sullivan's Gondoliers, and Frederic in Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance.
Jorell Williams, acclaimed by The New York Times for his "magnificent, rich toned" baritone and his "perfect" comic timing, is gaining international success on both the opera and concert stages. His 2013 season begins with the role of the Nurse/Lawyer in the world-premiere of Anthony Davis' opera Lear on the Second Floor at the Conrad Prebys Music Center in San Diego, Maximilian in Candide with Amarillo Opera, Belcore in L'elisir d'amore with the Martina Arroyo Foundation's Prelude to Performance, Brahms' Ein deutsches Requiem with the Omaha Symphony, and the US Tour of Wynton Marsalis' Abyssinia Mass with Jazz at Lincoln Center. Jorell was a Resident Artist for the 2011-2012 season of American Opera Projects Composers & Voice series, recorded Celebrating the American Spirit with the Essential Voices USA for National Public Radio (Judith Clurman, conductor/featuring Ron Raines and Kelli O'Hara), made his Off-Broadway debut as the Villager with the New York City Encores! production of Kurt Weill's Lost in the Stars, and performed as soloist with Wynton in the European premiere of Marsalis' Abyssinian Mass at the Barbican during the 2012 Olympics in London. In addition to being a Lys Symonette Award Winner in the 2011 Lotte Lenya Competition, he is a recipient of awards from the Gerda Lissner International Competition, Schuyler Foundation for Career Bridges, the Liberace Foundation, Sergei Koussevitzky Foundation, David Adams art song competition, Civic Morning Musicals Foundation, and the Charles A. Lynam Competition. Jorell is a graduate of the music programs at the Manhattan School of Music and SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music. www.JorellMWilliams.com
Lauren Worsham (soprano) is a New York-based actress and singer whose favorite roles include Flora in NYCO's Turn of the Screw directed by Sam Buntrock, Lisa in the critically acclaimed world premiere of Dog Days, directed by Robert Woodruff at Montclair Peak Performances; Amy in Where's Charley? at New York City Center directed by John Doyle; Cunegonde in NYCO's Candide; Lili in Goodspeed Opera House's Carnival directed by Darko Tresnjak; Cinderella in Kansas City Rep's Into the Woods directed by Moisés Kaufman; Clara in Weston Playhouse's The Light in the Piazza; and Olive in the first national tour of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Other theater credits include Jerry Springer the Opera at Carnegie Hall, Fiddler on the Roof (Hodel) at Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera, Master Class (Sophie) at Paper Mill Playhouse, and The Fantasticks (Luisa) at Emelin Theatre. She performs in concert frequently, including programs at Carnegie Hall, Merkin Hall, Oregon Bach Festival, Joe's Pub, Henry's, Galapagos Art Space, and NYCO's VOX Program. She is the co-founder, along with librettist Royce Vavrek, of the downtown opera company The Coterie and is the lead singer for the Brooklyn-based indierock band Sky-Pony.