The Atlanta Opera kicked off its Big Tent Concert Series last month with a socially-distanced performance titled Mack the Knife: An Evening of Kurt Weill. Presented under an open-sided, ventilated circus tent, the all-Weill concert featured members of the Atlanta Opera Company and Studio Players, including three prizewinners of the Lotte Lenya Competition: Jasmine Habersham (2017), Megan Marino (2012), and Brian Vu (2016). The Atlanta Opera has found innovative ways to continue performances during the pandemic, from audience pods spaced at safe distances to occasional performances behind clear barriers, all under a big top.

When asked about her favorite Weill song performed at the concert, mezzo-soprano Megan Marino recalls, “The song that I always go back to is ‘That’s Him’ from One Touch of Venus. It’s so universally relatable whether in the context of the show or just a sweet offering.” Tenor Brian Vu also mentions Venus: “Hands down, my favorite song performed is the ‘Speak Low’ duet. The juxtaposition of Venus’s vocal line set in the lowest lows of her mezzo while Rodney’s vocal in the highs of his tenor hits a sonic frequency that really rocks my soul.”

The 2021 Lotte Lenya Competition is now open for applications! For guidelines, important dates, and tips for contestants, click here.