Soprano Hana Abrams is a second year master’s student in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy studying with Ah Young Hong. She made her Peabody Opera Theatre debut last spring as La Novizia in Suor Angelica. She also premiered several roles and as part of the Etudes program, including the Narrator in Dear Father (Kim). This summer, she performed with Opera Susquehanna as Genovieffa and La Conversa in Suor Angelica and covered the Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi. Previously, she portrayed Stephanie in Heggie’s To Hell and Back with the St. Louis Opera Collective, in which she was noted for her “strong voice soaring,” Maguelonne in Viardot’s Cendrillon for Gateway Opera. This season, she is thrilled to perform as Charlotte Lucas in the Peabody Opera Theatre production of Pride and Prejudice.
Equally passionate about educating future generations of musicians, Hana spent several years as an elementary music teacher in the Webster Groves School District. She has also taught for Opera Theatre of Saint Louis’ Opera Camp for Kids, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s OrchKids Collective Composition program, and Stages Music Arts’ Musical Theatre programs. Hana previously earned her BA in music from the University of Rochester and an MA in music education from the Eastman School of Music. Her research into opera education informed her work as an education intern at OPERA America and at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis.
Soprano Mercy Calhoun is a senior voice major at the Peabody Conservatory. In the 2016-17 season, she attended the Wintergreen Performing Arts Vocal Intensive, performed the Soprano 2 solo in Mendelssohn’s Lobgesang, and appeared as a bridesmaid in Le nozze di Figaro with the Peabody Opera. She also performed the role of Susanna from Le nozze di Figaro at the Narni Arts Festival and the role of Giunone in Cavalli’s La Calisto with the Peabody Opera. In 2015, she performed the role of Dorinda from Orlando by Handel with the Peabody Opera. Mercy has attended the Interlochen Center for the Arts and Brevard Music Center. She has also been a guest artist with the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra and with the Appalachian Children’s Chorus during their Italy tour. In addition to solo work, she has had a vast choral performing background with the Appalachian Children’s Chorus and Peabody Singers. She has previously studied with Mariel van-Dalsum and currently studies with Ah Young Hong. In the 2017-18 season, Mercy performed with Now Hear This and the Peabody Opera Theater.
Carly Cummings is currently studying with Ah Young Hong at Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore Maryland, in the persuit of her Masters Degree in vocal performance. Cummings was most recently featured in Chicago Summer Opera’s Le Comte Ory as Alice. Before that she performed in Peabody Conservatory’s Suor Angelica as Prima Sorella Cercatrici. In that same semester she appeared on stage as Doctor #3 in The Falling and the Rising also with Peabody Conservatory. She has performed the operatic roles of Cendrillon in Cendrillon, Adina in L’elisir d’amore, Witch one in Dido and Aeneas, and Girl in Strawberry Fields with San Diego State University’s Opera Theater. In the summer of 2018 she performed Gretel in Hansel und Gretel with the Manhattan Opera Studio in New York. In the summer of 2017 she performed with the Seattle Opera Academy in the opera chorus of The Tenderland. She was also featured in the Seattle Opera Academy scenes program as both Pamina and Eurydice. Cummings was involved with San Diego Opera’s training program, Opera Exposed, from 2015-18 and there she performed many scenes as a part of San Diego Opera’s outreach. She was a part of Music Academy of the West’s Carmen, in the summer of 2014. Cummings was also awarded first place in the NATS competition (San Diego region division 11) in fall of 2017, and second place in the fall of 2016.
Tenor Jeong Wook Han is originally from Seoul, Korea and received his Bachelor of Art at Korea National University of Arts. He has previously studied with tenor Yim Ung-Kyun in Korea and bass Taikai Takahashi in Japan. He has been granted awards from various competitions, most notably theTokyo International Vocal Competition which acted as a catalyst to continue his career in Japan. He is currently the first Korean regular member of the Japan Vocalist Forum, one of the largest classical vocal associations in Japan. He has performed in Korea and Japan as an artist and soloist at Tokyo International Association of Artists, Saitama City Opera, and Opera Osaka singing the roles of Rodolfo (La Boheme), Edgardo (Lucia di Lamermoor), Alfredo (La Traviata) and Il duca di Mantova (Rigoletto). In addition, to his operatic career, he has also actively participated in oratorio and cantata works such as Handel’s “Messiah” and Beethoven “Symphony No. 9”. He is currently working toward his Master of Music degree at Peabody Conservatory. This season, he will be featured in the Peabody Opera Theatre mainstage production of Puccini’s Il Trittico as Luigi (Il Tabarro). He is a student of Ah Young Hong.
Abigail Head, a soprano from Roanoke, Virginia received her bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from Samford University in 2016. Some of her former roles include Amahl (Amahl and the Night Visitors, Samford Opera), Cecily (The Importance of Being Earnest, Showtimers), and Suor Osmina (Suor Angelica, Peabody Opera Theatre). Abigail has performed at several festivals such as Manhattan Opera Studio and Opera Festival di Roma. Additionally, she performed as an apprentice artist with Opera Roanoke in both the 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 seasons.She is currently in studying with Ah Young Hong while working on a master’s degree in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy at the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University. She is excited to be a part of Peabody Opera’s productions of Pride and Prejudice, The Hiding Tree and the Opera Scenes program in the fall of 2019.
Pauline Huey-Fen Hsu is a Taiwanese soprano. She has received the title of “New Voice Rising Star” from the Association of Vocal Artists of Taiwan, and was honored with a solo recital at the National Concert Hall in Taipei. Ms. Hsu has received many awards and scholarships in Taiwan, including Second Prize in the 2016 National Taiwan Student Music Competition, First Prize in the 2016 and 2018 Taichung Student Music Competition, First prize in the 2016 Nanhai Rotary Scholarship Awards Competition in Vocal Music, and First Prize in Tunghai University’s 2015 Concerto Competition. She has performed actively in the Tunghai Opera Theatre where she has sung many leading roles, including “Angelica” in Puccini’s Sour Angelica, “Yum-Yum” in Sullivan’s The Mikado, and “Une Pastourelle” and “La chauve-souris” in Ravel’s L’Enfant Et Les Sortilèges. She has also appeared with many choruses and orchestras as a soloist, such as Tunghai University Luce Chapel Choir, Taipei Chinsui Chorus, Kaohsiung Natus Cantorum, Vox Nova Singers in New Jersey and Maryland, as well as the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra. Ms. Hsu received her Bachelor of Music degree from National Pingtung University of Education, and Master of Art degree from Tunghai University in Taiwan. During her undergraduate and graduate years, she studied under Dr. Yi-lin Hsu, professor Shu-Shio Lu and professor Jejiun Chan. She is currently pursuing graduate studies in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy at The Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University, studying under the tutelage of Professor Ah Young Hong. Ms. Hsu will make her Peabody Opera debut this fall in the outreach production of Hansel and Gretel by Engelbert Humperdinck, singing the role of “The stepmother”. She will also be touring the greater Baltimore and Washington D.C. area this fall with Peabody Opera.
Claire is a soprano in her fourth year of study with Ah Young Hong, in pursuit of a Bachelor of Music degree. She is simultaneously pursuing a Bachelor of Arts through Johns Hopkins’ Kreiger School of Arts and Sciences, with a double major in International Studies and French. This season, she will be featured in Peabody Opera Theatre’s November production of Kirke Mechem’s Pride and Prejudice performing the role of Jane Bennet. December takes her to Kansas, with Music On Site International’s productions of Puccini’s Suor Angelica (Suor Dolcina) and Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors. And in February, she will take part in Peabody Voice Department’s performance of Kaija Saariaho’s recent opera Émilie (Scene VI, Feu) with seven fellow soprano students. Other recent operatic credits include Chicago Summer Opera’s double bill of Offenbach’s M. et Mdme. Denis (Gaston d’Amboise) and Le Mariage aux Lanternes (Denise) in August 2019 and Hawaii Performing Arts Festival’s performance of Benjamin Britten’s A Midsummer Nights Dream (Cobweb, Helena cover) in July 2019. Recent awards include being honored as a finalist in Saltworks Opera’s 2019 voice competition. She also enjoys working with young composers and is thrilled to collaborate with classmates Jake O’Connor and Serena Miller to premiere two new works in early 2020.
Noelle McMurtry, soprano, is interested in the intersection of music and theater, particularly through art song, new music, early music, and cabaret to explore diverse and underrepresented perspectives. Highlights of her operatic credits include Calisto in La Calisto, Drusilla in L’incoronazione di Poppea, Fairy in The Fairy Queen, Papagena in Die Zauberflöte and First Witch in Dido & Aeneas. In 2018, Noelle covered the title role of Krystyna Zywulska in the premiere of Jake Heggie’s Out of Darknesss: Two Remain with Peabody Chamber Opera. Noelle has also performed as a member of the Young Artist Program in Boston Early Music Festival’s production of Almira, shadowing the role of Edilia.
An avid recitalist, Noelle is most interested in innovative, thematic programming to create new contexts in which to experience the “canon,” particularly highlighting feminist perspectives and the works of historic female composers. Examples of her original programs include Ophelia and Her Sisters, Femme en fleurs, and The Heavenly Banquet, performed at various concert venues throughout NYC. To further this programming methodology, Noelle will pursue a Doctorate in Musical Arts at Peabody Institute with an expected graduation date of 2021. Through her affiliation with The Cantanti Project, a classical singer-lead collective in NYC, Noelle has also performed on The Little Ghost, Ophelia Transformed, and Her Story, all programs focusing on the perspectives of women through song.
Noelle currently serves as Secretary of The Pleiades Project, a production platform for female-identifying artists through digital and live performance opportunities. Through this collaboration, Noelle recently premiered as a soloist in Come down angels, a program exploring folk songs and spirituals from female perspectives, at the Multi- Cultural Sonic Evolution Festival (NYC) and the Alchemical Theatre Laboratory (NYC). Noelle has also created an original cabaret show, Queen of Hearts, with comedian Emma Tattenbaum-Fine, exploring female perspectives on love through story and song. In 2016, Queen of Hearts was awarded a Career Development Grant from Peabody Institute to further develop its artistic and theatrical scope with performances at The Duplex Theater (NYC), with Inception to Exhibition (NYC), and Stillpointe Theater (Baltimore).
A frequent collaborator in new music, Noelle performed at The New Music On The Point Festival, premiering works by composers Sarah Grace Graves and Aaron Wyanski. In 2017-2018, she performed with Peabody’s Now Hear This Ensemble, presenting works by Scott Ordway and Kate Soper, most notably on the Millennium Stage at The Kennedy Center. In the 2019-2020 season, Noelle will perform with In Series (DC) at the Women Composers Festival in Kate Soper’s opera, Here Be Sirens.
Hailing from Newark, Delaware, Rachel Mink is a first-year master’s student at Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore. She has performed with Charlottesville Opera, Victory Hall Opera, Staunton Music Festival, and Brevard Music Festival. She was most recently seen as Colin in Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s opera Le Devin du village. Mink graduated from University of Virginia with a double major in music and arts administration, where she studied with Pamela Beasley. In masterclasses, she has worked with Renee Fleming, Danielle Telemantes, and Rachelle Fleming. Before her time at Peabody, Mink was a development officer at the UVA School of Architecture.
Originally from the northern Midwest, Hannah Alexandra Noyes is a budding soprano with interests in Romantic opera, rarely-performed repertoire, and new music. Last season, she made her Peabody Opera Theatre debut in Puccini’s Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi and in Bernstein’s MASS under the direction of Marin Alsop. In July 2019, she debuted as Mozart’s Donna Anna in the Estates Theatre in Prague, Czech Republic.
An advocate for contemporary classical music, Hannah has been a vocalist in four world premieres. She was recently part of Peabody Conservatory’s Opera Etudes program where she performed in previews for new vocal works, including a monodrama for soprano during the fall of 2018. She created the role of the Younger Brother in A Madman’s Diary by Jun An Chew in April 2019.
During the 2017-18 season, Hannah appeared in the inaugural season of the Concordia Opera as Rosalinda in Die Fledermaus, where she also performed in scenes from Falstaff (Alice Ford) and Candide (Cunegonde). That summer, Hannah attended SongFest in Los Angeles as a Colburn Fellow where she was featured in recital performing Arnold Schoenberg’s Brettl-lieder. She has also been seen on stage in Italy as Violetta in La Traviata and Contessa Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro. Hannah has also portrayed the partial role of Zdenka from Strauss’s Arabella at Steve Smith’s Naked Voice Institute.
Hannah received her Bachelor of Music, magna cum laude, from Concordia College in Moorhead, MN, where she studied with Anne Jennifer Nash.
Mezzo-soprano Maddalena Ohrbach is a native of Buffalo, New York. She began as a classical pianist, but a childhood soundtrack of Andrea Bocelli and Carmina Burana coupled with her long-time shower singing led to an accidental discovery of a deep-seated love of opera. During high school, she attended NYSSMA Conference All-State, NAFME All-Eastern Honors choir, and toured Europe with American Music Abroad Honor Choir, as well as sang in the beloved Buffalo Choral Arts Society under Marcia Giambrone. She’s currently pursuing a BM in voice performance with a minor in anthropology, and hopes to integrate vocal music with social activism and mindfulness.
Learn more about Ah Young Hong in her bio.