Jenni Bank, mezzo-soprano (BM 2006, GPD Opera 2008)–was a Metropolitan Opera Competition National Semi-Finalist (1 of 17) at the Metropolitan Opera House in March, 2015. Jenni was also cited in the February 2012 issue of Opera News magazine’s “Opera Watch” column as one of ten winners of the 2011 Sullivan Musical Foundation competition. Each winner was awarded a cash prize of $11,000. Jenni was Winner of Peabody’s Sylvia Green Vocal Competition in 2006.
Kisma Jordan, soprano (GPD Opera 2012)—in November, 2015 won First Place in the Opera Theatre of Pittsburgh Mildred Miller International Vocal Competition, and will perform a lead role with that company as part of her prize. In January 2016, she won First Place in the National Opera Association Vocal Competition, Artist Division. Previously she won 2nd Prize in the Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition in New York, including a monetary prize of $10,000. Earlier, she was the Winner of the A. Grace Lee Mims Vocal Scholarship, also an award of $10,000, presented by the Cleveland Foundation. In addition, she was Winner Peabody’s Sylvia Green Vocal Competition (2012). A former Metropolitan Opera National Semi-Finalist, she was awarded in 2014, $3000 from the Metropolitan Opera Auditions’ National Winners’ Education Fund. In 2014, Kisma was awarded the distinguished Kresge Artist Award of $25,000 in Michigan.
William Davenport, tenor (BM 2011), –was a Metropolitan Opera Competition National Semi-Finalist (1 of 17) at the Metropolitan Opera House in March, 2015. In 2016, he was 2nd Place winner in the Veronica Dunne International Vocal Competition in Dublin, Ireland. Billy was also First Place winner in the 2015 Gerde Lissner International Vocal Competition and was awarded $10,000. In addition, he was Winner of the Bel Canto Opera Prize in the Opera Orchestra of New York Agnes Varga Vocal Competition. Previously, he was First Place winner of the Giargiari Bel Canto Vocal Competition. In April 2016, William sang the title role in Donizetti’s Roberto Devereux in performances at the Teatro Carlo Felice in Genova, Italy and received the following review on OperaClick.com (translated from Italian):
“The role of Roberto was supported by American tenor William Davenport. He pleasingly hit the timbre of a pure lyric, very natural emission and free of any force, especially in the high lying area of the score, and very much reminds us of the sound of Pavarotti of memory. He displayed optimal phrasing . . .” –Susanna Toffaloni-www.operaclick.com
Alexandra Razskazoff, soprano (BM, 2014)— won Third Place in the 2016 Houston Grand Opera Eleanor McCollum Vocal Competition. Alexandra was an Apprentice Artist at Santa Fe Opera last summer (2015) and will return this summer as Cover for Isabel Leonard in the role of Don Elvira in Don Giovanni. In the fall, she will begin a year at Minnesota Opera as a Young Artist, where she will sing as principal artist in the role of Musetta in La Bohème, the role of Wellgunde in Das Rheingold, as well as Cover for the role of Juliette in Roméo et Juliette. In 2014, Alexandra won Second Place in the Metropolitan Opera Competition Mid-Atlantic Regionals at the Kennedy Center at age 22. On November 18, 2015, she was reviewed in The New York Times (11/18/2015) by Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim for her performance of “From a Book of Hours” by James Primosch with the New Juilliard Ensemble:
“Alexandra Razskazoff gave a beautiful performance of this captivating work, which benefited as much from her richly faceted, slinky soprano as from the expressive clarity she brought to the German text. Art song requires a singer to lavish as much thoughtfulness and art on diction as on musical phrasing, and Ms. Razskazoff appears to have the makings of a great recitalist.”
Alexandra was Winner of Peabody’s Sylvia Green Vocal Competition in 2014.
Michael Maliakel, baritone, (BM, 2013)–in 2016 won First Place/Gold Medal in the American Traditions Vocal Competition in Savannah, Georgia. In 2015, Michael won 2nd Place in the Lotte Lenya Vocal Competition, as well as First Place in the 2015 National Association of Teachers of Singing–Musical Theatre Artists Awards. Also in 2015, he was awarded a $$1000 Grant in the 2015 Lieder/Song Competition in the Association with the Liederkranz Foundation and the Gerda Lissner Foundation.
Solen Mainguené, soprano (BM 2010) (team-taught with Phyllis Bryn-Julson)—after two years in the Opera Studio program at the Hamburg State Opera, Solen sang as principal artist there last year in the role of Musetta in La Bohème and Micaela in Carmen. She also performed as Musetta at Theater Lübeck in December, 2015. At the Hannover State Opera in 2016, she performs the role of Grete in A. Zemlinsky’s Der Traumgörge and Contessa in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro. In 2016, she sings the role of Mary Crawford in Jonathan Dove’s Mansfield Park with the Staatstheater Braunschweig, as well as the role of Friedensbote in Wagner’s Rienzi at Oper Leipzig and previously at the Hamburg State Opera. In recent years, she has been soloist with the Prague Philharmonic, the Gewandhaus Leipzig, the Nord Deutscher Rundfunk, the Hamburg Philharmonic, and the Real Orquesta Sinfónica de Sevilla.
Maggie Finnegan, soprano (MM ’10)–won the First Place prize of $10,000, as well as the Audience Prize for $1,000, in the Friday Morning Music Club’s Washington International Competition for Voice held June 18 and 19, 2016 at the Kennedy Center’s Terrace Theater. The judges were Frederica Von Stade, William Stone, and David Effron. She will appear as soloist with the Avanti Orchestra next year as part of the prize.
John Noh, tenor (BM, 2016) – -won 2nd Place in the Annapolis Opera Competition on April 24th, 2016, with Joan Dornemann from the Metropolitan Opera as Judge. He also won First Place in the 2015 Russell Wonderlic Vocal Competition, and won an Encouragement Award in the 2015 Metropolitan Opera Competition, Washington/MD/VA District.
Aundi Moore, soprano (private student) –won the 2015 American Prize in Voice, Professional Opera Division. She also won Third Place in the 2016 American Traditions Vocal Competition in Savannah, Georgia. A former Metropolitan Opera Competition Regional Finalist, Marian Anderson Scholar, and Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist, Aundi sings professionally with Robert Mirshak Artists Management.
Halim Shon, tenor, (MM 2013) –was recently a Young Artist at the Aspen Festival, and an Artist Diploma student at the Yale School of Music for two years, singing lead roles at both. Previous to that while at Peabody in 2013, he won First Place in the Maria Lanza International Vocal Competition, and Grand Prize/First Place and Conductor/Director Prize in the Annapolis Opera Vocal Competition.
Kristina Lewis, mezzo-soprano (GPD Opera 2012)–won an Encouragement/Study Award in the Metropolitan Opera Auditions Mid-Atlantic Regional Finals in 2012 at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. She was also the Winner of an Opera Index, Inc. 2011 Encouragement Grant as a Finalist in their competition. Kristina was Winner of the Sylvia Green Vocal Competition at Peabody in 2011. After studying with Dr. Cornett at Peabody, Kristina was accepted into the Academy of Vocal Arts vocal program in Philadelphia.
Leah Serr, mezzo-soprano (BM 2008) –was a Metropolitan Opera Competition National Southeast Regional Finalist in 2013. In 2014 and 2015 she was soloist with the Columbia Pro Cantare (MD).
Rachel Blaustein, soprano (MM 2015) –is a 2016 Studio Artist with Opera Santa Barbara. In the summer 2015 she was an Apprentice Artist with the Des Moines Opera, and she returns there in 2016 to cover Eurydice in Orphée et Eurydice. She will be joining Kentucky Opera for their 2016-17 season as a Studio Artist singing the role of Peeb-bo in The Mikado, and she will make her debut with Fort Worth Opera singing the role of Frasquita in Carmen in the Spring of 2017.
Laura Whittenberger, soprano (MM ’14, Voice) –and Peyson Moss (MM Vocal Accompanying 2016) are celebrating the launch of their new CD, “Never Give All the Heart,” a selection of love poems by W.B. Yeats set to music by Raymond Driver. They presented selections from the recording in a concert on February 25, 2016 at the American Irish Historical Society in New York. This summer Laura will sing as soloist with Annapolis Opera in their “Opera in the Park” concert of opera favorites. Laura was a Young Artist at Cedar Rapids Opera this last winter (2015-16). Recent performances this last year include the role of Johanna in Sweeney Todd with the Red Branch Theatre Company (MD), Rose in Ruddigore with Theater at Monmouth in Maine, and this summer she performs Mabel in Pirates ofPenzance with Mauckingbird Theatre Company (PA). Laura was also soloist with Columbia Pro Cantare (MD) in two concerts in 2015-16.
Robin McGinness, baritone (MM 2017) was Winner of the Sylvia Green Voice Competition at Peabody in March, 2016, and will sing as soloist with the Peabody Symphony Orchestra next season, singing Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen.Robin will be a Young Artist at the Caramoor Festival (NY) this summer (2016) and will work with Maestro Will Crutchfield.
Rebecca Wood, soprano (MM 2015, GPD 2016)—Team-Taught with Phyllis Bryn-Julson) won 2nd Place in the Sylvia Green Voice Competition at Peabody in March, 2016. This summer (2016) she will be singing the lead role of Phyllis in Gilbert & Sullivan’s Iolanthewith the Young Victorian Opera Theatre in Baltimore.
Jacob Bowman, baritone (BM 2018) –won 2ndPlace in the Friday Morning Music Club Sue Goetz Memorial Vocal Competition in Bethesda, MD. This summer (2016) he will be attending the Musiktheater Bavaria program in Germany.
Hyunah Yu, soprano, has recently released her second CD on the EMI Classics as a featured artist on their “Debut Series.” The CD is entitled Hyunah Yu–Bach & Mozart Arias, with the Prague Philharmonia, Shuntaro Sato conducting. Previously, Hyunah was featured on NPR’s Performance Today, singing Richard Strauss’ Lied “Alphorn.” Last year Hyunah sang the title role in Mozart’s Zaide for the Mosly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center and the Vienna Festival. The production was directed by Peter Sellars, and traveled from Vienna to Amsterdam, then London, and New York. Hyunah, who has four degrees/diplomas from Peabody (BM, MM, GPD, and AD), has appeared as an Artist at the Marlboro Festival for the last six seasons, and regularly tours U.S. cities as soloist with “Musicians from Marlboro.” Recently she performed on several chamber music concert series including the series at Alice Tully Hall, the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, the Vancouver Recital Society, and the Chicago Chamber Musicians. In 2005, she sang Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 with the Rotterdam Philharmonic under Valery Gergiev, and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with David Zinman at the Aspen Music Festival. She recorded her second recital broadcast for BBC’s Radio 3 Voices program; her first was picked as one of Radio 3’s Best of 2004. Hyunah was a 1999 Winner in the Walter Naumburg International Competition, and a Finalist in the Dutch International Vocal Competition and the Concert Artists Guild International Competition. Hyunah is also one of a few very select winners of the renown Boletti-Buitoni Trust Award. Google Hyunah Yu for her official biography and information about her recordings.
Kee-Sun Kwon, soprano, (BM Peabody, DMA student with Stanley Cornett at Catholic University and as a private student), won First Place in the Russell Wonderlic Vocal Competition in April (2007), and in May won the 2007 Baltimore Arts and Humanities Individual Artist Award. She has several wonderful competition experiences to her credit in recent years: First Place in the Paul Robeson Vocal Competition, First Place Winner in Maryland Opera Society’s Marie E. Crump Vocal Competition, First Place Winner of the Baltimore Music Club Competition-Professional Division, First Place in the NATS Regional Advanced College Division, Finalist and Study Award winner in the Gerde-Lissner Foundation Vocal Competition in New York, Finalist in the Connecticut Opera Vocal Competition, Finalist in the Violetta Dupont International Vocal Competition, and Finalist in the National Opera Association Competition–Professional Division.
Stephen Salters, baritone, was featured as a solo recital artist on the Vocal Arts Society Recital Series (December, 2005) at the Kennedy Center Terrace Theatre, and is scheduled to return for the 2009-2010 season. Other artists this year on this distinguished series include Anthony Dean Griffey, Gerald Finley, Patricia Racette, Christopher Maltman, Steven Blier, Malcolm Martineau, Graham Johnson, and Julius Drake. To read his wonderful review for his first performance on the Vocal Arts Society Recital Series and more information on Stephen’s burgeoning career see www.stephensalters.com.
Malin Fritz, mezzo soprano, is reprising the role of Third Lady in Mozart’s Die Zauberflote for the Metropolitan Opera this season. She also sang at the Met in Schoenberg’s Moses and Aaron, and the role of Schweitleite in Wagner’s Die Walkure in the Metropolitan Opera’s 2005-06 tour of Japan. She recently sang Azucena in Verdi’s Il trovatore with Sarasota Opera and the title role in Carmen with Opera San Jose. Other companies for whom she has sung leading roles are the New York City Opera, Virginia Opera, the Estonian National Opera, the Monterey Opera, and the Festival Dei Due Mondi in Spoleto, Italy, and she has continually soloed with major symphony orchestas and festivals. Opera Newspraised her for her “dignity and excellent vocalism,” while La Libre Belgigue hailed her as “a dream Carmen, with a warm, deep timbre and seductive physique.” Malin was a 1996 National Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera Auditions. She is with Herbert Barrett Management.
Chad Freeburg, tenor, received rave reviews for his performance of Lindoro in Rossini’s L’Italiana in Algeri last year with Connecticut Opera, and as Prince Ramiro in La Cenerentola with Dayton Opera. (He sings the role again with Birmingham Opera this season). He continues to be very busy with the role of Count Almaviva in Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia, portraying him with Utah Opera and Lyric Opera of Kansas City as well as covering the role with San Francisco Opera. He will return to Connecticut Opera for Ernesto in Donizetti’s Don Pasquale and will also sing the role with Opera Ireland in Dublin in Spring 2007. In 2008 he debuts with the Houston Grand Opera in Britten’s Billy Budd, and also makes a very noteworthy debut with San Francisco Opera as Tamino in The Magic Flute. Last summer, Chad sang the role of Romeo in Gounod’s Romeo et Juliette with the Wolf Trap Opera, Stephen Lord conducting. Other recent roles performed include Fenton in Falstaff, Pong in Turandot, and Laurie in Mark Adamo’s Little Women, with companies including: the New Jersey Opera Theatre, Gold Coast Opera, Lyric Opera of San Antonio, Cleveland Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Sacramento Opera, Roanoke Opera, Toledo Opera, and Chattanooga Opera. He continues to sing in concert as tenor soloist with major orchestras and festivals, including the Marlboro Festival, Alice Tully Hall, and Carnegie Hall, and with several orchestras in their Symphony Pops series (operetta and music theatre evenings) with Jack Everly, conductor (the Baltimore, Portland, Eugene, and Indianapolis Symphonies, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, Canada). Chad was a National Semi-Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera Auditions at Lincoln Center.
Audrey Babcock, mezzo soprano, has been covering the title role in Carmen at New York City Opera this season and performed the role of Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd for Wolf Trap Opera last summer. She is currently singing Maddalena in Verdi’s Rigoletto with Florida Grand Opera and Aldonza/Dulcinea in Man of La Manchia with Utah Festival Opera. She is a winner of a George London Foundation Award, the Jensen Foundation Award, and won First Prize in the Friday Morning Music Club Competition, as well as placing as a Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera Regional Auditions two years in a row. See www.ADA-Artists.com.
Israel Lozano, tenor, will sing Edgardo in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor with Florida Grand Opera this next season. He sang the role of Rodolfo in La Boheme last February/March at Sarasota Opera. He also sang Rodolfo with Los Angeles Opera and Palm Beach Opera in the last year. He debuted at Teatro Real in Madrid as Belfiore in Rossini’s Il Viaggio a Reims, sang Alfredo in La traviata at the Ludwigsburg Festival in Germany, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the National Symphony, and the role of Javier in the zarzuela Luisa Fernanda with Washington National Opera, (Placido Domingo sang the baritone lead and Israel sang the tenor lead formally sung by Domingo!). In 2003, Israel won an unprecedented three prizes in the International OPERALIA Competition: Third Prize-Opera; Zarzuela Prize; and Favorite of the Audience Prize. See www.israellozano.com
Charlotte Paulsen, mezzo soprano, recently sang Messiah at Avery Fisher Hall and received a lovely mention in The New York Times. She returns to Lincoln Center on Martin Luther King Day 2009 for a U.S. premiere. Charlotte has sung the title role in Carmen with the Ft. Wayne Philharmonic, was soloist in Elijah with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and was soloist in Messiah with the Syracuse Symphony. Previously she won First Place in the Liederkranz Foundation Awards, Wagnerian Voice Division. She debuted at Carnegie Hall in Messiah with John Rutter conducting, and was hailed as “an intense performer, with an unusual and distinctive voice, compelling and enormous in its lower register.” Charlotte has sung with Baltimore Opera, Virginia Opera, Utah Opera, Opera Delaware, Toledo Opera, Roanoke Opera, and Fresno Opera. She is managed by Thea Dispeker Artists (www.dispeker.com).
Alicia Berneche, soprano, has recently performed leading roles with Kentucky Opera, Arizona Opera, Virginia Opera, Opera Pacific, Austin Lyric Opera, Opera Omaha, and a return to Lyric Opera of Chicago in the role of Birdie in Blitzstein’s Regina. Previously there, she took over for Dawn Upshaw in the role of Daisy in John Harbison’s The Great Gatsby with tenor Jerry Hadley. She has also sung with the Portland Opera, the Orlando Opera, and the Opera Festival of New Jersey. While she was at Peabody, Alicia won Second Prize in the Houston Grand Opera Competition and was a Metropolitan Opera Auditions District Winner and Regional Finalist. Alicia is managed by Pinnacle Arts Management (see www.aliciaberneche.com).
Richard Crawley, tenor, is serving as Cover at the Metropolitan Opera this 2010-11 season as Don Jose in Carmen, and will be Cover for the title role in Lohengrinwith the Lyric Opera of Chicago. He will perform the role of Lohengrin for the Savonlinna Festival in Finland in the summer of 2011. Also in 2011, he will sing the role of Canio in I Pagliacci for Portland Opera. Previously he sang Don Jose in Carmen with Denyce Graves in the title role with the Greek National Opera in Athens, Greece in May (2007). In another exciting event, he sang the role of Cavaradossi in Tosca with the San Francisco Opera and Carol Van Ness as Tosca. He repeated the role for Hawaii Opera. Rich also sang Pinkerton in a critically acclaimed Madama Butterfly for Chautauqua Opera. Versatile as ever, on two days notice, Rich stepped into the title role of Faust for Portland Opera (having sung the role five years before), and was awarded a standing ovation and stellar reviews. This season includes another Pinkerton with Dayton Opera (audio excerpt on website–see below) and his first Riccardo in Verdi’s Un ballo in maschera with Opera Santa Barbara..Other companies with whom he has sung leading roles are the Atlanta Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Staadtstheater Stuttgart, Opera Colorado, Tulsa Opera, Syracuse Opera, Lake George Opera, Annapolis Opera, and Augusta Opera. Last summer he sang locally in a program of duets and arias with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in a very fun “Opera Night” at Oregon Ridge. Rich is managed by Bel Canto Global Arts (see http://www.belcantoglobalarts.com/index.php ).
Marguerite Krull, soprano, who has twice been featured in Opera News’s “Keep Your Eye On. . .” column, had great success in her Teatro Colon debut in Buenos Aires singing the title role in Rossini’s Elisabetta, Regina d’Inghilterra, and will return to South America this coming summer to sing Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni at the “other” Teatro Colon in Bogata, Columbia. In recent years, Marguerite has performed Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro with Lyric Opera of Chicago and Ruth Ann Swensen as the Countess, as well as debuting with Leipzig Opera, singing the title role in Alessandro Melani’s L’empio punito (first opera on the Don Juan story, 1669). She also debuted at the Grand Theatre in Bordeaux, singing the title role in La Capricciosa Corretta,by Martin y Soler with a libretto by Da Ponte (loosely modeled after The Taming of the Shrew). She sang the same production in Madrid, Spain and recorded it for the Naive recording label. Marguerite has sung with a long list of important conductors and opera companies, as well as in very specialized concert work.. See her extensive website at www.margueritekrull.com for detailed information. Marguerite is managed by Robert Lombardo & Associates. “Soprano Marguerite Krull gave a brilliant performance–her singing fiercely pure and searching, her technique beyond reproach.”– San Francisco Chronicle.
Timothy Bentch, tenor, has pursued a career as both a successful singer and minister. He spent twelve years in Hungary, and continues to sing there regularly, performing leading roles and as tenor soloist with all the major musical venues (including repeated appearances at the Hungarian State Opera), and on radio and television broadcasts. He has been hailed as “a treasure in today’s Hungarian musical life.” He also has performed in the UK, the Netherlands, Germany, and France, Bulgaria, and Russia, as well as extensively in the US. Timothy, who has performed over 35 opera roles, has several CD recordings, including Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 with the Warsaw National Philharmonic and glorious reviews. See www.timothybentch.com for details.
Nimrod Weisbrod, baritone, was one of three Winners of the 2008 Metropolitan Opera Auditions, Florida District, and subsequently won Third Place in the Metropolitan Opera Southeast Regionals in Atlanta in February. He is in his second season as an Apprentice Artist at Orlando Opera where he sang the role of Masetto in Mozart’s Don Giovanniand will sing the role of Ping in Puccini’s Turandot in April with the company. This summer (2008) Nimrod has been invited to be a Fellowship Artist at the Aspen Festival where he will perform the role of Pandolfe in Massenet’s Cendrillon with James Conlon conducting.
Sarah Davis, soprano, was recently First Prize Winner in the Barry Alexander International Vocal Competition (December 2007). As part of her award she was featured in a Winners Recital in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in January 2008. Also in 2008, Sarah won First Place in both the Pennsylvania District and Eastern Regional sections of the NATS Artist Awards Competition, and was chosen as one of six Finalists in the Artist Awards Competition at the NATS National Convention in June, 2008. In July 2007, Sarah was chosen by composer John Harbison to perform the World Premiere of his “Vocalization” (poem by Walt Whitman), for voice and piano, at the SongFest Summer Program for Singers and Pianists in Malibu, California. She will be a Tanglewood Fellow this summer.
Mark Tevis, tenor, sang the role of Tony in West Side Story in Bregenzer Festspiele and Staatstheater Oldensberg, with Francesca Zambello directing. He also sang the title role in Romberg’s The Student Prince in Heidelberg, Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis at the Al Busten Festival in Beirut, as well as the role of Manfredo in Verdi’s Les Vespres Siciliennes with the Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam. Mark is with Herbert Barrett Management in the U.S. and Impulse Art Management in Europe.
Catherine Choi, mezzo soprano, was recently accepted as a full-time member of the Metropolitan Opera Chorus. She recently returned from touring for a year and a half with the National Touring Company of The King and I. Cathy received rave reviews in almost every city for her portrayal and singing of the role of Lady Thiang, with Stephanie Powers and Sandy Duncan alternating in the role of Anna. She was also a Finalist and Study Award Winner in the 2006 Violetta Dupont International Opera Competition as well as a Finalist and Study Award Winner in the 2006 Annapolis Opera Competition.
Allison Charney, soprano, has been busy singing the title roles in Tosca, Madama Butterfly, and The Merry Widow, as well as the roles of both Donna Elvira and Donna Anna in Don Giovanni, Mimi in La Boheme, Liu in Turandot, Micaela in Carmen, Nedda in I Pagliacci, Marguerite in Faust, Roselinda in Die Fledermaus, and Pamina in Die Zauberflote. Opera companies she has performed with include Opera Memphis, Atlanta Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Opera Tampa, Palm Beach Opera, Colorado Opera, Illinois Opera, Nashville Opera, Utah Opera, Syracuse Opera, Opera Delaware, Mississippi Opera, and Connecticut Opera, with important concert opera performances at Avery Fisher Hall and Alice Tully Hall. Previously Allison debuted at New York City Opera as Musetta in La Boheme; she also was a National Semi-Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera Auditions at Lincoln Center. Most recently, Allison had very exciting news to announce with the birth of her first child –son Evan. She is with Randsman Artist Management ([email protected]).
Taewon Yi Kim, mezzo soprano, has recently finished a tour of American and Korean cities (including the New York State Theater) portraying the title role in The Last Empress, a musical on the life of Queen Min, the last dynastic empress of Korea. Taewon previously was the original Lady Thiang in the 1996 Revival of The King and I on Broadway and in London’s West End over the course of five years, with Lou Diamond Philips as the King and Donna Murphy as Anna, among others. The Broadway cast CD is readily available. (Catherine Choi — see above –assumed the role of Lady Thiang for the National Tour). Taewon was also a National Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera Auditions at Lincoln Center, as well as a Bronze Medalist in the Marian Anderson Competition, and First Place Winner in the Annapolis Opera Competition.
William Lagundino, tenor, made his Carnegie Hall solo debut in the role of Hervey in Donizetti’s Anna Bolena with the Opera Orchestra of New York. Eve Queler conducted, with Jennifer Larmore as Giovanna and James Morris as Enrico.
Brenda Nuckton, soprano, continues to work as Stage Director and Assistant Director for major opera companies, including productions with Houston Grand Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Grand Theatre de Geneve, Washington National Opera, Sarasota Opera, Syracuse Opera, Opera Illinois, and Portland Opera.
Matthew Chellis, tenor, who was a student of Dr. Cornett’s at the University of Michigan, is appearing regularly in leading roles with the New York City Opera, as well as myriad companies throughout the US, Canada, South America, and Europe. He is also tenor soloist with major symphonies and choral societies nationally. Matthew is represented by Randsman Artist Management.
Rebecca Broberg, mezzo-soprano, writes from Germany that she has been singing the role of Verena, the lead female role, in Siegfried Wagner’s (Richard Wagner’s son) Der Kobold, written in 1903. The premiere was on November 10 in the Stadttheater in Furth, followed by several cities including Bayreuth in the Stadthalle. The opera was broadcast on Deutschland Radio with the Nuremberg Symphony, and both a CD and DVD are in the works. She notes that the music is beautifully Wagnerian in dimension, and that the story concerns sensitive subjects such as abortion and child abuse, which may explain why it has not been staged since the 1930s.
Jeremy Blossey, tenor, is currently singing the role of Tinca in Puccini’s Il Tabarro and Gherardo in Gianni Schicchi with Hawaii Opera. He sang the role of Pong in Turandot with Hawaii Opera last year and will return to sing Goro in Madama Butterfly next year. Also next season, Jeremy will covering the role of the Duke in Rigoletto (and singing the role of Borsa) with Shreveport Opera, as well as singing the role of Frederick in The Pirates of Penzance with the Lyric Opera of Cleveland.
Chi-chun Chan, mezzo soprano, performed the role of Second Lady in Mozart’s Die Zauberflote with Summer Opera Theatre of Washington last season. She was also a featured artist on a recital series at the National Theatre Concert Hall in Taiwan. Recently, she sang with the National Symphony Orchestra of Taiwan in the role Gringerde in Wagner’s Die Walkure with James Morris as Wotan.
William Farrar Strum, tenor, was a District Winner in the Metropolitan Opera Council Auditions in Pittsburgh, and a Finalist in the Intermezzo/Elardo International Opera Competition.
Arsenia Soto, soprano, who three years ago won First Place in both the Russell Wonderlic Vocal Competition and the Baltimore Music Club Competition-Professional Division, is now in the Ensemble of the Las Vegas production of The Phantom of the Opera, where she is the understudy for the role of Carlotta. Currently in the process of finishing up her DMA at Peabody, she was Adjunct Professor of Voice at University of Nevada Las Vegas for two years. Other notable events include First Place Winner of the Kennett Symphony Soloist Competition, as well as her Weill Recital Hall debut at Carnegie Hall in 2005 under the auspices of the La Gesse Foundation.
Kenneth Shelley, tenor, who received his DMA from Peabody in 1994, was last year appointed to the faculty of The Hartt School of Music in Hartford, Connecticut. Ken has performed lead tenor roles with regional companies and orchestras in Turandot, William Tell, and La Traviata, and as tenor soloist in Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde, and Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 2 (Lobgesang), among others. His work has been praised by critics as “dramatic and forceful, charged with heroic virility,” “a powerful tenor whose voice is tempered with an expressiveness that gives his voice substance and strength.” Moreover, “he was impressive in everything he sang, and his delivery was world-class,” and “his voice was a mere vehicle to underscore his brilliant conceptualization.”
Randa Rouweyha, soprano, and Jeffrey Tarr, bass, were the two Winners of the Vocal Arts Society’s 2005 Art Song Discovery Series Competition. They then gave a series of recitals as part of the prize including one at the Kennedy Center. Previously Randa was First Place Winner in the Paul Robeson Vocal Competition, and Jeffrey was a Finalist and Award Winner in the Annapolis Opera Competition and recently sang Sarastro in Die Zauberflote as Guest Artist at Hood College. As a guest alumni artist, Jeffrey sang the role of Collatinus in Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia last year with Peabody Opera Theatre, and this spring will sing Sarastro in Mozart’s Die Zauberflote in a repeat appearance as alumni artist.
Randa Rouweyha, soprano, received the following review in The Washington Times: “As Nedda in Pagliacci, soprano Randa Rouweyha—whom we’ve heard and admired in Washington National Opera productions — gets to strut her stuff here as Leoncavallo’s brittle, two-timing anti-heroine. With her clean, elegant vocal lines and perfect diction, she’s simply terrific in a role which seems almost tailor-made for her impressive skills as both singer and thespian.” –Terry Ponick, The Washington Times(January 14, 2011).
Clifford Bechtel, tenor, has recently signed on with C&K Artists, based in Germany. He has been invited to sing with Boston Baroque in Croatia, Austria, and the USA in performances of Handel’s “Saul,” in which he will be singing the lead role of Jonathan. Discussions are underway for Clifford with the Hamburg State Opera in Germany and the well-known chamber orchestra, Cappella Istropolitana, based in Bratislava. In March 2009, Clifford will be performing the role of Eisenstein in Strauss’ “Die Fledermaus” with the Maryland Concert Opera.
Susan Wheeler, soprano, recently sang Gretel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel with the Augusta Opera (GA) and where she previously sang the three heroines in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann. This spring, she makes her Carnegie Hall debut as soprano soloist in Mozart’s Requiemand Dvorak’s Te Deum. Susan’s other recent engagements have included the role of Cunegonde in Bernstein’s Candide with the Tucson Symphony as well as soprano soloist in Mendelssohn’s Elijah and Brahm’s Requiem with the New Dominion Chorale. She has been featured regularly at the Austrian Embassy in the annual Viennese Opera Ball. She has been a prize winner in both the MacAllister and Annapolis Opera vocal competitions.
Andrea Wiltzius, soprano, received a Study Award from the Lyric Opera of Chicago Young Artists program last year. She previously granted two Study Awards from the Lindeman Young Artist program of the Metropolitan Opera. In the International Czech and Slovak Voice Competition, Andrea won Best American Young Singer Award, Best Czech Song Interpretation Award, and Fifth Prize.
Robert Cantrell, baritone, has been appointed a position with the Metropolitan Opera Chorus. Robert continues to sing supporting roles with Washington National Opera and Baltimore Opera as well as appearing as soloist with major choral groups in the area, and receiving consistently outstanding reviews.
Kevin Courtemanche, tenor, sang the role of Radames in Verdi’s Aida with Berkeley Opera (California) and received the following review in the San Francisco Chronicle (July 2007, Joshua Kozman, Chronicle Music Critic): “The evening’s vocal standout was tenor Kevin Courtemanche, whose performance as Radames, though dramatically rather stiff, boasted ringing high notes, agile phrasing and an arresting command of vocal color. He showed no fear in the face of the demanding Act 1 aria, ‘Celeste Aida,’ and brought fervor and discipline to his final showdown with Amneris.”
Sara Stewart, soprano, in the summer of 2008 was a Finalist in the Altamura Caruso Vocal Competition and a Semi-Finalist in the Leyla Gencer Vocal Competition. Last year she won Second Place in Maryland Opera Society’s Marie E. Crump Vocal Competition. For Baltimore Opera in Spring 2008 she was contracted as Cover for the role of Juliet in Gounod’s Romeo and Juliet and sang the role of Kate Pinkerton in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly. In October 2008, she sang the role of High Priestess in Verdi’s Aida with Baltimore Opera.
Seungwook Ryu, tenor, sang the title role of Otello in Verdi’s Otello with the Taconic Opera in New York state, and received excellent reviews. He also has sung Rodolfo in La Boheme with Bel Cantanti Opera and will appear again with that company next year as Alfredo in La Traviata.
Arturo Chacon, baritone, is Artistic Director of the Costa Rica National Opera.
Heyk Chae, tenor won First Place in the Paul Robeson Vocal Competition (November, 2006), and was Fourth Place Winner in the Annapolis Opera Competition (2006). He is represented by Robert Lombardo Artists Management.
Brendan Curran, baritone,was selected to be a participant in the Marilyn Horne Foundation Master Class Series in 2007.
Shelley Jackson, soprano, won Second Prize in the Russell Wonderlic Vocal Competition in May 2007. (Kee-Sun Kwon, listed above, won First Place in the same competition). Shelley is currently studying in Italy with internationally renowned soprano Mirella Freni.