Season

 

Operas

 

National Vocal Competition

 


 

 

Operas

2016/2017 SEASON

 

Large Calendar

 

2016/2017 SEASON

 

Opera Showcase & National Vocal Competition 

(Division II Finals)

Saturday, May 13, 2017 at 8:00PM

Weill Recital Hall at
CARNEGIE HALL 
881 7th Avenue/57th 
New York City 

 

 

National Vocal Competition Finals (Division I) 

& Winner’s Concert (Junior High & High School Divisions)

Saturday, April 29, 2017 at 8:30PM

Symphony Space on Broadway
2537 Broadway at 95th
New York City

 

Tosca
Saturday, April 29, 2017 at 5:00PM
Symphony Space on Broadway
2537 Broadway at 95th Street
New York City

 

An Afternoon of Mozart

The Magic Flute/The Marriage of Figaro

Saturday, April 29, 2017 at 1:30PM

Symphony Space on Broadway
2537 Broadway at 95th
New York City

 

Don Giovanni

Sunday, February 26, 2017 at 8:00PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Don Giovanni

Sunday, February 26, 2017 at 6:30PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Don Giovanni

Friday, February 3, 2017 at 8:00PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Don Giovanni

Friday, February 3, 2017 at 6:30PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Handel’s Ariodante

Wednesday, December 14, 2016 at 8:15PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Hansel and Gretel

Wednesday, December 7, 2016 at 8:15PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Suor Angelica

Wednesday, December 7, 2016 at 7:15PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

The Marriage of  Figaro

Saturday, November 19, 2016 at 2:00PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

L’incoronazione di Poppea

Saturday, November 19, 2016 at 12:30PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Opera Gala at Carnegie Hall

Saturday, November 12, 2016 at 8:00PM

Weill Recital Hall at
CARNEGIE HALL 
881 7th Avenue/57th 
New York City 

 

The Magic Flute
Sunday, November 6, 2016 at 7:00PM
Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Cendrillon

Sunday, November 6, 2016 at 5:15PM

NOLA Studios
244 W. 54th/8th/Broadway, 11th floor
New York City

 

The Magic Flute

Tuesday, October 25, 2016 at 8:00PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Cendrillon

Monday, October 24, 2016 at 8:30PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

The Cadi Outwitted

Monday, October 24, 2016 at 7:30PM

Marc A. Scorca Hall
NATIONAL OPERA CENTER
330 Seventh Avenue, 7th floor
New York City

 

Season Auditions

Friday, September 30, 2016 at 7:00PM

NOLA Studios
244 W. 54th/8th/Broadway, 11th floor
New York City

 

Season Auditions

Friday, September 23, 2016 at 7:00PM

NOLA Studios
244 W. 54th/8th/Broadway, 11th floor
New York City

 

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Competition

2017 National Vocal Competition

 

JUNIOR HIGH DIVISION

 

Perform at Symphony Space on Broadway

Saturday, April 29, 2017 at 8:30PM

 

HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION  

 

Perform at Symphony Space on Broadway

Saturday, April 29, 2017 at 8:30PM

 

DIVISION I

Saturday, April 29, 2017 at 8:30PM

Symphony Space on Broadway

 

DIVISION II

Saturday, May 13, 2017 at 8:00PM

CARNEGIE HALL

Weill Recital Hall  

 

2017 National Vocal Competition  

Winners

JUNIOR HIGH DIVISION

"1st Place" Evelyn Carr
"2nd Place" Sanghoon Jung
"3rd Place" Nishka Rao
"1st Alternate" Julia Rojkov
"2nd Alternate" Sana Jaffrey

High School Division 

"1st Place" Amalia Crevani
"2nd Place" Pablo Rubin-Jurado
"3rd Place" Annika Churchill
"1st Alternate" Juliet Papadopoulos
"2nd Alternate" Sophia Donelan

Division I
"1st Place" Esther Tonea
"2nd Place" Sean Stanton
"3rd Place" Kyaunnee Richardson
"1st Alternate" Jihao Tian
"2nd Alternate" Banlingyu Ban
Division II

To Be Announced following the Division II Semi-finals on May 12, 2017.

 

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2017 National Vocal Competition

National Finalists

(in alphabetical order)

 

Junior High division

Arielle Baril
Evelyn Carr
Emma Chenard
Rose Davenport
Sanghoon Jung
Sana Jaffrey
Nishka Rao
Julia Rojkov
Alt. 1: Sarah Tabin
Alt. 2: Yvanna Lovera

High School Division 

Annika Churchill
Amalia Crevani
Sophia Donelan
Elisabeth Mies
Juliet Papadopoulos
Nivi Ravi
Pablo Rubin-Jurado
Alexandra Taylor
Alt. 1: Lena Goldstein
Alt. 2: Sarah Martin

Division I
Banlingyu Ban
John Brakatselos
Breanna Ghostone
Kyaunnee Richardson
Hyun Sung Shin
Sean Stanton
Jihao Tian
Esther Tonea
Alt. 1: Taylor See
Alt. 2: Brittany Fouche
Division II

To Be Announced following the Division II Semi-finals on May 12, 2017.

 

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2017 National Vocal Competition

REGIONAL FINALISTS/NATIONAL SEMI-FINALISTS

(in alphabetical order)

 

Junior High division

Arielle Baril
Adriana Barrera
Evelyn Carr
Emma Chenard
Hannah Chilton
Rose Davenport
Hannah Dubroff
Iva Galic
Isabel Hernandez
Sana Jaffrey
Alexa Jimenez
Sanghoon Jung
Diane Li
Jennifer Lockhart
Yvanna Lovera
Lauren Oh
Leigh Palmer
Sam Piatt
Nishka Rao
Julia Rojkov
Sarah Tabin
Kirsten Tierney
Sophia Welch
Ashley Yang
Joyce Zhang

High School Division 

Katelyn Buerger
Adam Chase
Katelynn Cherry
Annika Churchill
Amalia Crevani
Sophia Donelan
Neha Garg
Jordan George
Lana Goldstein
Kianna Kelly-Futch
Sara Fleiss
Elizah Knight
Matthew Li
Sarah Martin
Emma Merriman
Elisabeth Mies
Erin Mullen
Juliet Papadopoulos
Sophia Peterson
Lauren Rose Randolph
Nivi Ravi
Clara Reeves
Emma Rogers
Pablo Rubin-Jurado
Kayla Smith
Alexandra Taylor
Angelina Yi (Minjung Kim)
Troi Zee
Sara Zerilli
Yuljia Zhang

Division I

Melanie Ashkar
Jamie Balter
Banlingyu Ban
John Brakatselos
Julia Cohen
Evan Coldiron
Natasha Czajka
Laura Fernandez
Brittany Fouche
Phoebe Dinga
Victoria Esposito
Breanna Ghostone
Gabrielle Haigh
Zoe Hart
Marianth Hatsis
Sarah Heitman
Joseph Hill
Zhiguang Hong
Alicia Hurtado
Kat Kirby
Stephanie Jones
Josh LeRose
Clara Lisle
Lu Liu
Elijah McCormack
Brett Pardue
Jun Suk Park
Cortlin Presley
Wei Qi
Lauren Rathbun
Kyaunnee Richardson
Emily Rosenberg
Taylor See
Rocco Sharkey
Hyun Sung Shin
Julia Smouse
Sean Stanton
Katy Tang
Jihuo Tian
Kaitlyn Tierney
Esther Tonea
Tiffanie Trujillo
Elizabeth Turner
Peiying Wang
Eric Wassenaar
Fei Xia
Jingye Xu
Mengtao Zhou

Division II

Chelsea Bonagura
Robin Bradley
Lisa Bryce
Melanie Campbell
Jean Collahuazo
Nicole Cooper
Jason Duika
Marci Malone DeAmbrose
Amal El-shrafi
Annie Gill
Heather Green
Kofi Hayford
Russell Hoke
Jeong Min Huh
Do Jin Jung
Sujin Kang
Geeseop Kim
Jed Kim
Manna KnJoi
Robyn Lamp
Heejung Lee
Ray Lee
Young Eun Lee
Christine Lyons
Alison McConekey
Julius Miller
Jungwon Na
Stephanie Newman
Tian Qin
Suzanne Rigden
Anastasiya Roytman
Cassandra Santiago
Jun Suk Park
Xuefeng Wan

 

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2016 National Vocal Competition

 

JUNIOR HIGH DIVISION

 

Perform at Symphony Space on Broadway

Saturday, April 30, 2016 at 2:30PM

 

HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION  

 

Perform at Symphony Space on Broadway

Saturday, April 30, 2016 at 2:30PM

 

DIVISION I

Saturday, April 30, 2016 at 2:30PM

Symphony Space on Broadway

 

DIVISION II

Saturday, May 7, 2016 at 8:00PM

CARNEGIE HALL

Weill Recital Hall  

 

 

2016 National Vocal Competition  

Winners

 

JUNIOR HIGH DIVISION
"1st Place" Caitlin Chisham 
"2nd Place" Erich Schuett
"3rd Place" Amanda Swickle
"1st Alternate" Grace Hoffmann
"2nd Alternate" Nicole Minar

High School Division 

"1st Place" William Desbiens 
"2nd Place" Morgan Mastrangelo 
"3rd Place" Shereen Pimentel
"1st Alternate" Kerrigan Bigelow 
"2nd Alternate" Abigail Harnum 

Division I
"1st Place" Maria Brea
"2nd Place" Alex Boyd
"3rd Place" Meghan Anthony
"1st Alternate" Gabriella Moscoso
"2nd Alternate" Melisa Bonetti

Division II
"1st Place" Jonathan Tetelman
"2nd Place" Jennifer Noel
"3rd Place" Christine Capsuto
"1st Alternate" Holly Flack
"2nd Alternate" Danielle Davis

 

 

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National Finalists  

(in alphabetical order)

 

Junior High division
Brand, Amy
Chisham, Caitlin
Hoffmann, Grace
Korman, Daisy
Malley, Cecilia
Schuett, Erich
Swickle, Amanda
Takacs, Christin
Alt. 1: Sara Zerilli
Alt. 2: Nicole Minar
High School Division 
Cooney, Carlyle
Desbiens, William
Mantilla, Adriana
Mastrangelo, Morgan
Mellman, Rachel
Pimentel, Shereen
Scott, Isabelle
Wenzelberg, Benjamin
Alt. 1: Kerrigan Bigelow
Alt. 2: Abigail Harnum

Division I
Meghan Anthony
Alex Boyd
Maria Brea Moeller
Melisa Bonetti
Shin Hyun
Min Jee Kim
Gabriella Moscoso
Samantha Scully
Alt. 1: Carolyn Aguirre
Alt. 2: Lieve Buzard

 

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NATIONAL FINALIST JUDGES (in alphabetical order)  

 

SAFFRON Y, CHUNG

Native of Korea, Saffron Y, Chung considers New York City her home.  She received her Bachelors of Music from Oberlin College, where she was the first recipient of a double major in Piano Performance and Vocal Accompanying. She also has Master’s of Music in Accompanying from University of Cincinnati, College- Conservatory of Music.  She has been an assistant conductor of opera companies such as Chautauqua Opera, El Paso Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Madison Opera, New York City Opera, Sarasota Opera, and Utah Festival Opera Company, under the baton of Harry Bickett, Richard Buckley, Barbara Day-Turner, Victor De Renzi, John DeMain, Raymond Harvey, Kynan Johns, David Larsen, Robert Lyall, Stewart Robertson, Luis Salemno, Steven Sloane, Bob Tweeten, and Steven White.  She is not a stranger to the world of academia and education.  She is a former Adjunct Faculty in Accompanying at William Paterson State University, and a former staff accompanist at Harlem Boys Choir, Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, and Mannes School of Music.  She led a workshop of Brahms lieder for the voice department at Hong Kong Academy for the Performing Arts.  Her recent performance was in Paris, France, where she was a guest artist for the Atelier Concert Series.  She currently resides in New York City where she works as coach/accompanist in Metropolitan area.  

 

DAVID COMMANDAY

David Commanday is the founding Artistic Director and Conductor of the Heartland Festival Orchestra. In 2011, Commanday was named Professional Conductor of the Year by the Illinois Council of Orchestras. He has performed with illustrious soloists as both cellist and conductor; among them Yo-Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman, Josh Bell, and Jason Vieaux. His earlier posts include Associate Conductor of the NJ Symphony Orchestra, and Music Director of the Boston Ballet, Boston Youth Symphony, and Peoria Symphony Orchestras. Active as guest conductor, he has recently directed the Southwest Florida Symphony, the Kansas City Symphony, and the Singapore National Youth Orchestra. Commanday has conducted orchestras around the world, including the National Symphony, Israel Philharmonic, American Symphony, Louisville Orchestra, Belgian Radio Orchestra, Vienna Pro Arte Orchestra, and the Seattle, Atlanta, and Richmond Symphonies, Ballet West (Salt Lake City, UT), and the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago.

 

RICHARD CORDOVA

Richard Cordova made his professional debut conducting the Scandinavian Premiere of Bernstein's Candide in Bergen, Norway, and has subsequently conducted productions for Oper der Stadt Bonn, Opera North (New Hampshire), Sarasota Opera, Opera Company of Boston, Long Beach Opera, Berkshire Opera, Florida Grand Opera and Baltimore Opera. He has collaborated with such artists as Martina Arroyo, Frederica von Stade, Renato Bruson, Florence Quivar and Julia Migenes, and has worked in this capacity for such organizations as the Istanbul Opera, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Tulsa Opera, New Orleans Opera, New York City Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Dallas Opera, Chautauqua Opera, the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria, and Des Moines Metro Opera.  For the past twenty years he has toured internationally with various productions of Gershwin's Porgy and Bess, conducting the work on four continents.  He was recently appointed Music Director of The Little Opera Theatre of New York, for whom he conducted the New York stage premiere of Mozart's early opera seria, Mitridate, re di Ponto, and the Gustav Holst double bill of The Wandering Scholar and Savitri. He recently conducted Porgy and Bess with the European National Tour in addition to conducting 10 Opera Premiere under the direction of the most famous opera composer alive today, Carlisle Floyd.

 

PATRICIA CRAIG

Renowned American operatic soprano Patricia Craig made her Metropolitan Opera debut in 1978 as Marenka in The Bartered Bride, and has performed leading roles in Madame Butterfly, Dialogues of the Carmelites, La bohème and Mahagonny. Her performing career spans over three decades of major roles in the world's leading opera houses, specializing in Puccini and Verdi heroines. Credits include performances with the New York City Opera; Teatro La Fenice in Venice, Italy; the Festival of Two Worlds in both Spoleto, Italy, and Charleston, South Carolina; L'Opera de Marseilles; Frankfurt Opera, Frankfurt, Germany; and the companies of Cincinnati, Miami, Baltimore and Washington, D.C. A faculty member of the New England Conservatory from 1990 to 2009, Craig also teaches at the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria, the Chautauqua Institution and the Bay Area Summer Opera Theater Institute. She received a B.S. from Ithaca College, pursued postgraduate studies in opera at the Manhattan School of Music, and gained her first critical vocal acclaim as a winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.

 

ANDREA DELGIUDICE

Andrea DelGiudice celebrates a full career in Europe and the United States as a leading international soprano. Theaters include the Scottish National Opera, Munich State Opera, Liege Opera, Bonn Opera, Edmonton Opera, Austin Lyric Opera, DiCapo Opera Theater and Arizona Opera. Her roles include the leading heroines in the Verdi and Puccini operas singing with renowned artists Johan Botha, Sherrill Milnes, Greer Grimsley, Rene Kollo, Alexei Steblianko, Vladimir Atlantov and Nicola Martinucci. Ms. DelGiudice performed and recorded at Boston’s Jordan Hall, and WGBH's “Morning Classics” with Richard Strauss’ Four Last Songs, and the beautiful song series Shema by Simon Sargon. She serves currently as director of music at the Neighborhood Playhouse Theater in New York City and enjoys her highly successful private studio working with her internationally acclaimed students.

 

RONALD HEDLUND

Ronald Hedlund made his professional debut in 1965 and Metropolitan Opera debut in 1966. He has earned accolades singing leading roles in every major American Opera House (NYC, San Francisco, Boston, Washington, Philadelphia, Seattle, Houston, Dallas, Chicago, St. Louis, Miami, Vancouver, among others), and U.S. Festivals in Aspen, Santa Fe, and Lake George. International festival and recital appearances include Canada, Spoleto (Italy), Austria (Vienna, Salzburg, & Eisenstadt), Hungary, Scotland, Mexico City. Listed in “Who’s Who in America” and “Who’s who in Entertainment”, his repertoire includes more than 70 opera roles and over 30 orchestral, oratorio and chamber works.  He has premiered numerous 20th century operas and song cycles by noted composers Samuel Barber, Benjamin Britten, and Thomas PasatieriWhile teaching at the University of Illinois, he remained an active performer appearing with the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Carnegie Hall, Chicago Opera Theatre, Dayton and Michigan Operas, Vancouver Opera. Washington (DC) Opera, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Klassiches Musik Festival in Vienna and Eisenstadt, Austria.

 

ELIZABETH HEUERMANN

Elizabeth Heuermann was appointed General/Artistic Director in June 2011. Since then, she has made it her mission to keep opera vibrant and relevant in this New Millennium not only in the New York area but on a global level. With the NY Lyric, she has produced over 250 performances to sold-out audiences at locations such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, National Opera Center, Symphony Space Theatre on Broadway, and DiMenna Center for the Performing Arts. Under her leadership, she has developed NY Lyric’s Annual National Vocal Competition to award excellence in music and opera. Singers ages 10-35 (four age categories) compete across the country to perform at Carnegie Hall and Symphony Space on Broadway and for thousands of dollars in cash prizes. In addition, she has created the Summer Program, where singers from all over the world participate in performances at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and the National Opera Center. She is currently coordinating with regional opera companies/orchestras, high schools & colleges, and choruses throughout North America, which is the first phase of NY Lyric’s N. American tour. As a performer, her recent Carnegie Hall credits include Gilda (Rigoletto), Lucia (Lucia di Lammermoor), Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), the Title Role in Manon, Juliette (Roméo et Juliette), Musetta (La Bohème) and Adele (Die Fledermaus), Contessa Almaviva (Le Nozze di Figaro). Other performances: Juliette in Roméo et Juliette (NY Arena in Times Square), Title Role in Rusalka (AIMS Festival in Graz, Austria), Title Role in Manon (NYC’s prestigious 92nd Street Y), Lisa in Das Land des Lächelns (AIMS Festival in Graz, Austria). Musetta in La Bohème (Symphony Space on Broadway, Apollo Theatre, Kaliope Opera of Long Island), Gilda in Rigoletto (Austin Lyric Opera, Opera Illinois, Symphony Space), Soloist in St. John’s Passion (St. Paul’s Orchestra), Norina in Don Pasquale (Milwaukee Opera), Gretel in Hansel and Gretel (Opera Illinois), and Contessa Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro (Apollo Theatre).

 

JORGE PARODI

Argentinean conductor, Jorge Parodi has worked at the Teatro Colón (Buenos Aires), Buenos Aires Lírica, Volgograd Opera (Russia), The Banff Centre (Canada), Encuentros Internacionales de Opera (Mexico), Opera Tampa, Connecticut Grand Opera, Lake George Opera Festival, Hofstra University and New York University. He has collaborated with such artists as Sherrill Milnes, Tito Capobianco, Gerald Finley, Isabel Leonard, and Rufus Wainwright; and he has assisted conductors of the caliber of Julius Rudel and Lorin Maazel. Jorge Parodi is the Music Director of the Senior Opera Theater at the Manhattan School of Music, where he has conducted its productions to critical acclaim; and he is also the Artistic Director of Opera Hispánica. Reviewed as having “the most expressive conducting hands since Stokowski’s,” (New York Daily News), he has performed with such artists as Eglise Gutiérrez and Metropolitan Opera star, Isabel Leonard at the at the inaugural Opera Hispánica Festival. Mr. Parodi has been a faculty member at The Juilliard School for over a decade and is Vocal Coach of the premier Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division. He spends his summers as a faculty member of Artescenica (Mexico), and of VOICExperience, a vocal workshop under the direction of Sherrill Milnes. He has offered master classes at the Teatro Colón, Manhattan School of Music (as co-teacher with opera legend Martina Arroyo), and the Escuela Superior de Canto de Madrid.

 

PETER RANDSMAN

Peter Randsman has managed artists that include: Deborah Voigt, Allan Glassman, Brian Montgomery, Stephen Powell, Delores Ziegler, David Malis, Cheryl Parrish. Native of Long Island, New York.  He has performed Billy Bigelow (Carousel), Tommy (Brigadoon), Dr. Einstein (Arsenic and Old Lace), Clifford Bradshaw (Cabaret), Charley (Charley’s Aunt), Dick (Dames at Sea) and Gabey (On the Town). He was chosen as the “Burger King boy” in a series of commercials, which would air on national television for several years, and was featured as Minolta’s “Camera Boy” in dozens of national magazines.  He spent several days filming Brighton Beach with Ruth Gordon and Lee Strassburg. He participated in several national tours performing both operetta and Gilbert & Sullivan. Appearing on Broadway, he both sang and danced LizaLiza with film legend, Ruby Keeler at a tribute to the Ziegfeld Follies.  Shortly after, he joined the New York City Opera chorus, and for the next three years appeared in many Lincoln Center productions and several national tours.  He sang in a LIVE FROM LINCOLN CENTER telecast in scenes from Mefistofele with Samuel Ramey, conducted by Julius Rudel, and the great Triumphal Scene from Verdi’s Aida under the direction of Anton Guadagno.   After nearly fifteen years as a professional singer /actor, he has fulfilled two life-long dreams by being appointed artistic director of an opera company (National Grand Opera, at The Tillis Center for the Performing Arts at C.W. Post Campus in Long Island) and by starting his own company, Randsman Artists Management. 

 

ELAINE RINALDI

Artistic Director of Orchestra Miami, Elaine Rinaldi is fast making her mark among the ranks of rising young American conductors.  Lawrence A. Johnson of The Miami Herald writes, “the orchestra’s playing was consistently energized, polished and responsive…showing some of the fire and excitement of the [former Florida] Philharmonic on its best nights”. Critic Lawrence Budmen wrote, “Rinaldi showed real affinity for Gershwin’s bluesy brand of Americana, and drew supple playing from the hard-working orchestra…” With Orchestra Miami, she has collaborated with international opera stars such as Mark Rucker, Eglise Gutierrez, Eduardo Villa, Indra Thomas, and Gregory Schmidt.  She has conducted La Traviata with Teatro Lirico Europa, Schumann’s 4th Symphony and Brahms’ Symphony No. 1 with Vidin Philharmonia (Bulgaria).  In addition, she has conducted La Perichole, Rigoletto, L’elisir d’amore & Street Scene with DiCapo Opera in NYC, L’elisir d’amore and Die Fledermaus with the National Lyric Opera Tour, L’elisir d’amore and Dido & Aeneas with the Albany Symphony, as well as Amahl & the Night Visitors with Opera Company of Brooklyn.  Additional companies include: Florida Grand Opera, Sarasota Opera, Opera Birmingham, Utah Opera Festival, Palm Beach Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, Opera Festival of New Jersey, and Valley Lyric Opera. Former music staff of University of Miami.

 

MICHAEL SHEETZ

Pianist/Conductor, Michael Sheetz serves as Music Associate at the Church of St. Ignatius Loyola, where he conducts the choirs for the Sacred Music in a Sacred Space concert series and for its liturgical music program. A recording of his playing with the St. Ignatius Children’s Choirs was regarded as “consistently excellent” by the American Record Guide Review. He is the Assistant Conductor of the Fairfield County Chorale, and Assistant Music Director of Musica Sacra, and through this organization he assists Music Director Kent Tritle in performances at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, and the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. He has collaborated with the New York Philharmonic, Orchestra of St. Luke’s and New York City Ballet, and released a recording on the AMR label, “Eternal Reflections: The Choral Music of Robert Paterson.” He made his Musica Sacra conducting debut in 2014 at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine with Judith Lang Zaimont’s Parable: A Tale of Abram and Isaac. He is on the faculty of the Berkshire Choral Festival, the United Nations International School, and La Lingua della Lirica in Novafeltria, Italy. He has served as a Teaching Fellow at The Juilliard School and as a vocal coach and accompanist at Manhattan School of Music, as well as Assistant Choral Director at the New York Philharmonic, Lincoln Center Festival, and Weill Music Institute. He has performed live broadcasts on WQXR and Vermont Public Radio, and in concert at Weill Hall, Alice Tully Hall, and The Kennedy Center. He has worked with the Oratorio Society of New York, Voices of Ascension, New York Choral Consortium, Aspen Opera Theatre Center, Middlebury Opera, and the College Light Opera Company.

 

CÉSAR ULLOA

César Ulloa has performed with the Metropolitan Opera, NY City Opera, Washington Opera, Canadian Opera, L’Opéra de Monte-Carlo, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Boston Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony and Cleveland Symphony, among numerous others. An international recognized teacher whose students perform regularly at the major operatic and concert stages of the world, Mr. Ulloa presently the Chair of the Voice Department at San Francisco Conservatory of Music and also holds the position of master teacher at the renowned Adler and Merola opera programs of the San Francisco Opera.   In 2014, he was awarded the Sarlo Family Foundation Award for Excellence in Teaching at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, an award that has never been given to any voice teacher in the history of the conservatory.   He has been on the voice faculty at the University of Montreal, as visiting professor of voice, Palm Beach Atlantic University, New World School of the Arts, as well as holding the position for several years as master teacher at several young artist programs including, Los Angeles Opera, Montreal Opera, Palm Beach Opera and IVAI/International Vocal Arts Institute for ten years.  He has also been on the teaching staff for the eighteen years at SIVAM, Mexico’s most prominent young artist program.  His students appear in virtually every major young artist program including, Merola, Santa Fe, Glimmerglass, Music Academy of the West, Aspen Music Festival, Ravinia, Minnesota, Domingo-Thornton, MET Lindemann, Wolftrap and Domigo-Cafritz, among others.  His students have been First Prize winners in numerous competitions including Operalia, Monseratt Caballé, Loren Zachary, George London, Iturbi, Veronica Dunne, Richard Tucker and most recently finalist in the 2013 Cardiff Singer of the World, and most recently two of his students were winners in the 2014 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.

 

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REGIONAL FINALISTS/NATIONAL SEMI-FINALISTS

(in alphabetical order)

 

Junior High division
Archbold, Sheridan (Midwestern)
Brand, Liraz (Northern)
Chisham, Caitlin (Midwestern)
Fletcher, Abby (Southern)
Hennessey, Erin (Northern)
Hoffman, Grace (Northern)
Korman, Daisy (Northern)
Malley, Celilia (Southern)
Minar, Nicole (Northern)
Perl, Alexandra (Northern)
Schuett, Erich (Northern)
Sivieri, Sara (Northern)
Sturgeon, Kimi (Northern)
Swickle, Amanda (Northern)
Takacs, Gabrielle (Northern)
Tierney, Kirsten (Northern)
Yochim, Olivia (Western)
Zerilli, Sara (Northern)
**Junior High National Finalists & 1st, 2nd, & 3rd Place winners 
will be announced later in the week.
High School Division 
Bennett, Allyson (Northern)
Berkman, Golda (Western)
Bigelow, Kerrigan (Northern)
Briffault, Jonathan (Northern)
Churchill, Annika (Midwestern)
Cooney, Carlyle (Northern)
Crevani, Amalia (Northern)
Desbiens, William (Northern)
Feder, Jaime (Northern)
Fernandez, Laura (Southern)
Fleiss, Sarah (Northern)
Harnum, Abigayle (Northern)
Hryniszak, Kristy (Northern)
Kraack, Lillian (Southern)
Li, Matthew (Northern)
Mantilla, Adriana (Southern)
Mastrangelo, Morgan (Northern)
Mayo, Isabella (Northern)
Mellman, Rachel (Western)
Oceguera, Ana (Southern)
Orengo, Melinda (Northern)
Pimentel, Shereen (Northern)
Robinson, Catherine (Northern)
Rogers, Emma (Northern)
Scott, Isabelle (Southern)
Smith, Kayla (Northern)
Wenzelberg, Benjamin (Northern)
Yuhas, Audrey (Northern)
Zhang, Ruobing (Northern)

**High School National Finalists & 1st, 2nd, & 3rd Place winners 
will be announced later in the week.

Division I
Aguirre, Carolyn (Northern)
Almonte, Mario (Southern)
Anthony, Meghan (Northern)
Balter, Jamie (Southern)
Bonetti, Melisa (Midwestern)
Boyd, Alex (Northern)
Brabec, Maureen (Northern)
Contreras, Josaphat (Midwestern)
Corrales, Caroline (Midwestern) 
Darmahkasih, Fidelia (Midwestern)
Ferrara, Teresa (Northern)
Hamington, Rosemary (Midwestern)
Hendren, Lieve (Northern)
Hoard, Elizabeth (Midwestern)
Jordheim, Alisa (Northern)
Kim, Min Jee (Northern)
Kucine, Sydney (Western)
Marsh, Amber (Western)
Merz, Callie (Northern)
Mion, Allison (Northern)
Moeller, Maria (Northern)
Moscoso, Gabriella (Northern)
Rathbun, Lauren (Northern)
Rice, Mary (Northern)
Rossiter, Katherine (Northern)
Scully, Samantha (Northern)
Shin, Hyun (Northern)
Simmons, Marissa (Northern)
Sorenson, Emma (Northern)
Steinberg, Nicole (Southern)
Yeung, Paulina (Midwestern)
Division II
Barrera, Megan (Northern)
Belonni, Jorge-Philippe (Midwestern)
Browning, Christine (Northern)
Byerly, Daniel (Northern)
Caldwell, Anna (Northern)
Capsuto, Christine (Western)
Colvin, Cristin (Northern)
Davis, Danielle (Midwestern)
Duika, Jason (Southern)
Flack, Holly (Northern)
Gartner, Magda (Northern)
Gill, Annie (Midwestern)
Gunther, Thomas (Midwestern)
Hayford, Kofi (Northern)
Herman, Allyson (Northern)
Jerinic, Alexandra (Western)
Jordheim, Alisa (Northern)
Kang, Sujin (Northern)
Kim, Chae Seon (Northern)
Kim, Jungyong (Northern)
Knott, Sarah (Northern)
Moulton, Sarah (Northern)
Neill, Carley (Western)
Noel, Jennifer (Northern)
Ortega, Gerard (Southern)
Patrick, Paige (Western)
Schmid, Samantha (Northern)
Smeltzer, Rebekah (Southern)
Tetelman, Jonathan (Northern)
Williams, Erica (Southern)
Yinji, Shim (Midwestern)
Zhu, Chunlin (Northern)

 

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2015 National Vocal Competition

 

 

2015 National Vocal Competition  

Winners

 

JUNIOR HIGH DIVISION
Aliya Douglas "1st Place"
Sehjin Jo "2nd Place"
Mia Procavvino "3rd Place"
Liraz Brand "1st Alternate"
Sara Zerilli "2nd Alternate"

 

 

High School Division 
Merissa Beddows "1st Place"
Sarah Parker "2nd Place"
Gwyneth Campell "3rd Place"
Dakota Torres "1st Alternate"
Amelia Crevani "2nd Alternate"

 

 

Division I
Anna Marie Stanley "1st Place"
Beibei Guan "2nd Place"
Zheng Huan Yu "3rd Place"

 

 

Division II
Matthew Brown "1st Place"
Karolina Pilou "2nd Place"
Yu Jin Kim "3rd Place"

 

 

Top

 

 

REGIONAL FINALISTS/NATIONAL SEMI-FINALISTS

(in alphabetical order)

 

 

Junior High division
Liraz Brand (Northern)
Laura Bretan (Midwest)
Aliya Douglas (Northern)
Sehjin Jo (Northern)
Isabella Miller (Northern)
Mia Procavvino (Northern)
Sara Zerilli (Northern)
High School Division 
Merissa Beddows (Northern)
Gwyneth Campell (Northern)
Amelia Crevani (Northern)
Ana Del Valle (Northern)
Samantha Dhanraj (Northern)
Abigail Gunther (Northern)
Christina Hong (Midwest)
Alexandra Lucas (Midwest)
Emme Malcomson (Midwest)
Caitlin McGrail (Northern)
Sarah Parker (Northern)
Nivedita Ravi (Northern)
Dakota Torres (Northern)
Jiyoon Yooun (Northern)
Division I
Leslie Bickle (Northern)
Brittany Catalano (Northern)
Ana Collado (Southern)
David Davani (Northern)
Guillermo Delgado (Midwest)
Nathalie Eccleston (Northern)
Dorothy Gal (Northern)
Elena Galvan (Northern)
Beibei Guan (Northern)
Morgan Harrington (Western)
Ericka Hopkins (Midwest)
Regina Krawiec (Northern)
Clara Lisle (Northern)
Nadia Oselsky (Midwest)
Georgia Rehbock (Northern)
Zaray Rodriguez (Southern)
Melinda Root (Northern)
Christopher Rorie (Northern)
Mark Saunders (Midwest)
Brooklyn Snow (Midwest)
Anna Marie Stanley (Northern)
Kristin Starkey (Northern)
Lauren Walker (Western)
Bronwyn White (Northern)
Jennifer Wu (Western)
Zheng Huan Yu (Midwest)
Division II
Nathalie Avila (Southern)
Barbara Baldwin (Northern)
Matthew Brown (Midwest)
Dan Byerly (Northern)
Carolina Castells (Northern)
Teresa Castillo (Northern)
Andre Chiang (Northern)
Natalie Cummings (Northern)
Ashley Curling (Northern)
Danielle Davis (Western)
Diana Kalinowski (Northern)
Rebecca Kidnie (Western)
Taesung Kim (Northern)
You Jin Kim (Midwest)
Yu Jin Kim (Western)
Jaime Korkos (Northern)
Euigun Lee (Midwest)
Chunfeng Li (Northern)
Antoni Mendezona (Northern)
Wesley Morgan (Northern)
Luisa Munster (Northern)
Stephanie Newman (Southern)
Shinyoung Oh (Western)
Gerard Ortega (Southern)
Yunnie Park (Northern)
Karolina Pilou (Northern)
Raquel Suarez (Northern)
Chrissy Suits (Southern)
Shelby VanNordstrand (Northern)

 

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2014 National Vocal Competition

Finals

 

JUNIOR HIGH DIVISION

 

Perform at Symphony Space on Broadway

Saturday, May 10, 2014 at 5:30PM

 

HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION  

 

Perform at Symphony Space on Broadway

Saturday, May 10, 2014 at 5:30PM

 

DIVISION I

  1st Prize:  $1,000.00, 2nd Prize: $500.00, 3rd Prize:  $250.00

Saturday, May 10, 2014 at 5:30PM

Symphony Space on Broadway

 

DIVISION II

1st Prize:  $2,000.00, 2nd Prize: $1,000.00, 3rd Prize:  $500.00  

Saturday, May 3, 2014 at 8:00PM

CARNEGIE HALL

Weill Recital Hall

 

 

2014 National Vocal Competition  

Winners

 

 

 

JUNIOR HIGH DIVISION

Biana Pinchuk "1st Place"
Ethan Yan "2nd Place"
Jasmine Galante "3rd Place"

 

HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION

Hansini Bhasker "1st Place"
Melissa Lubars "2nd Place"
Caitlin McGrail "3rd Place"

 

 

DIVISION I

Andres Lasaga "1st Place"
Mia Rojas "2nd Place"
Alexander Charles Boyd "3rd Place"

 

 

DIVISION II

Meghan Picerno "1st Place"
Mileeyae Kwon "2nd Place"
Merideth Marano "3rd Place"

 

Top

 

National Finalists  

(in alphabetical order)

 

JUNIOR HIGH DIVISION

Laura Bretan
Jasmine Galante
Bianca Pinchuk
Ethan Yan

 

HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION

Hansini Bhasker
Monica Gonzalez
Monica Lockwood
Melissa Lubars
Caitlyn McGrail
Caroline Zhao
Jacqueline Urdang

 

DIVISION I

Margaret Blackburn
Alex Boyd
Theodora Cottarel
Leah Hawkins
Nika Kolkhidashvili
Andres Lasaga
Hyeon Cheol Pak
Mia Rojas
1st Alternate: Hyun Jin Ahn
2nd Alternate: Jason Zacher

 

DIVISION II

Thaddaeus Bourne
Mary Claire Curran
Mileeyae Kwon
Claudia Anna Lantin
Merideth Marano
Lauren Michelle
Winnie Nieh
Meghan Picerno
1st Alternate: Lee Heejung
2nd Alternate: Carami Hillaire

 

NATIONAL FINALIST JUDGES (in alphabetical order)  

 

RICHARD CORDOVA

Richard Cordova made his professional debut conducting the Scandinavian Premiere of Bernstein's Candide in Bergen, Norway, and has subsequently conducted productions for Oper der Stadt Bonn, Opera North (New Hampshire), Sarasota Opera, Opera Company of Boston, Long Beach Opera, Berkshire Opera, Florida Grand Opera and Baltimore Opera.  As an accompanist and coach he has collaborated with such artists as Martina Arroyo, Frederica von Stade, Renato Bruson, Florence Quivar and Julia Migenes, and has worked in this capacity for such organizations as the Istanbul Opera, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Tulsa Opera, New Orleans Opera, New York City Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Dallas Opera, Chautauqua Opera, the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria, and Des Moines Metro Opera. Mr. Cordova has also been associated with the opera programs of a number of educational institutions, including the Manhattan School of Music, the Mannes College of Music and Westminster Choir College.  For the past twenty years he has toured internationally with various productions of Gershwin's Porgy and Bess, conducting the work on four continents.  He continues a twelve year association with the Sarasota Opera, having held various titles with the organization including that of Program and Music Director for the Studio Artists. He was recently appointed Music Director of The Little Opera Theatre of New York, for whom he conducted the New York stage premiere of Mozart's early opera seria, Mitridate, re di Ponto in the spring of 2011, and the Gustav Holst double bill of The Wandering Scholar and Savitri, in the spring of 2012.

 

ANDREA DELGIUDICE

Andrea DelGiudice has enjoyed a full career in Europe and the United States as a leading international soprano. Theaters include the Scottish National Opera, Munich State Opera, Liege Opera, Bonn Opera, Edmonton Opera, Austin Lyric Opera, DiCapo Opera Theater and Arizona Opera. Her roles include Cio-Cio San (Madama Butterfly), Nedda (Pagliacci), Manon (Manon Lescaut), Giorgetta (Il Tabarro), Mimi (La Bohème), Desdemona (Otello), Giulietta (Tales of Hoffmann), alongside renowned artists Johan Botha, Sherrill Milnes, Greer Grimsley, Rene Kollo, Alexei Steblianko, Vladimir Atlantov and Nicola Martinucci. Ms. DelGiudice debuted at Boston’s Jordan Hall, and WGBH's “Morning Classics” with Richard Strauss’ Four Last Songs, and a recording of Shema by Simon Sargon.

 

 

ZEHAVA GAL

Israeli born-American based mezzo-soprano, Zehava Gal studied voice at the Juilliard School of Music and Piano at the Rubin Academy in Jerusalem. Ms. Gal won prestigious awards such as the Paris and Munich International Voice Competition, and Young Concert Artists in NY. Ms. Gal has sung at top opera houses and festivals all over the world, such as La Scala, Paris, Covent Garden, Vienna, Glyndebourne, Santa Fe, & Pesaro. She has performed with conductors such as Von Karajan, Abbado, Mehta, Barenboim with major orchestras such as New York, Israel & Berlin philharmonic, Chicago Symphony. Ms. Gal has appeared in the title role of Carmen in Peter Brook’s Theatre and Film production of La Tragédie de Carmen. Ms. Gal has recorded for major record labels including RCA, CBS, Philips and EMI. Since 1994, Ms. Gal holds a teaching position at the Westminster Choir College, Princeton, N.J., and a private studio in NYC. As an extremely well received master teacher, she has been invited to give Master Classes and Seminars at top conservatories and voice organizations around the world. 

 

JORGE PARODI

Reviewed as having “the most expressive conducting hands since Stokowski’s,” (New York Daily News) Argentinean conductor Jorge Parodi has worked at the Teatro Colón, The Banff Centre, Buenos Aires Lírica, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Lake George Opera Festival, Opera Tampa, and the Castleton Festival, where he was assistant conductor to Maestro Lorin Maazel. Maestro Jorge Parodi is the Music Director of the Senior Opera Theater at the Manhattan School of Music, where he has conducted its productions to critical acclaim. He is also Artistic Director if Opera Hispánica. Maestro Parodi is a faculty member at The Juilliard School, MSM Summer Voice Festival, NYU and V.O.I.C.Experience.  He has been a faculty member of the International Vocal Arts Institute (Israel, Japan and China) and SIVAM (Mexico).

 

PETER RANDSMAN

Peter Randsman has managed artists that include: Deborah Voigt, Allan Glassman, Brian Montgomery, Stephen Powell, Delores Ziegler, David Malis, Cheryl Parrish. Native of Long Island, New York.  He has performed Billy Bigelow (Carousel), Tommy (Brigadoon), Dr. Einstein (Arsenic and Old Lace), Clifford Bradshaw (Cabaret), Charley (Charley’s Aunt), Dick (Dames at Sea) and Gabey (On the Town). He was chosen as the “Burger King boy” in a series of commercials, which would air on national television for several years, and was featured as Minolta’s “Camera Boy” in dozens of national magazines.  He spent several days filming Brighton Beach with Ruth Gordon and Lee Strassburg. He participated in several national tours performing both operetta and Gilbert & Sullivan. Appearing on Broadway, he both sang and danced LizaLiza with film legend, Ruby Keeler at a tribute to the Ziegfeld Follies.  Shortly after, he joined the New York City Opera chorus, and for the next three years appeared in many Lincoln Center productions and several national tours.  He sang in a LIVE FROM LINCOLN CENTER telecast in scenes from Mefistofele with Samuel Ramey, conducted by Julius Rudel, and the great Triumphal Scene from Verdi’s Aida under the direction of Anton Guadagno.   After nearly fifteen years as a professional singer /actor, he has fulfilled two life-long dreams by working 1 season (a decade ago) as artistic director of an opera company (National Grand Opera, at The Tillis Center for the Performing Arts at C.W. Post Campus in Long Island) and by starting his own company, Randsman Artists Management.  He is responsible for over 50 thriving international opera careers.

 

NATIONAL FINALISTS (in alphabetical order)

 

HYUNJUN JIN AHN (Division I)

Hyunjun Jin Ahn was born in South Korea. He started studying singing when he was a senior in high school. Then he came to America after graduating high school for better music education and he is now a junior at Kean University. He is trying to challenge and expand my ability in singing by having experiences as a tenor soloist in choir. He is also planning on getting into a graduate school afterwards. The reason he entered into NY LYRIC 2014 COMPETITION was to take an opportunity to compete with others and objectively see where he is as a singer.

 

HANSINI BHASKER (High School)

Hansini Bhasker, a junior at Greenwich High School (GHS), Greenwich, CT, is very interested in pursuing an operatic career.  She possesses a lyric soprano voice and since 2011, has been a student of Soprano, Pamela Kuhn, who has presented her in numerous solo recitals. Ms. Bhasker is also a talented flautist.  She has represented her schools, in band and chorus, at various competitions and performances.  She has attended summer programs at Interlochen and Tanglewood.

 

MARGARET BLACKBURN (Division I)

Margaret Blackburn, a native of Plainfield, IL, is currently a sophomore in Vocal Performance at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. She studies under Professor Dawn Harris. She has been in several productions at the University of Illinois, including My Fair Lady, Orpheus in the Underworld, and as the premiere role of the Chambermaid in Joseph Turrin’s Love Games. She will be attending Scuola Italia’s Lyric Program for Young Opera Singers this summer in Italy. She is a recipient of the IOTE Encouragement Award.

 

ALEXANDER CHARLES BOYD (Division I)

Alexander Charles Boyd is a baritone from Purcellville, Virginia. He was an Emerging Artist in Opera New Jersey's 2012 season, and an Apprentice Artist at Sarasota Opera in the fall of 2012. He took second place in the New York Lyric Opera Theater's 2012 Vocal Competition, and was invited to sing at Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall as a finalist in the 2012 Concert Festival Concerto Competition. Currently residing in New York City, he studies with Mark Oswald. Upcoming engagements include Sharpless in Madama Butterfly with Amore Opera, the Harlequin in Ariadne auf Naxos with New York Opera Forum, and Ford in Falstaff with Utopia Opera.

 

THADDAEUS BOURNE (Division II)

Thaddaeus Bourne performs this season in the title role of Le nozze di Figaro with FAVA in Salzburg, El Dancaïro in Carmen with Long Island Opera, Junius in Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia with Hartford Opera Theatre, Reverend John Hale in The Crucible with UConn Opera, and Papageno in Die Zauberflöte with New York Lyric before returning to Salzburg with FAVA as Don Giovanni.  Previous performances include appearances with La Musica Lirica in Italy, Connecticut Lyric Opera, Opera del West, Greater Worcester Opera, and Simsbury Light Opera.

 

THEODORA COTTAREL (Division I)

Théodora Cottarel is a young Franco-American lyric soprano. Full roles include: Pamina from the Magic Flute, Suor Genovieffa from Suor Angelica, Maria in the world premiere of Yerma by Edward Poll, Donatella, in the US premiere of Nina by Paisiello, Shadow Jo, in the European premiere of Adamo’s Little Women, and Polly in Austin's Beggars Opera.  Théodora prepared the role of Despina from Così fan tutte with Martina Arroyo's Prelude to Performance. Ms. Cottarel holds her Bachelors of Music in Vocal Performance from the Manhattan School of Music. Théodora will sing Pamina for the Tuscia Operafestival in Viterbo, Italy and a give a recital in Houston, Texas.

 

MARY CLAIRE CURRAN (Division II)

Mary Claire Curran, soprano, is a second year Master student at the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music. Last year she performed the roles of Erste Dame in “Die Zauberflote” as well as Janice in the world premiere of Charles Mason’s opera “Entanglements”. Also in the spring of 2013, Ms. Curran won Third Place in the New York Lyric Opera’s National Voice Competition at Symphony Space, New York City. Recently, she was awarded the “Encoragement Award” from the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Competition (Florida District).

 

JASMINE GALANTE (Junior High)

Jasmine Galante is currently an 8th grader living in New York. She has loved singing since she was very young; however she began taking voice lessons about one year ago. She received third place in her first voice competition, Concert Festival International Competition. She was also selected twice to go to All County NYSSMA Music Festival. She was selected to be in the Chorale, an audition chorus in her school. This competition is her second voice competition.

 

 

LEAH HAWKINS (Division I)

Leah Hawkins, Mezzo-Soprano, is a 1st year MM candidate in the Opera Program at Yale School of Music. Her roles include Zita in Gianni Schicchi, Maria in Porgy and Bess, Meg Page in Falstaff, Gertrude in Hansel and Gretel, La Voix in Les contes d’Hoffmann, and Tisbe in La Cenerentola. She has participated in master classes with Alan Held, Laquita Mitchell, Marquita Lister, Cori Ellison, Denyce Graves, and Angela Brown. She has participated in The Martina Arroyo Foundation’s Prelude to Performance Program, Houston Grand Opera’s Young Artist Vocal Academy, and this summer she will join Central City Opera as a Studio Artist. She received her BA in Music from Morgan State University.

 

NIKA KOLKHIDASHVILI (Division I)

Nika Kolkhidashvili has a unique range and beauty of his voice as well as his outstanding acting ability. Since Nick was a child, he performed in many charities. One of which took place in Hollywood. He sang with a group called the M-Generation, special guests at the Telethon. Nick went to the Manhattan School of Music, Pre-College Division, with a Scholarship awarded. His voice teacher at The Manhattan School of Music was Maitland Peters. Nick was also awarded a scholarship to the Interlochen Art Academy. Nick is studying with Beth Roberts. He has performed in Merkin Concert Hall back in 2013 and recently performed at Carnegie Hall in 2014. Currently Nick studies professionally at Manhattan School of Music.

 

MELISSA LUBARS (High School)

Melissa Lubars has performed Mabel (Pirates of Penzance), Gabby/Bobbi (City of Angels), Molly (You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown), Peaseblossom (A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Wife/Dancer (The King & I) at the Eastern High School Theatre.   In addition, she has performed in Madama Butterfly and La Sonnambula with Delaware Valley Opera Company. She is currently a Junior in High School in Voorhees, New Jersey.

 

 

MERIDETH MARANO (Division II)

Merideth Marano is a soprano currently living in the DC area. Her performing career spans from oratorio and concert performances to leading roles in opera. Recent roles include Roselinde (Strauss) in Washington DC, Suor Angelica (Puccini) in Rome, Italy; and Laetitia (Menotti) in South Carolina. She was the featured soprano soloist in Handel’s Messiah and Vivaldi’s Gloria, and has performed in several countries including Germany, Czech Republic, Jordan, the United States and Italy. Merideth gained international acclaim when she was chosen to be a winner in an International Vocal Competition in the Czech Republic.

 

CAITLIN MCGRAIL (High School)

Caitlin McGrail, age 15, is a tenth grade honors student at Noble and Greenough School in Dedham, MA. She took first place in her division at the NATS Boston 2013 Song and Aria Competition.  She has performed with the Tuscia Opera Festival in Viterbo, Italy for three summers; most recently as Barbarina (Le Nozze di Figaro). She studies with Molly Jo Rivelli in Boston and Andrea DelGiudice in New York.

 

 

 

LAUREN MICHELLE (Division II)

A "luminous-voiced soprano", Los Angeles native Lauren Michelle is a graduate of The Juilliard School and UCLA. Previous credits include her debut as Nella in Gianni Schicchi at the Aspen Music Festival, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro for The Juilliard School and Opera UCLA , her Canadian debut as Helena in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Banff and her debut as Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi at Teatro Romano di Fiesole. She was a 2014 Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and a Finalist of the 2014 Kurt Weill Competition among other awards. This summer she debuts Musetta in La Bohème in Tel Aviv.

 

WINNIE NIEH (Division II)

Winnie Nieh, soprano, made her European solo debut with legendary Maestro Helmuth Rilling, and was invited by the Metropolitan Opera Guild to perform at Dawn Upshaw’s masterclass. A versatile artist with perfect pitch, “fantastic facility” and “clarity of tone”, she received Associate of Trinity College London diplomas in voice, piano and violin, and her B.A. with a French language citation from Harvard. She is a Resident Artist with Opera Company of Brooklyn. Awards: First Place in 2012 St. Andrews Arts Council International Aria Competition, Third Place & Audience Favorite in 2013 Madison Early Music Festival’s Handel Aria Competition.

 

BIANA PINCHUK (Junior High)

2011 Finalist for Annie on Broadway, Biana Pinchuk has performed in a Florida tour titled “River of Musical Dreams”, was a soloist with the South Florida Youth Symphony and Hallandale Symphonic Pops Orchestra, and Tickerbell (Peterpan) in the Junior Orange Bowl Parade.  She was featured on ABC Miami, NBC 6 Miami, and appeared on News 12 NJ.  Award: 2011 Winner: Talent Quest Vocal Fort Lauderdale.  She is currently in 7th grade in Sunny Isles Beach, Florida.

 

MIA ROJAS (Division I)

Mia Rojas (Soprano), is a current Masters Student at the University of Miami studying with Dr. Esther Jane Hardenbergh. She received her Bachelors of Music at George Mason University. Ms. Rojas started singing at the age of 9 with the World Children’s Choir and has been performing since. She has had the honor of performing in Italy, Korea and the Washington D.C. area in the past few years. This summer she will be attending the Salzburg Music Festival in Austria.

 

ETHAN YAN (Junior High)

Ethan Yan lives in Mountain View, California, and is a sixth grader at Nueva School. He made his solo opera debut with the Monterey Symphony in Amahl and the Night Visitors. He sang at the Junior Bach Festival, and was the soloist in Chichester Psalms with the Marin Symphony, and Festival Te Deum with St. Andrew’s Choir, performed in the children’s chorus in San Francisco Opera’s Tosca and Mefistofele, and San Francisco Symphony’s Deck-The-Hall concerts.  

 

 

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REGIONAL FINALISTS/NATIONAL SEMI-FINALISTS

(in alphabetical order)

 

JUNIOR HIGH DIVISION
Laura Bretan
Jasmine Galante
Beluca Harivel
Bianca Pinchuk
Ethan Yan
HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION
Hansini Bhasker
Chloe DeCleene
Monica Gonzalez
Grace Kim
Sarah King
Monica Lockwood
Melissa Lubars
Caitlyn McGrail
Caroline Zhao
Jacqueline Urdang
DIVISION I
Hyonjun Ahn
Margaret Blackburn
Alex Boyd
Susan Bywaters
Theodora Cottarel
Brittany Cusack
Samantha Dwyer
Dominique Fisher
Caleb Forlong
Leah Hawkins
Nika Kolkhidashvili
Andres Lasaga
Jillian Marini
Justin Morrison
Hyeon Cheol Pak
Mia Rojas
Amy Savino
Lara Alexandra Semetko
Erika Vasallo
Bronwyn White
Jason Zacher
DIVISION II
Jungho Bae
Ashley Bell
Thaddaeus Bourne
Kelli Butler
Marie Claire Curran
Danielle Davis
Andra Erbar
Valdis Gregory
Lee Heejung
Lorraine Helvick
Carami Hilaire
Samantha Jeffreys
John Kaneklides
Chae Seon Kim
Mileeyae Kwon
Claudia Anna Lankin
Merideth Marano
Margaret Meyer
Lauren Michelle
Barbee Monk
Li Nan
Winnie Nieh
Meghan Picerno
Julia Snowden
Alexandra Turchenhova
Jennifer Zamorano
Xiaoyi Zha

 

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2013 National Vocal Competition

Winners

 

 

Division I
From Right to Left
Rachel Policar "1st Place"
Erika Baikoff "2nd Place"
Mary Claire Curran "3rd Place"

   

 

 

Division II
From Right to Left
Kathryn Leemhuis "1st Place"
Melinda Whittington "2nd Place"
Jonathan Hare "3rd Place"

 

 

 

PRE-COLLEGE DIVISION
From Left to Right
Samantha Dwyer "1st Place"
Samantha Park "2nd Place"
Galen Otten "3rd Place"

 

 

National Finals

Round III

 

 

 

(In alphabetical order)

PRE-COLLEGE NATIONAL FINALISTS

Hansini Bhasker
Jordan Costa
Samantha Dwyer
Matthew Laude
Melissa Lubars
Galen Otten
Nicholas Parrillo
Samantha Park
Chelsea Schwartz
Caroline Zhao

DIVISION I NATIONAL FINALISTS

Erika Baikoff
Mary Claire Curran
Shana Grossman
Joyce Jin
Nini Marchese
Ema Mitrović
Erin Mor
Rachel Policar
Lauren Rosas
Erin Schwab

DIVISION II NATIONAL FINALISTS

Lacey Jo Benter
Halley Gilbert
Liana Brooke Guberman
Jonathan Hare
Joel Herold
Kathryn Leemhuis
Alexandra Loutsion
Katherine Tombaugh
Laura Virella
Melinda Whittington

 

 

JUDGES FOR REGIONAL DIVISIONS (in alphabetical order)

 

ANDREA DELGIUDICE

“A voice of astonishing power and beauty.”Newcastle Journal, England. Andrea DelGiudice, has enjoyed a full career in Europe and the United States as a leading international soprano. Venues include the Scottish National Opera, Munich State Opera, Liege Opera, Opera Bonn, Edmonton Opera, Austin Lyric Opera, DiCapo Opera Theater and Arizona Opera. Her verismo roles include the Puccini and Verdi heroines alongside renowned artists such as Placido Domingo, Johan Botha, Sherill Milnes, Alexei Steblianko, and Nicola Martinucci. She has been featured as a concert soloist at Boston’s Jordan Hall with some of Boston’s foremost instrumental soloists, Brockton Symphony Orchestra and WGBH's “Morning Classics” in Richard Strauss’ Four Last Songs and original works including Shema by composer Simon Sargon. Her diverse talents led to numerous international recording contracts in over 200 major films and animated features in Rome, Italy with Walt Disney/ Buena Vista, RAI television and Sundance Films. Ms. DelGiudice currently serves as Artistic Development Director at Dicapo Opera Theater for the Resident Artist program in New York City; Artistic Advisor and Voice Faculty at the Tuscia Opera Festival in Viterbo Italy, and Voice Faculty at the Neighborhood Playhouse of the Theater in New York City.

 

PETER RANDSMAN

President of Randsman Artist Management, Peter Randsman is one of the top opera agents in New York, responsible for over 50 thriving international opera careers. Among the many artists he has managed include: Deborah Voigt, Allan Glassman, Brian Montgomery, Stephen Powell, Delores Ziegler, David Malis, and Cheryl Parrish. His performance experience includes: Billy Bigelow (Carousel), Tommy (Brigadoon) , Dr. Einstein (Arsenic and Old Babes in Arms),  Clifford Bradshaw (Cabaret),  Charley  (Charley’s Aunt), Dick (Dames at Sea) and Gabey  (On the Town).  After making his move to New York City, he was cast as the “Burger King boy” in a series of National Television commercials, and was featured as Minolta’s “Camera Boy” in dozens of national magazines.  He spent several days filming Brighton Beach with Ruth Gordon and Lee Strassburg.  Mr. Randsman participated in several national tours performing operetta and Gilbert & Sullivan, and enjoyed a special pleasure singing the song, “He’s in love” while touring Kismet with the Metropolitan Opera star, John Reardon.  Appearing on Broadway, he both sang and danced LizaLiza with film legend, Ruby Keeler at a tribute to the Ziegfeld Follies.  Shortly after, he joined the New York City Opera chorus, and for the next three years appeared in many Lincoln Center productions and several national tours.  He sang in a LIVE FROM LINCOLN CENTER telecast in scenes from Mefistofele with Samuel Ramey, conducted by Julius Rudel, and the great Triumphal Scene from Verdi’s Aida under the direction of Anton Guadagno.

 

JUDGES FOR NATIONAL SEMI-FINALS (in alphabetical order)

 

WILLIAM HICKS

William Hicks, voice coach, conductor, and pianist recently completed a recording of 127 pieces by Victor Herbert to be issued by New World Records, including fifteen piano solos, eleven pieces for cello and piano featuring Jerry Grossman, Principal Cellist of the Metropolitan Opera, and 101 songs with fifteen solo singers.  He also recorded Have a Heart by Jerome Kern with the London Sinfonietta; A Simple Song: Blackbell sings Bernstein and All Through the Night with Harolyn Blackwell; and My Life, My Song with Martha Eggerth Kiepura. He most recently conducted La Boheme and L’elisir d’amore for the Martha Cardona Opera Theatre in Brooklyn, NY. He made his New York conducting debut in 2003 conducting a Mozart/Beethoven concert with members of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra at Alice Tully Hall. From 1995 to 2001, Mr. Hicks served as Assistant Conductor for the Metropolitan Opera, and made his Metropolitan Opera stage debut as the concert pianist Lazinski in Giordano's Fedora. He has also served as Associate Conductor for the Santa Fe Opera, The Canadian Opera Company, the Cincinnati Opera, and the New York City Opera. He prepared the singers, conducted rehearsals, and performed as pianist in Maestro Lorin Maazel's first opera production of Britten's Turn of the Screw at Castleton, Virginia. From 1990 to 1995, he collaborated as repetiteur and pianist for Luciano Pavarotti; he has coached, appeared in recital and on television and in master classes Luciano Pavarotti, Franco Corelli, Renata Scotto, Roberta Peters, Teresa Stratas, Anna Moffo, Regina Resnik, Deborah Voigt and Harolyn Blackwell. In 2009, he prepared Renee Fleming for her recording, Verismo!

 

MATTHEW LOBAUGH

Matthew Lobaugh currently resides in New York City where he works as a freelance accompanist and maintains a private vocal-coaching studio. His operatic credits include Chorusmaster for the Virginia Opera (2010) and Assistant Conductor at Cincinnati Opera (2006-2010). Mr. Lobaugh also completed a 2-year residency at Los Angeles Opera under the auspices of the Domingo-Thorton Young Artist Program. He holds a M.M. in Music from the College-Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati, OH and dual B.M. degrees in both Piano and Vocal Performance from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX. Last month, Mr. Lobaugh conducted our Lincoln Center performance of Die Zauberflöte and our Symphony Space performance earlier in the day.

 

JUDGES FOR NATIONAL FINALS (in alphabetical order)

 

KEN BENSON

Ken Benson joined Columbia Artists Management, Inc. in 1986 and for 25 years headed his own division as Vice President. Recently, he has interviewed Jonas Kaufman for the Wagner Society of New York, has given lectures on The "Ring" cycle for the Metropolitan Opera and has given a pre-concert lecture at the Caramoor Festival.  Well-known and respected for his broad knowledge of repertoire and voices, he represented Harolyn Blackwell, Patrick Carfizzi, Rod Gilfry, Marcello Giordani, Thomas Hampson, Jerry Hadley, Lucas Meachem, Susanne Mentzer, Aprile Millo, and Florence Quivar, among many others.  He is presently the Executive Director of the Marcello Giordani Foundation.  Mr. Benson appears frequently as both host and panelist on the Opera Quiz of the Metropolitan Opera's radio broadcasts, and as a writer, he contributes to Opera News and Classical Singer magazines.  He is regularly invited to give classes at Yale, DePaul, Roosevelt, and Indiana Universities, Manhattan School of Music, Mannes College, Hartt School of Music, and U.C.L.A. as well as for many of the Young Artists Programs of major opera companies throughout the U.S. He also offers individual consultations to singers on auditioning techniques and career direction.  This fall he returns for his third season as in-house consultant to the Master’s students of Vocal Arts, Juilliard.  Mr. Benson adjudicates vocal competitions for the Metropolitan Opera, Opera Index, Palm Beach Opera, Astral Artists, and for various foundations including: The George London Foundation, The Richard Tucker Foundation, Licia Albanese/Puccini Foundation, Gerda Lissner Foundation, Giulio Gari Foundation, The Loren Zachary Foundation, and the Liederkranz Foundation.  Since 1996, he has appeared each season on the Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcasts, on the Opera Quiz, Record Collector’s Roundtables, panel discussions and presenting biographies of great singers.  In 2010-11 he launched the New York City Opera's "Listening Room" series, with recorded material and discussion for each opera in the season's repertoire.

 

ZEHAVA GAL

Israeli born-American based mezzo-soprano, Zehava Gal studied voice at the Juilliard School of Music and Piano at the Rubin Academy in Jerusalem. Ms. Gal won prestigious awards such as the Paris and Munich International Voice Competition, and Young Concert Artists in NY. Gal has sung at top opera houses and festivals all over the world, such as La Scala, Paris, Covent garden, Vienna, Glyndebourne, Santa Fe, & Pesaro. Gal sung with conductors such as Von Karajan, Abbado, Mehta, Barenboim with major orchestras such as New York, Israel & Berlin philharmonic, Chicago Symphony. Ms. Gal has appeared in the title role of Carmen in Peter Brook’s Theatre and Film production of La Tragédie de Carmen. Ms. Gal has recorded for major record labels including RCA, CBS, Philips and EMI. Since 1994, Ms. Gal holds a teaching position at the Westminster Choir College, Princeton, N.J., and a private studio in NYC. As an extremely well received master teacher, She has been invited to give Master Classes and Seminars at top conservatories and voice organizations around the world. 

 

MICHAEL PAUL

Tenor, Michael Paul's professional students perform in both national and international venues, in opera, oratorio, lied, and musical theater.  Mr. Paul's students perform principal roles regularly at venues such as the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, San Francisco Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Washington National Opera, Royal Opera Covent Garden, Deutsch Oper Berlin, Teatro San Carlo in Naples, Teatro alla Scala, Teatro Communale in Florence, the Welsh National Opera, Opera Australia, Baltimore Opera, Dallas Opera, The Florida Grand Opera, and the Santa Fe Opera. On Broadway his students have performed leading roles in The Phantom of the Opera, Flower Drum Song, Jane Eyre, Marie Christine, Miss Saigon, Les Mirables, and the Lion King.  Mr. Paul's students have been prize winners in competitions such as the Metropolitan Opera Competition, the Richard Tucker Awards, the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation Competition, the Loren Zachary Competition,  the New York Oratorio Society Competition, the Opera Index Awards, and The George London Awards. His students also perform regularly in concert venues such as Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall, Merkin Hall, Town Hall, and many other recital venues and  are accepted regularly into the major American opera apprentice programs. He is on faculty at the Washington Opera's Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist program. 

 

NATIONAL FINALISTS (in alphabetical order)

 

LACEY JO BENTER (Division II)

Mezzo-Soprano, Lacey Jo Benter is currently enrolled at The Juilliard School pursuing an Artist Diploma in Opera Studies. She is a previous graduate of The Juilliard School and Lawrence University. Roles: Maurya (Riders to the Sea), Zita & La Ciesca (Gianni Schicchi), La Marchande de Journaux (Les Mamelles de Tiresias), Madame de Croissy (Les Dialogues des Carmélites), and Ma Moss (The Tender Land). Upcoming: Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni) and a reprise of Madame de Croissy, both at Chautauqua Institute.

 

ERIKA BAIKOFF (Division I)

A freshman at Princeton University studying music and romance languages, Erika Baikoff has been studying voice with Sooyeon Kim.  While attending LaGuardia High School, she studied with Lorraine Nubar.  Most recently, she competed in the 2012 Classical Singer convention and the 2013 Mondavi Center Young Artists Competition as a national finalist in both. Ms. Baikoff  has also been invited to perform in this year’s Bouchaine Young Artists Concert at the Napa Valley Festival del sole, which will include world-renowned artists Jessye Norman and Audra McDonald.

 

MARY CLAIRE CURRAN (Division I)

Soprano, Mary Claire Curran is a first year graduate student at the University of Miami's Frost School of Music. This year, she has originated the role of Janice in Charles Mason's world premiere opera Entanglements, she has sung Erste Dame in Frost Opera Theatre's Die Zauberflöte, was Sally Brown in You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown and has sung in concert recitals. She has been a Masterclass participant for Darren K. Woods, Dean Anthony, Sylvia Greenberg, Denyce Graves and Barbara Bonney. This summer she will be a Young Artist at SongFest in Los Angeles.

 

SAMANTHA DWYER (Pre-college Division)

Soprano, Samantha Dwyer is currently a senior at Centereach High School in NY and will attend the Aaron Copland School of Music in Fall, 2013.  Roles: Santuzza (Cavelleria Rusticana), Mrs. Nolan (The Medium), Fantine (Les Misérables Student Edition), Mimi (Scenes from La Bohème), and Mrs. Potts (Beauty and the Beast Jr.).  Honors:  2012 All State Women’s Chorus, 2013 All-Eastern Mixed Choir, and Stony Brook Pre-College Performances at Stony Brook University Staller Center.

 

HALLEY GILBERT (Division II)

Soprano, Halley Gilbert graduated from Eastman School of Music where she sang the roles of La Fee (Cendrillon) and Arminda (La Finta Giardiniera). Recent credits include Adina cover (L’elisir D’Amore) with the Opera Company of Brooklyn and Opera For Humanity, Queen of the Night (Die Zauberflöte) with Harrisburg Opera Associate, La Fée cover (Cendrillon) with New York Lyric Opera Theater; Lucia cover (Lucia di Lammermoor) and Gianetta (L'elisir D'amore) with Opera For Humanity. This summer, she will be covering Fortuna/Damigella (L'incoronazione di Poppea).

 

SHANA GROSSMAN (Division I)

New York native soprano, Shana Grossman attended the Diller-Quale School of music where her passion for performing emerged.  She was accepted and attended the prestigious Peabody Conservatory of Music, where she earned her undergraduate degree in vocal performance in 2012. Ms. Grossman is currently pursuing her Masters at Brooklyn College where she most recently performed the role of Nanetta in Verdi's Falstaff.  Her upcoming performance will be at Brooklyn College where she will be singing the title role in Stravinsky's Le Rossignol.

 

LIANA BROOKE GUBERMAN (Division II)

Born in New York City, Liana Brooke Guberman is pursuing a Professional Studies Diploma at Mannes College. Her roles include Parasha in Stravinsky’s Mavra, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni, Thérèse in Les Mamelles de Tirésias, Puccini's Suor Angelica, and Pamina in Die Zauberflöte.  She received a Master’s of Music from Purchase College Conservatory and a Bachelor of Music from Boston University. She attended the Castleton Artist Training Program, “Si parla, Si canta,” the Franz-Schubert-Institut in Baden bei Wien, Austria, and Chautauqua.

 

JONATHAN HARE (Division II)

Baritone, Jonathan Hare is a graduate of the Manhattan School of Music. Roles: Schaunard (La Bohème) with the North Shore Music Festival, Papageno (The Magic Flute) with the New York Lyric Opera Theatre and the Marina Arroyo Foundation, Baron (La Traviata) with the New York Grand Opera, Tim (God Bless Us Everyone) with the Dicapo Opera. Upcoming: Silvio (Pagliacci) with the New Rochelle Opera.

 

 

JOEL HERALD (Division II)

According to Opera News, Joel Herold, “showed off a handsome, light baritone and polished stage presence” as Pish-Tush in The Mikado during the 2011 Fort Worth Opera Festival. Upcoming: Apprentice Artist with at Caramoor. He was a national semi-finalist for the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. Venues/Companies: Santa Fe Concert Association, Opera Memphis, Fort Worth Opera, Lake George Opera, Connecticut Opera, Opera Cleveland. Roles:  Belcore (Elixir of Love), Papageno (The Magic Flute), Antonio (Le Nozze di Figaro), and Frank (Die Fledermaus).

 

JOYCE JIN (Division I)

Joyce Jin recently graduated from Converse College with a Bachelor’s of Music and a distinction in performance award. She will be pursuing her master’s degree at the Royal Academy of Music in London this coming fall. She received the young artist award at the Hariclea Darclée International Voice Competition in August 2012. Roles: Despina in Così fan tutte with the Converse Opera in 2011 and Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro at Operafestival di Roma in 2009. In addition, Ms. Jin has sung in several recitals and concerts in Italy under the Italian conductor maestro Marco Balderi.

 

KATHRYN LEEMHUIS (Division II)

Mezzo-soprano, Kathryn Leemhuis recently sang Dorabella in Così fan tutte (Opera Theatre St. Louis), Florence Pike in Albert Herring (Florentine Opera), Amaltea in Mosè in Egitto (Chicago Opera Theater), Zerlina in Don Giovanni (Opera Theatre St. Louis), Suzuki in Madama Butterfly (DuPage Opera).  Venues: Lyric Opera Chicago, Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall, Metropolitan Opera, Tanglewood, Ravinia. Awards: 1st Place (Bel Canto Competition), 2nd Place (Lissner Competition), and 2nd Prize (Florida Grand Opera Competition).

 

ALEXANDRA LOUTSION (Division II)

Alexandra Loutsion has recently been seen with Washington Concert Opera as Anna Kennedy in Maria Stuarda, Mother/Witch in Hänsel und Gretel with Pittsburgh Opera, and the cover of Cio-Cio San in Madama Butterfly with Opera Santa Barbara. Additional roles: Title role cover in Tosca (Santa Fe Opera), Anna cover in Maometto II (Santa Fe Opera), Cio-Cio San in Madama Butterfly (Opera on the James, Central City Opera Family Performance), Armida in Rinaldo (Pittsburgh Opera), and Melissa in Handel’s Amadigi di Gaula (Central City Opera Family Performance).

 

NINI MARCHESE (Division I)

Nini Marchese is a young Soprano from Lisle, Illinois.  She is currently working toward a B.M. in Vocal Performance at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, studying with Cynthia Haymon. In recital and competition, Ms. Marchese has most recently performed works by Mozart, Fauré, Donaudy, and Quilter. In 2011, she appeared as Margot in Franz Lehar’s Die Lustige Witwe with Sinfonietta Bel Canto Opera.

 

EMA MITROVIĆ (Division I)

Currently studying with Sondra Kelly, Ema Mitrović holds a BM from New Jersey City University. Roles: Title role (Carmen), Carmen (La Tragédie de Carmen), Le Prince Charmant (Cendrillon), Suzuki (Madama Butterfly), Maddalena (Rigoletto), Martine (Le Médecin malgre lui), Abbess & Monitor (Suor Angelica), third lady (Die Zauberflöte), first witch (Dido Aeneas), Mrs. Gobineau (The Medium), The Mother (Amahl and the Night Visitors), third lady (The Magic Flute). Awards: NJ NATS ‘13, 1st Place Division 9; 8th Annual Peter Elvin’s Vocal Competition, Semi-finalist.

 

ERIN MOR (Division I)

Tenor, Aaron Mor is a second year student at Juilliard, where he studies voice with Marlena Malas. Earlier this year, Mr. Mor was seen as a super in the Juilliard production of Così fan Tutte. Last summer he was able to study and perform at Chautauqua Institution. He graduated Great Neck South High School where he performed in numerous productions, including the title roles in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Gianni Schicchi and Phantom of the Opera. Mr. Mor is also a graduate of the Juilliard Pre-College Division.

 

GALEN OTTEN (Pre-college Division)

Galen Otten, a junior at Fairview High School in Boulder, Colorado has been active in youth theater for 9 years.  Highlights of recent performances include: Cassie in 13: The Musical, Regional Premier with Broadway in Boulder, Hodel in Fiddler on the Roof with Center Stage Theater Co., Brooke Wyndham in Legally Blonde at Fairview High School, Classical Soloist in Fairview’s POPs Show, Soloist in Calling All Dawns  at the Temple Buell Theater.  She is a student of Lauren Sawyer at Boulder Classical Voice and plans to pursue her education in opera.

 

SAMANTHA PARK (Pre-college Division)

Currently a senior at Suffern (NY) High School, Samantha Park will be attending Eastman School of Music in the fall to pursue a B.M. in Vocal Performance as a recipient of the Hanson Scholarship Award.  Ms. Park began classical voice training in 2010 and earned perfect scores at NY All State Voice competitions in 2011 and 2012. Recently, she has received 1st place college scholarships in local competitions and was a national finalist of the Bacardi Fallon Music Competition.

 

RACHEL POLICAR (Division I)

Soprano, Rachel Policar has recently been seen as the title character in the world premiere of Liebovar  with the Brooklyn Philharmonic at St. John the Divine Cathedral and as Young Molly Pitcher in the world premiere of The Boston Tea Party Opera. She will join the Janiec Opera Company at Brevard this summer, performing Valencienne in The Merry Widow and covering Nannetta in Falstaff. She is a semi-finalist in the Classical Singer Competition and a finalist in the Ladies Musical Club of Seattle Competition

 

LAUREN ROSAS (Division I)

Lauren Rosas is a current undergraduate soprano of Westminster Choir College. Ms. Rosas has performed in Guys and Dolls and in Warren Martin's The True Story of Cinderella as Cinderella. Sacred music works include: Arvo Pärt Gloria, Schubert Mass in G, and Vivaldi Gloria. She recently placed 1st in the voice awards scholarship in Westminster Choir college. She is currently still working on her Bachelor’s degree for Voice Performance at Westminster Choir College under the study of her voice teacher, Carolann Page.

 

ERIN SCHWAB (Division I)

Erin Schwab is in her final year at Rutgers University Mason Gross School of the Arts. Roles: Nanetta (Falstaff), Noémie (Cendrillon), Lucky Lockitt (The Beggar’s Opera).  She has also performed in Carmen at the Castleton Festival and La Bohème at the Royal Opera House Muscat in Oman, both conducted by Lorin Maazel. Sacred works include: Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, Fauré’s Requiem, Gabrieli’s In Ecclesiis, Mendelssohn’s Hear My Prayer (O for the Wings of a Dove), and Haydn’s Heiligmesse.

 

KATHERINE TOMBAUGH (Division II)

Kate Tombaugh recently made her Carnegie Hall solo debut upon winning the Barry Alexander International Vocal Competition. Roles: Lucette (Cendrillon), Angelina (La Cenerentola), Meg Page (Falstaff), Meg (Little Women), Papagena/Second Lady (Die Zauberflöte). Venues: Santa Fe Opera, Utah Opera, Opera Omaha, Madison Opera, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Santa Fe Concert Association, Utah Symphony. Upcoming: Rosina in The Barber of Seville, Hansel in Hansel and Gretel, Flora in La Traviata, Amelie in The Grand Duchess, solo debut with the Jackson Symphony.  

 

LAURA VIRELLA (Division II)

Mezzo-Soprano, Laura Virella is known for her compelling performances. The summer of 2012 in Austria marked her debut as Octavian with Kammersängerin Linda Watson in the Rosenkavalier finale, under the baton of Volksoper Wien’s Gerrit Prieβnitz. A few days later she was named First Runner-Up (2nd to Patricia Racette) for Best Actress in Opera in the DC Theatre Scene Awards for her portrayal of Luisa Fernanda. She holds degrees from the Peabody Conservatory and Manhattan School of Music, apprenticed with Dicapo Opera, and continued studies in Italy, Berlin and Graz.

 

MELINDA WHITTINGTON (Division II)

Melinda Whittington was a National Semi-finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council competition, after winning first place at the South Carolina district and the Southeast regional competitions. Upcoming: Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni) at Green Mountain Opera Festival and  Lauretta (Gianni Schicchi) with Opera Carolina.  She was Merola young artist at San Francisco Opera, performing scenes as the title role in Anna Bolena and Vanessa. Additional roles: 2nd Lady (Magic Flute, Opera Carolina), Violetta (La traviata, Brevard), and Alcina (Alcina, Brevard).

 

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2013 REGIONAL FINALISTS/NATIONAL SEMI-FINALISTS

 

NORTHERN REGION
PRE-COLLEGE DIVISION
Hansini Bhasker
Kendall Brighton
Jordan Costa
Samantha Dwyer
Sarah King  
Matthew Laude  
Melissa Lubars  
Samantha Park  
Nicholas Parrillo
Chelsea Schwartz  
Victoria Stempel
Caroline Zhao

DIVISION I & II 

Seung-Hyeon Baek
Erika Baikoff
Kristin Behrmann
Ashley Bell  
Lacey Benter
Joseph Beutel  
Daniel Byerly
Zion Byun
Jordan Campbell  
Danielle Davis
Angela Dinkelman
Eric Downs  
Anna Farysej  
Sarah Gardner
Justin Gordon
Olanna Goudeau
Zoya Gramagin
Shana Grossman
Liana Guberman
Christina Hager
Jonathan Hare
Ashley Harrington  
Joel Herold  
Deena Hower
Scott Ingram
Joyce Jin
Manna KnJoi
Quentin Lee
Kathryn Leemhuis  
Christy Lombardozzi  
Alexandra Lutsion  
Ema Mitrovic
Rachel Montoya
Aaron Mor  
Christopher Nelson
Rachel Policar
Lauren Rosas
Erin Schwab  
Laura Virella
Melinda Whittington

MIDWEST REGION

PRE-COLLEGE DIVISION
Morgan Brennan

DIVISION I & II

Jihyun Kim  
Sam Jew Kim
Megan Liles
Jackline Madegwa
Nini Marchese
Yoosun Na
Bethany Stiles
Kate Tombaugh  
Heather Youngquist

SOUTHERN REGION  

PRE-COLLEGE DIVISION
Virginia Barefield
Maria Zoller

DIVISION I & II

Marie Claire Curran
Ginett Delara
Carl Dupont
Shirin Eskandani  
Omari Hardy
Rebecca Henriques
Alexey Kukhaskiy
Katie Kupchik
Eric McConnell
Kunya Rowley
Hillary Trumpler
Claudio Valverdi  
Alejandro Viera  
Jeffrey Williams

WESTERN REGION

PRE-COLLEGE DIVISION
Galen Otten
DIVISION I & II
Halley Gilbert
Annie Gill  
Ewa Plonka

 

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2012

National Vocal Competition

Winners

 

Division I

From Left to Right

Elise Brancheau

"1st Place"

Alex Boyd

"2nd Place"

Jacqueline Piccolino

"3rd Place"

 

 

 

 

Division II

From Right to Left

Nicholas Tamagna

"1st Place"

Do Jin Jung

"2nd Place"

Phillip Gay

"3rd Place"

 

 

JUDGES FOR NATIONAL SEMI-FINALS (in alphabetical order)

 

KEN BENSON

Ken Benson joined Columbia Artists Management, Inc. in 1986 and for 25 years headed his own division as Vice President. Well-known and respected for his broad knowledge of repertoire and voices, he represented Harolyn Blackwell, Patrick Carfizzi, Rod Gilfry, Marcello Giordani, Thomas Hampson, Jerry Hadley, Lucas Meachem, Susanne Mentzer, Aprile Millo, and Florence Quivar, among many others. He is presently the Executive Director of the Marcello Giordani Foundation. Mr. Benson appears frequently as both host and panelist on the Opera Quiz of the Metropolitan Opera's radio broadcasts, and as a writer, he contributes to Opera News and Classical Singer magazines. He is regularly invited to give classes at Yale, DePaul, Roosevelt, and Indiana University Manhattan School of Music, Mannes College, Hartt School of Music, and U.C.L.A. as well as for many of the Young Artists Programs of major opera companies throughout the U.S. He also offers individual consultations to singers on auditioning techniques and career direction. For the past two seasons he has served as in-house consultant to the Masters students of Vocal Arts, Juilliard. Mr. Benson adjudicates vocal competitions for the Metropolitan Opera, Opera Index, Palm Beach Opera, Astral Artists, and for various foundations including: The George London Foundation, Licia Albanese/Puccini Foundation, Gerda Lissner Foundation, Giulio Gari Foundation, The Loren Zachary Foundation, and the Liederkranz Foundation. Since 1996, he has appeared each season on the Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcasts, on the Opera Quiz, Record Collector’s Roundtables, panel discussions and presenting biographies of great singers. In 2010-11 he launched the New York City Opera's "Listening Room" series, with recorded material and discussion for each opera.

 

KEITH CHAMBERS

Keith Chambers was appointed Assistant Conductor of New York City Opera in 2007 and is the Director of the Victoria J. Mastrobuono Emerging Artist Program for Opera New Jersey.  He has conducted Tosca for Amarillo Opera, Roméo et Juliette for Asheville Lyric Opera, New York Lyric Opera (Suor Angelica, Le nozze di Figaro, Rigoletto, Hansel & Gretel), The Living Opera (Hansel & Gretel, Le nozze di Figaro, Don Pasquale, The Pirates of Penzance), Halifax Summer Opera (Giulio Cesare), Moores Opera Center (Die Fledermaus, La finta giardiniera), Sugar Land Opera (The Station), Martha Cardona Opera Theater (Gianni Schicchi) and Opera in the Ozarks (Don Giovanni & L’elisir d’amore).  He has served on faculty of the Seattle Opera Young Artist Program and the RESONANZ Festival and is past Artistic Director of The Living Opera and Chorus Master/Music Director of Shreveport Opera.  Additional performances include Toledo Opera, Connecticut Opera, American Opera Projects, American Lyric Theater, and Lake George Opera.  He has appeared as concerto soloist with the Delaware Symphony, Clear Lake Symphony, and Naples Philharmonic, and often performs with his wife, soprano Kirsten Chambers.  During the 2011-12 season, he conducts Tosca for the Martha Cardona Opera Theater, Nora, In The Great Outdoors for American Opera Projects, The Poe Project for American Lyric Theater, and La bohème, Die Zauberflöte, and Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci for both New York Lyric Opera Theatre and Martha Cardona Opera Theater.  Mr. Chambers will lead performances of Verdi’s Un giorno di regno for the Seattle Opera Young Artists Program in 2012-13.

 

ALEX FLETCHER

Alex Fletcher serves as president and artist manager at Fletcher Artist Management, a firm he founded in December 2009. As president, Mr. Fletcher proudly manages a selective roster of opera singers, conductors, and directors. Prior to the establishment of his management firm, Mr. Fletcher enjoyed a two-year tenure at Neil Funkhouser Artists Management, where he eventually assumed the position of artist manager. Mr. Fletcher has held internships with the public relations department of Washington National Opera and with the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra in Alexandria, Virginia. He is a Business Member of Opera America, and has enjoyed the opportunity to serve as a panelist for Opera America’s “Making Connections” series in New York and Philadelphia. Alex Fletcher received his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia, where he also studied vocal performance. He is a native of Fairfax, Virginia.

 

PETER RANDSMAN

Randsman Artists Management

Native of Long Island, New York, Peter Randsman already in possession of a well-developed bass singing voice.  He was “discovered” while vocalizing, and taken to an in-progress chorus rehearsal and ordered to sing!  The choral conductor, Theodore Bagdikian, was sufficiently impressed, and immediately called him to the attention of Arthur Kaye, the English and Drama teacher, and was offered the leading role (Billy Bigelow) in an as yet un-cast production of Carousel.  During the next few years, Mr. Randsman continued to develop his singing and dramatic skills, and his portrayal of Tommy in Brigadoon and Dr. Einstein in Arsenic and Old Lace brought continued success. He began his first semester as a drama major at Nassau Community College, where immediately after a performance of Babes in Arms, the head of Hofstra University’s Drama Department offered him a Drama Scholarship.  He quickly recognized the tremendous honor of being included in a company of so many famous alumni at Hofstra— James Caan, Francis Ford Coppola, Madeline Kahn and Lanie Kazan to name a few—and gratefully accepted.  A highlight was to be the role of Clifford Bradshaw in Cabaret. Among many, three of his favorites are the roles of Charley in Charley’s Aunt, Dick in Dames at Sea and Gabey in On the Town. In 1976, Mr. Randsman moved to New York City.  Within two months he was chosen as the “Burger King boy” in a series of commercials, which would air on national television for several years, and was featured as Minolta’s “Camera Boy” in dozens of national magazines.  He spent several days filming Brighton Beach with Ruth Gordon and Lee Strassburg.  For most of the following decade, Peter participated in several national tours performing both operetta and Gilbert & Sullivan, and enjoyed a special pleasure singing the song, “He’s in love” while touring KISMET with the Metropolitan Opera star, John Reardon.  Appearing on Broadway, he both sang and danced LizaLiza with film legend, Ruby Keeler at a tribute to the Ziegfeld Follies.  Shortly after, he joined the New York City Opera chorus, and for the next three years appeared in many Lincoln Center productions and several national tours.  He sang in a LIVE FROM LINCOLN CENTER telecast in scenes from Mefistofele with Samuel Ramey, conducted by Julius Rudel, and the great Triumphal Scene from Verdi’s Aida under the direction of Anton Guadagno.   After nearly fifteen years as a professional singer /actor, he has fulfilled two life-long dreams by working 1 season (a decade ago) as artistic director of an opera company (National Grand Opera, at The Tillis Center for the Performing Arts at C.W. Post Campus in Long Island) and by starting his own company, Randsman Artists Management.  He is responsible for over 50 thriving international opera careers.

 

SARAH STEPHENS

Sarah Stephens founded International Artists Management in Bremen, Germany in 1996. Her agency specialized in professional personal management and bilingual promotion for international opera singers in Europe and later expanded to include management for conductors, stage directors, and other classical musicians.  Her artists performed in theatres throughout Europe including the Staatsoper in Berlin, Covent Garden in London, Opera Bastille in Paris, Stockholm, Zurich, Graz, Bayreuth Festival, Semperoper in Dresden, Dusseldorf, Duisburg, Bayerische, Staatsoper in Munich, Mannheim, Leipzig, Bremen, Oldenburg, Kiel, Darmstadt, Augsburg, Nurnberg, and Munster.  Ms. Stephens was granted the German agency license in 2000 authorizing her artists management agency (Kunstleragentur) in Germany.  A second license was issued the same year entitling her agency to engage in business internationally and throughout the European Union. In 2008, she returned to the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis to complete her Master’s degree with a bilingual thesis on Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde.  Subsequently, she came to New York City and founded Stephens Artist Management with Mark Nicolson.  Sarah Stephens studied as a young student in Germany, where she learned German fluently, and has spent most of her life since (25 years).  Ms. Stephens attended the University of Vermont, Albert-Ludwigs-University of Freiburg (Germany), and the University of Minnesota.

 

JUDGES FOR NATIONAL FINALS (in alphabetical order)

 

KEITH CHAMBERS

For Biography, please see “Judges for National Semi-Finals”

 

ARTHUR LEVY

Respected voice teacher, Arthur Levy has students who appear in opera houses,and concert stages throughout the world as well as on Broadway. He is also a faculty member of the Mannes School of Music, has been a vocal consultant at Glimmerglass Opera, Hawaii Performing Arts Festival, Roundabout Theatre, as well at the Manhattan School of Music and at the Opera House in Stuttgart, Germany and classes at the Metropolitan Opera Guild. His students include such distinguished artists as Audra MacDonald, Elizabeth Futral, rising MET star  tenor, Yonghoon Lee, William Burden, bass Hao Jiang Tian, and Broadway luminaries Marin Mazzie, Jason Daniely, Brian Stokes Mitchell and Lea Michelle.  He has helped prepare such stars as Stockard Channing, and Oliver Platt for Broadway role debuts.

 

SARAH STEPHENS

For Biography, please see “Judges for National Semi-Finals”

 

WILLIE ANTHONY WATERS

Willie Anthony Waters is a regular guest of the opera companies in North America, Europe, and Africa, including notable recent appearances with the Australian Opera, Arizona Opera (Aida, La Fanciulla del West), Boston Lyric Opera (The Abduction from the Seraglio and a gala concert), Deutsche Oper Berlin and Capetown, South Africa (Porgy and Bess), Chautauqua Opera (The Daughter of the Regiment), Cincinnati Opera (Carmen), Cologne (Germany) Opera, Dayton Opera (Carmen), Edmonton Opera (Nabucco), Fort Worth Opera (Turandot), Kentucky Opera (Salome), Manitoba Opera (Nabucco), Michigan Opera, Montreal Opera (La Gioconda, Aida and Tosca), New York City Opera (Rigoletto and Of Mice and Men), Opera Memphis (Tosca, Rigoletto and La Traviata), Opera Carolina (Der Fliegende Holländer), Opera Colorado (Porgy and Bess), Opera de Quebec (Carmen), Orlando Opera (Lucia di Lammermoor, Falstaff, Cosi fan tutte, Don Giovanni), San Diego Opera (Lucia di Lammermoor), San Francisco Opera, Vancouver Opera (La Traviata), and the Florida Grand Opera.   For twelve years, he served as General and Artistic Director of the Connecticut Opera, for whom he conducted more than thirty productions. He also served as Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Florida Grand Opera for seven seasons. During his tenure, he led a number of noteworthy productions, including Salome, Manon Lescaut, Die Walküre, Macbeth, Aida, Of Mice and Men, Falsfaff, Bianca e Falliero, Cristoforo Coolmbo, La Gioconda, Turandot, Tosca, Carmen, Trouble in Tahiti, and Lucia di Lammermoor. He has returned to the company as a guest to conduct Carmen. 

 

DIVISION I FINALISTS (in alphabetical order)

 

ALEX BOYD

Alexander Charles Boyd is a young baritone from Purcellville, Virginia. Post Oberlin Conservatory, he is now studying with Mark Oswald in New York City. Mr. Boyd has performed in Austria, England, Italy, Venezuela, and Carnegie Hall's Weill recital hall in New York City, and has sung with the Oberlin Opera Theater, the Loudoun Lyric Opera, the New York Lyric Opera Theatre, the Delphi Theater, the Martha Cardona Theater, and will be an OperaNJ Emerging Artist this summer. Upcoming: Escamillo in Carmen and Pandolfe in Cendrillon with the NY Lyric Opera

 

ELISE BRANCHEAU

Elise Brancheau is a second-year graduate student at Mannes College The New School for Music. At Mannes, she recently sang Act II of Lucia di Lammermoor as Lucia for Mannes’s Opera Scenes program, as well as scenes from Les pêcheurs de perles (Leïla) and La Cenerentola (Clorinda). This summer, she will be covering the role of Blanche in dell’Arte Opera Ensemble’s production of Dialogues des Carmélites. She recorded selections of the title role in Jan Albert’s new opera, Kiyo, for Mind the Art Entertainment. She has performed the role of Rapunzel in Into the Woods.

 

CLAIRE COOLEN

Claire Coolen is known not only for her "thrilling voice", (Portland Press Herald) but for her compelling dramatic presence on stage. The New York Times described her performance as “Winningly portrayed” and the New York Daily Post wrote, “Claire Coolen stole the show”. Performing highlights include Gilda in Rigoletto, Pamina in Magic Flute, Nanetta in Falstaff, Marie in La Fille du Régiment, Mrs. Winemiller in Summer and Smoke, and the Governess in Turn of the Screw at Banff Opera Theater, in Alberta. Recipient: Margaret Hoswell van der Marck Scholarship.

 

LINDSAY ECKHARDT

A student of Yvonne Gonzales Redman, Lindsay Eckhardt is currently pursuing a M.M. in Vocal Performance and Literature at the University of Illinois. She has performed as the Second Boy in Die Zauberflöte, Maria in West Side Story, Casilda in Gondoliers, Nanetta in Falstaff, Norina in Don Pasquale, Antonia in Man of La Mancha, and Josephine in HMS Pinafore. Most recently, she was seen as Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflöte.  Upcoming engagements include appearances as Lucia in The Rape of Lucretia, Gabrielle in The Game of Love, and Zerlina in Don Giovanni.

 

RACHEL FELSTEIN

Soprano, Rachel Felstein performed Zerlina (Don Giovanni), Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), Gounod's Mireille, Adina (L'elisir d'amore), Miss Wordsworth (Albert Herring), Juliette (Roméo et Juliette), Susanna (Le nozze di Figaro), Frasquita (Carmen), Eurydice (Orphée aux Enfers), Papagena (Die Zauberflöte), and Sonja (Der Zarewitsch) with companies such as Mannes Opera, New York Lyric Opera Theatre, dell'Arte Opera Ensemble, Hartford Opera, and Divaria Productions. She completed her Bachelor of Music degree at Mannes College, the New School.

 

BRYN HOLDSWORTH

Soprano, Bryn Holdsworth is currently studying at the Manhattan School of Music under world renowned mezzo-soprano, Mignon Dunn.  Bryn is the proud recipient of The ASCAP Foundation Fran Morgenstern Davis Scholarship and is a three time first place winner in the National Association of Teachers in Singing of the Lehigh Valley area. She is also the recipient of the Pennsylvania Music Teachers Association Highest Achievement Award for four consecutive years. Ms. Holdsworth has been a national semi-finalist in the Palm Beach Opera vocal competition.

 

NIKHIL NAVKAL

Nikhil Navkal is a tenor currently working toward a Master’s of music degree at Mannes College, specializing in the high coloratura repertoire of Rossini, Donizetti, and Bellini, as well as other bel canto composers. This summer, he will attend the Central City young artist program. From Andover, Massachusetts, Mr. Navkal holds a bachelor of music degree in vocal performance, with a minor in Italian, from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. In past summers, he has studied at IVAI and the Ezio Pinza Council for American Singers of Opera in Oderzo, Italy.

 

JACQUELINE PICCOLINO

Jacqueline Piccolino, a Chicago native, is currently pursuing a B.M. at the University of Illinois studying under the direction of Cynthia Haymon. Ms. Piccolino will portray the role of Arminda (La finta giardiniera) and Lady with a Cake Box (cover) (Postcard from Morocco) with the San Francisco Opera Merola Program and will participate in Houston Grand Opera's Young Artist Vocal Academy this summer. Recent roles include Rosina (Il barbiere di Siviglia), First Lady (The Magic Flute) and Giunone (La Calisto). She has performed various scenes with Wolf Trap Opera Studio. 

 

DIVISION II FINALISTS (in alphabetical order)

 

KRISTI BULOT

Native of Louisiana, Kristi Bulot has performed the First Lady in The Magic Flute with Opera Louisiane, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni with Martina Arroyo’s “Prelude to Performance” as well as with La Musica Lirica in Novafeltria, Italy.  Additionally, she covered the role of Alice Ford in Falstaff with La Musica Lirica.  Competition Winnings include: National Finalist of the Lois Alba Aria Competition, Finalist in the Classical Singer Competition (Graduate Level), Semi-Finalist with the Palm Beach Opera Competition, and a Semi-Finalists of the Loren L. Zachary Competition.

 

JOHN CALKINS

Tenor, John Calkins most recently was a featured soloist in Opera New Jersey’s Holiday Celebration Concert.  Also in 2011, Mr. Calkins performed Count Almaviva in the Barber of Seville with Light Opera Company of Maryland, in collaboration with COSMIC Symphony, under the baton of Vladimir Lande.  A graduate of The Ohio State University, Mr. Calkins currently studies privately with Dr. Christopher Arneson and Rachelle Jonck.  Upcoming engagements include Prince Ramiro in La Cenerentola, a role Mr. Calkins had previously covered for Opera New Jersey.

 

PHILLIP GAY

Phillip Gay, Bass-Baritone, is currently finishing his Masters degree in Vocal Performance at University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. This summer, he will be a Young Artist at the Glimmerglass Festival, appearing in their productions of Aida, Armide and Lost in the Stars. He has been a regional finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, and has been a semi-finalist for the Gerda Lissner and Licia-Albanese competions. While at U of I, Mr. Gay has appeared in their productions of Rigoletto, Man of LaMancha, La Calisto, Die Zauberflote.

 

JULIA LIMA

Julia Lima was awarded the 1st prize of the NY District Metropolitan National Council 2011, International Bella Voce Competition (1st prize), All-Russian Festos Competition (1st prize), and the International Festival of Arts in Yalta (1st prize). She made her American debut with the New York Lyric Opera Theatre in the role of Madame Goldentrill in Der Schauspieldirektor. She has appeared as Susanna in the American premiere of  I due Figaro by S. Mercadante with Amore Opera. She is a graduate of the State Musical College (Russia, Moscow) and a master level sport of gymnastics.

 

CLARISSA LYONS

California native, Clarissa Lyons received Bachelor of Arts with Honors from the University of California Berkeley where she studied Music and History of Art.   She has earned Masters of Music degrees under the tutelage of Patricia Misslin from the Manhattan School of Music and Bard College Conservatory in Dawn Upshaw’s Vocal Arts Program. Ms. Lyons created the role of St. Francis’ Trainer in David T. Little’s Vinkensport: The Finch Opera for Bard College Conservatory’s Vocal Arts Program. She appeared as Elaine O’Neill in the New York Premier of Later that Same Evening.

 

SARAH NISBETT

Sarah Nisbett has performed roles such as Mrs. Nolan (Medium), Giovanna (Rigoletto), 2nd & 3rd Lady (The Magic Flute), Prince Orlofsky (Die Fledermaus), Title role in Oreste, and Sesto in La Clemenza di Tito.  Venues/Companies include: Michigan Opera Theatre, Tanglewood Music Center, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Ann Arbor Opera Theatre, Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra, Princeton Festival and Westminster Opear Theatre.  She was a 1st place winner of the National Opera Association  Vocal Competition.

 

DO JIN JUNG

A native of Seoul, Korea, Do Jin Jung earned his Bachelor of Music Degree from the Korea National University of Arts and Master degree at Mannes, New York. He is Winner of the New York District at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and Grant winner award in The Licia Albanese-Puccini Competition. Roles: Colline in La Bohème, Raimondo in Lucia di Lammermoor, Bartolo in Le Nozze di Figaro. Don Magnifico in Cenerentola. He performed scenes as Dr.Dulcamara of L’elisir d’amore and Osmin in Die Entfuhrung aus dem Serail.

 

ELLEN PUTNEYMOORE

No Biography available.

 

PERRI SUSSMAN

Mezzo-soprano, Perri Sussman made her Carnegie Hall debut in the 2011 Master Singer Finalist Concert for the Nico Castel International Master Singer Competition. She is a second year graduate student at Manhattan School of Music. She was a participant with La Lingua della Lirica in Novafeltria, Italy. There she performed opera scenes from Les Contes d’Hoffman (Nicklausse), Falstaff (Alice), I Capuleti e i Montecchi (Romeo), and Lakmé (Mallika). Ms. Sussman will  perform Zweite Dame in Die Zauberflöte as an Apprentice Artist with Opera in the Ozarks this summer.

 

NICHOLAS TAMAGNA

Countertenor, Nicholas Tamagna, winner of the Nico Castel Mastersinger Competition 2011 and Arkadi Foundation Competition 2011, made his Lincoln Center debut with DCINY Orchestra at Avery Fischer Hall in Handel's Messiah. An active concert and opera singer, Mr. Tamagna has performed with many regional US and Canadian opera companies, orchestras, and ensembles since 2008. Opera Now described him as “exquisite, combining perfect tonal quality with substantial power.  His voice soared with piecing [sic] sadness and soothed with a silky beauty."  

 

 

Top

 

2011

Vocal Competition

Winners

 

 

 

Ricardo Rivera

"People's Choice Award"

Ricardo Rivera

"1st Place"

Meredith Mecum

"2nd Place"

Robert Balonek

"3rd Place"

 

 

2011

Vocal Competition

   

Saturday

May 7, 2011, 8:00PM

Symphony Space, Leonard Nimoy Thalia, NYC

 

JUDGES: Keith Chambers, Zehava Gal, Katherine Olsen

 

         Doug Han, Pianist

 

KORNGOLD: Mein Sehnen Mein Wähnen…”  (Die Tote Stadt)
— Robert Balonek —
STRAUSS: The Composer's Aria…” (Ariadne Auf Naxos)
— Kaitlyn Costello —
THOMAS: O vin dissipe la tristesse…” (Hamlet)
— Jonathan Estabrooks —
STRAUSS: Grossmächtige Prinzessin…” (Ariadne Auf Naxos)
— JeanMarie Garofolo—
BIZET:  Seguidilla…” (Carmen)
— Erin Greene —
MOZART: Martern aller Arten(Die Entführung aus dem Serail)
— Julie-Anne Hamula —
DONIZETTI: Prendi… (L’elisir d’amore)
— Stefanie Izzo —
MOZART:   “Hai già vinta la causa…(Le nozze di figaro)
— Michael Krzankowski —
DONIZETTI: O mio Fernando…” (La Favorita)
— Beth Lytwynec —
MOZART:  Come scoglio…”(Co fan tutte)
— Meredith Mecum —
OFFENBACH:  Les oiseaux…(Les contes d'Hoffmann)
— Monica Pasquini —
GUERRERO:  Mi Aldea …” (Los Gavilanes)
— Ricardo Rivera —
PUCCINI:  Donde lieta…” (La Bohème)
— Shanna Spiro —
VERDI:  “La donna è mobile…” (Rigoletto)
— Jonathan Winell —

 

 

JUDGES

(In alphabetical order)  

 

 

keith chambers

Conductor Keith Chambers was appointed Assistant Conductor of New York City Opera in 2007 and is Music Director of the Emerging Artist Program & Chorus Master for Opera New Jersey.  He has conducted Tosca for Amarillo Opera, Roméo et Juliette for Asheville Lyric Opera, The Station for Sugar Land Opera, The Living Opera (Hansel and Gretel, Le nozze di Figaro, Don Pasquale, & The Pirates of Penzance), Halifax Summer Opera (Giulio Cesare), Moores Opera Center (Die Fledermaus & La finta giardiniera), and Opera in the Ozarks (Don Giovanni & L’elisir d’amore).  He serves on faculty of the Seattle Opera Young Artist Program and is a Program Director for the RESONANZ Festival.  Mr. Chambers is the past Artistic Director of The Living Opera and Chorus Master/Music Director of Shreveport Opera.  Additional performances include Toledo Opera, Connecticut Opera, American Opera Projects, and American Lyric Theater.  He has appeared as concerto soloist with the Delaware Symphony, Clear Lake Symphony, and Naples Philharmonic, and often performs with his wife, dramatic soprano Kirsten Chambers.

 

 

Zehava Gal  

The Israeli born mezzo-soprano studied voice at Juilliard and piano at the Rubin Academy, Israel. Gal is a winner of the Paris and Munich International Competition, and Young Concert Artists, NY. Gal has sung at La Scala, Paris, Covent Garden, Vienna Staatsoper, Glyndebourne, Santa Fe, Pesaro, collaborating with conductors such as Von Karajan, Abbado, Mehta, Barenboim, with New York, Israel, Chicago and Berlin philharmonic orchestras. Gal has appeared in the title role of Peter Brook’s Theatre/Film production of La Tragedie de Carmen, and recorded for major labels including RCA, CBS, Philips and EMI. Gal holds a teaching position at Westminster Choir College, Princeton, N.J. and a private studio in NYC. As an extremely well received master teacher, Gal has been invited to give Master Classes/Seminars at top conservatories and voice organizations around the world.

 

 

Katherine Olsen

Encompass Arts Founder, Katherine Olsen, is one of the most famous and sought-after opera coach/accompanists in the world today. She is currently on the board of the Singer’s Development Foundation and the Marcello Giordani Foundation. In 2001, she was appointed Principle Coach and Artistic Administrator for Baz Luhrmann’s Tony Award-winning production of Puccini’s La Boheme. She worked closely with the company in both the pre-production phase and during the performance runs in San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles. Ms. Olsen was part of the casting team responsible for hiring both principle artists and chorus. Several of the young artists she selected for La Boheme have gone on to further operatic achievements including: MET tenor, Joseph Kaiser, who portrays Tamino in Kenneth Branaugh’s film The Magic Flute, conducted by James Conlon; Ben Davis who portrays Papageno in the same film; Alfred Boe Alfie Boe crossover recording artist; and David Miller, now a recording artist with the group Il Divo.

 

PIANIST

 

DOUG HAN

Doug Han has conducted Massenet's Cendrillon last October and will be conducting Mozart's Die Zauberflöte later this evening.  Maestro Han has just finished a rewarding two-year association with the Knowlton Festival, a groundbreaking collaboration between the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and Rome's historic Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia.  Mr. Han joined the festival at the express invitation of artistic director Kent Nagano and served as coach/répétiteur for productions of the Bellini operas Norma and La Sonnambula (starring Grammy award-winning coloratura Sumi Jo) as well as the Bel Canto Concert "June Anderson and Friends".  He also worked closely with the winners of Operalia 2008 (the Plácido Domingo Competition). 

 

 

FINALISTS (in alphabetical order)

 

ROBERT BALONEK

Baritone, Robert Balonek has performe Count Robinson (Matrimonio Segreta) at Pine Mountain, Figaro (Le Nozze di Figaro) at Chelsea Opera, Figaro (Le Nozze di Figaro), Prospero and Ferdinand (Hoiby’s The Tempest), Ottone (Poppea), Gêolier (Dialogues of the Carmelites), Title Role in (Gianni Schicchi), Francis (Confession) - World Premeire at Purchase Opera. At Mannes, he performed  Ford (Falstaff), Guglielmo (Cosi fan Tutte). Mr. Balonek recorded Prospero in The Tempest for Albany Records. He is a Liederkranz winner, Opera Index encouragement award winner, and a Career Bridges Scholarship winner. He can find Mr. Balonek on Itunes as Prospero in Hoiby’s The Tempest.  Mr. Balonek was the soloist for the Bach’s Mathew Passion for the Mannes Baroque Ensemble and Fauré Requiem soloist for the Westchester Choral Society.

 

KAITLYN COSTELLO

Mezzo-Soprano, Kaitlyn Costello is a young artist with a multi-faceted talent in the arts. Ms. Costello is a past winner of the District Metropolitan Opera Competition, Metropolitan Opera Southeast Regional Finalist and Encouragement award winner, and Brumby Concerto Competition winner to name a few. This summer, Ms. Costello will perform with the Central City Opera as Mercédès in Carmen. Ms. Costello is also looking forward to performing the title role in Carmen for the family matinee performance on July 28th. Along with Ms. Costello accomplishments as a vocalist, she is also an accomplished dancer with professional training of over 17 years.

 

JONATHAN ESTABROOKS

Hailed by the New York Times as a “robust baritone” and 1st place winner of the prestigious Oratorio Society of New York Vocal Competition at Carnegie Hall, Jonathan Estabrooks is one to watch. He has performed for President Clinton and UN deligates, appeared with the NYFOS at Carnegie Hall, the NAC Orchestra, the Israeli Chamber Orchestra and on a 20-city tour with the Jeunesses Musicale du Canada. His growing list of principal roles include: Guglielmo, Papageno Shaunard, Pelleas, Tarquinius and Smirnov (The Bear). Upcoming engagements: Concerts in New York, Florida, Virginia and his debut as Silvio in I Pagliacci with Opera Lyra Ottawa.

 

JEANMARIE GAROFOLO

JeanMarie Garofolo, Coloratura Soprano, is described as possessing a voice that is “beautiful and warm in tone with strong high notes.” (Muncher Merkur) Most recently, she made her Carnegie Hall debut at the Liederkrantz Winner’s Concert, where she placed third in the Lieder Division.  She has received many awards for her singing. She was the winner of the 2010 Chicago NATS competition, The Jenny Lind Soprano Competition, and The Italian Cultural Center of Chicago Competition. Ms. Garofolo was also the featured singer at the Erwin Piscator Awards in New York honoring Peter Gelb. On the operatic stage, she has captivated many audiences performing in several productions such as Massenet’s Cendrillon in the role of La Fee, with NY Lyric Opera Theatre.

 

ERIN GREENE

Erin Greene, mezzo-soprano, recently performed the role of Dorabella in Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte, Maddelena in Verdi’s Rigoletto, and Cordula Wagner in Rushton’s The Shops with Center City Opera Theater. With the College-Conservatory of Music, she performed the roles of Isabella in Catan’s Rappaccini’s Daughter and La Voce in Resphigi’s Lucrezia. Ms. Greene has received a BM degree from the University of Texas at Austin and a MM from the College-Conservatory of Music. She is currently a studio artist with Center City Opera Theater and will be performing the role of Orlofsky in Strauss’ Die Fledermaus.

 

JULIE-ANNE HAMULA

Julie-Anne Hamula, soprano, has been praised for her “warm tone”, “agile phrasing” and “considerable vocal energy”  (Austin XL). Most recently, she has sung Antonia in Les Contes d’Hoffman with Tri-Cities Opera. Also with Tri-Cities Opera, she has sung Fiordiligi (Cosí fan Tutte), Adina (L’elisir d’amore), Susanna (Le Nozze di Figaro), and Gilda (Rigoletto). Other roles include  Carlisle Floyd’s Susannah with The Butler Opera Center, and Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), in Costa Rica, Mexico, and Austin. She was recently a finalist in the Liederkranz General Opera Competition and was awarded the Phyllis Bryn-Julson Award at the Civic Morning Musicals Competition in Syracuse, New York.

 

STEFANIE IZZO

Stefanie Izzo is a New York native soprano who recently made her international operatic debut as Adina in L’Elisir d’Amore with Musica Viva Hong Kong. She has appeared in such roles as the Coloratura in Dominick Argento’s Postcard from Morocco, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte and Candide (Cunegonde) . Other local credits include:  The Marriage of Figaro (Susanna) and Hansel & Gretel (Dew Fairy) with the Brooklyn Repertory OperaBritten's A Midsummer Night's Dream (Peaseblossom) with Dell'Arte Opera Ensemble, Sweeney Todd (Johanna), and HMS Pinafore (Josephine) with the Gilbert & Sullivan Light Opera Company of Long Island. An avid linguist, Stefanie has studied languages and performed recitals in Italy, Germany and Austria.

 

MICHAEL KRZANKOWSKI

Michael Krzankowski is quickly establishing himself on the operatic stage.  He recently made his debut with San Antonio Opera where he “had outstanding moments as the foolish count,” in Le nozze di Figaro.  He has been described as “warm and persuasive,” with “a gentle, unforced effervescence to his singing.”  He performed Harlekin in Ariadne auf Naxos, Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, Demetrius in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and the title role in Eugene Onegin with the Seattle Opera Young Artists Program.  Internationally, Mr. Krzankowski sang Count Gil in Il segreto di Susanna with the Lucca Opera Festival, and the title role in Don Giovanni with the Europäische Akademie.

 

KATHERINE LA PORTA

Katherine LaPorta is a coloratura soprano quickly establishing herself as a skilled artist with a rich timbre, versatile repertoire, and astounding accuracy. Upcoming: Ginerva in Handel's Ariodante with the New York Opera Forum and Gretel in Hansel and Gretel with Opera Theater of Connecticut. She recently sang the role of Die Königin der Nacht in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with Connecticut Lyric Opera and New York Lyric Opera Theatre’s Artist-in-Residence Concert Series.  Other Roles Include: Gilda (Rigoletto), Monica (The Medium), Pauline (La Vie Parisienne), Pamina (The Magic Flute). She holds a Masters and Bachelors Degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Connecticut.

 

BETH LYTWYNEC

American mezzo-soprano Beth Lytwynec, a finalist in the 2011 NY Lyric Opera Theatre Competition, and a National Semi-Finalist in the 2010 Classical Singer Competition, is making her New York Lyric Opera Theatre debut singing the role of Maddalena in Verdi’s Rigoletto. Ms. Lytwynec has portrayed the role of Jo March in Boston Opera Collaborative’s production of Little Women, Romeo in I Capuleti e i Montecchi, the title role of Serse, Mme. de la Haltière in Cendrillon, Marcellina in Le Nozze di Figaro, Mrs. Grose in The Turn of the Screw, Dido in Dido and Aeneas, and Lampito in Lysistrata.

 

MEREDITH MECUM

Soprano, Meredith Mecum has been awarded Second Place in the Ades Vocal Competition at Manhattan School of Music, and an Encouragement Award from the Gerda Lissner Foundation Competition.   She covered the role of Donna Anna in Don Giovanni as a Young Artist with Ash Lawn Opera, appeared as Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus with Martina Arroyo’s Prelude to Performance, and as Rose Segal in the New York premiere of John Musto's Later the Same Evening at Manhattan School of Music.  Upcoming performances include Soprano Soloist in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with Williamsport Symphony Orchestra and Berta in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Opera New Jersey.

 

MONICA PASQUINI

Monica Pasquini, coloratura soprano, is currently a studio artist with Center City Opera Theater in Philadelphia where she is singing the roles of Francesca in the North American premiere of The Shops, Norina in Don Pasquale and Despina in Cosi fan tutte. She has performed in numerous operatic roles, including:  Belinda in Dido & Aeneas, Tytania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Ruth Baldwin in the southeastern premiere of John Musto’s Later the Same Evening, The Queen of the Night in The Magic Flute and Madame Herz in Der Schauspieldirektor. Monica holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Rollins College and a Master of Music degree from Florida State University.

 

RICARDO RIVERA

Baritone, Ricardo Rivera has performed Ford in Falstaff and Don Alfonso in Cosi Fan Tutte with the Mannes Opera, Moralès in Carmen and Fiorello in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Opera North, and L'horloge comtoise and Le chat in L'Enfant et les Sortièges and Roderick in La chute de la maison Usher (Debussy) with Pocket Opera of NY. He has won awards from the Gerda Lissner, Licia Albanese-Puccini, Opera Index, Career Bridges, and MONC Competitions, and was a recipient of the Richard F. Gold Career Grant. He is currently completing his Professional Studies Diploma at the Mannes College of Music.

 

SHANNA SPIRO

Shanna Spiro completed her Bachelors degree at SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music in May 2008 where she graduated summa cum laude.  Her roles include Juno, Fiordiligi, Nutrice ,The Countess  (scenes), Gretel (scenes).  Ms. Spiro recently performed as Dorothée, The Dew Fairy, Micaëla (scenes), and Countess Ceprano with the New York Lyric Opera Theatre. Competition winnings include: Finalist for the New York Lyric Opera Theatre Vocal Competition in 2010.  This summer, Ms. Spiro will be attending BASOTI in San Francisco, California, where she will be performing the role of Dido in Dido and Aeneas.

 

JONATHAN WINELL

Jonathan Winell, a New York City born tenor, graduated from The Hartt School of Music, 2007, and attended AVA where he studied with Bill Schuman.  He has been the student of Doris Jung Popper since 2002.  Among roles performed are Camille in The Merry Widow, Nadir in Les Pêcheurs de Perles, Lord Percy in Anna Bolena and Tamino in Die Zauberflöte.  Mr. Winell spends summers in Florence, Italy, studying Italian and voice. He has sung in a number of opera concerts and has been a winner of several competitions and awards, both here and in Italy.  He was Ernesto (cover) in Don Pasquale for the Opera New Jersey Young Artists Summer Program. 

 

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2010

Vocal Competition

Winners

 

 

Division I

1st Place   Jennifer Feinstein

2nd Place   Rebecca Fay

3rd Place   J'nai Bridges

Audience Choice Award  Angela Gribble


Division II

1st Place   Sei Hee Lee

2nd Place   Yungee Rhie

3rd Place    Sarah Joy Miller

Audience Choice Award   Jin-won Park

 

 

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