2017 Season Launch Event

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Soprano Emily Misch

A coloratura soprano praised for her "scintillating precision" (Opera News), Emily Misch is establishing herself as a clear-voiced, versatile, and intelligent performer. Her 2017-2018 season includes Leah in Joel Mandelbaum's The Dybbuk at Queens College and the Kaufman Music Center, Exsultate, jubilate, K. 165 with the Greenville Symphony Orchestra, Giuditta in the Academy of Sacred Drama's reading of Domenico Freschi's Giuditta, and the soprano solo in Carmina Burana with Altoona Symphony Orchestra.

Recent engagements include the Ravinia Festival's Steans Music Institute (Vocal Fellow), Kate Alterman in The Triangle Fire at New York University, and concert debuts in Mahler's Symphony No. 8 (Mater Gloriosa) with Berkshire Choral International and Carmina Burana with Westchester Choral Society and Huntington Choral Society. Her 2015-2016 season included debuts with Opera in Williamsburg as Zerlina in Don Giovanni and Opera on the Avalon as Le feu, La princesse, and Le rossignol in L'enfant et les sortilèges. She is a recent graduate of Mannes College of Music, where she was heard as the Controller in the New York premiere of Jonathan Dove's Flight and Lucia in The Rape of Lucretia.

oncert performances include Respighi's Deità silvane (Ravinia's Steans Music Institute), Schoenberg's Pierrot lunaire (Neue Galerie New York), Joseph Schwantner's Two Poems of Agueda Pizarro (Weill Recital Hall), Benjamin Britten's Les illuminations (Garden City Chamber Music Society), and premieres of works by Joel Mandelbaum, Wendy Griffiths, and Joseph Hallman. She was a featured soloist on the New York City Opera gala in honor of Julius Rudel alongside Fredericka Von Stade, Christine Goerke, Placido Domingo, and others.

A 2017 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Eastern Region finalist, she has also been awarded prizes from the Schuyler Foundation for Career Bridges, the Gerda Lissner Foundation in association with the Liederkranz Foundation, Mannes College, and Yale University, and has participated in young artist training programs at Wolf Trap Opera Company, Opera North (NH), and Opera on the Avalon. She received a BA in Music from Yale University, where she graduated magna cum laude.


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Soprano Felicia Moore

Though in the early stages of her career, American soprano Felicia Moore is being recognized as a powerful and innovative emerging artist. Ms. Moore has already gained recognition through competitions and her work in various houses in the United States. She is currently an Artist Diploma in Opera Studies candidate at The Juilliard School. This season sees Ms. Moore as Mrs. Grose in Britten's The Turn of the Screw at Opera Columbus in a new Stephen Wadsworth production. She will then return to NYC for her last year at Juilliard and workshop selections of Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin with Maestro Alan Gilbert and the Juilliard Orchestra Lab. The end of the Juilliard season will feature Ms. Moore in Juilliard's Commencement Concert at Alice Tully Hall in Beethoven's "Ah! perfido" with Maestro Speranza Scappucci and the Juilliard Orchestra. 

Last season, she performed as the title role in Juilliard Opera's production of Janáček's Katya Kabanova with Maestro Anne Manson in Peter Jay Sharp Theater. She spent the summer in San Francisco as a participant in the Merola Opera Program, performing in the Schwabacher Summer Concert as Agathe from Der Freischütz, and Elisabeth in Tannhäuser in the Merola Grand Finale on the stage of the San Francisco Opera. Before heading to the West coast, she was Soprano Soloist in Rossini's "Stabat Mater" with the Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle in North Carolina. Other recent performances include her Alice Tully Hall debut at Juilliard's Wednesdays at One Series, performances of Mozart's "Ch'io mi scordi di te?" with Maestro Gary Thor Wedow and The Juilliard Orchestra, and workshopping Strauss' "Vier letzte Lieder" with Maestro Alan Gilbert and the Juilliard Orchestra Lab.

Ms. Moore recently completed a residency at Portland Opera for their 2015-2016 season, performing the role of First Lady in The Magic Flute with costume and sets by Maurice Sendak. Following her time in Portland, she was an Apprentice Artist at Des Moines Metro Opera for their 44th Season, covering Alice Ford in Falstaff, and performing scenes from Un ballo in maschera and Fidelio.  She then traveled to Chicago to participate in Ravinia Festival's Steans Institute as a Vocal Fellow.

Ms. Moore was a Gerdine Young Artist with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis their 2014 and 2015 seasons. She performed the role of Harriet Mosher in Tobias Picker's Emmeline, and covered Joyce El-Khoury in the title role. As a 2014 Gerdine Young Artist she covered internationally known soprano Christine Brewer as Madame Lidoine in Dialogues of the Carmelites, and covered First Lady in The Magic Flute. Directly following her time in St. Louis in 2014, she traveled to North Carolina to work with the Swannanoa Chamber Festival, performing Barber's Knoxville: Summer of 1915. 

In competitions, Ms. Moore has been very successful. She was recognized in 2013 and 2016, as a National Semi-Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions. In 2013 she was also awarded as a top prize winner of the George London Competition. She also received encouragement awards that same year from The Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation and Opera Index, as well as The Robert Lauch Award from the Wagner Society of NY. In 2015, she received a Grant from The Gerda Lissner Foundation and a Career Development Grant from The William Matheus Sullivan Foundation. In March 2016 she was a Finalist in Fort Worth Opera's McCammon Voice Competition. She was a Grant Winner in The Gerda Lissner Lieder/Song Competition in the fall of 2016.  

In April of 2013, Ms. Moore made her solo debut at Carnegie Hall with The Cecilia Chorus of NY and Maestro Mark Shapiro performing the NY Premiere of Ethel Smyth’s Mass in G, as well as scenes from Tchaikovsky’s The Maid of Orleans. In the summer of 2013, she was a Marcello Giordani Young Artist with the Crested Butte Music Festival, covering Der Trommler in Der Kaiser von Atlantis and performing scenes from LohengrinDon Giovanniand Idomeneo

Ms. Moore completed her Artist Diploma in May 2015 and her Master's Degree in May 2013, both from Mannes College The New School for Music. She had great success in her work with Mannes Opera. As a Mannes Young Artist she has performed the title role in Suor Angelica, Nella in Gianni Schicchi, Madama Cortese in Il viaggio a Reims and Female Chorus in The Rape of Lucretia, all with Maestro Joseph Colaneri. In addition to those roles, she has performed scenes from Ariadne auf NaxosAlbert HerringGuillaume TellIphigénie en AulideDialogues of the Carmelites and Der Rosenkavalier at Mannes. She has received The Richard F. Gold Career Grant and The Michael Sisca Memorial Opera Award at both Mannes Recognition Ceremonies. 

Other previous engagements include performances with Nevada Opera as The Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors. Ms. Moore is a graduate of Westminster Choir College, and made her professional debut with the Spoleto Festival USA as a Fate in the American premiere of Proserpina. She has attended numerous admired summer programs, such as International Vocal Arts InstituteInstitute for Young Dramatic Voices and OperaWorks.


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Mezzo-Soprano Emily D'Angelo

Emily D’Angelo is a member of the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program at the MET. The young mezzo-soprano studied Voice Performance at the University of Toronto until 2016. Emily has been appearing on stage since 2014: She appeared as Nerone in L’incoronazione di Poppea at the Centre for Opera Studies in Italy. At the Halifax Summer Opera Festival she played the role of Sesto in Giulio Cesare. From 2015 to 2016 the Italian-Canadian singer was a Fellow of the Ravinia Steans Institute in Chicago. She performed in the role of Cherubino in The Marriage of Figaro at the Spoleto Festival di Due Mondi and in 2016 became an ensemble member of the Canadian Opera Company. There she sang the role of the Second Lady in The Magic Flute and the title role in Ariodante. In summer 2017 she made her debut at the Opera Theatre Saint-Louis as Annio in La clemenza di Titoand appeared as Rosina in The Barber of Seville at the Glimmerglass Festival. Emily has already demonstrated her talent in a number of international competitions: In 2016 she won the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, and in 2017 she was a prize winner in the Gerda Lissner International Competition.


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Soprano Heather Bobeck

Heather Bobeck is a NYC artist currently nurturing her talents as a freelance singer and was honored in 2017 to have been selected as a winner of The Milton Cross award performing Verdi's Sempre Libera, as well as a New York district winner in this year’s Metropolitan Opera National Council competition. She was previously the recipient of the prestigious Mary Ann and Spencer Everett Scholarship in Voice, as well as the Choir Scholarship at the Little Chapel on the Boardwalk. As the winner of the Richard Deas Concerto Competition, Ms. Bobeck sang Johann Strauss’ Fruhlingsstimmen with the Wilmington Symphony Orchestra February 2012.

Her most recent performances include: Der Königen from Mozart's Die Zauberflöte with Opera Theatre of Montclair and Manhattan Opera Studio; Valencienne/Natalie in Merry Widow in the Continuo Arts Foundation Young Artist Program, 2017, and in the debut performance with Opera Wilmington, 2014; Alcina in Handel's Alcina with Opera Rox Productions; Musetta in Puccini's La Boheme with ONLI; and Sandman from Humperdink’s Hansel and Gretel with the Manhattan Opera Studio. She has also recently covered Gianetta in North Shore Music Festival’s The Elixir of Love, the Cockerel for New Opera NYC’s Zolotoy Petushok (The Golden Cockerel), Gretel from Hansel and Gretel with the Manhattan Opera Studio.  

Additionally, she has sung as soprano soloist in chamber performances of Schubert’s Mass in G, Bach’s St. John’s Passion with the North Carolina Baroque Orchestra; Mozart’s Exultate Jubilate K.165; and participated in the Laudate Dominum Conference in St. Polten, Austria, under the direction of Dr. Wolfgang Reisinger. She looks forward to more frequent visits to Vienna, Austria to study under the tutelage of soprano Ursula Langmyr.


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Bass-Baritone Lawson Anderson

Hailed for his “powerful, darkly-hued voice" and "nobility of phrasing and carriage” (Cleveland Classical), Lawson Anderson is quickly establishing himself as one of the leading bass-baritones of his generation.  A former management consultant with an MBA from Columbia Business School, Lawson has made waves in the opera world coming off of a First Prize award from the Gerda Lissner Foundation’s International Vocal Competition; his Carnegie Hall debut singing Wotan from das Rheingold; his 2017 Opera Index Top Prize Arthur E. Walters Memorial Award; representing the USA as a Finalist of the 2017 Hans Gabor Belvedere finals in Moscow;  a Grand Finalist and Winner of the 2017 Anita Cerquetti Voice Competition; a 2017 Grant Winner from the Giulio Gari Foundation; a 2017 Eastern Region Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and triumphant runs in the title roles of Don Giovanni with the Cleveland Opera and Le nozze di Figaro with the Berlin Opera Festival.  Upcoming engagements take Lawson back to Italy to perform as bass soloist in Verdi’s Requiem, to Atlanta as bass soloist in Handel's Messiah, and to NYC in 2018 to make his debut as Méphistophélès in Gounod's Faust.  Lawson is a native of Atlanta, Georgia and currently resides in Manhattan.


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Soprano Anna Dugan

Anna Dugan, a “pliant soprano, as powerful in her chesty low register as in her creamy middle and top” (Opera News), was recently critically acclaimed for her performance as the Marquise de Merteuil in Conrad Susa’s The Dangerous Liaisons, which was recorded commercially for the first time by Albany Records. This past summer, she performed Violetta in La traviata with the Aspen Opera Center.

Previous credits include the soprano solo in Dvorak’s Stabat Mater with Maestro David Rosenmeyer and the Fairfield County Chorale, Magda de Civry cover in Puccini’s La rondine as a Gerdine Young Artist at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, and First Sorceress in Ernest Bloch’s Macbeth. She has performed scenes from Così fan tutte (Fiordiligi) and Don Giovanni (Donna Elvira) with orchestra, under the baton of Maestro Stephen Lord. She recently workshopped and performed multiple scenes from Michael Dellaira and J.D. McClatchy’s opera The Leopard, based on the famous novel of the same name, with American Opera Projects. 

Ms. Dugan was a National Semi-finalist in the 2017 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, a 2016 recipient of the Richard F. Gold Career Grant from the Shoshana Foundation, and a finalist in the 2016 New York District of the Paris Opera Competition. She won the Eisenberg-Fried Concerto Competition last year, with Barber’s “Andromache’s Farewell,” for soprano and orchestra, which she performed last October with Maestro George Manahan and the MSM Chamber Sinfonia.

Ms. Dugan has a Bachelor’s degree from Columbia University in European History and Music, was a participant in its Joint Exchange with the Juilliard School, studying Classical Vocal Performance. She also has a Master’s Degree from Manhattan School of Music, and currently studies with Ruth Golden.


Ken Benson


Ken Benson is one of the leading managers for opera singers, including 25 years as Vice-President of Columbia Artists Management, Inc.,where his artists included Thomas Hampson, Aprile Millo,, Jerry Hadley, Florence Quivar, Susanne Mentzer, Marcello Giordani and Jamie Barton. He is Vocal consultant at Juilliard School of Music, and he regularly gives classes and consultations at Yale, UCLA, Mannes, Manhattan School of Music, Boston Conservatory, DePaul, Roosevelt and Indiana Universities. He also offers private consultations. Mr. Benson is invited to serve as adjudicator for the Metropolitan Opera National Council's auditions, as well as to judge in most of the major vocal competitions throughout the US. Frequently, he lectures on operatic subjects, includes a series of talks on Wagner's "Ring" at the Metropolitan Opera House. He is also heard as frequent Host and panelist on the Metropolitan Opera broadcast's Opera quiz. As a writer, he regularly contributes to such publications as Opera News and Classical Singer magazine. He has recently returned to Artists Management, representing a select group of the most talented singers from the emerging generation.


Pianist Doug Martin

Mr. Martin conducts Fledermaus this Holiday season   for Amore Opera.  Last season Maestro Martin conducted a gala at Amore which featured Met singers Francisco Casanova and Aprile Millo. 

Mr. Martin has treasured an association of almost 20 years with the astounding Eve Queler who will celebrate her 50th year with Opera Orchestra of New York this coming season.

Mr. Martin is one of the not many people who can say they've conducted 100 performances of Puccini’s La Boheme.  Doug was one of two conductors of Baz Luhrmann’s La Boheme on Broadway.  The  opera was sung without cuts in Italian with 28 piece orchestras in San Francisco, New York, and Los Angeles.

Mr. Martin has a Performer’s Certificate in piano from SUNY Fredonia, and a Masters of Music degree in piano performance from University of Indiana Bloomington -  where he worked extensively with Virginia Zeani, and John Wustman.  

As an Associate Instructor at IU - he coached productions including Wozzeck, and Love for Three Oranges; while attending classes alongside Gayletha Nichols!    


Met Opera Auditions Yield a Young Star

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Met Opera Auditions Yield a Young Star: Aryeh Nussbaum Cohen

By ZACHARY WOOLFEMARCH 20, 2017

Aryeh Nussbaum Cohen - Credit Richard Termine for The New York Times

Aryeh Nussbaum Cohen - Credit Richard Termine for The New York Times

There were several good singers onstage Sunday afternoon at the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Auditions Grand Finals concert, a venerable tryout for future stars. (Renée Fleming, the event’s host, was a winner in 1988, on her third attempt.)

But there was only one complete artist. At just 23, Aryeh Nussbaum Cohen, a baby-faced countertenor from Brooklyn, already possesses a remarkable gift for intimate communication in a vast hall, combined with a voice of velvety gentleness — surprisingly penetrating given the tenderness of its texture — and a taste for adventure.

In a competition that hews toward the standards, Mr. Cohen chose a harrowing aria from Jonathan Dove’s 1998 opera “Flight,” based on the true story of an Iranian refugee stranded for years in a Paris airport. While most young performers in the National Council Auditions concentrate simply on nailing their high notes, Mr. Cohen — his diction superb, his acting alert without overplaying — provided an eloquent reflection on a current international crisis.

But he is no contemporary specialist. Twenty-first-century singers, like 21st-century instrumentalists and orchestras, are rightly expected to range widely as well as deeply. For his second selection (the nine finalists each picked two pieces to perform with the Met orchestra, conducted by Nicola Luisotti), Mr. Cohen balanced the aria from “Flight” with “Dove sei,” an aching lament from Handel’s “Rodelinda” (1725). Expressive yet dignified, his phrasing confident and his ornamentation stylishly discreet, he brought tears to my eyes.

Mr. Cohen was deservedly named one of the competition’s six winners, but he stood clearly apart from the pack. Not that there weren’t other talents on offer. I appreciated Samantha Hankey’s mellow mezzo-soprano; the budding heldentenor Kyle van Schoonhoven’s steady, burnished sound; the soprano Kirsten MacKinnon’s liveliness. Vanessa Vasquez impressed merely by acquitting herself in two of opera’s most recognizable soprano hits, “Un bel dì” from “Madama Butterfly” (here nicely dreamy) and “Sempre libera” from “La Traviata.” Richard Smagur offered old-fashioned poise, verging on staidness, in tenor arias from “Carmen” and “Werther.”

Samantha Hankey - Credit: Richard Termine for The New York Times 

Samantha Hankey - Credit: Richard Termine for The New York Times 

Even the three finalists not named winners were pleasing. Natalie Image’s soprano was notable for its pristine high notes, Gabriella Reyes de Ramírez’s for its generosity. Cody Quattlebaum, his bass-baritone voice more restrained than his bicep-length mane of curly hair, was unusually low-key as Mozart’s Figaro and Gounod’s Méphistophélès.

But there was only one singer who could plausibly stand with the voluptuous-voiced Jamie Barton, the commanding Amber Wagner and the impassioned Michael Fabiano — the distinguished previous winners who performed while the judges deliberated. Mr. Cohen is ready.

District Auditions Results 2016

District Winners and moving on to the Region Finals on January 18th:

Mary Claire Curran
Michael Gracco
Lawson Anderson
Betsy Diaz
Samantha Hankey
Aryeh Nussbaum Cohen
Cody Quattlebaum
Emily Misch
Anna Dugan
Julie Wolcott
Jonathan Tetelman
Heather Bobeck

Encouragement Winners:

Alaysha Fox
Yesul Yeon
Kirsten Scott
Derrell Acon

Congratulations to everyone 👏🏻