Marina Harris Wins George London-Leonie Rysanek Award

Alumna Marina Harris won the George London-Leonie Rysanek Award in New York last weekend. The George London Foundation holds one of the oldest vocal competitions in the United States and Canada, offering among the most substantial awards to outstanding North American opera singers.
In 2014 there were 5 top awards of $10,000 each.  Former George London winners include Renee Fleming, Shigemi Matsumoto, Eric Owens, and Dawn Upshaw.

Thor Steingraber to Head Valley Performing Arts Center

Thor Steingraber, director of the Fall Opera Scenes, was named the new Executive Director of the Valley Performing Arts Center at California State University, Northridge. Thor is a noted opera and theater director who earned his Bachelor’s degree in theater/drama from Indiana University and his Master’s in Public Administration from the Kennedy School at Harvard University.

Nicola Said at Valletta International Baroque Festival

Nicola Said performed “Scoglio d’immota fronte” from Handel’s Scipone and “Caro! Bella! Più amabile beltà” from Handel’s Giulio Cesare at the Valletta International Baroque Festival. She was accompanied by Les Bougies Baroques, an international vocal and period instrument ensemble, in the Throne Room of the Presidential Palace in Valletta

Nathan Stark in La Fille du Regiment

Alumnus Nathan Stark performed the role of Sergeant Sulpice in La Fille du Regiment at the Madison opera Feb 7 and 9, 2014.

He received several excellent reviews including, “With Nathan Stark as Sergeant Sulpice, the opening scene of Act 2 was simply a tour de force” from the Madison Magazine; “Tall and stocky veteran baritone Nathan Stark is ideal as the blustering but warm-hearted Sulpice.” from the Daily Isthmus; and “Mr. Stark… was clearly the most experienced of the three principals. Although more often than not tasked with portraying serious bass roles such as the Commendatore in Don Giovanni, Mr. Stark was perfectly charming as the oafish Sulpice, leader of the regiment that has raised Marie, and primary father figure to the lass.  He gave Sulpice his all, making him both believable and amusing. One wonders whether singing basso buffo roles might prove to be a gold mine for Mr. Stark. He was certainly very successful with this one!” from www.taminophile.com.

Nathan Stark in The Poe Project

Alumnus Nathan Stark will be singing with The Poe Project – Buried Alive & Embedded at North Dakota State University: Festival Concert Hall in Fargo in March.

Buried Alive (by composer Jeff Myers and librettistQuincy Long) and Embedded by composer Patrick Soluri and librettist Deborah Brevoort) were commissioned by American Lyric Theater in New York City in honor of the Poe Centennial in 2009. Rather than adapting Poe’s stories, to the stage, the writers were challenged with “What might Poe write if he were alive today?.”