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ALT Alumni: Composers & Librettists in Concert
April 23, 2017 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
American Lyric Theater
and The Morgan Library & Museum
ALT Alumni: Composers & Librettists in Concert
Excerpts from JFK, After the Storm, Steal a Pencil for Me,
and The Copper Queen
Featuring Jessica Jones, Caroline Worra, Heather Johnson, Laura Krumm, Spencer Viator, Gideon Dabi, and Joseph Lattanzi,
with music director Djordje Nesic
Sunday, April 23, 2017 at 3pm
American Lyric Theater (ALT) and The Morgan Library & Museum present ALT Alumni: Composers & Librettists in Concert on Sunday, April 23, 2017 at 3pm at The Morgan Library & Museum in the Gilder Lehrman Hall, 225 Madison Avenue, NYC.
Tickets are $25 ($20 for members of the Morgan) and are available at 212-685-0008, x560 or http://purchase.tickets.com/buy/TicketPurchase?orgid=24379&pid=8293573.
This concert celebrates the success of prominent alumni of American Lyric Theater’s innovative Composer Librettist Development Program. Excerpts from recently premiered operas and works in development, will be featured on the program:
David T. Little and Royce Vavrek*
Co-commissioned by Fort Worth Opera, American Lyric Theater, and Opéra de Montréal. Premiered April 2016 at Fort Worth Opera; up next at Opéra de Montréal in January 2018
After the Storm
David Hanlon and Stephanie Fleischmann*
Commissioned by HGOco, Houston Grand Opera. Premiered May 2016 by HGOco, Houston Grand Opera
Steal a Pencil for Me
Gerald Cohen* and Deborah Brevoort*
Featured in the 2016 Frontiers Festival at Fort Worth Opera. World Premiere scheduled for January 2018 at Opera Colorado
The Copper Queen
Clint Borzoni* and John de los Santos
Winner of Arizona SPARK, a commission competition at Arizona Opera
(*Denotes an alum of the Composer Librettist Development Program)
Featured guest artists include soprano Jessica Jones, soprano Caroline Worra, mezzo soprano Heather Johnson, mezzo soprano Laura Krumm, tenor Spencer Viator, baritone Gideon Dabi, and baritone Joseph Lattanzi, led by music director Djordje Nesic.
“These concerts [are] so valuable for city-bound fans of inventive new work that pushes the art form forward.” – Opera News (Henry Wallace)
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Baritone Gideon Dabi continues to receive great acclaim delivering “powerfully felt, beautifully performed and articulated” performances across a wide array of genres and styles. His “earnest interpretations” have thrilled audiences from his home State Theater in New Brunswick, NJ, through the Music Festival of the Hamptons working with Norman Dello Joio, to Israel, Italy, and back again. This season, Gideon joined Sarasota Opera for their production of La Bohème (Schaunard) and Ash Lawn Opera for Amahl and the Night Visitors. In 2016, he returns to Sarasota Opera for a role debut of Dr. Malatesta in Don Pasquale and to Ash LawnOpera for Amahl and the Night Visitors and to sing the role of Sir James in the east coast premiere of Middlemarch in Spring. In the 2017-18 season he makes his debut with Opera Colorado in the world premiere of Gerald Cohen’s Steal a Pencil For Me.
Hailed by Opera News as “a dramatic singer in the truest sense,” mezzo soprano Heather Johnson made her Metropolitan Opera debut in 2013 as the Flower Maiden in the new production of Parsifal. This season she sang the title role in Rossini’s Tancredi with Baltimore Concert Opera and Opera Southwest, Baba the Turk in The Rake’s Progress with Boston Lyric Opera. Also, at the Library of Congress, she performed the world premiere of Fierce Grace: Jeannette Rankin, a song cycle commissioned by OPERA America and written by Ellen Reid, Kitty Brazelton, Laura Kaminsky and Laura Karpman. She has appeared with Dallas Opera, Minnesota Orchestra, Sarasota Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Opera Saratoga, Opera Orchestra of New York, Virginia Opera, Madison Opera, Nashville Opera, PORTOpera, and the New York City Opera where she was the 2006 recipient of the prestigious Stanley Tausend Award. Upcoming performances include Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo with Chautauqua Opera, returning to the Metropolitan Opera for their productions of Parisfal and Luisa Miller and Dinah in Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti with Boston Lyric Opera.
Jessica E. Jones is quickly establishing herself as a leading American soprano. As an interpreter of American Opera she has been in high demand. She will sing in the world premiere of The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs as Chrisann Brennan with Santa Fe Opera this summer, has workshopped Veronica in Roscoe by Evan Mack, and portrayed Lightfoot McLendon in Floyd’s Cold Sassy Tree, Lulu in Elmer Gantry, and Rosasharn in The Grapes of Wrath. Her other roles include Lucia in Lucia di Lammermoor, Elvira in L’italiana in Algeri, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus, Desdemona in Rossini’s Otello, Adina in L’elisir d’amore, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, The Governess in The Turn of the Screw, and Beatrice in Daniel Catán’s Il Postino. She has performed with Santa Fe Opera, Sarasota Opera, Utah Opera, Utah Symphony, Opera Idaho, Opera Saratoga, Opera in the Heights, Sugar Creek Symphony & Song, and Crested Butte Music Festival.
Praised for her “exceptionally beautiful mezzo” Iowa native Laura Krumm is a 2013 graduate of the prestigious Adler Fellowship of the San Francisco Opera. In 2016-17, Laura looks forward to a return to San Francisco Opera as Javotte in Manon and a Maid in Elektra, as well as role and company debuts performing Zerlina (Don Giovanni) for Nashville Opera, Mrs. Webb (Our Town) with Townsend Opera, and Meg in Mark Adamo’s Little Women for Michigan Opera Theater. Last season, Laura made a return to the Lyric Opera of Chicago to cover Angelina in La Cenerentola and a role debut of Sister Helen Prejean (Dead Man Walking) for Townsend Opera.
A 2017 Sullivan Foundation Award recipient, baritone Joseph Lattanziestablished himself as a young singer to watch with his portrayal of Hawkins Fuller in the world premiere of Greg Spears’ Fellow Travelers with Cincinnati Opera. The New York Times said “Jospeh Lattanzi was splendid as Hawk, his buttery baritone luxuriant and robust.” and Opera News described him as a “confident, handsome presence, and a resonant baritone suggesting wells of feeling that the character might prefer to leave untapped.” Currently, he is a member of the Arizona Opera Studio where his performances include Yamadori in Madama Butterfly, Dandini in La Cenerentola, and the Gamekeeper in Rusalka. He also returns to Seattle Opera as Kuligin in Katya Kabanová. Equally at home in standard and new repertoire, Lattanzi has created roles in workshops of operas by Gregory Spears (Fellow Travelers), Jake Heggie (Great Scott), Daniel Catán (Meet John Doe), and Clint Borzoni (The Copper Queen).
Spencer Viator is a native of Cincinnati, Ohio. He attended the College Conservatory of Music (CCM) in Cincinnati for both his undergraduate and graduate degrees. During his time at CCM he had the pleasure to of performing a multitude of roles including Don Ramiro in La Cenerentola and King Ouf in L’Etoile. He was recently hailed for his “ringing and elegant tenor” by the New York Times for his return to LoftOpera as Ferrando in their production of Cosi fan Tutte. This past year he was a Beneson Young Artist with Palm Beach Opera where he sang Fernando in Goyescas, Offizier/Scarmuccio in Ariadne auf Naxos, and a family performance of Ernesto in Don Pasquale. He returns to Palm Beach to sing the role of Borsa in Rigoletto and to sing the family performance of Frederick in The Pirates of Penzance. In 2015 he helped premiere the role of Soldier Hyimie in Ricky Ian Gordon’s new opera Morning Star with Cincinnati Opera. He has been in many prestigious young artist programs including Des Moines Metro Opera’s Young Artist Program where he covered Fenton in Falstaff. He was also a two time Gerdine Young Artist at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. This summer Spencer debuts two new roles, Junior Mister in The Cradle Will Rock with Opera Saratoga and Tanzmeister/Brighella in Ariadne auf Naxos with The Berkshire Opera Festival.
Caroline Worra has been hailed by Opera News as “one of the finest singing actresses around.” She has sung over 75 different operatic roles including more than 20 World, American, and Regional Premieres. She was internationally acclaimed for her performances of Jenny in The Mines of Sulphur, Grammy nominated CD for Best Opera Recording, and as the title role for The Greater Good; Passion of Boule de Suif, Opera News and New York Times pick for one of the top classical CDs of the year. Her third full opera recording, Glory Denied, was released by Albany Records and is a Washington Post and Opera News pick for one of the top CDs of the year. Her fourth full opera CD Amleto, was recorded live by Naxos and is now available. Upcoming Engagements include Alice Ford in Falstaff with Opera Saratoga and Mathilde in Guillaume Tell with Baltimore Concert Opera and Opera Southwest.
Djordje Stevan Nesic’s pianism has been described as artful, assertive, sensitive and quietly virtuosic, and his career highlighted by recital, concerto, chamber, and collaborative performances, both in the US and his hometown of Belgrade, Serbia. Engagements in 2016 include performing as the piano collaborator for the annual Joyce DiDonato Carnegie Hall masterclasses, the annual recital for the George London Foundation, performance with mezzo Isabel Leonard for the Lincoln Center Great Performers Circle, teaching residency in Zagreb, Croatia, a gala concert for the 84th anniversary of Belgrade’s Kolarac Hall, and recitals for the Metropolitan Opera Guild. Other former activity includes appearances at Opera Saratoga, Asolo Theater in Sarasota, the Phoenicia Festival of the Voice, the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, and a live performance on A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor. Djordje is a roster member of the Arts Global Artistic Foundation. He lives in New York, and serves as full time special faculty for Vocal Coaching and Accompanying at the College of Fine Arts at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.
ABOUT AMERICAN LYRIC THEATER
Great Operas Don’t Just Happen. American Lyric Theater (ALT) was founded in 2005 by Lawrence Edelson to build a new body of operatic repertoire by nurturing composers and librettists, providing an incubator for their collaborations, and contributing new works to the national canon. Many opera companies commission and perform new works; but ALT is the only company in the United States that offers extensive, full-time mentorship for emerging operatic writers. While the traditional company model focuses on producing a season, ALT’s focus is on serving the needs of composers and librettists, developing new works, and collaborating with larger producing companies to help usher those works into the repertoire. In 2012, ALT was the first company dedicated to artist mentorship rather than operatic production to be recognized by OPERA America as a Professional Company Member – a testament to ALT’s service to the field. For more information about American Lyric Theater, please visit www.altnyc.org.
American Lyric Theater’s mentorship programs for composers and librettists are made possible by generous lead funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts; and additional support from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, The Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University, The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, The Amphion Foundation, The ASCAP Foundation Irving Caesar Fund, Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trusts, Friars Foundation, Howard Gilman Foundation, Howard & Sarah D. Solomon Foundation, New Music USA’s Impact Fund (made possible with funding from The Scherman Foundation’s Katharine S. and Axel G. Rosin Fund), and OPERA America / The Opera Fund.
ABOUT THE MORGAN LIBRARY & MUSEUM
A complex of buildings in the heart of New York City, the Morgan Library & Museum began as the private library of financier Pierpont Morgan, one of the preeminent collectors and cultural benefactors in the United States. Today it is a museum, independent research library, music venue, architectural landmark, and historic site. A century after its founding, the Morgan maintains a unique position in the cultural life of New York City and is considered one of its greatest treasures. With the 2006 reopening of its newly renovated campus, designed by renowned architect Renzo Piano, and the 2010 refurbishment of the original library, the Morgan reaffirmed its role as an important repository for the history, art, and literature of Western civilization from 4000 B.C. to the twenty-first century. For more information about concerts at The Morgan Library & Museum, please visit www.themorgan.org/programs/concerts.