Free Concert :: Opera IMPROV!
This is a one-of-a-kind, never-to-be-repeated afternoon of entirely improvised arias, duets, trios, and scenes complete with improvised accompaniment, and performed without any prepared or printed music. Audience suggestions and creative interactions are what sow the seeds for this truly spontaneous, newly minted concert. Come experience beautiful music, riotous laughter, and poignant drama as incredibly talented young singers break all the rules and preconceptions of what classical opera should be.
This concert is FREE to the public, as part of National Opera Week.
Time: 2:00-3:15ish p.m.
South Pasadena Public Library
1115 El Centro Street
South Pasadena, CA 91030
For information or to reserve a seat, contact Gila Levi at 818.898.9597, or by email.
October 26 - November 4, 2012
ncourages fun, free and accessible activities designed to invite the community to experience the joy of opera. Organized by OPERA America with support from the National Endownment for the Arts.
STEPHANIE ASTON is a committed performer of contemporary music. She has participated in several American and world premiers, including Luigi Nono’s Guai ai Gelidi Mostri, Michael Gordon’s What to Wear, and George Aperghis’ Sextuor: L’Origine des espèces. She has appeared on the L.A. Philharmonic Green Umbrella Series, CalArts Creative Music Festival, Et Cetera Festival of New Music, (Re)Sounds at Stanford University, and at REDCAT. Ms. Aston is an original member of the vocal ensemble Kallisti, and a founding member of the Walcott Sextet. She has also performed with Riverside Lyric Opera, Red Fish Blue Fish, the La Jolla Symphony and Chorus, the CalArts Orchestra, the New Century Players, 18-squared, and ad-hoc ensembles at the Norfolk Contemporary Music Festival, UC San Diego, Stanford University, and in Los Angeles. Noteworthy Performances include John Zorn’s Rituals, Phillipe Manoury’s Cruel Spirals, Jason Eckardt’s Tongues, John Adams’ A Flowering Tree (Kumudha), Edgard Varese’ Offrandes, Pascal Dusapin’s To Be Sung, Igor Stravinsky’s Les Noces, Alberto Ginastera’s Cantata Para America Magica, and Kueiju Lin’s Snow in June. Ms. Aston holds a D.M.A. from University of California San Diego, an M.F.A. from California Institute of the Arts, and a B.M. from University of North Texas.
Soprano NAN CUI recently graduated from California State University-Northridge, and will return this fall to sing the title role in Cendrillon. She has also performed the roles of Yum-Yum (The Mikado), Poppea (L’incoronazione di Poppea), and Despina (Così fan tutte).
MELINDA EHRLICH is described by the Long Beach Grunion Gazette as “astonishing, a large, gleaming soprano secure from top to bottom and thrilling to hear”. Her roles include Vitellia from Mozart's La clemenza di Tito, Mme. de la Haltiere in Massenet's Cendrillon, and Giulietta in >Les contes d’Hoffmann, and the title role in Suor Angelica with Intimate Opera'w Opera Fusion series in Pasadena.. For Long Beach Opera, she was in the West Coast staging of Osvaldo Golijov's Ainadamar. Most recently, Melinda made her international debut as the soprano soloist in Dvorak's Te Deum with the Orange County High School of the Arts choir and orchestra in England. In the Masters program at California State University-Long Beach, Melinda graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a degree in Peace and Conflict Studies and French from UC Berkeley. She has a background in marketing, journalism, and was the youngest founding member of the Lonely Planet Charitable Foundation. She was a 2010 OperaWorks Advanced Artist.
JON ELLIS, tenor, has brought his powerful tenor voice and dramatic presence to numerous concerts, operatic performances and solo recitals throughout the United States and Europe. Mr. Ellis has appeared in a wide variety of operatic roles including Cavaradossi in Tosca, Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus, and Don Ramiro in La Cenerentola. Mr. Ellis has enjoyed creating operatic improv with Ann Baltz for more than 25 years. He is a two-time OperaWorks alumnus.
Praised by Mark Swed as 'luminous', soprano KAREN HOGLE BROWN has appeared with numerous organizations including The LA Master Chorale, LA Opera, LA Phil, Long Beach Opera, and Opera a la Carte. Solo performances include Mabel (The Pirates of Penzance), Perichole (La Perichole), Symphony No. 4 (Schnittke), The Messiah, Magnificat (Bach), and many recordings including the soundtrack for Avatar. She is a 2012 OperaWorks Advanced Artist.
HARMONY YUNHUI JI is a lyric coloratura soprano born and raised in Shanghai, China. Harmony received her Masters degree in Voice Performance at California State University Northridge in 2011. Harmony performed as the title role of American Folk Opera the Ballad of Baby Doe by Douglas Moore as well as Gasparina in Haydn's La Canterina in 2010 with CSUN Opera Theatre. In 2009, Harmony played in Dido and Aeneas as the chorus soprano with the CSUN Opera Theatre. She also performed in Italy as a soloist in the summer program "International Lyric Academy" in 2010. Other experiences include performances in Austria, North Korea, South Korea, Hong Kong. She is a 2009 OperaWorks Emerging Artist alumna.
JON LEE KEENAN, tenor, currently resides in Los Angeles where he is pursuing a DMA in Vocal Arts at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music. Jon is currently in his sixth season with the LA Master Chorale, where he has been featured as a soloist in Haydn’s Maria Theresa Mass, Bach’s St. Matthew and St John Passions, and Handel’s Messiah where Jon was called “a tenor to watch” by Mark Swed of the LA Times. He earned 3 undergraduate degrees from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas: in vocal performance, music education, and in jazz studies, and he earned a MM in Vocal Arts from USC in 2009. Recent operatic engagements include the role of ”Monostatos” in Mozart’s The Magic Flute, “Lechmere” in the West Coast premiere of Britten’sOwen Wingrave, “Il Podesta” in Mozart’s La Finta Giardiniera, and“Antonio” in Wagner’s Das Liebesverbot with the Thornton Opera at USC. Recent engagements include Bach’s Easter Oratorio with the American Bach Soloists in San Francisco and Monostatos with the Aspen Opera Theatre Center. Jon was a 2010 OperaWorks Advanced Artist.
Known for her "beautiful voice and equally beautiful presence (El Nuevo Herald)," ALINA ROITSTEIN has been seen as Pamina (The Magic Flute) and has appeared as a soloist with the Toomai String Quintet, with whom she will also sing in April for Carnegie Hall’s Neighborhood Concert Series. Alina is active in singing and performing new music, and last spring, she recorded an original collaboration at Capitol Records on the 23rd annual CalArts Jazz CD released by Capitol Records/EMI. Alina graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in Psychology, and is earning her Masters Degree in Vocal Arts from USC. She is a 2012 OPeraWorks Advanced Artist.