As featured on Jeopardy quiz television show, Opera Company of Brooklyn’s (OCB) Original & Famous BYOB Opera Series: Enjoy drinks and top-flight opera singers in homes/unusual places. Always casual, no ties or gowns. Bring wine, soft drinks, food, etc. and we provide the cups, seltzer, water, fruit, raw nuts, different cheeses & crackers. After the show, receive one free drink at the Indian Road Cafe.
OCB’s Bring Your Own Beverage (BYOB) Opera Series returns to Inwood, Manhattan on Saturdays, 12/13, 12/20, 1/24. To protect the host, the exact address, near 218th Street & Indian Road, is announced to advance-ticket buyers via email one day before the event. New ticket specials: Adult=$35 each or two for $50. Students with ID=$25 or two for $40. Buy seats in advance for all operas at http://operabrooklynbyobopera.brownpapertickets.com. Seating is limited; all shows start at 7PM.
11/15, Auditions: Click on the date to schedule an audition.
12/13, 7PM, BYOB Opera Double-bill Feature: Menotti’s The Telephone & Amelia Goes to the Ball, (near 218th Street & Indian Road) Inwood, Manhattan, 10034, 1 train to W. 215th Street or A Train to W. 207th Street
Lucy, Kristen Charpentier (Aine Hakamatsuka)
Ben, Scott Thomas (Ben Bloomfield)
Pianist, Ming Kwong
Conductor, Jay Meetze
Amelia Goes to the Ball
Amelia, Meredith Mecum
The Husband, Ben Bloomfield
The Lover, Jon Olson
Amelia’s friend, Margaret O’Connell
Chief of Police, Jonathan Dauermann
First and Second Maids, Caitlin Mead, Aine Hakamatsuka
Pianist, Ming Kwong
Conductor, Jay Meetze
12/20, 7PM, BYOB Opera, La Fille du Régiment, BYOB in Inwood
Marie, Heidi Sauser (Caitlin Mead, Aine Hakamatsuka, Winnie Nieh, Kristin Young)
Tonio, Luke Grooms, (Brent Turner, Jonathan Brinson, David Perper)
Sulplice, Ivan Amaro
Marquise of Birkenfeld, Helena Brown
Duchess of Crakenthorp, Adriana Lee
Hortensio, Scott Thomas
Peasant, Jonathan Brinson
Pianist, Ming Kwong
Pianist Cover, TBA
Conductor, Jay Meetze
1/24, 7PM, Attila, BYOB Opera in Inwood
Odabella, Eudora Brown (Jody Doktor)
Foresto, Luke Grooms (Byron Singleton)
Ezio, Joseph Flaxman (Gerald Yarbray)
Attila, Matthew Burns
Uldino, Jon Olson
Leone, Scott Tomlinson (Jonathan Dauermann)
Pianist, Ming Kwong
Conductor, Jay Meetze
Ilia, Caitlin Mead (Kristen Charpentier, Rachel Hippert, Kristin Young)
Electra, Rachel Hippert (Noelle Banks, Alexis Cregger)
Idamante, Francesca Erni (Melissa Serluco)
Idomeneo, Brent Turner (Christopher Eaglin, Jon Thomas Olson)
Arbace, Gerald Yarbray (Joseph Flaxman)
High Priest, Byron Singleton (Jon Thomas Olson)
Voice of Neptune, Scott Tomlinson
Conductor, Jay Meetze
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VOLUNTEER OR INTERN WITH US
The Opera Company of Brooklyn is a grassroots organization consisting of disciplined professionals and students who donate time, resources and talents for an exciting company. All volunteers receive free admission to all shows and first priority to purchase extra seats. While the pay is pure gratitude, the rewards of getting involved on the ground-floor are great! Work in consultation with the Artistic Director and other key constituents. College credit is available.
Please submit cover letter and resume.
Coordinate and facilitate the artistic and administrative elements of OCB. Provide leadership, direction and follow-through for designated projects, completed on time, on budget, and to our high standard.
Participate in the financial development of the organization, such as planned giving, prospect research, donor/audience cultivation and grant writing. Organize and strategize the long-range financial planning for the company.
Lead marketing efforts with audience building strategies, publicity, ticket sales and ongoing customer relations.
Education & Outreach
Provide support for our year-round educational tour. Liaise with public and private school officials, develop study guide materials to coincide with each new opera production, cultivate new relationships in the NYC metropolitan area.
Peruvian-born bass-baritone, Ivan Amaro, has been acclaimed by critics for his vibrant voice and his exceptional communication of the characters he performs. He has many opera roles to his credit: Rigoletto, Germont , Don Carlo, Il Conte di Luna, Ferrando, Sulpice, Enrico, Dulcamara, Count Almaviva, Figaro and Bartolo (both from Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Le Nozze di Figaro) , Don Magnifico, Bruschino Padre, Don Pasquale, Slook, Tobia Mill, Marcello, Benoit/Alcidoro, Tonio, Leporello, Papageno, Don Alfonso, Crespel , Elviro, Salieri, Chorazy, Mr. Gobineau, Pizarro, and Sancho Panza, among many others, totaling more than 80 roles, including also operetta, zarzuela, and oratorio ones. Mr. Amaro is also an archaeologist and archaeomusicologist with published works.
Noelle Banks is a Full Lyric Soprano who holds a B.F.A. in Vocal Performance from Carnegie Mellon University and a M.M. in Voice from the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music. Her performance credits include Susannah (Susannah), First Lady (Die Zauberflöte), Mother (Amahl and the Night Visitors) and Sr. Blanche (Dialogues of the Carmelites). She has sung with the Pittsburgh Opera, Opera Theatre of Pittsburgh, Cincinnati Opera and Des Moines Metro Opera. Noelle most recently performed the role of Countess Almaviva in New York Lyric Opera’s performance of Le Nozze di Figaro.
Sarah Beckham-Turner is a Texas native soprano who recently sang Pamina in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with Opera Saratoga where she was praised as being “soaring and lovely” and “stealing the stage.” Sarah has performed Josephine in H.MS. Pinafore and Anna Gomez in The Consul with Opera New Jersey, Fiordiligi in Cosi fan Tutte and Desdemona in Rossini’s Otello with Opera in the Heights, Fiordiligi in Cosi fan Tutte and Elena in The Italian Straw Hat with Amarillo Opera, Fiordiligi with Asheville Lyric Opera, and Frasquita in Carmen with Lyric Opera Virgina. Other companies with whom she has performed include Opera North, Center City Opera Theater of Philadelphia, Sarasota Opera, Florida Opera Theater, Lake George Opera, and Boston Concert Opera.
Baritone Benjamin Bloomfield has understudied roles at both the Met(Lewitsky, Boris Goudonov) and NY City Opera(Baron Douphol, La Traviata). He spent the summer with Chautauqua Opera covering Sharpless in Madama Butterfly and Horace Tabor in the Ballad of Baby Doe, as well as singing Barney in the latter. In September he made his debut with DC Public Opera as Marcello in their new immersive production of La Boheme. In January he premiers Ben Weatherstaff in the new revision of Gasser’s The Secret Garden with Vermont’s Weston Opera Theatre. In the spring he will be travelling to Rochester, NY to perform Brahms’ Ein Deutches Requiem. For more information visitwww.benjaminbloomfield.com
Jonathan Coleman Brinson just returned from the Universita’ per Stranieri di Perugia in Italy where he has been studying and performing the past few months. He has been fortunate to star as Nemorino in Marcello Giordani Young Artist Program’s production of L’elisir d’amore in Colorado. While attending school at Georgia Southern University, Jonathan performed multiple roles such as Ferrando in Cosi Fan Tutte along with Donald in Douglas Moore’s Galantry. He has also performed Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni with the Sieur DuLuth Music festival in Minnesota, along with Alfred in Die Fledermaus in Arkansas. He currently resides in New York where he plans to move to Europe in the upcoming year.
Eudora Brown, soprano, will perform Berg’s “Sieben Fruhe Lieder” as well as the final scene from Salome in recital this September with pianist Jeffrey Swann and the Wagner Society of Washington DC. In December she will perform the role of Liu with Opera Hong Kong. She performed the soprano solo in Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy with the Boston Symphony Orchestra for the Tanglewood 75th Anniversary Celebration with Maestro David Zinman and pianist Peter Serkin. She recently participated in the American Wagner Project with Ms. Dolora Zajick. She has sung with conductors Seiji Ozawa, Robert Spano, Graeme Jenkins, Antony Walker, Kenneth Montgomery and Jane Glover and has performed with the Dallas Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Boston Lyric Opera, Opera Theater of Chicago, Washington Concert Opera and at the National Cathedral.
Mezzo-soprano, Helena Brown: Having a “stunningly large round sound,” (Voce di Meche) she recently made her Chautauqua Opera debut as the Aunt in Puccini’s Brescia version of Madam Butterfly. Other performing credits include Dritte Dame (Die Zauberflöte) at New York Opera Exchange; Witch (Hänsel und Gretel), Klementia in Hindemith’s rarely performed Sancta Susanna, Angel and Queen Jezebel (Elijah), in which she was acclaimed by the New York Times for having sung “attractively…especially in her duskier moments as Queen Jezebel,” and Madame Halitiere (Cendrillon), the Amato Opera-in-Brief – all at Manhattan School of Music. She has performed in festivals such as the Opera Studio of Richard Crittenden in Boston, where she sang La Zia Principessa (Suor Angelica), the International Vocal Arts Institute in Virginia, and Lied Austria International in Graz.
Declared as “having a beautiful bass-baritone voice” by the New York Times, Matthew Burns is a dynamic performer known for his unique portrayals of opera’s most acclaimed bass-baritone roles spanning the repertoire from dramatic roles to buffo roles, and everything in between. This season, Mr. Burns makes his Austin Lyric Opera début in the role of Leporello in Don Giovanni, which he will also sing at Opera Memphis, sings Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor at Fargo Moorehead Opera, performs in Wuthering Heights at Florentine Opera, and sings Rambaldo in La Rondine at Opera Theatre Saint Louis.
Soprano Kristen Charpentier has performed with Opera Providence in Pirates of Penzance and as a soloist for their holiday concert. She has studied roles from Idomeneo, Daughter of the Regiment, Cendrillon, Don Pasquale, and Little Women, among others. Ms. Charpentier has participated in the Crittenden Opera Workshop twice, the Coaching Diva’s Audition Workshop, the RI College Opera Workshop, and the New England Conservatory Summer Opera Studio. She was the soprano soloist for Masterwork Chorale’s Summer Sing of Brahm’s Requiem and she sings with the RI Civic Chorale and Orchestra. She is looking forward to reprising her role with Opera Providence this fall.
Katherine Corle performed the Contessa in Le nozze di Figaro with the Burgas Opera in Bulgaria, where she also covered the role of Mimì (La bohème). She sang the role of Frasquita and covered Micaëla in Carmen with the Hradec Kralove International Summer Opera Festival in the Czech Republic. She has appeared frequently with Light Opera of New York, including Gretchen in The Student Prince and covering Marianne in The New Moon. Other recent New York performances include Echo (Ariadne auf Naxos) and First Lady (Die Zauberflöte) with Manhattan Opera Studio, Fiordiligi (Così fan tutte) at the Metropolitan Opera Guild with Sing Through Central, and the title role in Suor Angelica with Trinity Opera. She received her B.F.A. with honors from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and studies voice with Dorothy Stone.
Alexis Cregger, Soprano -Ms. Cregger hails from Winchester, MA and currently resides in New York City. She has performed with OperaDelaware, Chelsea Opera, Regina Opera, Opera Manhattan, the Helena Symphony, the Blue Hill Troupe, the Atlantic Coast Opera Festival and the Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company in Buxton, England. Her roles include the Queen of the Night, Pamina, Baby Doe, Lucia di Lammermoor, Mimi & Musetta in La Bohème, and Rosalinda in Die Fledermaus. In October 2013 she was featured in the New York Times Arts section in relation to her performance as Queen of the Night in Amore Opera’s Das Labyrinth (Magic Flute II), an American Premiere.
Jonathan Dauermann is a rising performer whose singing career has already taken him around the world. This past summer, he made his Canadian debut with the Opera on the Avalon festival in St. John’s, Newfoundland as Theseus in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Later, he debuted with dell’Arte Opera Ensemble, appearing as Bardolf in Salieri’s Falstaff and covering Banco in Verdi’s Macbeth. Last season, he appeared with Regina Opera as Sparafucile in Rigoletto (where critics praised him as having “subterranean notes. His resonant basso… [was] perfect.”) and made debuts with Bronx Opera, Utopia Opera, and enCANTA Collective. For further information on Mr. Dauermann’s engagements, please visit www.jonathandauermann.com
Jody Doktor is a New Jersey based dramatic soprano, who performs frequently as a soloist and recitalist. This season, her recital repertoire featured all-Czech composers including the music of Dvořák, Janáček, Eben, and Kaprálová. Additionally, her opera credits include: Cio-Cio-San inMadama Butterfly, Lady Billows in Albert Herring, the Sorceress in Dido and Aeneas, Lady with Cake Box in Postcard from Morocco, Maria Callas in Jackie O, Savitri in Savitri, The Secretary inThe Consul, and the Mother in Amahl andthe Night Visitors. Doktor is currently working on the roles of Turandot (in Turandot) and Kostelnička (in Jenufa).
American soprano Stacy Dove is a versatile vocalist and powerful performer. This fall, Miss Dove joins the Metropolitan Opera Guild in their tour of Mozart’s The Magic Flute as First Lady and Papagena. She made her professional mainstage debut with Opera Roanoke as Zweite Dame in Die Zauberflöte, covering the role of Pamina. Additionally, Stacy has appeared with Nashville Opera, Opera Carolina, Greensboro Opera, Capital Opera Raleigh and at the Eastern Music Festival as Pamina (Die Zauberflöte) and Mercédès (Carmen – Cover), and in scenes as Musetta (La Bohème), Violetta (La Traviata), Norina (Don Pasquale) and Lauretta (Gianni Schicchi).
Christopher Eaglin most recently sang Vaudemont in Opera Slavica production of Iolanta in NYC praised for his “emotional vocalism”. He previously was part of the International Vocal Arts Festival performing Brahms Liebeslieder and scenes from Don Giovanni and Most Happy Fella. He has also sung Don Ottavio with CoOPERAtive Opera in NJ, Tamino with New York Opera Forum, and Steva from Jenufa by Janacek performed by Opera Slavica. He is the winner of the Metropolitan International Music Festival and a finalist for Joy in Singing. Prior to focusing on sining, Mr. Eaglin worked on economic development and climate change in Southern Africa.
Francesca Erni is a recent graduate of the Master’s Program in Classical Voice at NYU. Last year, Francesca made her Carnegie Hall debut with New York Lyric Opera, performing in scenes as Mercedes (Carmen) and Annio (La Clemenza di Tito). With NYLOT she also performed the roles of Nerone (L’incoronazione di Poppea), Third Lady, and Third Spirit (Die Zauberflote). At NYU she played in scenes concerts as Dinah (Trouble in Tahiti) and Charlotte (A Little Night Music). This summer, Francesca sang as the alto soloist for Mozart’s Coronation Mass and Regina Coeli.
Possessing a “devilish manner and burly baritone” that is “robust and vocally powerful,” Joseph Flaxman is a baritone who has been drawing praise from musicians and critics alike internationally and throughout America for his compelling dramatic portrayals. Joseph has performed at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, La Palacio del Opera (Spain), Lyrique-en-mer (France), Lorin Maazel’s Castleton Festival, Opera Memphis, Des Moines Metro Opera, Sarasota Opera, Bard Summerscape, Opera Saratoga, Opera Naples, and St. Petersburg Opera amongst others. A graduate of the Manhattan School of Music, Mr. Flaxman’s talents have been recognized by the Liederkranz Foundation, Opera Index, the Bel Canto Foundation Scholarship, Career Bridges, the Comeptizione dell’Opera, the Armel Opera Competition, and the MacGraw Hill Young Artist Showcase on WQXR.
Japanese Soprano Aine Hakamatsuka is the winner of the 2013 Yokohama International Music Competition. She has performed roles including Susanna (Le nozze di Figaro), Gretel and Taumännchen (Hänsel und Gretel), Lucia (The Rape of Lucretia), Belinda (Dido and Aeneas), and Kate (Pirates of Penzance). Equally gifted as a concert performer, she has been seen as guest soloist performing Beethoven’s Symphony No.9 with the Salina Symphony. Ms. Hakamatsuka received her Master of Music degree from Manhattan school of music in 2014 and Bachelor of Arts degree from Kansas Wesleyan University. While at Kansas Wesleyan University, she also performed with Wichita Grand Opera.
Young dramatic coloratura soprano Rachel Anne Hippert has recently performed with such local companies as the New York Opera Exchange (“Fiordiligi” in Così fan tutte) and the Brooklyn Philharmonia Chorus (soprano solo in Carmina Burana). Her upcoming engagements include “Isabelle” (Robert le diable) in Clef Note Productions’ November bel canto opera scenes concert, directed by Evelyn La Quaif, and she will be returning to the Brooklyn Philharmonia as the soprano soloist in Poulenc’s Gloria this December. Ms. Hippert earned her B.M. in voice performance from Boston University, is an alumna of Ann Baltz’s Operaworks Advanced Artist Program, Sherril Milnes’ V.O.I.C.Experience!, and Simon Estes’ Young Artist Performance Program. She currently studies with Metropolitan Opera veteran Atarah Hazzan.
Mr. Hollie is thrilled to be making his debut with Opera Company of Brooklyn. His 2013-2014 season concluded with a critically-acclaimed role and company debut as Malcolm in Verdi’s Macbeth with dell’Arte Opera Ensemble. Mr. Hollie’s operatic repertoire spans a diverse range of comedic and dramatic roles including the Pilot in The Little Prince, Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Pang in Turandot, Gherardo in Gianni Schicchi, Don Jose in Carmen, and Cavaradossi in Tosca. For an up-to-date schedule of Mr. Hollie’s singing engagements, please visit www.marqueshollie.com.
Pianist/Coach Ming Kwong is very active in the world of opera. In spring 2014, he joined the music staff at Portland Opera for their production of “Postcard from Morocco” by Dominic Argento. He is currently the coach-accompanist at Manhattan Opera Studio, music director of Manhattan Opera Repertory Ensemble (MORE Opera) and pianist for Opera Company Brooklyn. In this coming fall, he will be playing the NYC auditions for Washington National Opera, Aspen Opera Theater, Portland Opera and Glimmerglass Opera. Ming is regularly engaged by the Metropolitan Opera Guild as well to accompany their master class series. His past credits include an assistant coach position at Glimmerglass Opera, Tanglewood Music Center (assisting Maestro James Levine on Don Giovanni), and an apprenticeship with Florida Grand Opera for their 2008-2009 season. He has been invited frequently to join summer programs as a faculty coach. They include the CoOPERAtive program in New Jersey, Opera on the Avalon in Newfoundland, Canada. He held a fellowship coach position at the Aspen Summer Music Festival and was a vocal pianist at the prestigious Music Academy of the West, where Marilyn Horne chairs the program. Mr. Kwong was the Music Director of the Undergraduate Opera Theater at Manhattan School of Music.
Soprano Caitlin Mead made her operatic debut at the age of 15 when she sang in Madison Opera’s Die Zauberflöte (3rdSpirit) alongside world-renowned artists Nicole Cabell, Sumi Jo, and Richard Troxell. She has since pursued her studies and has appeared in the Montefeltro Festival, the Madison Opera chorus, and as a chorus member under Maestro Lorin Maazel’s baton at the Castleton Festival. Ms. Mead has also appeared as a soloist with the Northwestern Symphony Orchestra, Northwestern Baroque Music Ensemble, and Chicago’s Fourth Presbyterian Church. A native of Madison, Wisconsin, she holds an undergraduate degree from Northwestern University and is currently pursuing her master’s degree at Mannes College The New School For Music.
Winnie Nieh, soprano, won First Place in the 2012 St. Andrews Arts Council International Aria Competition, Third Place and Audience Favorite in the 2013 Madison Early Music Festival’s Handel Aria Competition, and competed at Carnegie Hall as a National Finalist in NY Lyric Opera’s 2014 National Competition. A versatile artist with perfect pitch praised for her “fantastic facility” and “clarity of tone”, she has performed as a soloist with legendary Maestro Helmuth Rilling and collaborative pianist Graham Johnson. Ms. Nieh graduated from Harvard, holds Associate of Trinity College London diplomas in voice, violin and piano, and was a Resident Artist with Opera Company of Brooklyn.
David Perper’s opera credits include, Des Grieux in Massenet’s Manon, in New York City, Alfred, in Die Fledermaus, with Crystal Opera in Norwalk, CT, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus as well as Don Ottavio, in Don Giovanni at Opera in the Heights, TX, Arnalta (his first female role) in Monteverdi’s Il Coronazione di Poppea, with Opera Neo, in San Diego, CA, and Light Opera of New Jersey Orpheus in the underworld singing the role of Mercury. David has also performed with Natchez Opera, MS as well as the Delle Arte Ensemble, NYC. Mr. Perper has concertized in the US, Europe, Israel and Canada.
Tyler Putnam, bass, recently sang in the Apprentice Singer Program at The Santa Fe Opera (covering Rocco inFidelio) and made company debuts at Opera Omaha (Ceprano in Rigoletto) and Sarasota Opera. This winter Mr. Putnam makes his Off-Broadway debut in the title role of Markheim by Carlisle Floyd with Little OPERA Theatre of NY. Other upcoming engagements include a second season with Sarasota Opera where Mr. Putnam will sing The Monk in Verdi’s Don Carlos. Mr. Putnam is a winner of a Career Development Grant from the Sullivan Foundation, top prize from the Schuyler Foundation for Career Bridges and is a Boston District winner of the Met’s National Council Competition.
Heidi Sauser, soprano and Atlanta native, has performed roles that include Morgana in Alcina, Marie in La fille du regiment, and Madame Herz in Der Schauspieldirektor with Opera Company of Brooklyn, Utopia Opera, and Apollo Opera, among others. She sang the role of Nannetta in Falstaff with Utopia Opera this past June. A graduate of Mannes College of Music, Heidi was a member of the acclaimed Mannes Opera with which she performed roles such as Olympia in Les contes d’Hoffmann and a Bridesmaid in Le nozze di Figaro. Heidi was a finalist for The American Prize in Opera in 2013.
Melissa Serluco, mezzo-soprano, received a Master’s of Music from Northwestern University in 2014, studying with W. Stephen Smith. She is scheduled to have her debut with The Secret Opera as Mrs. Norris in Menotti’sThe Medium in November of 2014. Serluco starred in Northwestern’s production of Adamo’s Little Women as Jo. She was also featured in Sounds and Sweet Airs as Gertrude, Anita and Meg. Past credits include La Perichole in La Perichole and Sesto in La Clemenza di Tito at Franco-American Vocal Academy; Marcellina inLe Nozze di Figaro, Zita in Gianni Schicchi, and the Sorceress in Dido and Aeneas at Stetson University; Monitor in Suor Angelica at Northwestern University; Rinaldo in Rinaldo and Die Hexe in Hänsel und Gretelat the New York Opera Forum.
Scott Bradford Thomas, lyric baritone, lives, performs, and teaches voice in the Washington, D.C., area. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Arizona and his Masters of Music in Voice at the University of Kentucky as an Alltech and T.J. Freeman Scholar. This is Scott’s principal debut with Opera Company Brooklyn and Scott has performed to critical acclaim in several Washington metropolitan area productions (“Scott Thomas has a smooth baritone that’s very powerful,” DC Metro Theater Arts). Publio in La Clemenza de Tito, Achilles in an original opera, A Fire in Water, and as Dortch in Norton, A Civil War Opera. Scott will appear in upcoming performances with the Washington National Opera.
In the 2013-’14 season, American tenor Brent Reilly Turner debuted with Syracuse Opera, Opera Louisiane, and Ash Lawn Opera. In 2013, Turner took 1st place in the Orpheus Vocal and Florida Suncoast Opera Competitions. In 2014, Turner took top prizes at the Peter Elvins Vocal and Mary Jacobs Smith Singer of the Year Competitions, 2nd place honors at the Dallas Opera Guild Competition, and 3rd place in the Irma M. Cooper Competition. Turner was an encouragement award recipient in the Wagner Division of this year’s Gerda Lissner Vocal Competition in New York City. Mr. Turner has participated with several major Young Artist programs including Santa Fe Opera, Utah Opera, Ash lawn Opera, Opera North, and Opera Saratoga.
Gerald Yarbray, Baritone, hails from the land of Jessye Norman, Augusta, GA and holds a BM from Columbus State University and an MM from Georgia State University. His roles include Danilo in The Merry Widow, Escamillo in Carmen, title role in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi, John Brooke in Little Women, Don Alfonso in Cosi Fan Tutte, Ford in Verdi’s Falstaff, Doctor Bartolo in The Barber of Seville, Amonasro in Aida, Pandofe in Massenet’s Cendrillon, Mr. Gobineau in The Medium, Martin Luther King in the Premier of King the Opera based on the studies and teachings of Martin Luther King Jr, the Giant in Jack and the Beanstalk and the Wolf in Little Red Riding Hood for community outreach. Concert performances includes Beethoven’s 5th, Schubert’s Mass in C, Bach’s Cantata 54, and Faure’s Requiem. He has served as Phi Mu Alpha, Xi Gamma Chapter President and Board Member of the Classical Singer National Forum, as well Feeding the Homeless Organization Fonder, which is on it’s 7th year of operation.
Maestro Jay Meetze, OCB Artistic and Music Director, FounderAccording to CNN, “Conductor Jay Meetze has been instrumental in making opera accessible to a wider audience. Meetze attracts a new generation of music lovers.” Maestro Jay Meetze, founder, Artistic & Music Director of Opera Company of Brooklyn, is also the Music Director of Philadelphia’s Atlantic Coast Opera Festival. Mr. Meetze is lauded for his “passionate and undeniably impressive command of performances” and “sympathetic leadership of the forces of the OCB.” (Metropolitan Opera’s Opera News). Opera News named his Grammy-nominated CD “BEST OF THE YEAR” and “CRITIC’S CHOICE,” recorded on Albany Records and features music by and with Thomas Pasatieri, whose many film orchestrations include Finding Nemo, Little Mermaid, Shawshank Redemption, American Beauty. The CD is sung by San Francisco Opera Center’s Director Sheri Greenawald and Manhattan School of Music’s Ashley Putnam. “Magic is wielded in the hands of Meetze.” American Record Guide. Meetze has worked with countless leading singers, instrumentalists, conductors and stage directors from the Metropolitan Opera, New York Philharmonic, New York City Opera, LA Phil, San Francisco Symphony and Opera. “Jay Meetze achieved impressive results. The orchestra followed Mr. Meetze lead quite aptly.” The New York Times. He has conducted performances with members of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Northern Kentucky Symphony, Flint Symphony Orchestra of Michigan, Rannaana Symphonette (Israel) and New Jersey’s Stony Hill Players and has worked as an assistant conductor for Cincinnati Opera, Opera Theatre of Lucca Italy, Elysian Opera, Regina Opera and Cosmopolitan Symphony Orchestra of New York. An active member of the New York Philharmonic’s Conductors Table, American Symphony Orchestra League and the Conductors Guild he has presented workshops at various regional universities and high schools, as well as serving as an adjudicator for competitions. He has served on the faculty of the International Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv (Israel) and the Manhattan School of Music’s Summer Music Camp. “Conductor Jay Meetze’s Flute was a game, witty and endearing…” New York Post. Meetze graduated from Michigan State University, majoring in vocal music education. His understanding of the singing voice and rapport with artists made him a sought-after conductor. He received a Master’s of Music in Orchestral Conducting from Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music on a full scholarship. Meetze’ travels led him to Glimmerglass Opera, Tanglewood and the International Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv. After conducting with the American Symphony Orchestra League, which led to jobs in Lucca, Italy and others, Meetze moved to Manhattan to start an accessible opera company, Opera Company of Brooklyn. “The company was well-prepared and the singers and orchestra obviously appreciated Meetze’ loving attention to detail. He has a keen ear for nuance, and made subtle adjustments that were particularly helpful.” Classical Singer Magazine. On Good Morning America with MythBusters, Meetze provided artists to demonstrate the voice can only break crystal when artists sing the pitch of the glass and greatly amplified. His work has made front-page of the Wall Street Journal, covered internationally by major news via Associated Press, on National Public Radio, 1010WINS, WNYC and ZDF (German Public TV), guest appearances on WNYC, in Life, NY Magazine, Crain’s New York Business, Frommer’s and two art administration books. “The ensemble numbers rang through with clarity and shimmer. It was a joyful afternoon, a reminder that opera was once a “pop” art and, under the right circumstances, still is..,” New York Daily News. “It’s to bring in the newer, younger audiences…Meetze overflows with ideas,” New York Daily News. His innovative vision for opera, featured on the Jeopardy quiz show, is to reach out to the thousands of “nontraditional” patrons who enjoy opera but who may not feel comfortable in a large opera house. Since audiences are not going to opera, he takes it to them. Lucky audience members hear top-flight artists, many are enjoying national and international careers. “Undeniably impressive. Well-sung and winningly acted by a talented, intrepid cast,” New York Times. “Meetze is changing the public perception of opera with a common sense approach, coupled with an infectious enthusiasm. It would be hard for even the most operaphobic to resist,” Classical Singer Magazine. Artists who know his work: Martina Arroyo, Mignon Dunn, Simon Estes, Carlisle Floyd, Denyce Graves, Elaine Malbin, Itzhak Perlman, Joseph Rescigno, Ira Siff, Frederica Von Stade, Richard Woitach, Francesca Zambello.
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