CCM alumna Joelle Harvey recently starred in New York City Opera’s production of Telemann’s “Orpheus,” singing the role of Eurydice. Harvey, who holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in vocal performance from CCM, was also mentioned in a New York Times review of the production and was praised by Times writer Anthony Tommasini for her “bright, agile soprano” and “winsome presence.”
Thursday May 10th, 8:00pm
Saturday May 12th, 8:00pm
Sunday May 13th, 2:00pm
For additional information or to purchase tickets,
please visit the CCM Box Office:
- Marc Scorca, President and CEO, OPERA America
- Patricia Beggs, General Director/CEO, Cincinnati Opera
- Marcus Küchle, Director of Artistic Operations, Cincinnati Opera
- Robin Guarino, CCM Opera Department Chair and opera director
- Marjorie Fox, CCM Electronic Media Division Head, moderator
CET’s Digital Arts channel broadcasted this panel discussion at 10 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 29. on channel 48.3 (Time Warner channel 987).
Opera Fusion: New Works hosted the composer, Douglas Cuomo and the playwright/librettist John Patrick Shanley for a ten day residence and developmental workshop, November 3-10 working on their opera, DOUBT based on Shanley’s play and movie of the same title. Workshop rehearsals took place on the CCM campus as well as on site at Cincinnati Opera. Joining the team was Maestro Gary Wedow (Seattle Opera,New York City Opera) with Robin Guarino directing. The ten day workshop culminated with public readings of part of Act One at the Patricia Corbett Theater and at Northern Kentucky University’s Griffin Hall at the School of Informatics. Both Cuomo and Shanley participated in a lively talk back and Q&A after both of the readings.
For ten days CCM singers,pianists, designers and stage management worked closely in collaboration with the creative team to learn and “Try out” new material and help discover the world of the piece.
CCM Opera Artist Diploma student Xi Wang sits down with Janelle Gelfand from the Cincinnati Enquirer
From The Cincinnati Enquirer, January 23rd, 2011
By Janelle Gefland
Soprano Xi Wang, a student at the University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music, remembers standing on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera in New York two years ago, when she was a national semifinalist in the National Council Auditions.
“Being on that stage at age 25, I thought, ‘Oh my God, I have already fulfilled my dream.’ The stage was so huge, but you could hear a penny drop,” the singer says. “Even though I didn’t advance to the finals, I felt so grateful, so lucky to be that far.” Wang sings the role of Liù in a concert presentation of Puccini’s “Turandot” Friday and Saturday in Corbett Auditorium at CCM.
In a rehearsal last week, Wang sang with beauty, passion and bell-like timbre as she rehearsed Liù’s famous Act I aria, “Signore Ascolta,” with Gibson and the CCM Philharmonia. “I feel amazed by the music, and there is some resonance to my culture,” Wang says, struggling to find the right words in English. “(The music) is big and huge. It reminds me of China, where everything is big. And the tragic story has such beauty.”
The CCM Opera department would like offer congratulations to Noel Bouley, Yoongeong Lee, Abigail Pashke, John Christopher Adams and Mark Diamond. This January they will travel to Houston to compete in semi-finals in the Houston Grand Opera Eleanor McCollum Competition.
I just completed a very successful run in the title role of Lucia di Lammermoor with the Cape Town Opera. Thank you CCM for preparing me so well for the professional world! Reviews are posted below. Enjoy!
Excerpt from The Cape Times:
Opening night saw Bronwen Forbay make her debut, both in Cape Town and in the title role. We have waited long to hear this Durban-born soprano and, given the performance, one wonders why! She is a wholly convincing Lucia, portraying a girlish naivety that becomes increasingly suggestive of a more fundamental mental instability until the celebrated Mad Scene of the final act reveals her as having lost touch with reality. The portrayal was chillingly accurate in its detailing: the angle of the head, the fiddling with the hair, the apparently all-seeing eyes. Coupled to her fine acting is a triumphant account of a glorious vocal role. She started with a “Regnava nel silenzio” that was precisely controlled, with rock solid intonation and precise delineation of ornamented lines . . . by the time “Veranno a te sull’aure” came around, her voice had acquired a lovely round warmth and a beguiling sense of color. She is a fine exponent of ‘bel canto,’ with delicious flexibility, a smoothly managed transition through the registers, and a technical armoury that allows her to indulge in the most taxing passage work and the most awkward leaps with quasi instrumental precision. The famous flute cadenza . . . was greeted with a lengthy ovation. – The Cape Times, October 2010
Blood smeared with a dagger swaying already in hand and madness evident in her, the young soprano Bronwen Forbay (of Durban) enthralled the audience of the ArtsScape opera house on Saturday night.
It was Forbay‘s interpretation of the familiar mad scene in the third act of Cape Town Opera’s production of Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor that left one overwhelmed. But at the beginning of the opera, her excellent singing was a taste of what was to come. In fact, one was left in great anticipation of what she would do in the mad scene, “Il dolce suono … Spargi D’Amaro pianto.”
Donizetti’s opera is based on a story by Sir Walter Scott, based in Scotland. Enrico, head of the Ravenswood Castle, was in a financial trouble and forced his sister, Lucia, to marry a rich husband, Arturo. Lucia is in love with Edgardo, but has no choice but to marry Arturo. On their wedding night, however, she becomes insane and kills Arturo before her beloved Edgardo sees her again.
The role of Lucia in this opera is one of the greats for a coloratura soprano, who sings high notes, fast, light runs, and lyric phrases. Forbay’s voice has all these qualities, and especially her high notes are perfectly placed and cured.
Forbay’s intonation was pure and the sound is easily produced. Lucia is destined to be one of her signature roles.
As the aggrieved Edgardo, the local tenor Given Nkosi impressed. Nkosi’s voice beamed, and his performance was dramatically strong. He and Forbay’s duet in the first act was nothing less than exciting.
As the evil Enrico, the Italian Paolo Ruggiero provided a strong interpretation. His voice demonstrates a well-established vocal technique, and his performance was, on the whole, convincing. Enrico could have been even more terrifying and evil. The famous and beloved sextet – Nkosi, Forbay and Ruggiero with Monika Voysey (Alisa), Mthunzi Mbombela (Arturo) and Xolela Sixaba (Raimondo) – is powerful and impressive. Voysey and Sixaba’s singing in the rest of the opera must be singled out.
This is a repeat of 1997 Angelo Gobbato’s presentation and his direction is still good, although the set had a static feel. Scenery is largely brought about with Faheem Bardien’s most excellent lighting, but in some scenes the lighting is just too extravagant.
This performance is definitely worth seeing and experiencing. It’s a no-frills production, sung well overall.
By Wayne Muller, Die Burger, 20 Oct 2010
‘Lead singers save us from a bland Lucia’
By Carl Fourie
Lucia di Lammermoor
Director: Angelo Gobbato
Soloists: Bronwen Forbay, Given Nkosi, Paolo Ruggiero, Xolela Sixaba, Monika Voysey
Cape Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Kamal Khan
Cape Town Opera Chorus trained by Albert Horne and Elisabeth Frandsen
Venue: Artscape Opera House
The opening night of Cape Town Opera’s (CTO) Lucia di Lammermoor was dedicated to the memory of the late Joan Sutherland, who died this week and who made the role of Lucia so much her own.
The South African coloratura soprano, Bronwen Forbay, sang the title role. She was greeted with rapturous applause after the infamous mad scene. The applause was thoroughly deserved: she managed the floral vocal lines with aplomb and fused these beautifully with Lucia’s deranged state of mind.
Given Nkosi (tenor) sang her lover Edgardo. He also earned appreciation from the audience and sang with commitment. Apart from Forbay, he was the most committed dramatically to his character.
Enrico was sung by the Italian baritone Paolo Ruggiero. He has a gloriously strong voice that is fully developed in all its registers. Unfortunately, he is not an actor. As examples, the first meeting between him and Edgardo, as well as their final encounter, were amateurish and unconvincing.
The chaplain was pleasingly sung by baritone Xolela Sixaba, who also took well to his character.
Arturo was sung by tenor Mthunzi Mbombela and Alisa by soprano Monika Voysey. Both these singers are competently developing as professionals. Mbombela had one or two unstable lines, and Voysey should have been made up to portray a much older woman. The vocal highlights were the sextet and Lucia’s final mad arias. The former was a glorious exercise in vocal ensemble as well as careful balance with the orchestra. And Lucia’s solo vocal fireworks were exquisitely executed, not just in accuracy, but also with musical sensitivity. The orchestra under Kamal Khan played very well. They were supportive at the tender moments and dramatic where it counts. Strings were well intoned and harpist Jane Theron and flautist Gabriele von Durckheim had beautiful solo passages.
The Voice of the Nation Chorus was well trained by Albert Horne and Elisabeth Frandsen. The initial male chorus battled a bit with following Khan’s time, but otherwise gave a satisfying performance.
If it’s great singing you want, you won’t be disappointed with this production of Lucia. Décor and acting, however, were rather anaemic. Peter Cazalet’s monolithic set and bland costuming needed a bold dash of colour somewhere: a blue fountain, a green tree, a red moon, a yellow bouquet at the wedding?
Published on the web by Tonight on October 20, 2010.