The lineup for Operanation 8: A Muse Ball just got a dose of indie-cool: breakthrough Canadian dance-pop band Austra will be joining Rufus Wainwright at the party. Austra's performance will include a collaboration with two members of the Ensemble Studio: soprano Ambur Braid (who tore up the stage at last year's Operanation with Broken Social Scene) and baritone Adrian Kramer.
Austra's frontwoman, Katie Stelmanis, is an alumnus of the Canadian Children's Opera Company, and credits her early exposure to opera as a major influence on her style. This Toronto Star review of Austra's debut album Feel it Break predicts that it " is going to make her an indie star." Check out the video above for a preview.
Two of our Ensemble Studio graduates, Wallis Giunta and Yannick Muriel-Noah, are singing leading roles in Opera Lyra Ottawa's upcoming production of Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci! In this interview with the Ottawa Citizen (including a video), they discuss their roles and careers.
Alexander Neef, our General Director, blogs about Montreal's new Maison Symphonique: "as one might expect, the acoustics are glorious: detailed, warm, rich and transparent."
Posted by Cecily Carver / in Daily Links / comments (0) / permalink
The 2011/2012 lineup for the Free Concert Series was announced today! In addition to major artists from our mainstage season such as Russell Braun and Krisztina Szabó, concertgoers can see an exciting diversity of performances including jazz and chamber ensembles, virtuoso pianists, world music and dance. The first concert is Sept. 20 at 12 p.m. and will feature the artists of the Ensemble Studio. You can find the full listings and brochure on our website.
Making music of their own are the resident honeybees at the Four Seasons Centre, who were photographed with beekeeper Fred Davis for an article about urban beekeeping in Metro Toronto.
Looking ahead to spring 2012, here's an interview on Operatoonity with tenor René Barbera, who swept the top honours at this year's Operalia competition! He placed first in the opera and zarzuela categories as well as scooping up the audience prize, and he'll be singing Rinuccio with us in Gianni Schicchi.
Photo: Arabesque Dance performs in the Free Concert Series. © Chris Hutcheson 2010
Leslie Barcza at barczablog interviews soprano Simone Osborne (pictured above), a member of the Ensemble Studio who will be debuting the role of Gilda with us this fall. She talks about the challenges the role of Gilda presents:
"The music for Gilda is extremely challenging in itself but trying to create a believable, multi dimensional, significant character is an equally difficult task. I refuse to believe that Gilda is simply a love stricken ingénue. Luckily for me (and the COC audiences), the incredible stage director, Christopher Alden, will be leading the way for us and I am very much looking forward to creating my first Gilda with him. In terms of the vocal writing, the role sits relatively high and in certain sections the orchestration is very thick. As a young singer, there is a tendency to want to prove yourself and put your best foot forward. This role will be an exercise is singing smart and not allowing the energy and excitement from the pit overwhelm my good judgement!" [read the full interview]
Alexander Neef wound up his summer travel season at Santa Fe with performances of Faust, Wozzeck, and Vivaldi's Griselda. Catch up on his two most recent blog posts here and here.
The Guardian's How to Enjoy Opera series includes an article on surviving your first opera as well as Fiona Maddocks' list of opera's top 50 works.
You might enjoy this story of a granddaughter's tribute in ink to her opera-loving grandmother. Part I, Part II, Part III.
Photo of Simone Osborne © Kevin Clark Photography
Sara Fulgoni in the COC production of Bluebeard's Castle. Photo: Michael Cooper © 2001