“Jamie Barton has an obvious affinity for strong, confident and outspoken women — both on and off the operatic stage. Perhaps that’s because, well, she’s one herself.” The American mezzo talks with Joshua Kosman about Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Carmen, and other fierce feminist role models.
“In these divisive times, vocal support of refugees has become critical – and musicians are uniquely well-positioned to address this issue,” explains founder Lidiya Yankovskaya. “Our art form crosses linguistic and cultural boundaries, and so much of what we do is rooted in collaboration.”
"After only a single season in her new role, her musical presence has revitalized a company that had become a shadow of itself.” Lidiya Yankovskaya’s work at Chicago Opera Theater has earned her a coveted spot on Newcity’s Music45 list.
Designed to motivate the next generation of activists, the book features Lidiya’s work with Refugee Orchestra Project and highlights her as the only woman music director of a multimillion-dollar opera company in the United States.
“Everything from the highly characterized singing to the lush yet keenly honed reading of the score, under Kim’s baton, registers in a vividly visceral, emotionally penetrating way. Nothing feels or sounds gratuitous; just about everything, across three-and-a-half musically and dramatically absorbing hours, seems essential.” Eun Sun Kim’s house debut in San Francisco earns widespread critical acclaim.
“Aubrey Bergauer is the dynamic and innovative administrator whose five-year tenure as executive director of the California Symphony in Walnut Creek helped revitalize the orchestra’s audience base and bottom line…” The data-driven leader will launch a consultancy intended to replicate her game-changing strategies across a broad range of arts organizations.
Beth Stewart joined San Francisco Chronicle critic Joshua Kosman, Opera Philadelphia VP of Marketing & Communications Frank Luzi, and composer Niloufar Nourbakhsh in a panel discussion on the state of media and promotion in 2019.
“A festival suffused with purpose and ambition.” ResBods returns to Brooklyn’s Roulette Intermedium for its 7th annual festival this September 3-5, 2019. Featured artists include Kate Soper, Arooj Aftab, Anthony Roth Costanzo, and Charmaine Lee with guest artists Conrad Tao, Vijay Iyer, Wet Ink Ensemble, Ashley Bathgate.
We’re expanding the Verismo team with two new positions: one in New York City, and one that can be based in another metropolitan area.If you’re whip smart, witty, and wild about classical music and opera, check out our Jobs page!
“Otello requires a dramatic tenor with a wide vocal range, the power to cut through heavy orchestration, and the skill to make the long, declamatory passages sing – ideally, a voice that marries Wagnerian stamina and Italianate beauty. Russell Thomas is one of them.” The American tenor’s staged role debut as Otello is met with critical acclaim across North America.
“Organizers have sought to recognize creators who unflinchingly detailed Black experiences despite the risk of offending a powerful white establishment.” An All Arts preview examines the influence of Harry T. Burleigh on generations of African American classical musicians.
“Musical mastery that turns both this massed ensemble and superb orchestra, conducted by Lidiya Yankovskaya, into forces of nature in their own right.” The Chicago premiere of Heggie’s Moby-Dick is led by Music Director Lidiya Yankovskaya.
“Instagram allows access for everyone, which is really important in a field that has traditionally been elitist. I believe very much that the future of opera is inclusivity, and Instagram provides a platform for that.” Star mezzo Jamie Barton, conductor Lidiya Yankovskaya, and Verismo founder Beth Stewart are all featured in the Spring 2019 issue of Opera America Magazine.
“Thomas is an engaging, easy conversationalist; he admits with a grin that he has ‘a lot of opinions,’ but they are impressively well argued and delivered without a trace of arrogance.” The American tenor has landed his first Opera News cover.
“A stinging rebuke to still-active demeaning stereotypes that cast black people as sassy, loud, and unrefined.” The Harry T. Burleigh Society concert, featuring the Fisk Jubilee Singers, earned critical acclaim from the Log Journal.
“A complete singer with a once-in-a-generation voice, a born communicator, a deeply compassionate human being with so much to give to audiences – Jamie Barton is an artist whose time truly has come.” The American mezzo earns a six-page feature in the March 2019 issue of Opera.
“Khalil's performances offer an energy and understanding that make hers a new definitive interpretation of the work.”Ayre: Live, the debut release from Against the Grain Theatre’s new in-house recording label, has been nominated for a 2019 Juno Award for Classical Album of the Year, Vocal or Choral.
“Yankovskaya does a terrific job as a conductor of this score bringing out the many colors and styles of music with her thirteen musicians who prove game to the challenge.” Lidiya Yankovskaya makes her Washington National Opera debut leading the world premiere of Kamala Sankaram’s Taking Up Serpents.
“Holtan is ecstatic about having this world-class soprano back in our midst. ‘She was such a huge hit when she was here last time, and when we reached out to her, she didn’t hesitate,’ he says.” Corinne Winters joins the Tucson Desert Song Festival for concerts, a recital, and a masterclass.
“What makes an American opera? Many of the support programs designed to promote new work create the somewhat amusing spectacle of American artists such as Kamala Sankaram, whose father is from South India, or the opera’s conductor, Lidiya Yankovskaya, whose family emigrated from Russia when she was 9, compressing themselves into someone else’s ‘American’ template.” Ahead of her house debut at Washington National Opera, the conductor spoke with Anne Midgette about the world premiere of Taking Up Serpents.
“Miriam Khalil’s performance on this album shows her to be more than a singer: she is an elemental force.” Against the Grain Records releases a stunning new recording of Osvaldo Golijov’s Ayre by a soprano native to many of the cultural threads.
“Lyric provided the finest, best matched group of lead singers that I can imagine singing today." Il trovatore at Lyric Opera of Chicago stars critically acclaimed mezzo Jamie Barton as Azucena and tenor Russell Thomas as Manrico.
“Yankovskaya’s supple command of musical shape and dramatic continuity was never in doubt.”Chicago Opera Theater Music Director Lidiya Yankovskaya leads the Chicago premiere of Tchaikovsky’s final opera.
“I believe the way you diversify an audience is by diversifying the stage. But if there are not people backstage that are thinking diversity, you don’t have it.” Tenor Russell Thomas talks to the Chicago Sun-Times ahead of his appearance in Il trovatore.
“It’s hard to find adjectives superlative enough to describe her voice: huge and sumptuous, but with such broad possibilities of color that the singer can chill the blood with just a glint of steel in the tone. Lurching, heaving and writhing nonstop, she looked as if she might any moment explode out of sheer malevolence.” New York City audiences have another chance to experience Jamie Barton’s Jezibaba at the Met’s Summer HD Festival, and audiences around the world can see her Fricka in cinemas in 2018/19.
“Out of the tumult tenor Russell Thomas, with all the strength of a commanding general, strode on stage and proclaimed, ‘Esultate!’ For the next three hours there was a great deal to rejoice about…” Russell Thomas joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic as the title character in Verdi’s iconic Otello.
“A heroically shining tone of exceptional clarity and precision…” American tenor Russell Thomas will bring his signature elegance and intensity to the title characters in Verdi’s Otello, Donizetti’s Roberto Devereux, and Mozart’s La clemenza di Tito.
"Success for Mejía…has come easy, in part, because he can relate. Mejía is a musician himself, a pianist-composer who is known for connecting on a visceral and musical level with his songwriters.” Billboard Magazine talks with Jorge Mejia about bridging worlds, genres, and cultures.
"Monumental and well-crafted…Craig Bohmler's Riders of the Purple Sage can now lay claim to a rightful place in the canon of works about the American West." WFMT's American Opera Series broadcast of Riders has been named a finalist in the New York Festivals Radio Awards.
Over the past decade, Musical America has had an incredible knack for featuring "New Artists of the Month" who go on to big things. This month's follow-up on 25 of these still-rising stars includes conductor Christopher Allen and soprano Corinne Winters.
“Wheedling, cajoling, commanding, she can play the kitten, gently twitting her husband’s nose, but in this relationship it is she who is determined to wear the palazzo pants. The voice is still creamy, but when the top notes fly, the audience are pinned to their seats.” Jamie Barton sings her first complete Ring cycle at San Francisco Opera.
“Mezzo Jamie Barton, former HGO Studio Artist and conquering international singer, supplies heft, smoky velvet tone, and incomparable artistry…” Jamie Barton brings her Adalgisa to Houston Grand Opera’s Norma in Resilience Theater.
"Being in Miami allowed me to continue growing as a multicultural citizen, and I never felt that my identity had to be wrapped up in just one facet of who I am." Ahead of the release of An Open Book: A Memoir in Music on Sony Latin, composer and pianist Jorge Mejia is profiled in UM Connect.
“A musician who exemplifies the confluence that makes Miami unique.” Ahead of the release of An Open Book: A Memoir in Music on Sony Latin, composer and pianist Jorge Mejia speaks with El Nuevo Herald.
“Winters glides, she soars with a magnificence of coloratura that is merely the theatrical expression of a wholly consistent characterisation, sometimes coolly self-possessed in the face of tightly controlled desire, sometimes enraptured, sometimes very convincingly at the edge of despair. This is a very contemporary Violetta – musically flawless but with a convincing and enshrouding self-possession…” Corinne Winters brings her signature role to Opera Australia in the beloved Elijah Moshinsky production of La traviata in Melbourne.
"It’s easy to jump on the bandwagon, but daring to be oneself, especially when it means standing alone, is real bravery..." Ahead of her Opera Australia debut as Violetta in the beloved Moshinsky La traviata, Winters speaks with Australian Arts Review.
"Opera changes people on a molecular level. The unamplified voice is a frequency that changes them. Maybe my particular frequency, my particular aesthetic, won't move everybody – but it could move someone." Corinne Winters speaks with Spectrum in Australia’s The Age newspaper.
“No one who has heard Jamie Barton in action is in any doubt about the American mezzo-soprano’s gifts. She boasts an expansive, robust vocal sound, tinged with richly varied colors, and she deploys it with a distinctive combination of heroic power and tender intimacy. So the splendors of her debut release don’t exactly come as a surprise. But that hardly diminishes the joy of listening to Barton’s expressive, full-throated performances.” Jamie Barton's debut solo album has won the Vocal Category of the 2018 BBC Music Magazine Awards.
“Beautiful tone draws people in, but primal emotion breaks hearts – an easy thing to forget after years of higher education and trying to ‘get it right.’” Ahead of her Opera Australia debut, Winters appears in Australia’s Limelight Magazine.
"There are times in life where there just isn't a question that it's the right next step to take. With opera and my husband it has felt like that – like I didn't have a choice. It's that strong of a pull." Corinne Winters speaks with the Herald Sun, ahead of her debut with Opera Australia as their La traviata in Melbourne.
A heavyweight in the Latin music world, classical composer and pianist Jorge Mejia releases AN OPEN BOOK: A Memoir in Music on Sony Latin on May 4, 2018. This ambitious genre-blending project, born of Mejia’s devotion to storytelling in all its forms, is an e-book alternating narrative vignettes with orchestral preludes recorded by the composer with the Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra.
"Even in a cast as extraordinarily strong as this one, Barton rises above. Her "O don fatale" elicited one of those magical operatic moments where time stops..." Jamie Barton makes her American role debut as Princess Eboli in a new Tim Albery production in Washington, D.C.
"The Wagnerian voice we have been waiting for since Flagstad and Nilsson." This season, American dramatic soprano Heidi Melton sings Brünnhilde and Sieglinde in performances of Wagner's Ring Cycle at the New York Philharmonic, Dallas Symphony, and Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe.
“The kind of singer that changes the way we think about mezzos in this century…the kind of singer who brings us back to other centuries. The voice itself is, of course, a marvel. Rich and sonorous, but also vulnerable, it seems to emerge from the depths of the lower abdomen, as though lungs could start where legs ended, with tone shooting up from the floor.” Jamie Barton and pianist Kathleen Kelly kick off their recital tour to rapturous acclaim in Boston and New York.
"An opera as monumental and well-crafted as Craig Bohmler's Riders of the Purple Sage can now lay claim to a rightful place in the canon of works about the American West. Riders is literally and figuratively blazing new trails, demonstrating the relevance and value of the age old genre in a dynamic and memorable production." Arizona Opera's first commissioned world premiere airs on WFMT's American Opera Series in over 400 cities.
"Mejia's investment in 'Despacito' has paid dividends beyond anything he could have imagined. Penned by Sony/ATV's own Luis Fonsi, Daddy Yankee, and Erika Ender, the global hit, which spent 16 consecutive weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100, is the most streamed song of all time, with 4.6 billion streams and counting. 'We always thought the day would come when there would be light at the end of the digital tunnel," says Mejia. "It's starting to happen.'"
"An interpretation with personality, quality, variety of expression, authority in the extremes of the registers, and daring assurance..." Jamie Barton makes her role debut as La favorite in Teatro Real Madrid's bicentennial gala.
"No one could ask for more from the role: a Traviata who delivers glittering coloratura runs as well as intimate lyrical passages, extroverted self-expression, and bitterest pain with magnificent touching intensity.” Winters makes her Theater Basel debut as Violetta in a new co-production with English National Opera.
“These artists address the listener with the urgency of a prophet or an obsessive. World War I ended almost a century ago, but they make it seem present and pressing, like many of the songs it inspired. Artsong recitals rarely feel so grounded in reality.” The debut album from baritone John Brancy and pianist Peter Dugan is reviewed in Opera News and aired on radio stations across the U.S.
"At thirty-one, conductor Christopher Allen is one of the fastest-rising podium stars in North America. Allen’s leadership is a model of clarity, vigor and intelligence, keenly detailed and richly colored; his work with soloists, chorus and orchestra is first-class..." TheOctober issue of Opera News includes a 2-page spotlight on the young conductor – and his tattoos.
"Atlanta is home not only to some of the most progressive and competent fine arts institutions in the U.S. but also to uniquely engaged creative communities. The fearless and empathetic role of the artist in Atlanta makes the place a paragon of a new American art mecca..." Mezzo Jamie Barton and The Atlanta Opera are featured in Audi Magazine's "Art x ATL" piece.
"A full-scale and colorful mosaic. Mejia’s world is imagery, cinema, storytelling, and he doesn’t hold back..." Dinnerstein and the Havana Lyceum Orchestra feature Mejia's preludes in their first U.S. tour.
“An unfailingly inviting and seductive soundworld…provided a comfortable entry point for what might otherwise have proved an elusive evening for many. Zvulun and his team can be proud of what could well become a new classic for Atlanta.” The Atlanta Opera continues its adventurous Discoveries series programming with Astor Piazzolla's Maria de Buenos Aires.
"An international phenom with that dazzlingly creamy voice and commanding stage presence. With power to spare, she soars over the lush orchestration...to penetrate the wrenching heart of her tale." Mezzo Jamie Barton returns to Houston for the final installment of Wagner's epic Ring cycle.
“The general reaction we have gotten from audiences is that it not only educates them, but it delivers them to a place and time that is really hard to feel without the music. People can actually feel these moments deeply within their souls and spirits.” Baritone John Brancy and pianist Peter Dugan release A Silent Night: A WWI Memorial in Song this month.
In the coming season, The Atlanta Opera will showcase its vision as a regional leader in the arts through innovative, theatrical productions of diverse works. The 17/18 season will also feature the first fully staged performances of Jake Heggie's Out of Darkness, in TAO's fourth consecutive season offering a contemporary work by an American composer.
"Opera is alive, and exists only from the downbeat until the curtain falls." The soprano sings Verdi's tragic heroine in productions at Seattle Opera, San Diego Opera, and the Royal Opera House Covent Garden this season.
"It’s hard to find adjectives superlative enough to describe her voice: huge and sumptuous, but with such broad possibilities of color that the singer can chill the blood with just a glint of steel in the tone. Lurching, heaving and writhing nonstop, she looked as if she might any moment explode out of sheer malevolence." Jamie Barton returns to the Metropolitan Opera in a new production of Rusalka.
The Atlanta Opera’s Silent Night “revealed a company unafraid to move in bold new directions, and with more than enough talent on hand to take a captivated audience along with it into the 21st century."
"She brought enormous power, rich colours and perfect intonation to the vocal line. This was highly emotional and yet beautifully restrained singing that really got beneath the skin of the music.” Jamie Barton's recent recital tour with pianist James Baillieu was 'ecstatically acclaimed' by audiences and critics alike.
"'Come scoglio' (Like a rock) applied rather more correctly to Winters’ singing technique than to Fiordiligi’s constancy.” Winters makes her Covent Garden debut as Fiordiligi in a new production of Mozart's Così fan tutte.
Alongside an album of environmentally conscious new works by Grammy winner Libby Larsen and Pulitzer Prize nominee Laura Kaminsky, the visionary Fry Street Quartet has launched the #makeityours campaign to encourage personal responsibility for global sustainability.
"As her voice leaps across the extremes of range and emotions, Barton remains solid as a rock." Jamie Barton sings Elizabeth Proctor in Robert Ward's haunting The Crucible, directed by Francesca Zambello.
"Majeski sings this touchstone Straussian role with gleaming, resonant tone and insightful musicianship..." Amanda Majeski returns to Santa Fe Opera as the Countess in Capriccio, opposite Susan Graham's Clairon.
"Deliciously phrased, Winters' Alice is the real deal, soaring in ensemble, sighing in mock adoration..." After role and house debuts in Rome and Birmingham, Winters joins Bryn Terfel and the Welsh National Opera Orchestra in concert at the Henley Festival.
“Amanda Majeski made the best Eva I have heard in years, true of pitch and pure of tone, comfortable in all reaches of the part and emotionally persuasive from beginning to end." Majeski returns to the rolling hills of Glyndebourne as Eva in Wagner's Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg.
"Winters exudes the fascination of a very exceptional woman in every moment." Corinne Winters sings Mélisandein a new, psychoanalytically inspired Dmitri Tcherniakov production of Pelléas et Mélisande.
Ahead of her Opernhaus Zürich debut as Mélisande in Debussy's Pelléas et Mélisande, Corinne Winters talks with Schmopera about playing those coveted roles, her offstage creative outlets, and how she stays happy and healthy on the road.
Ahead of her Washington National Opera debut as Waltraute/2nd Norn in Götterdämmerung, Jamie Barton talks with Schmopera about her goal to bridge the gap between the art form she does on a daily basis with the art form she grew up loving.
"She sounds so richly experienced, so old-school, with a coloratura that is pure Technicolor..." Jamie Barton graces the glossy pages of the March issue, talking music from bluegrass to Bizet, and staying true to her Georgia roots on the road.
Jamie Barton will debut as Jezibaba in an imaginative new Mary Zimmerman production of Dvorak's Rusalka and bring her celebrated Fenena to the Met stage alongside Plácido Domingo as the title character in Nabucco. Both productions will be Met Live in HD broadcasts in cinemas worldwide.
"One does not need to "appreciate" singing to know what good singing is...we all know it when we hear it, and the goosebumps are proof positive of that." Rolando Sanz talks with Schmopera about listening to the greats, trusting oneself, and giving Aretha Franklin the R-E-S-P-E-C-T she deserves.
Nearly a decade after singing a winning "Priva son d'ogni conforto" during the finals of the 2007 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, Jamie Barton is making her much-anticipated debut as Cornelia in Handel's Giulio Cesare.
“In a modern world in which classical music is facing a tough battle for continued funding, TDSF is giving smaller regional organizations an opportunity to thrive.” The Tucson Desert Song Festival brings the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World and Grammy winners to the Old Pueblo.
Named "Best Breakout Star" by Chicago Magazine, Amanda Majeski is living up to the title. Ahead of her Marschallin in Lyric Opera of Chicago's production of Der Rosenkavalier, she spoke with Schmopera about singing, the importance of being multi-lingual, and her enormous dedication to her work.
"Classical music should not just be for the people who can pay the most." Ahead of their telecast of the 2015 Richard Tucker Opera Gala, Live from Lincoln Center has released "Bringing Music to the People," a video showcasing Jamie Barton's work with Sing for Hope.
Caliente explores how TDSF lures top singers, the collaboration with the Ravinia Festival's Steans Institute to honor Robert Shaw, and guitarist Adam del Monte's musical upbringing in the caves of Spain.
"For 18 days this winter, the world’s most exciting vocal stars will descend on Southern Arizona, enriching the seasons of eight local performing arts organizations." Jamie Barton and TDSF Director George Hanson made a joint television appearance, featuring an interview and two performance segments.
Corinne Winters will appear as Violetta in the Peter Konwitschny La traviata – the same production that launched her international career and landed her on the cover of Opera magazine in the UK – as well as the title role in Katya Kabanova.
"Few music festivals can claim the leadership position or forward thinking of the Tucson Desert Song Festival." The Latin Post features the TDSF's work, including upcoming appearances by Spanish guitarist Adam del Monte and Argentine-American mezzo Daniela Mack.
"She has everything: the voice, the charisma, the looks, the intensity, the acting...touching, vulnerable and vocally flexible, melting or brilliantly edgy as necessary." Corinne Winters speaks with The Independent about marketing opera to young people and her new life as a Londoner.
"Faultless — stylistically on the money, dramatically committed, and displaying a vocalism that was perfectly even from the top to the bottom of his range." Weston Hurt's signature roles are the complex, menacing, cajoling heroes and villains immortalized by Verdi, Puccini, and Donizetti.
"A leader of a new generation of opera stars." Classical Music Editor Zachary Woolfe joined Jamie Barton as she recorded her first solo album, rehearsed a new role at the Metropolitan Opera, and performed at the Greene Space.
"At once supportive, unassuming, and richly musical." Christopher Allen is currently The John L. Magro Resident Conductor for Cincinnati Opera, Associate Conductor at Los Angeles Opera, and was recently nominated as a finalist for the 2015 International Opera Awards in London in the “Newcomer” category.
"It’s not often that the words 'down-to-earth' and 'opera star' are spoken in the same breath, but both terms fit mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton perfectly." Jamie Barton talks to the AJC about staying grounded and juggling stage time between the Metropolitan Opera and the DeSoto Theatre in Rome, Georgia.
"Barton is dazzling as Fenena, with a showstopper Act IV aria that displayed the lyricism and agility of this remarkable voice." Jamie Barton sings her first Fenena in Nabucco, a role that will also serve as her Royal Opera House Covent Garden debut this season.
"That joyfully dark, voluptuous and steady voice sucked us in from the first worried note to the last breath of emollient calm." Jamie Barton sings the Brahms Alto Rhapsody with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, under the baton of Marin Alsop.
"Although fate may have jump-started Majeski's career, pure talent propels it." Amanda Majeski talks with CS Modern Luxury magazine about stepping up to the plate and which opera character she'd like to chat with over coffee.
“My first instinct is to go for a very sympathetic Fenena. I’m a big believer in bringing beauty into the story when I can." Ahead of her Seattle Opera debut, Jamie Barton talks to the Seattle Times about Fenena, Wagner, and her roll-out-of-bed-and-sing music.