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By New York City Opera
Monday, August 27, 2012 | 7:32 AM
Davies Headshot 1Up-and-coming soprano Siân Davies has been making her mark on the opera world.  She made her recent professional debut at Chicago Opera Theater, singing the role of Elcìa from Rossini’s Moses in Egypt, a role she'll reprise for the NYC Opera 2012-2013 Season. Siân answered questions submitted by New York City Opera's Young Patron Circle especially for this round of "Questions with..". Check out her answers, and get to know more about one of NYC Opera's newest singers!
 
 
 


Full Given Name
Siân Margaret Davies – (Although it looks strange, my name is pronounced like Shawn Davis – my name is Welsh)
 
Hometown
I was born in Dewsbury, England but spent my formative years in Rochester, Michigan.  I’m now based in Chicago.
 
What is your first musical memory?
Being completely honest, I don’t remember a time in my life where there wasn’t music.  I come from a family of music lovers, so it was always there.  As a performer, my first memory is singing “Tomorrow” from the musical Annie on a train while I was traveling with my Dad and brother.  I was probably 4 years old!
 
First opera you saw? 
Carmen
 
First opera you performed in?
I was in the chorus of Puccini’s La Bohème during my undergraduate studies.  The first role I performed in an opera was a chamber version of Bartok’s Bluebeard’s Castle in Hungarian.  As far as traditional opera goes, it was as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni by Mozart.
 
Which of the roles you’ve performed is your favorite and why?  What would be your dream role?
Countess Almaviva from Le Nozze di Figaro has been my most performed and favorite role so far.  She is such a complete and well-rounded character with some of the most beautiful music.  I could probably sing her role every day for the rest of my life and still find something new and interesting.  I absolutely adore that!
 
As far as my diva “bucket list” goes, I would say Anna in Donizetti’s Anna Bolena and the Marschallin from Der Rosenkavalier by Richard Strauss.            
 
When did you know you wanted to be an opera singer, and what made you choose this career?
Before I knew I specifically wanted to be an opera singer, I knew I wanted to be a professional musician during my senior year of college.  At that point in time I was auditioning for graduate schools and didn’t have much experience with opera yet.  After I did Don Giovanni, I was bitten by the bug and have never looked back!
 
If you weren’t an opera singer, which career would you want
That’s a really hard question… I would probably want to be in some sort of marketing/event planning career path.  I really enjoy planning parties and events.
 
Do you have any pre-performance rituals?  Good luck charms?
I always have a can of diet coke before a performance or audition.  There is something about those bubbles that just make me happy and ready to rock.  I’m sure the caffeine doesn’t hurt either!  It seems like I have different rituals for each production that I do and they haven’t been the same.  When I did Mosè in Egitto with Chicago Opera Theater, I ate steak for lunch with cast mates before each show!
 
Who is your role model?
I don’t know that I have a single role model, but I have a lot of respect for many people in this career.  I really appreciate the down to earth musicians that I’ve had a chance to work with like Christine Brewer and Joyce DiDonato.  It is really great to see people who are so grounded even though they are such divine performers.
 
Where is your favorite spot in NYC?
Café du Soleil on the UWS.  DELICIOUS!!!
 
Favorite thing to do besides singing?
I love spending time with my family and friends - whether it is spending relaxing time at home or out looking for new adventures.
 
Do you ever get nervous before a performance?
Honestly I usually get nervous after I am done.  Beforehand I am in a focused place of preparation and I don’t have time to think about what I’m doing until the curtain has fallen at the end of the night.  That is the point where I sometimes sit back and think, “What did I just do out there???”
 
You’re a soprano—what does it really feel like to hit those high notes?
It’s honestly really liberating.  That moment is as raw and open as I can possibly be because I can’t hold anything back if it is going to work well. 
 
What are the most challenging aspects of being a young opera singer in today’s music scene?
Being a young person in any field, I feel that it’s difficult to get yourself out there until people know about you.  Being ready for anything is, in my opinion, the best way to be prepared when amazing opportunities come along.
 
Do you have any advice for our audience members that are new to opera?
Just remember that it is like a musical bred with a foreign film (unless you see an opera in English).  The characters will take you on a musical journey through their stories.  All you need to do is come along for the ride.
 
What are you most excited about with reprising your role as Elcia in Moses in Egypt
The music in this show is so beautiful.  The story isn’t extremely complicated, so Rossini really allows the music to take control of the piece.  As with any role I get to do more than once, I’m looking forward to discovering more about Elcìa and doing something new with her!
 
For more information about Moses in Egypt, click here.
By New York City Opera
Wednesday, February 8, 2012 | 8:25 AM
Tiller JenniferIf you've seen anything at NYC Opera in the past eight years, there's a good chance you've seen soprano Jennifer Tiller, though you may not even know it! A chameleon of the stage, Jennifer has played everything from young boys (Hansel in Hansel and Gretel) to animals (The Fox in The Little Prince) to a trainer in a finch-singing competition (VOX 2011's Vinkensport).  This season, she'll sing the role of Flora in Jonathan Miller's production of La traviata at BAM's Howard Gilman Opera House.  Learn more about Jennifer in our latest round of "Questions with..."
 



Full Given Name  
Jennifer Denise Tiller
 
Hometown 
Holly Grove, VA
 
First opera you ever saw? 
Amahl and the Night Visitors
 
First opera you ever performed? 
The Pirates of Penzance (yeah, I know… it's an operetta!)
 
Favorite role to date? 
Hansel, performed at NYC Opera!!!
 
If you were given the chance to do any role here at NYC Opera, what would it be?
Salome
 
Favorite opera to listen to?
ANYTHING Puccini
 
Album you can’t live without?
Anything from the 1970's
 
Secret Talent (other than singing)?
Juggling
 
Most played song on your iPod?
"Sisters are doin' it for themselves", The Eurythmics
 
Any pop culture guilty pleasures?
Top Chef
 
Pre/Post show meal?
I eat very little before a show.  Afterwards, however… falafel sandwich, pizza, pasta with veggies, or just lots of cheese and bread.
 
You have a super cool time machine and you can go back in time to see any opera's premiere.  Which one? 
Puccini's Il Trittico
 
You have a super cool time machine and you can go into the future.  Which young singer or composer would you be excited to see 20 years from now? 
Composer Ricky Ian Gordon.  He already has had great success, but I predict many more lovely things to come from him!
 
If you weren’t an opera singer, what career would you want?
Professional swimmer
 
Worst costume ever?
Haha!!!  I did a tour of Hansel and Gretel throughout Indiana while I was a young artist with Indianapolis Opera.  For Hansel I had to wear satin, green lederhosen that were too small and a matching hat.  And a shirt that resembled the "puffy shirt" from SEINFELD.
 
Where is your favorite spot in New York?
Anywhere on the Hudson River between April and September.  Central Park is a close second!
 
Three favorite cities?
NEW YORK!, Vienna, Blowing Rock, NC
 
Which is the better river— the East or the Hudson?
The Hudson… duh!
 
Any advice for aspiring opera singers?
Always sing for yourself.  Remember, it's what you love doing.
By New York City Opera
Thursday, February 2, 2012 | 11:50 AM
Overton KennethBaritone Kenneth Overton may be making his NYC Opera debut this season in Jonathan Miller's production of La traviata, but he's is no stranger to the New York opera scene.  As co-founder of Opera Noire of New York, Kenneth has been instrumental in the organization's mission of creating opportunities for African American singers through networking and professional resources.  NYC Opera has had the pleasure to work with Opera Noire of New York on a number of performances at the Schomburg Center, most recently excperts from Scott Joplin's Treemonisha last spring. Learn more about this fabulous baritone in another round of "Questions with..."
 
 
Full Given Name 
Kenneth Lee Overton
 
Hometown
Philadelphia, PA
 
First opera you ever saw?
La Boheme
 
First opera you ever performed?
La Boheme
 
Favorite role to date?
Porgy in Porgy and Bess, followed closely by Sharpless in Madama Butterfly.
 
If you were given the chance to do any role here at NYC Opera, what would it be?
Stephen Kumalo in Kurt Weill’s final Opera Lost in The Stars.
 
Favorite opera to listen to?
Anything Puccini!
 
Album you can’t live without?
Anything by Whitney Houston
 
Secret Talent (other than singing)?
Cooking
 
Most played song on your iPod?
"Love on Top" by Beyoncé
 
When were you first introduced to La traviata?
It was part of the season when I was a studio artist at Chautauqua Opera. I was 20 years old.
 
Any pop culture guilty pleasures?
Red carpet events ie. Oscars (fashion), Top Chef, Iron Chef, America’s Next Top Model, and The Young and The Restless
 
Pre/Post show meal?
Pre show… fruit, veggies and pasta.
Post show… Anything I can get my hands on!!! Singing makes me hungry.
 
You have a super cool time machine and you can go back in time to see any opera's premiere.  Which one?
Turandot!
 
You have a super cool time machine and you can go into the future.  Which young singer or composer would you be excited to see 20 years from now?
My adopted nephew Justin Michael Austin
 
 
If you weren’t an opera singer, what career would you want?
If I couldn’t have Oprah’s career, then I would have been a Lawyer, Chef, or Professional tennis player.
 
Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap?
Slipped and fell during a fencing scene in Romeo et Juliette. LOL.
 
 
Website, other than Facebook, email, and your own, that you visit every day?
Yahoo/Espn Sports or Foodnetwork.com
 
What would your Lifetime Original movie title be?
On My Journey: The Boy from Philly with a Dream.
 
Where is your favorite spot in New York?
Anywhere where great music is being made.
 
Three favorite cities?
San Francisco, Paris and New York.
 
Do you have any pets?
No, I travel waaaaayyyy too much.
 
Which is the better river— the East or the Hudson?
Hudson
 
What’s the craziest venue in which you’ve performed?
Bregenz Festival. The stage sits in Lake Constance, and you sing to a 7,000 seat ampitheatre on land.
 
Any advice for aspiring opera singers?
1. Sing on your vocal interest and not your vocal capital (advice from Leontyne Price).
2. Follow your heart and be your biggest fan/advocate.
3. Don’t measure yourself by other people’s success, everyone has their own path/journey.
4. There is ALWAYS something to learn, even if it’s WHAT NOT TO DO. 
By New York City Opera
Wednesday, November 23, 2011 | 7:52 AM
Happy Thanksgiving, opera lovers! Here at New York City Opera, we wanted to raise a glass to the great composers whose work we will present in the spring.  And with the help of Drinkify.org, we've found the best beverage to toast each of them.  Check it out!
 
DrinkifyVerdi
Click here to toast
Giuseppe Verdi!
 
DrinkifyRufus
Click here to toast Rufus Wainwright!
 
DrinkifyMozart
Click here to toast W. A. Mozart!
 
DrikifyTelemann
Click here to toast George Telemann!
 
 
 
By New York City Opera
Monday, November 7, 2011 | 11:37 AM
One might not guess that one of New York's most popular venues is in hiding in the basement of a college. Being steps away from Lincoln Center, however, The Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College of Criminal Justice has become no stranger to premiere performing arts organizations.  The 600-seat venue on West 59th Street is one of the chosen theaters for the Lincoln Center Festival every summer. It's hosted the Metropolitan Opera Guild, Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, Great Performances at Lincoln Center, among others.  It's intimacy and excellent acoustics make it the ideal choice for our upcoming production of Mozart's Così fan tutte, directed by Christopher Alden. Besides music, theater, and dance performances, the Lynch is often used for television specials on Comedy Central, VH1, A&E, and more. Check out the pictures below, and get to know one of the new homes for our 2011-2012 season!
 
 
Stage to House
 
 
House Left
 
 
Studio
By New York City Opera
Thursday, November 3, 2011 | 8:08 AM
Andrew GarlandBaritone Andrew Garland is making his City Opera debut this month in our upcoming concert "Who Are You New York?: The Songs of Rufus Wainwright".  Andrew is no stranger to the works of American composers, having recently recorded songs by composer Lee Hoiby (whose Natalia Petrovna made its world premiere at New York City Opera in 1964) and wowing audiences with his robust voice at the New York Festival of Song. Get to know a little more about Andrew in another round of our "Questions with..."
 





Full Given Name                       
Andrew B. Garland (can you guess what the ‘B’ stands for?)
 
Hometown
Kingston, MA
 
First opera you ever saw?     
Rossini’s La Cenerentola at Wolf Trap Opera in 1995
 
First opera you ever performed?
Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro
 
Favorite role to date? 
I have three favorite roles: Dandini (in La Cenerentola), Pélleas (in Debussy’s Pélleas et Mélisande) and whatever I'm preparing at the moment (right now that's Billy Bigelow in Carousel).
 
If you were given the chance to do any role here at NYCO, what would it be? 
Lady MacBeth
 
Album you can’t live without? 
John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman
 
Secret Talent (other than singing)? 
Cycling – not that much of a secret, or a talent
 
Most played song on your iPod? 
“The Poet Game” – Greg Brown
 
When were you first introduced to Rufus’ music? 
In 2006 when my hip brother-in-law made me a mix CD.
 
Favorite Rufus Wainwright song?
“The Dream”
 
Any pop culture guilty pleasures?
Glee
 
Post show meal? 
Tanqueray 10 martini
 
You have a super cool time machine and you can go back in time to see any opera's premiere.  Which one? 
Das Rheingold
 
You have a super cool time machine and you can go into the future.  Which young singer or composer would you be excited to see 20 years from now? 
Nico Muhly and Rufus Wainwright
 
If you weren’t an opera singer, what career would you want?
A teacher
 
Secret talent (other than singing!)?
Raising money (while cycling!)
 
Worst costume ever?   
Don Giovanni (Sorry, company whose name I won’t mention).  They wanted my Giovanni to look like a 90’s rock star in period costume.  Problem was, I looked like a 90’s rock star – with elastic-waisted pants.
 
Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap? 
I forgot the words at least 5 times in the premiere of a song cycle – in English.  It was just me out there on stage.  Had to stop, walk over to the piano and look at the music each time.  The audience still really dug it.
 
Most awesome on-stage kiss? 
I never enjoy kissing female colleagues onstage.  I only enjoy kissing my wife.  (Adriana Zabala, to answer your question)
 
What would your Lifetime Original movie title be?    
“Nice Guys Laugh Last”
 
Three favorite cities?
Vancouver, Dubrovnik, Boston
 
Do you have any pets?
1 dog, 1 guinea hen, 4 chickens
 
Which is the better river— the East or the Hudson?
The Jones River (Kingston, MA--holla!)
 
What’s the craziest venue in which you’ve performed?
The Mullins Center singing backup for Barry Manilow
 
Any advice for aspiring opera singers? 
Go for it, good luck.
 
For more information on Andrew, click here.
By New York City Opera
Friday, September 16, 2011 | 8:51 AM
"Every opera house has its own personality, some are opulent and grand, some intimate and elegant, others have an extraordinary sense of history. The Howard Gilman Opera House at BAM is nothing less than magnificent, with very savvy people coming in to hear its productions. It caters to the connoisseur... and offers a different repertoire than other lyric houses in New York."
 
--William Christie
 
The Howard Gilman Opera House was built in 1908 by premier theater architects Herts and Tallant, whose previous work included Broadway's Lyceum Theatre and New Amsterdam Theatre.  Located in the heart of the Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood, this opera house has been an amazing stimulus for the burgeoning arts scene in Brooklyn.  It's been home to productions from the world's most-renowned opera house including the Welsh National Opera, Paris National Opera, The Kirov Opera, and the Dutch National Opera to name a few.  New York City Opera is excited to add it's name to that list with new productions of Verdi's La Traviata and the U. S. Premiere of Rufus Wainwright's Prima Donna.  To learn more about the Howard Gilman Opera House and how to get tickets to our productions there, click here.
 
Howard Gilman Opera House
Howard Gilman Opera House
By New York City Opera
Monday, August 8, 2011 | 8:44 AM
As we embark on our 2011-2012 season, we here at City Opera thought it would be fun to take a look at some of the exciting new venues in which we'll perform.  First up: El Teatro Theater at El Museo Del Barrio, the charming Upper East Side theater which will house our new production of Telemann's Orpheus.
 
This 599-seat venue, considered one of the "hidden gems" of the Manhattan theater scene, is nestled right on the northeastern corridor of Central Park. Designed in 1921 by Architects Maynicke and Frank, El Teatro, formerly known as the Heckscher Theater was founded in 1924.  The theater's history includes prominence in the 1930s as a home to many Broadway tryouts.  It was also the original location for the Joseph Papp New York Shakespeare Festival, now housed at Central Park's Delacorte Theater.
 
The theater is covered in a remarkable series of 30ft murals, giving it the grand distinction of being honored as a Landmark Quality Venue by the Municipal Arts Society and the City of New York Arts Commission.  The murals, entitled Scenes for Children's Literature, were created by Willy Pogany (1882-1955).  They feature scenes from legedary fairy tales like Jack and the Beanstalk, Hansel and Gretel, and Cinderella.
 
 
Get acquainted with the theater at Museo Del Barrio, and check out the pictures below.
 
InteriorTeatro
Museo 8
Museo 6A
 
Museo 1A copy
 
For more information about this historic theater or New York City Opera's upcoming seasons, visit us online at nycopera.com.
By New York City Opera
Tuesday, June 21, 2011 | 12:29 PM
Anne-Carolyn Bird
 
Anne-Carolyn Bird has been quite the busy soprano.  Besides performing in some of the most celebrated opera houses in the world, the young singer welcomed son Henry into the world just last year with husband (and bass-baritone) Matthew Burns.  Both Anne-Carolyn and Matthew will perform at NYCO's upcoming "Rufus Wainwright Goes to the Opera"--part of this year's River to River Festival.  Anne-Carolyn took time out of her busy schedule to answer some of our "Questions with..."  Check them out!
 
 
 
 
 
Full Given Name?
Anne-Carolyn Bird (my Southern mother gave me two "first names"; I've always gone by both.)

Hometown?
I don't have one! I grew up an Air Force "brat," living in Delaware, Utah, Germany, Illinois, Maine, and Georgia before leaving home for college.

First opera you ever saw?
Turandot at Atlanta Opera as a senior in high school.

First opera you ever performed?
I sang in the chorus of Carmen in college; my first role in a full production was Pamina in The Magic Flute.

Favorite role to date?
Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro. I have so much fun onstage when I sing that role! I know someday I'll "grow up" to sing Countess, and I will miss feisty, sweet Susanna!

If you were given the chance to do any role here at NYCO, what would it be?
My wish list of roles to add to my repertoire is very long - Gilda, Juliette, et al - but at NYCO, I would love to be involved in something more contemporary. New music has always been a big part of my career, and NYCO has a reputation for presenting modern works in interesting productions.

Favorite opera to listen to?
Turandot! I'm not sure how the tradition started, but we listen to it every New Year's Day as we make our black-eyed peas and greens.

Secret Talent (other than singing)?
I can sing "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" starting on any syllable in the song! It's my OCD/savant party trick.

Most played song on your iPod?
"Mushaboom" by Feist, a great song about living in the city but dreaming about raising a family in the country.

Pre/Post show meal?
I need protein and carbs before a show, so I love to grab sushi or, ideally, a burrito bowl from Chipotle. Afterwards, bring on dessert!

You have a super cool time machine and you can go back in time to see any opera's premiere. Which one?
I would love to see Le Nozze di Figaro, not only to watch and hear the original Susanna, but also to learn "Mozartean performance practices" from the man himself.

You have a super cool time machine and you can go into the future. Which young singer or composer would you be excited to see 20 years from now?
Well, it would be nice to know what I’m up to in 20 years! :) There are several composers I hope to still be working with far into the future: John Musto, Judd Greenstein, Gabriel Kahane, David T. Little, Darcy James Argue...

If you weren’t an opera singer, what career would you want?
Midwife. We had Henry at home last year, and our midwife was the lynchpin in making the experience everything we had hoped it would be. I would be honored to be able to help other families welcome their little ones into the world.

Worst flubbed line/missed cue/onstage mishap?
I've got a good story for this one! I had a super quick costume change as a stepsister in Cendrillon at Santa Fe Opera. After the change, I had to come onstage without my shoes and gloves. They were given to me by the dancers in the scene; one of them handed me my gloves, and then two lifted me up by my armpits and put on my shoes. One night, when the dancer gave me the gloves, he spoke to me. We even made eye contact, but I had no idea what he said. The English words, coming at me in a place and time where I was exclusively singing in French, just did not compute! In one ear and out the other... The scene continued: I put on my first glove, the shoes went on, and then I started to put the other glove on my left hand. At this point the dancer's face appeared to me in a "thought bubble" as I heard his voice again, and this time I understood him: “It’s two right gloves!” Not a major "costume malfunction" by any means, but it was a very funny example of how intense performance focus can be!

Most awesome on-stage kiss?
Matt [bass-baritone Matthew Burns] and I have the same answer to this one! There was one kiss during rehearsals for a production of Nozze that made the world stand still. We didn't start dating until a couple months later, but we confessed that we both remembered that kiss!

Which is the better river— the East or the Hudson?
The Hudson has some great songs written about it...

Any advice for aspiring opera singers?
Nothing they haven't heard many times before: Learn your languages. Learn to play the piano. Learn stagecraft. And don't be in a hurry; if you move slowly through your repertoire, you'll be able to sing it for a very long time.
 
For more information about Anne-Carolyn, click here or visit her blog.
By New York City Opera
Wednesday, June 8, 2011 | 11:00 AM
The 2011 Tony Awards are fast approaching, and what better way to celebrate the biggest night on Broadway than stocking up on your favorite cast recordings!  The Online City Opera Gift Shop is currently having a sale on all CDs and DVDs (25% off when you use the code SUMMER11), so why not pick out some of your favorite Tony winners and nominees.  Here are a few of the selections you can find now on sale.
 
A Little Night Music
 
Music & Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Book by Hugh Wheeler
 
Winner of six 1973 Tony Awards including Best Musical, A Little Night Music is considered by many to be one of Sondheim's greatest musical accomplishments and is produced in both musical-theater and opera houses around the world.  Included in the waltz-driven score is Sondheim's biggest hit "Send in the Clowns".
 
Fun Fact: The actress playing "Anne Egerman" in the 2009 Broadway revival (Ramona Mallory) is the daughter of the Anne from the original Broadway production (Victoria Mallory).
 
 
 
 
Pirates of Penzance
 
Music by Sir Arthur Sullivan
Libretto by W. S. Gilbert
 
The 1981 Broadway revival of Gilbert & Sullivan's comic operetta garnered seven Tony nominations and won 3 awards.  Oscar winner Kevin Kline took home the Best Actor statuette for his outlandish, Yankee -infused performance as the Pirate King.
 
Fun Fact: The big screen adaptation included most of the cast members from the Broadway revival, only adding Broadway legend Angela Lansbury as Ruth.
 
 
 
 
Sweeney Todd
 
Music & Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Book by Hugh Wheeler
 
Speaking of Ms. Lansbury, who can forget her Tony-winning turn as the indomitable Mrs. Lovett in the original 1979 production of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.  The show went on to win 8 of its 9 nominations including Best Musical. The original production also included a young Victor Garber, seen recently at our "Defying Gravity: The Music of Stephen Schwartz" concert.
 
Fun Fact: Paul Gemignani, a frequent Sondheim collaborator, conducted both the original Broadway production as well as the 2007 Tim Burton film adaptation.
 
 
 
Wicked
 
Music & Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz
Book by Winnie Holzman
 
This winner of three Tony Awards, including Best Actress for Idina Menzel, has been a huge hit on Broadway and around the world.  Featuring a score from Séance on a Wet Afternoon composer Stephen Schwartz, this tale of two unlikely friends in the magical land of Oz has banked on its resonance with tween girls and tween-girls-at-heart.
 
Fun Fact: Joe Mantello, the director of Wicked, is currently nominated for his portrayal of Ned Weeks in the revival of Larry Kramer's The Normal Heart.
 
 
 
These, as well as many other cast recordings, are now available at the Online Gift Shop. Remember to use code SUMMER11 to get 25% off your favorites!
By New York City Opera
Friday, May 13, 2011 | 11:48 AM
Composer David T. Little and librettist Royce Vavrek are back for another year at VOX.  This year's selection Vinkensport concerns the little-known sport of finch-singing and the quirky characters who participate.  For more information, click here.
 
 
By New York City Opera
Friday, May 13, 2011 | 7:21 AM
Daryl FreedmanDaryl Freedman may be making her New York City Opera debut in this year's VOX, but she sure has made her impression on the opera world.  This vivacious mezzo-soprano has previous sang at Wolf Trap Opera, Portland Opera, and Central City Opera to name a few. She now stars in Blood Rose, Hannah Lash's operatic interpretation of the Beauty and the Beast story which features a mezzo-soprano Beauty and a countertenor Beast.  Learn more about Daryl in our latest edition of "Questions with..."
 
 
 
 
 
 
Describe VOX
An important forum for new works to be given life.
 
Describe your character
Beauty is an almost other-worldly woman who has come to seduce the Beast. She masochistically becomes emotionally enmeshed with him, despite (or because of) his violent actions and violations.
 
21st Century Opera is…
Exciting and alive!
 
You should come see Blood Rose because…
I sing really low, and Eric Brenner sings really high! Also, because Hannah Lash has written an incredibly interesting and beautiful piece.
 
Were you a big fan of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast?
I used to watch Disney’s Beauty and the Beast on VHS as a kid over and over! A week before I received the score to Blood Rose, I was told that the opera is a Beauty and the Beast story, and that the role of Beauty is a very low mezzo role. So, naturally, I spent that week jokingly singing Disney’s "Belle" down the octave in an operatic mezzo voice… “Oh, isn't this amazing? It's my favorite part because --- you'll see. Here's where she meets Prince Charming. But she won't discover that it's him 'til chapter three!” (Operatically… down the octave).
 
Role you most want to play and why:
Baba The Turk. I love The Rake's Progress, and I think Baba would be an unbelievably fun role to sing.
 
Your diva role model is…
Giulietta Simionato.
 
Favorite opera to listen to?
Contemporary American opera. Seriously!
 
Favorite opera to sing?
That always changes! Whatever opera I’m currently singing at the moment tends to become my favorite opera to sing.
 
Pre-performance diet?
I try not to eat tooooo much before a performance, and I always drink Throat Coat tea.
 
Album you can’t live without?
Way Back to Paradise – Audra McDonald.
 
Secret talent (other than singing!)?
Cake decorating.
 
Worst costume you ever wore?
In high school, I sang the role of Lisa, a homeless lady, in William Finn's A New Brain. My costume was my own old clothes covered in dirt and duct tape.
 
Who would play you in the movie about your life?
Minnie Driver. People have told me that I look like her my whole life, and she sings!
 
Where’s your favorite place in New York?
Riverside Park.
 
What famous movie/play/story do you think would make a fantastic new opera?
 The Hours.
By New York City Opera
Thursday, May 12, 2011 | 12:24 PM
Meet Arlene Sierra and Lucy Thurber, the composer-librettist team for Faustine, one of the works showcased in this year's VOX Contemporary American Opera Lab.  For more information or to purchase tickets to this event, click here.
 
By New York City Opera
Thursday, May 12, 2011 | 7:51 AM
Composer Andrew Gerle and librettist Royce Vavrek talk about their opera The Beach which will be featured on the first day of this year's VOX Contemporary American Opera Lab.  For tickets and information, click here.
 
By New York City Opera
Wednesday, May 11, 2011 | 12:02 PM
Meet Allan Jaffe and Deborah Atherton, the composer-librettist team behind Mary Shelley. Learn about the fascinating story behind the trailblazing author at the heart of this VOX selection.  For tickets and information, click here.
 
 
By New York City Opera
Tuesday, May 10, 2011 | 2:50 PM
Meet Dag Gabrielsen, and learn about the origin of his opera All Three Acts of a Sad Play Performed Entirely in Bed. To learn more about this and other VOX selections, click here.
 
 
By New York City Opera
Monday, May 9, 2011 | 2:49 PM
Meet another of our fabulous composer/librettist teams!  Paola Prestini and Donna DiNovelli talk about their opera De Deo, a selection that will be featured in the second day of this year's lab at Le Poisson Rouge.  For more information, click here.
 
By New York City Opera
Friday, May 6, 2011 | 6:19 AM
All this week, we'll be introducing you to the teams behind each of this year's VOX selections.  Hear composer Huang Ro and librettist Candice Chong discuss the subject at the heart of their opera, Dr. Sun Yat-Sen.  For tickets and information, click here.
 
By New York City Opera
Thursday, April 21, 2011 | 11:24 AM
Bailey GreyThough Bailey Grey, age 12, makes her New York City Opera debut as Adriana Clayton in Stephen Schwartz's Séance on a Wet Afternoon this month, she's no stranger to the stage.  The singing actress was last seen in the national tour of Mary Poppins as Jane Banks (a role she counts among her favorites) and has been in regional productions of Godspell, Seussical, and A Christmas Carol.  Learn more about Bailey in another round of our "Questions with..."
 
 
 
 
 
Hometown
Livingston, New Jersey
 
First opera performance
Séance will be my first opera
 
Favorite Role to date
Jane Banks in Mary Poppins
 
Why is this role challenging?
This is my first opera, and it’s allergy season! But playing Adriana is awesome!
 
What moment should the audience be looking/listening for?
I can’t tell you…it’s a secret. Shhh.
 
How would you describe working with Stephen Schwartz?
Stephen Schwartz is my idol - he has written my favorite all-time music, so it is an honor and a dream come true to work with him. He is such a joy to work with. He gives good advice and he’s very thoughtful. And I love his eyes!
 
If you had to describe Séance in three words, what would they be?
Suspenseful, Exciting, Emotional
 
Have you ever taken part in a séance?
No, but I’d like to!
 
If you were given the chance to do any role here at NYCO, what would it be?
Anything they want me to do! I really like working here - everyone is so nice
 
What is your secret talent (other than singing)?
Defying Gravity! (just kidding, that is my answer to the next question.) I am great with animals.
 
What songs get you pumped up while working out?
"Defying Gravity"!
 
Pre/Post show meal?
Salad before, pizza or mac-n-cheese after. Lots of water!!!
 
Most awesome on-stage kiss?
Well, I’m twelve years old, but I actually do have one… when I kissed my dad George Banks in Mary Poppins on the cheek and said, "Goodnight Daddy. We do love you, you know."
 
You have a super cool time machine and you can go into the future. Which young singer or composer would you be excited to see 20 years from now?
My good friend Benjamin Wenzelberg (the cover for Arthur) is already a fantastic composer at age 11! I can’t wait to see what his future holds for him.
 
Worst costume ever?
T-shirt in a first grade school play (lol)
 
When you’re hanging with a friend and tell the other person that you are an opera singer the common reaction is…
Shock and jealousy (I’m not sure if they’re more jealous of the performing, or the fact that I get to miss school!)
 
What would your Lifetime Original movie title be?
I Sing, Therefore I Am
 
Where is your favorite spot in New York?
Inside any theatre!
 
What famous actor/actress (dead or alive) would play you in the movie of your life?
She hasn’t been born yet.
 
Do you have any pets?
YES! Three awesome cats! Skipper, Battery, and Malchy.
 
Any advice for aspiring opera singers?
Keep practicing, go on lots of auditions, and don’t get discouraged!
By New York City Opera
Friday, April 15, 2011 | 1:27 PM
melody moore headshot
Soprano Melody Moore makes a splashy New York City Opera debut in the New York premiere of Stephen Schwartz's Séance on a Wet Afternoon. Melody plays Rita Clayton, the distraught mother searching for answers in her daughter's disapperance.  Melody took time out of her busy rehearsal schedule to answer a few of our "Questions with...".  Check it out!
 
 
 
 
 
 
Full Given Name
Melody Anne Moore
 
Hometown
Dyersburg, Tennessee
 
First opera performance
The first opera performance I saw was La Traviata. The first I performed was Bianca in The Rape of Lucretia.
 
Favorite role to date
Governess in Turn of the Screw.
 
Why is this role challenging?
I find my role more emotionally challenging that anything as she is distraught over her missing child.
 
What moment should the audience be looking/listening for?
I think the duet between Rita and Charles Clayton is a key musical and dramatic moment in the opera. However, I think that Myra has myriad "moments" - my favorites are "Lucky" and "Before You"
 
How would you describe working with Stephen Schwartz?
I am honored to be singing his score. I find him to be a brilliant writer both lyrically and texturally.
 
If you had to describe Séance in three words, what would they be?
Chilling, complex and visceral.
 
If you were given the chance to do any role here at NYCO, what would it be?
Susannah by Floyd
 
What is your secret talent (other than singing)?
Cooking
 
What songs get you pumped up while working out?
 Arcade Fire "Keep the Car Running", Coldplay "Viva la Vida", Frightened Rabbit "The Modern Leper", The Temper Trap "Sweet Disposition", Kate Bush "Running up that Hill"
 
Pre/Post show meal?
Protein
 
Most awesome on-stage kiss?
Between Cherubino and The Countess [in Le Nozze di Figaro] in L.A.
 
You have a super cool time machine and you can go back in time to see any opera's premiere.  Which one?
The Magic Flute
 
You have a super cool time machine and you can go into the future.  Which young singer or composer would you be excited to see 20 years from now?
Heidi Melton (Wagnerian soprano from the San Francisco Opera Adler program) and Benjamin Wenzelberg (our very own "Arthur" cover).
 
If you weren’t an opera singer, what career would you want?
Chef
 
Website, other than Facebook, email, and your own, that you visit every day?
The NYCO schedule.
 
What would your Lifetime Original movie title be?
Truth Is Heavy.
 
Where is your favorite spot in New York?
Central Park
 
What famous actor/actress (dead or alive) would play you in the movie of your life?
Kate Winslet
 
Any advice for aspiring opera singers?
While following others' advice, be sure not to neglect your own.
 
To learn more about Melody and her amazing career, click here.
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