Ciao, Opera Mavens! Here’s what some of our Adler and Merola alumni are up to:
An AIDS Quilt Songbook: Sing For Hope has brought together top classical musicians and celebrities for a new album benefitting amfAR, the Foundation for AIDS Research. An all-star cast comes together on one album to sing for hope and in support of cure-focused HIV/AIDS research. With new songs by established and emerging American composers, this recording provides a global musical portrait of AIDS today, spanning a range of perspectives and illuminating our interconnectedness in the changing face of the disease. Featuring Joyce DiDonato (Merola 1997), Melody Moore (Adler 2007), Noah Stewart (Adler 2007), Daniel Okulitch (Merola 2002), and lots more. http://tinyurl.com/singforhope
Janai Brugger (Merola 2010) recently received the medal of excellence from the Sphinx Organization which recognizes “artistic excellence, outstanding work ethic, a spirit of determination and great potential for leadership.”
André Heller Lopes (Merola 2001, apprentice stage director) is a 2014 International Opera Award nominee for his Parque Lage (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) production of Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and has recently directed Eugene Onegin at the Salzburg Festival as well as the Uruguay premiere of Ariadne auf Naxos. http://www.andreheller-lopes.com/sobre_english.html
Two Merola alums are nominated at this year’s Grammy Awards:
Joyce DiDonato (Merola 1997) – Best Classical Solo Vocal Album for Stella Di Napoli
Dan Kempson (Merola 2010) – Best Opera Recording for Milhaud’s L’Orestie d’Eschyle.
The full list of the classical music nominees is available here: http://www.wqxr.org/#!/story/classical-grammy-nominees/
Tenor Sean Panikkar (Adler 2006), recently sang Molqi in John Adams’ The Death of Klinghoffer at the Met and has an upcoming role as Nikolaus Sprink in Kevin Puts’ Silent Night at Lyric Opera of Kansas City. He sat down with the editors of Opera News for a “Take 5″ Q & A session: http://vimeo.com/112523988
Rolando Villazón (Merola 1998), will be making his directorial debut in January at the Volksoper Wien with Donizetti’s comedy Viva la Mamma.
Three Merola/Adler alums recently appeared in the workshop for the new opera JFK by David T. Little & Royce Vavrek at the Kaufman Music Center’s Merkin Concert Hall. Sean Panikkar (Adler 2006) sang secret service agent Henry Rathbone, Daniel Okulitch (Merola 2002) sang LBJ and Daniela Mack (Adler 2009) sang Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy. The opera will premiere at the 2016 Fort Worth Opera Festival with the same cast. http://www.kaufmanmusiccenter.org/mch/event/insightalt-jfk/