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Dramatic Soprano Dara Hobbs was born in Williams Bay, Wisconsin, USA and earned Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, where she was selected for membership in the Phi Beta Kappa and Pi Kappa Lambda national honor societies.
A regional finalist in the Metropolitan Opera Competition, Ms. Hobbs began her professional stage experience in the choruses of the Lyric Opera of Chicago and San Diego Opera, as a member of Chicago Opera Theater’s Debut Artists Series, and as an Apprentice Artist and subsequently as a Studio Artist with Sarasota Opera. Subsequently she received a Metropolitan Opera Competition scholarship to the 2005 American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria and also studied at the 2006 Vocal Arts Symposium in Spoleto, Italy.
Ms. Hobbs has performed at some of Germany’s leading opera houses, including the Bayreuther Festspiele, Opera Frankfurt, Aalto‐Musiktheater Essen, Opera Leipzig, Staatsoper Hannover, Theater Chemnitz, Deutsche Oper am Rhein and Theater Bonn. Her engagements outside Germany include performances in the Netherlands, Austria, Portugal and the United States.
Her engagements include performances as Brünnhilde (Die Walküre, Siegfried, Götterdämmerung), Isolde (Tristan and Isolde), Senta (Der Fliegende Holländer), Sieglinde (Die Walküre), Salome (Salome), Ariadne (Ariadne auf Naxos), Lisa (Pique Dame), Rosalinde (Die Fledermaus), Aida (Aida), Tosca (Tosca), Angelica (Suor Angelica) und Elisabeth (Don Carlo).
Her concert and oratorio engagements include Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and Missa Solemnis, Brahms’ Requiem, Verdi’s Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Mendelssohn’s Elijah and Paulus, Liszt’s Cristus and Vivaldi’s Gloria. Other performances include Strauss’ Vier letzte Lieder, Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder and numerous solo recitals.
She has worked with conductors such as Kirill Petrenko, Valery Gergiev, Marek Janowski, Sebastian Weigle, Lawrence Foster, Stefan Blunier, Howard Arman, Karen Kamensek, Victor DeRenzi and Frank Beerman.
American tenor Matthew Vickers has been praised for his “brilliant and golden voice” (Die Kleine Zeitung), his “burnished sound and confident acting” (National Post), and hailed as “a gutsy performer whose glowing tenor voice has interestingly dark, baritonal undertones (Opera Now).
In the 2018-2019 season Mr. Vickers performed the role of Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly with Opera Memphis, was in concert with Sarasota Opera, debuted with the Macerata Festival as Don José in Carmen, and sang Canio in Pagliacci with the Savannah Music Festival. His 2019-2020 season sees a return to Virginia Opera as Cavaradossi in Tosca, Rodolfo in La bohème with Dayton Opera, Principe Dimitri in Risurrezione with the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Carmel Symphony, Sam in Susannah with Annapolis Opera, and Calaf in Turandot with the Evansville Philharmonic.
The 2017-18 season included his debut as Arnold in Guillaume Tell with Opera Southwest as well as returns to Opera Western Reserve as Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor, Sarasota Opera as Des Grieux in Manon Lescaut, Opera Roanoke as Rodolfo in La bohème, and Opera Delaware as Luigi in Il tabarro. In the 2016-2017 season, Mr. Vickers performed the role of Don José in Carmen with Opera Western Reserve, covered Canio in Pagliacci with Virginia Opera, sang Avito in Montemezzi’s L’amore dei tre re with Sarasota Opera, Sam in Carlisle Floyd’s Susannah with Opera Roanoke, Luigi in Il tabarro with the Opera Company of Middlebury, and the Duke in Verdi’s Rigoletto with Ashlawn Opera. In the 2015-2016 season, he made his Sarasota Opera debut as Arrigo in Verdi’s La battaglia di Legnano, stepping in for an ailing colleague; took part in the east coast premiere of Faccio’s Amleto with Opera Delaware as Laertes, and performed the title role in Mascagni’s L’amico Fritz with Boston Midsummer Opera. The 2014-2015 season saw him as Rodolfo in Puccini’s La bohème with Penn State Opera Theatre and Turiddu in Mascagni’s Cavalleria rusticana with Minnesota Concert Opera.
In twenty-seven years as an opera singer in Europe, Elizabeth Hagedorn has gathered extensive performing experience in Germany, Italy, Austria and the Czech Republic. A wide repertoire of over fifty leading roles developed, through the dramatic coloratura and lyric soprano literature, and revealing her particular affinity for the complex characters of the Italian verismo and German expressionist composers. Significant role portrayals include Tosca, Salome, Ariadne, Chrysothemis (Elektra), Elsa, Senta, Marie (Wozzeck), Leonore (Fidelio), Ellen Orford, Maddalena (Andrea Chenier), Leonora (Trovatore), Elisabetta (Don Carlo), Violetta, Konstanze, Donna Elvira, Mimi, Rusalka and Olympia/Antonia/Giulietta (Tales of Hoffmann). Recent performances include Mirabella in Zigeuner Baron in Austria, Alma March (Little Women) with the Madison Opera, and concert performances of Mahler’s Rückert Lieder, Respighi’s Il Tramonto and Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder.
A three-year appointment as Visiting Associate Professor of Voice at the University of Wisconsin – Madison followed a position on the faculty at AIMS in 2013. Ms. Hagedorn is in demand in Europe and the United States both as a performer and vocal pedagogue, presenting voice master classes and stage performance workshops (Wien.Oper.Intensiv.). Her workshop in Global Vocal Styles is currently part of the Vienna school system’s continuing education program for music teachers, and was presented in 2017 at the Salzburg ISME conference (International Society for Music Education). Since 2010, she has maintained a private voice studio in Vienna.
Elizabeth Hagedorn completed music degrees in her home state of Wisconsin (BME) and at the University of Colorado (MM) as a student of Berton Coffin and Barbara Doscher. As a Regional MET competition finalist and the recipient of the Denver Lyric Opera Guild award, she was able to attend AIMS in 1986, a significant step toward beginning her European career.
Prof. Lechner completed musical and vocal studies at Viennese Musikhochschule and in Italy. She was awarded the diploma summa cum laude in vocal training, lied and oratorio, and opera. She also won prizes in several competitions: Mario del Monaco (Italy), Opera en Belcanto (Belgium), and Dr. Luis Segall Competition (Chile). She performed for many years with the Vienna State Opera and Graz Opera and then joined Zürich Opera (1991-2001) where she sang the major lyric and dramatic roles of Verdi, Puccini, Strauss, and Wagner and performed over 26 leading roles in the operas of Gluck, Mozart, Weber, Meyerbeer, Boito, Giordano, Offenbach, Schreker, Goldmark, and modern composers Henze and Reimann, among others.
She performed in almost every European country, Korea, Chile and participated in major international festivals such as Salzburger Festspiele, Wiener Festwochen, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Prague Spring Festival and Carinthischer Sommer Austria. Her international career began in 1986 as Amelia (Un Ballo in Maschera) at Vienna State Opera with Luciano Pavarotti and Claudio Abbado. Watch Prof. Lechner and Luciano Pavarotti sing the Ballo Duett https://www.youtube.com/watch?
She has a vast concert repertoire having appeared with the leading conductors of the day (She has worked with over 120 conductors!), and appears often in solo concerts in European countries. Many radio and television broadcasts and CD/DVD productions, including “Un Ballo in Maschera” with Pavarotti and Abbado, Tosca with Neil Shicoff, Hänsel and Gretel with Maestro Welser-Möst, have resulted from these artistic collaborations. Currently she is University Professor of Voice at Viennese U of Music and Dramatic Arts. She has judged the Meistersinger Vocal Competition and is one of the favorite master class teachers at AIMS.
Visit Prof. Lechner’s website: http://www.gabriele-lechner.at
Clemens was born and schooled in Graz and has been associated with AIMS all his life. Completed BA, MPh and PhD studies in Musicology, Romance Languages and Organ performance. He is a freelance author, journalist, program annotator, narrator, and musician.
Since 2004, Clemens works as an artists’ agent representing an international group of vocalists.
He frequently collaborates with the most prestigious promoters, orchestras, festivals and opera houses around the World.
Artists he has worked with include Christa Ludwig, Elina Garanča, Rolando Villázon, Thomas Hampson, and actors Christoph Waltz and Vanessa Redgrave. On his roster are several former AIMSers whom he represents in various European countries.
He teaches audition training at the Graz Music University, in London, Washington DC, Buenos Aires, and many other places.
Gary Matthewman is one of the UK’s leading song pianists. A regular artist at Wigmore Hall in London, other recent and forthcoming appearances include Carnegie Hall in New York, the Musikverein in Vienna, the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow, and in Strasbourg, Prague, Lucerne, Basel, Lisbon, Toronto, São Paulo, Singapore, Hong Kong, Melbourne and Sydney. His UK Festival performances include Oxford Lieder, Leeds Lieder, Aldeburgh, Buxton and Glyndebourne.
Recent and future recital partners include Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Sir Thomas Allen, Sumi Jo, Nuccia Focile, Mark Padmore, Ailyn Perèz, Kate Lindsey, Markus Werba, Dimitri Platanias, Sylvia Schwartz, Kate Royal, Andrei Bondarenko, Louise Alder, Adam Plachetka, Benjamin Appl, Sarah-Jane Brandon and Roderick Williams.
Gary has made numerous live broadcasts and recordings for BBC Radio 3, and his recent recording of Schubert’s Winterreise with Matthew Rose received widespread critical acclaim, featuring as Gramophone Magazine’s Recording of the Month and BBC Radio 3’s Disc of the Week. He is Professor of Vocal Repertoire at the Royal College of Music, and song coach for the Jette Parker Young Artists at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.
American soprano Linda Watson has appeared at many of the major opera houses of the world including Deutsche Oper Berlin, Teatro Real Madrid, Gran Teatro del Liceu, Teatro alla Scala Milan, Nederlandse Opera, Opéra national de Paris, Wiener Staatsoper, Bayreuther Festspiele and at the Metropolitan Opera, with leading conductors including Abbado, Mehta, Levine, Gergiev, Thielemann, Pappano, Gatti, Salonen and Nagano. She began her career as a mezzo-soprano in Aachen and in 1995 joined the Leipzig Opera.
She sang her first soprano role, Sieglinde (Die Walküre), in Essen and subsequently joined the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, where she also sang Leonore, Ortrud, Kundry, Feldmarschallin, Färberin, Ariadne and Elektra. In 2014 she was nominated for the Principal Soloist Grammy Award for her participation in Christian Thielemann’s Ring recording. Engagements this season include Ariadne and Turandot for the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Die Amme (Die Frau ohne Schatten) in Hamburg and Herodias (Salome) at the Wiener Staatsoper.
Ms. Radtke holds degrees in speech therapy from Ludwig-Maximilian U (Munich) and in logo/psychotherapy from Süddeutsches Institut für Logotherapie u. Existenzanalyse (Munich). She was a Lecturer for Diction and Vocal Health at Hildesheim U (Germany) and maintained a practice in speech therapy. Since 1987, she has been a German diction coach for singers at Stadttheater Hildesheim (Germany) coaching opera, operetta, Lieder and concert repertoire. Her specialty is pure high German and she has an extensive knowledge of opera libretti and Lieder. Ms. Radtke does worldwide German diction coaching for any German repertoire via Skype or phone. She has coached German Diction and prepared singers for concerts at AIMS from 2004-2019. Ms. Radtke is also the author of the booklets “Diction with Conviction” and “An Approach to the Poetry of German Lieder for the Non-native Speaker”.
Ms. Radtke also provided Latin diction coaching for sacred orchestra concerts.
Born in Denmark, Boje Skovhus studied at the Aarhus Music College and the Royal Academy for Opera of Copenhagen and in New York. He rose to opera stardom after a last minute appearance at the Vienna Volksoper when he substituted as Don Giovanni. Since then he has enjoyed a rapidly developing career on the world’s greatest opera stages.
He has been virtually adopted by the Viennese, and regularly performs at the Vienna State Opera and the Salzburg Festival. He sings the major baritone roles, such as the Count in Le nozze di Figaro and Guglielmo in Così fan tutte. He has spurred a revival of Ambroise Thomas’ Hamlet at the Vienna Konzerthaus, Vienna Volksoper, and Royal Opera Copenhagen, and the little known baritone version of Massenet’s Werther. He also has made a specialty of Britten’s Billy Budd and Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, including arias or scenes from them on his first opera disc (Sony Classics). Other leading baritone parts in his repertoire are Berg’s Wozzeck, Dallapiccola’s Il Prigioniero, Peter I in Zar und Zimmerman, Tarquinius in Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia, and Raimond in Othmar Schoeck’s Venus.
Skovhus also frequently appears on the recital stage and has recorded many recital discs. These include selections of Lieder by Hugo Wolf and Erich Korngold, a selection of songs by Robert and Clara Schumann (The Heart of the Poet), and the two great Schubert song cycles Schwanengesang and Die schöne Müllerin. After his 1997 New York recital at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center he was acclaimed as one of the great Lieder singers of his generation. He is particularly known for the energy and characterization he brings to the stage. He has appeared on many of the world’s great opera stages, including the Metropolitan in New York (debuting 1998 in Die Fledermaus), the Hamburg State Opera, the Houston Grand Opera, the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Opéra de Paris, Royal Opera Copenhagen, and the Bavarian State Opera.
He appears at major music festivals such as Die Salzburg Festspiel, Ravinia, Tanglewood, Edinburgh, the Vienna Festwochen, and the Feldkirch Schubertiade. On the orchestral concert stage, he has sung in Orff’s Carmina Burana, Britten’s War Requiem, Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, Brahms’ Ein deutsche Requiem, and Schumann’s Scenes from Faust. This is Skovhus’ sixth time to give a master class at AIMS.
Professor Ewa Izykowska is a world class singer (soprano/mezzo soprano), actress, and stage director. She holds a PhD and she is on the faculty of the Frederic Chopin University of Music in Warsaw, Poland where she was V-ce Rector. She graduated from the Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw, and is also a summa cum laude graduate of the State Academy of Drama in Warsaw. She continued her vocal studies in Italy at the Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Siena, Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome, and Teatro alla Scala in Milan with Giulietta Simionato, Antonio Tonini and Eduardo Mueller. She was also a pupil of Giorgio Favaretto, and she participated in the masterclasses given by Birgitt Nilson.
Ewa won several prizes at the international vocal competitions, including the Belvedere Competition in Vienna, the Mozart Competition in Alessandria, Italy, the Vocal Competition in Rome, and the Szymanowski Competition in Warsaw.
Ewa made her international debut at Milan’s La Scala as the eponymous heroine in Donizetti’s Rita. Having won a competition, she subsequently took part in the summer staggione in Alessandria, where she sang the part of Fiordiligi opposite Mauro Trombetta as Don Alfonso, with Eduardo Müller conducting.
In 1986, Ewa made her debut at Vienna’s Kammeroper as Nedda in Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci – the only opera production directed by Georg Tabori. The production was selected as “The best performance of the year” by Vienna’s critics. With Vienna’s Kammeroper she also sang the roles of the Countess in Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, Dorlisca in Rossini’s Torvaldo e Dorlisca and Violetta in Verdi’s La Traviata.
In 1987-1991 Ewa was soloist at the Opera House in Luzerne, Switzerland, where she sang Poppea in L’incoronazione di Poppea, Countess in Le nozze di Figaro Tatyana in Eugen Onegin, Violetta in La traviata, Adriana in Adriana Lecouvreur together with tenor Ramon Vargas and conductor Marcello Viotti.
She continued her carrier appearing in many European theatres singing main characters in Penderecki’s Die Schwarze Maske, The Devil from Loudaine (both broadcasted internationally), Paradise Lost, as well as Strauss’ Salome, Rosenkavalier (Marschalin), Puccini’s Tosca, and Giordano’s Fedora.
Ewa is also a distinguished oratorio singer. Her repertoire includes the best known works starting from Baroque through Romantic oratorios, to contemporary works like Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 and No. 8, Shostakovich’s Symphony No.14, and Gorecki’s Symphony No.3, as well as the whole oratorio repertoire of Penderecki.
During her career she performed in the world’s most prestigious opera theaters and concert halls like La Scala, Musikverein, Carnegie Hall, Vienna’s Kammeroper, the Great Hall of Moscow Conservatory, Shanghai Symphony Hall, and she was touring around Europe, North and South Americas, Africa, Russia, China, South Korea and Philippines.
She has recorded with Austrian ORF TV, Polish Radio & TV, Vatican Radio, Swiss Romande Radio, Russian Radio and Television, Television of Philippines, Brazil, Korea, for Italian RAI as well as different labels. Her recording of Caccini’s Ave Maria reached almost 1 million entries on YouTube.
Since 2004, she has been invited to participate in many international opera workshops, seminars, courses and festivals, including the Schlern Musik Festival in Italy; Masterclasses at the Texas Christian University; Masterclasses at the Catholic Universtity in Daegu, S. Korea; the From Chopin to Gorecki Festival at the F. Chopin University in Warsaw; Masterclasses in Santa Cecilia, Rome, and the Conservatorio in Padova. Ewa also became a Vice Director of the Keimyung F. Chopin Academy of Music in South Korea. She is also teaching at and the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw. She speaks 6 languages: Italian, German, Russian, French, English and Polish.
Thomas Hampson, America’s foremost baritone, has received international honors and awards for his captivating artistry and cultural leadership. Lauded as a Metropolitan Opera Guild “Met Mastersinger” and inducted into both the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and Gramophone’s “Hall of Fame,” Hampson is one of the most respected and innovative musicians of our time. With an operatic repertoire of over 80 roles sung in all the major theaters of the world, his discography comprises more than 170 albums, which include multiple nominations and winners of the Grammy Award, Edison Award, and the Grand Prix du Disque. He received the 2009 Distinguished Artistic Leadership Award from the Atlantic Council in Washington, DC, and was appointed the New York Philharmonic’s first-ever Artist-in-Residence. In 2010, he was honored with a Living Legend Award by the Library of Congress, where he has served as Special Advisor to the Study and Performance of Music in America. Furthermore, he has received the famed Concertgebouw Prize.
Highlights of Thomas Hampson’s 2019/20 season include his return to the Wiener Staatsoper in his signature role of Giorgio Germont in Verdi’s La Traviata, and his return to Teatro alla Scala for a role debut as Altair in Strauss’ Die ägyptische Helena. At Opernhaus Zürich, he creates the role of Jan Vermeer in the world premiere of Stefan Wirth’s Girl with a Pearl Earring, based on the American author Tracy Chevalier’s eponymous novel about the famous portrait study by Dutch master, Johannes Vermeer.
Notable engagements on the concert stage include Schumann’s Dichterliebe with pianist Jan Lisiecki and a concert with the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra at the Tsinandali Festival; Schubert lieder with the Orchester Wiener Akademie at the Brucknerhaus Linz and Musikverein; a recital with Wolfram Rieger and a masterclass at Wigmore Hall; Beethoven’s An die ferne Geliebte on tour with the Amsterdam Sinfonietta; and rising star soprano Angel Blue joins him in concert at Royal Opera House Muscat.
Hampson also takes his “No Tenors Allowed” program to Provo, Utah, and on to the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires for a debut with his son-in-law, bass-baritone Luca Pisaroni. He returns to Berlin’s Boulezsaal for Schubert Week, launching with a program of Schubert’s Winterreise with Wolfram Rieger. His “Song of America: Beyond Liberty” project continues this season with performances in Tucson and Seattle, with pianist Lara Downes and the Beyond Liberty Players.
In the 2018/19 season, Thomas Hampson made two highly anticipated house debuts, at the Canadian Opera Company, singing the title role in the world premiere of Rufus Wainwright’s Hadrian, as well as at Houston Grand Opera, where he created the role of the famed librettist Lorenzo da Ponte in the premiere of Tarik O’Regan’s The Phoenix.
On the concert stage, Hampson continued to show his great repertoire diversity in the 2018/19 season. In Vienna, he performed Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem with the Wiener Symphoniker under Philippe Jordan, in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I. He then engaged on an extensive tour with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra under Vasily Petrenko, with works by Hugo Wolf, Aaron Copland, and others. He started the New Year with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and conductor Bramwell Tovey singing Copland’s Old American Songs, before he reunited with clarinetist Daniel Ottensamer and his ensemble the Wiener Virtuosen, for a chamber music concert with Dvořák’s Zigeunerlieder and a selection of Mahler songs at Vienna’s Musikverein.
Further orchestral concerts brought Hampson to Munich with the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks under the baton of Mariss Jansons (Kurt Weill: Four Walt Whitman Songs), to Berlin with the Radio Symphony Orchestra and Vladimir Jurowsky (Mahler: Rückert Lieder) and to Japan, where he performed Mahler Songs with the Gewandhaus Orchestra and Andris Nelsons. Thomas Hampson gave several gala performances with renowned vocal partners throughout the season, in Tokyo with Angela Gheorgiu, in Baden-Baden with Nadine Sierra, with Kristine Opolais in Leipzig, and at the Ljubiljana Festival with Elena Mosuc. He was also once again the star in the Bayerische Staatsoper’s summer open-air gala “Oper für Alle” under the baton of renowned conductor Kirill Petrenko. He reunited with Luca Pisaroni for their “No Tenors Allowed” program in Boston, Toronto, and Santa Fe.
The 2018/19 season also marked the exciting launch of Thomas Hampson’s “Song of America: Beyond Liberty” project. In this one-man show, Hampson guides audiences through stories using personal anecdotes, historical monologues, and readings of his favorite poetry, to celebrate America’s history through song. The project, developed with stage director Francesca Zambello and writer Royce Vavrek, premiered at the Glimmerglass Festival, and shares the rich history of the people and events that helped create and define “the land of the free” with audiences, students, and educators across the US and beyond. Through The Hampsong Foundation, which he founded in 2003, he employs the art of song to promote intercultural dialogue and understanding.
Hampson is an honorary professor on the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Heidelberg, and holds honorary doctorates from Manhattan School of Music, the New England Conservatory, Whitworth College, and San Francisco Conservatory, and is an honorary member of London’s Royal Academy of Music. He carries the titles of Kammersänger of the Wiener Staatsoper and Commandeur dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres of the Republic of France, and was awarded the Austrian Medal of Honor in Arts and Sciences. In 2017, Thomas Hampson received the Hugo Wolf Medal from the International Hugo Wolf Academy, together with his long-time musical collaborator, pianist Wolfram Rieger. Hampson was awarded the Heidelberger Frühling Music Prize in 2019.
Thomas Hampson enjoys a singular international career as an opera singer, recording artist, and “ambassador of song,” maintaining an active interest in research, education, musical outreach, and technology, continually expanding his pedagogical activities. He is the Artistic Director of the Heidelberg Lied Academy, and collaborates with the Barenboim-Said Academy Schubert Week in Berlin each year. His recurring international master class schedule is a continuing online resource of the Manhattan School of Music, Medici.tv, and The Hampsong Foundation livestream channel.
The 2019-20 season will see pianist Kathleen Kelly in London, Atlanta, San Francisco, Cincinnati, Toledo, and Detroit. Her many recital collaborations have taken her to Weill Hall, Zankel Hall, the Kennedy Center, Vienna’s Musikverein, the Mahlersaal of the Vienna State Opera, the Neue Galerie, the Schwabacher Series in San Francisco, and the Tucson Desert Song Festival. She has curated art song series for the Houston Grand Opera and the Vienna State Opera, and is currently involved in the creation of new song through Sparks and Wiry Cries’ songSLAM events.
The first woman and first American named as Director of Musical Studies at the Vienna State Opera, Kathleen’s operatic experience is the backbone of her career. Trained at the San Francisco Opera, she joined the company’s music staff and moved from there to a long association with the Metropolitan Opera. She was head of music at Houston Grand Opera, and music director of the Berkshire Opera before moving to Vienna. Kathleen has conducted at the Glimmerglass Festival, Wolf Trap Opera, Arizona Opera, El Paso Opera, Opera Columbus, the Merola Program, and the Alexandria Symphony, and has been a visiting master coach for the prestigious young artist programs of Chicago Lyric Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Washington National Opera, and the Canadian Opera Company.
In demand as a mentor of rising artists, Kathleen has given masterclasses and workshops across North America, among others at the University of Toronto, the Schulich School at McGill University, University of Cincinnati, Baylor University, Vanderbilt University, University of Texas at Austin, University of Michigan, the Peabody Conservatory, University of Washington, Westminster Choir College, and Interlochen.
A published poet and essayist, Kathleen has created several new opera translations and libretti. Her English adaptation of Hansel and Gretel, commissioned by Tri-Cities Opera, is now in use alongside her chamber orchestra arrangement of the work. For Arizona Opera, she created a multilingual version of Emmerich Kalman’s Arizona Lady, and she wrote the libretto for David Hanlon’s Wolf Trap premiere Listen, Wilhelmina! Her English adaptation of Smetana’s The Bartered Bride will premiere in November 2019.
Music Director of the Oviedo Philharmonic (OFIL) since 2011, Marzio Conti has earned recognition and the acclaim of audiences and critics for his achievements in guiding the growth of the orchestra to new artistic heights. He has earned numerous awards and has been named a juror for the arts prize of the prestigious Premios Asturias.He had a major critical success with recording of the complete symphonic works of Saint-Saens for Warner Classic. At the community level, Mr. Conti has earned praise for his special projects at local centers and for a joint project with the University of Oviedo to offer films with music, projects for families, musical projects related to sports and outdoor summer projects designed to spotlight historic parts of the city.
Since his arrival in Oviedo, the symphonic season of OFIL has established a standard of excellence for the musical world of Spain, presenting notable artists such as Midori, Christian Zimermann, Gregory Kunde, Elina Garanca, ElissoVissaladze, Sabine Mayer, Cecilia Bartoli, Natalia Gutman, Rudolf Buchbinder, Katia and Marielle Lebeque, Grigory Sokolov,Bryn Terfel.
Mr. Conti has appeared as a guest conductor in Italy with the Rome Opera, Maggio Musicale of Florence, Teatro Regio di Torino, Teatro Comunale of Bologna, Teatro Massimo of Palermo, Teatro La Fenice of Venice Orchestra Sinfonica Siciliana, Teatro Donizetti Bergamo, Teatro di Ravenna, Teatro di Bolzano , Teatro del Giglio di Lucca, Teatro Bellini Catania, Teatro Verdi Pisa, Teatro Comunale di Livorno, Orchestra Regionale Toscana, Orchestra Haydn, Orchestra di Padova e del Veneto. In Spain, he has conducted Orquesta de la Comunidad de Madrid, Teatro de la Zarzuela, Orquesta Sinfonica de Bilbao, Orquesta de Tenerife, Orquestra de Extremadura, Orquestra de la Gran Canaria, Orquestra de las Baleares, Teatro Arriaga Bilbao, and Orquesta de Navarra. In Germany, he has conducted at the Dortmund Staatsoper, Saarbrücken Staatsoper, Dessau Stadtsoper, Monchegladbach Stadtoper, and Brandemburger Symphoniker. In France, he has conducted the Orchestra Regional de Cannes e de la Cote d’Azur, Orchestre da La Picardie, Opera de Marseille, and Orchestre d’Avignon.
Formerly one of his generation’s leading exponents of the flute following a debut at the Salzburg Festival with I Soloist Veneti at the age of 20, Marzio Conti performed with major orchestras and made numerous recordings through the middle 1990’s after which he devoted himself full-time to conducting.
From 1998 to 2002 he was principal conductor at the Istituzione Sinfonica Abruzzese in Italy,from 2001 until 2004, he was music director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Turin,from 2003 until 2008 was Music Director of the Teatro di Tradizione per l’Opera Italiana of Chieti and from 2004 to 2010 he also served as Artistic Director of the Orchestra Sinfonica di Sanremo.
Since 2014 he collaborates as guest conductor and professor with Jacob School of Music, Indiana University, Bloomington: this year he inaugurated the Opera season with Donizetti Fille du Regiment, the Ballet Season with Nutcracker and in April 2107 he conducted Petruska. In January 2017 he has conducted Rigoletto at Opera de Oviedo. In February 2018 he conducted Don Quichotte in Amsterdam the prestigious Dutch National Ballet. In July 2017 he ends to be music director of Oviedo Filarmonia. The city as an acknowledgment of the extraordinary work he has done awarded with the Gold Medal of the Auditorium Prince Felipe.
American-born (Montclair NJ) Barbara Bonney is one of the world’s most accomplished lyric sopranos. She lead the field in her chosen repertoire of roles by Mozart and Richard Strauss and is recognised as one of the finest Lieder and concert performers of her generation. Barbara Bonney sang with the world’s leading opera companies. Her interpretations of Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier under Sir Georg Solti and Carlos Kleiber have both been released on video, as has her performance of Pamina (Die Zauberflöte)from La Scala, Milan. She was a regular guest with the Vienna State Opera, the Metropolitan Opera in New York, The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and in Munich, Hamburg and Geneva.
In concert, Ms. Bonney has appeared with the Vienna Philharmonic under Seiji Ozawa and Riccardo Muti, the Berlin Philharmonic under Claudio Abbado (singing Mahler), Vladimir Ashkenazy and the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra (Mahler 2nd) and the Norddeutscher Rundfunk with John Eliot Gardiner (Paradies und die Peri and Mahler 4). In the summer of 1995 she was in residence at Tanglewood and performed extensively with Ozawa and the Boston Symphony Orchestra in addition to giving recitals and masterclasses. Her engagements have included Falstaff andL’elisir d’amore at the Met, Figaro and Der Rosenkavalier at Bastille Opera in Paris and many other opera houses of the world. She toured Japan with Ozawa and made a major European tour with the Oslo Philharmonic and Mariss Jansons.
Barbara Bonney was a prolific recording artist and her outstanding recordings have included many with Claudio Abbado, John Eliot Gardiner (Lehár’s Die lustige Witwe) and Nikolaus Harnoncourt. Also critically acclaimed were her recital discs of Lieder by Richard Strauss, Mozart, Wolf, Mendelssohn and Schubert, all accompanied by the late Geoffrey Parsons. In addition there are complete recordings of Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, Don Giovanni and Die Zauberflöte with both Harnoncourt and Östman, and Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel under Jeffrey Tate. Additional releases include La Clemenza di Tito for Decca and Exsultate jubilate with Trevor Pinnock, plus Carmina Burana with André Previn for DGG and her Lieder series with discs accompanied by Previn and Ashkenazy. In 2007, she was appointed professor of voice at the Mozarteum in Salzburg.
In 1999 Alison established The Virtual Works, a virtual project management business in the arts, corporate, diversity & small business sectors. Alison brings over 30 years’ experience in Arts & Business and delivers it with a particular blend of humour. She is passionate about working within the arts sector on a quest to bring greater synergies between art and business. Alison is currently the Executive Director of The Opera Foundation for young Australians, where she manages national auditions, events and provides professional development support to young opera artists to enable them to maximise international opportunities. Alison’s unique strength is her ability to convey the complexities of the operational side of a business to artists whilst supporting their individual goals objectively and without any artistic interference.