COC Media Releases

3/10/2017

TOSCA’S TALE OF LOVE, LUST, PASSION AND BETRAYAL RETURNS TO CANADIAN OPERA COMPANY

Read the PDF version here.

Two of Opera’s Great Divas—Adrianne Pieczonka and Keri Alkema—Star in Title Role

Toronto – The Canadian Opera Company closes its 2016/2017 season with Puccini’s beloved Tosca. A tense drama of passion and betrayal, Tosca returns in a COC production performed with two of today’s great divas in the title role: internationally renowned Canadian soprano Adrianne Pieczonka and critically acclaimed American soprano Keri Alkema. Tosca runs for 12 performances at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts on April 30, May 4, 6, 7, 9, 11, 12, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20, 2017.

Set in Rome amid the turbulence of the Napoleonic Wars, Tosca’s story is a melodramatic tale of love, lust, corruption and betrayal as opera singer Floria Tosca fights to save her lover from a blood-thirsty chief of police. The COC revives its lavish production by award-winning Scottish director Paul Curran, with sumptuous costumes and stunning sets of chapels, palaces and fortresses of 19th-century Rome by designer Kevin Knight, and atmospheric lighting design by David Martin Jacques. Conducting the COC Orchestra, COC Chorus and cast through some of Puccini’s most deeply felt and dramatic melodies is Canadian Keri-Lynn Wilson. A regular guest conductor at leading international opera companies and orchestras, Wilson makes her COC debut with one of the most popular and performed operas in the world.

The title role is one of Puccini’s most complex and fascinating heroines and an unforgettable theatrical showcase for a great dramatic soprano, shared in the COC’s production by Adrianne Pieczonka and Keri Alkema. Celebrated on the leading opera and concert stages of Europe, North America and Asia, Pieczonka has been described as “simply magnificent” (The Independent) and “a revelation, with a lavishly creamy voice” (The Financial Times). She returns to the role of Floria Tosca at the COC after delivering a “luminous performance” (Globe and Mail) with the company in 2012. Alkema returns to the COC after sharing her “rich, full vocal presence that caresses the score to perfection” (Toronto Star) in 2013’s La clemenza di Tito and bringing a “sensuality and a strong presence” (NOW) to 2012’s The Tales of Hoffmann. Her engagement at the COC comes on the heels of her Tosca debut with English National Opera last fall where she was met with lavish praise: “compelling…. Passionate, teasing, vulnerable, full of love, stirred to vengeful rage and desperate measures, Alkema gets to the heart of Tosca, giving us a poised ‘Vissi d’arte’ on the way” (The Times).

Making their COC debuts as Tosca’s lover, Mario Cavaradossi, are exciting young Argentine tenor Marcelo Puente and heroic Bulgarian tenor Kamen Chanev. German bass-baritone Markus Marquardt, a sought-after interpreter of the Italian repertoire, makes his Canadian debut as the evil police chief, Scarpia. He shares the role with young American bass-baritone Craig Colclough who makes his COC debut and is reunited with Alkema, having sung Scarpia to her Tosca with ENO in fall 2016.

South African bass-baritone Musa Ngqungwana, praised for his “rich, glowing voice and elegant legato” (New York Times) makes his Canadian debut as the escaped political prisoner Angelotti. Italian bass Donato di Stefano (2011’s La Cenerentola) returns to the COC as the Sacristan. The role of Spoletta is sung by American tenor Joel Sorensen, in his COC debut.

Canadian-British bass-baritone Giles Tomkins sings Sciarrone, in his company debut, and COC Ensemble Studio baritone Bruno Roy is the Jailer.

Last performed by the COC in 2012, this production of Tosca is a COC co-production with the Norwegian National Opera and Ballet. Tosca is sung in Italian with English SURTITLES™.

Tosca premiered to mixed reviews in Rome in 1900, but this thrilling melodrama, with its all-consuming power to stir passion, has since become a staple of the operatic repertoire.

TICKET INFORMATION
Single tickets for Tosca range from $35 – $235 and box seats, when available, are $350. Tickets are now on sale, available online at coc.ca, by calling 416-363-8231, or in person at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts Box Office (145 Queen St. W.). For more information on specially priced tickets available to young people under the age of 15, standing room, Opera Under 30 presented by TD Bank Group, student groups and rush seating, visit coc.ca.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
This production of Tosca was originally made possible by Delia M. Moog.
CIBC: Production Sponsor
BMO Financial Group: Season Sponsor
Mercedes-Benz Canada: Official Automotive Sponsor of the COC at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts
TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite Privilege*: Preferred Credit Card
TD Bank Group: Presenting Sponsor Opera Under 30

About the Canadian Opera Company
Based in Toronto, the Canadian Opera Company is the largest producer of opera in Canada and one of the largest in North America. The COC enjoys a loyal audience support-base and one of the highest attendance and subscription rates in North America. Under its leadership team of General Director Alexander Neef and Music Director Johannes Debus, the COC is increasingly capturing the opera world’s attention. The COC maintains its international reputation for artistic excellence and creative innovation by creating new productions within its diverse repertoire, collaborating with leading opera companies and festivals, and attracting the world’s foremost Canadian and international artists. The COC performs in its own opera house, the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, hailed internationally as one of the finest in the world. Designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects, the Four Seasons Centre opened in 2006. For more information on the COC, visit coc.ca.

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For more information or to request photography, please contact:
Jennifer Pugsley, Media Relations Manager, tel: 416-306-2303, e-mail: jenniferp@coc.ca
Kristin McKinnon, Publicist, tel: 416-306-2383, e-mail: kmckinnon@coc.ca

Posted by Public Relations / in Press Releases / comments (0) / permalink

3/7/2017

LOUIS RIEL RETURNS TO CANADIAN OPERA COMPANY WITH INCLUSIVE AND EXPANSIVE HISTORY RESTORED

Read the PDF version here.

A Contentious and Provocative Celebratory Work to Honour Canada’s History

Toronto – Canadian history comes to life on the stage of the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts this spring when Harry Somers’ Louis Riel returns to the Canadian Opera Company. A new production of this uniquely Canadian contribution to the opera world is being conceived by one of Canadian theatre’s most acclaimed and inventive directors, Peter Hinton, with the COC’s celebrated music director, Johannes Debus, conducting. This production of Louis Riel is proudly presented by the COC and its co-producer, National Arts Centre (NAC), in anticipation of Canada’s sesquicentennial and the 50th anniversary of the opera’s premiere. Louis Riel is sung in English, French, Michif and Cree with English, French, Michif and Cree SURTITLESTM, and runs for seven performances by the COC on April 20, 23, 26, 29, May 2, 5, 13, 2017 at Toronto’s Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. It will premiere in Ottawa by the NAC on June 15 and 17, 2017.

The 2017 production of Louis Riel is made possible through the financial support of individuals, corporations and charitable foundations and trusts. The COC gratefully acknowledges its underwriters: The Catherine and Maxwell Meighen Foundation, Philip Deck and Kimberley Bozak, Asper Foundation, and The Max Clarkson Family Foundation in honour of Harry Somers; with additional support from Mark and Gail Appel, Margaret Harriett Cameron, Catherine Fauquier, Sally Holton, Michiel Horn and Cornelia Schuh, Michael and Linda Hutcheon, The Michael and Sonja Koerner Charitable Foundation, Peter Levitt and Mai Why, John D. McKellar, Trina McQueen, Roger D. Moore, Sue Mortimer, Dr. Shirley C. Neuman, Tim and Frances Price, Dr. Joseph So, Philip Somerville, Françoise Sutton, Dr. John Stanley and Dr. Helmut Reichenbächer, The Stratton Trust, and John Wright and Chung-Wai Chow. Louis Riel has also been made possible by generous donors to the National Arts Centre Foundation, who believe in investing in Canadian creators, including Kimberley Bozak and Philip Deck, Earlaine Collins and TD Bank Group.

Composed by Harry Somers for Canada’s centennial in 1967, Louis Riel was described as “big, efficient, exciting” (Toronto Evening Telegram) when the COC gave the opera its world premiere. Louis Riel, and its story of the Métis leader and Canada’s westward expansion, went on to be called “one of the most imaginative and powerful scores to have been written in this century” (Washington Star) after its 1975 US premiere at the Kennedy Center. More recently, on the occasion of its 2011 DVD release, it was hailed as “both a personal story and a national epic…the libretto is as taut and thrilling as a well-written play” (Globe and Mail).

Telling the history of Louis Riel is ever more important in this period of Truth and Reconciliation. It is the COC’s intention that an inclusive and expansive history shall be restored with the 2017 production. Throughout the conceptualization of the 2017 production of Louis Riel and in preparation for the rehearsal period, Hinton and his creative team have followed the guidance and wisdom of members of the Indigenous community.

“What struck me from the very beginning about this piece is the motivation for its creation. It is a contentious and provocative ‘celebratory’ work,” says Louis Riel director Peter Hinton. “When composer Harry Somers and librettist Mavor Moore were commissioned in 1966 by the Floyd S. Chalmers Foundation to write an opera to commemorate the centennial of Canada, Somers and Moore chose the subject of Louis Riel. Their choice to show Canada’s history of struggle and representation in the west, against colonialist and centralist objectives, is not only a metaphor for the conflicts which forged the idea of confederation, but also serves as a challenge for present and future understandings of our country.”

“We asked Peter Hinton to direct this production of Louis Riel because of his long-standing relationship and involvement with Indigenous artists and his knowledge and experience in mounting a theatrical project of this scale,” says COC General Director Alexander Neef. “His involvement brings an informed and culturally sensitive approach to the interpretation of Louis Riel that we are sharing on the stage.”

“The National Arts Centre is thrilled to be the co-producer of Louis Riel. It’s one of the great Canadian operas— an epic story about our country,” says Peter Herrndorf the President and CEO of the National Arts Centre. “When Alexander Neef approached us a number of years ago about a partnership, our immediate answer was ‘yes’, and we both agreed that Peter Hinton had the sensitivity and vision to bring this story to the stage as our director.”

Since 1985, Peter Hinton has directed over 75 productions of new plays, classical texts and operas as well as written the librettos for two operas with composer Peter Hannan, working across Canada and with many theatre companies. He has been the associate artistic director at Theatre Passe Muraille and the Canadian Stage Company in Toronto, artistic director of the Playwrights Theatre Centre in Vancouver, the dramaturg-in-residence at Playwrights’ Workshop Montréal, and artistic associate of the Stratford Festival. From 2005 to 2012, he was artistic director of English theatre at the National Arts Centre, where he created a resident English theatre company, with actors from across the country, and programmed the NAC’s first season of Canadian plays. It was in this role at the NAC where Hinton initiated a commitment to producing the work of Indigenous theatre artists every season during his tenure. Hinton’s directorial work has included premiere works by Métis playwright Marie Clements, as well as producing plays by Kevin Loring, Waawaate Fobister, Yvette Nolan and George Ryga. In 2012, he directed an adaptation of Shakespeare’s King Lear with 40 First Nations/Métis actors and starring August Schellenberg in the title role. He has directed works by Tomson Highway and, in the fall of 2017, Hinton directs the world premiere of City Opera Vancouver’s much anticipated production of Missing by Brian Current, with a libretto by Marie Clements about the Highway of Tears.

“Our challenge is taking an artifact from the 1960s and reviving it for today within a contemporary and inclusive practice,” adds Hinton. “It is a delicate balance of renewing the original spirit of the piece with contemporary perspectives in order to revise the opera’s colonial biases and bring forward its inherent strengths and power.”

Working alongside Hinton is assistant director Estelle Shook, a Métis artist from British Columbia. Artistic director of Caravan Farm Theatre from 1998 to 2010, and current interim artistic and managing director, she recently directed the Dora Award-winning Sunday in Sodom for Canadian Stage. Shook is also a descendant of Saskatchewan pioneer Thomas McKay, who testified at the trial of Louis Riel in 1885. Shook makes her opera debut with Louis Riel, bringing personal, professional and cultural perspectives to the production.

Santee Smith makes her COC debut as the choreographer for Louis Riel. Smith is a member of the Mohawk Nation, Turtle Clan from Six Nations of the Grand, Ont. One of Canada’s most exciting choreographers, she is the founding artistic director/choreographer for Kaha:wi Dance Theatre and has propelled her company to international acclaim. In Louis Riel, she re-imagines and re-stages a number of dances, including the Buffalo Hunt.

Canadian Michael Gianfrancesco, who previously designed sets and costumes for COC school tour productions of The Magic Flute, La serva padrona and The Barber of Seville, makes his COC mainstage debut as the set designer for Louis Riel. His work has been seen across Canada in productions of theatre, opera and dance, with the Stratford and Shaw festivals, Canadian Stage, Neptune Theatre, Theatre New Brunswick, Theatre Passe Muraille, Theatre Aquarius and Pleiades Theatre, among others.

In Louis Riel, Gianfrancesco has created a single set with the flexibility to convey the epic-scale of the events being told as well as the more intimate moments of quiet reflection. The physical space sits atop a solid wood floor into which the topography of the Red River Valley has been carved. Set pieces will come in and out as needed to suggest interior and exterior spaces, transporting the audience from the Parliament Buildings of Ottawa to Fort Garry in Manitoba to Riel’s home in exile in Montana.

Dora Award winning Canadian designer Gillian Gallow makes her COC debut as the costume designer for Louis Riel. Her work in set and costumes has been seen across Canada in productions for Thousand Islands Playhouse, the Stratford Festival, Theatre Calgary, Vancouver Playhouse, Soulpepper and National Arts Centre, to name but a few.

Gallow’s costume design for Louis Riel is inspired by the drive for historical authenticity while also communicating a modern-day sensibility. The resulting aesthetic realizes the visual contradiction between truth and misconception and what is being lived out in the East versus in the West, as well as offers an opportunity for audiences today to see themselves reflected back in the onstage action.

Canadian lighting designer Bonnie Beecher returns to the COC with Louis Riel, last with the company in the 2008 Ensemble Studio double-bill presentation of Giuseppe Gazzaniga’s Don Giovanni and Igor Stravinsky’s Renard. A multiple Dora Award winner and frequent nominee, Beecher’s work has lit the stages of theatres across Canada, including the Shaw and Stratford festivals, Opera Atelier, Soulpepper, National Arts Centre, National Ballet of Canada and Tarragon Theatre, as well as internationally for the Dutch National Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Glimmerglass Opera, The Royal Shakespeare Company, New Zealand Opera, Stuttgart Ballet and Kevin O'Day Ballet. The lighting design for Louis Riel will serve the range of experiences and spaces playing out on stage, from epic and intimate, to interior and exterior, to realistic and magical.

Louis Riel was the first opera written by a Canadian to be presented by the COC, and the COC is the only professional opera company to date to have ever performed it.

The NAC presents Louis Riel on June 15 and 17, 2017 as part of its Canada Scene festival in Ottawa. For more information on the NAC’s performances of this production of Louis Riel, please visit www.nac-cna.ca.

Additional information about the libretto and score of Louis Riel, as well as complete casting, and a series of public education and outreach events will be forthcoming in separate press materials issued in the coming weeks.

TICKET INFORMATION
Single tickets for Louis Riel range from $35 – $235 and box seats, when available, are $350. Tickets are now on sale, available online at coc.ca, by calling 416-363-8231, or in person at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts Box Office (145 Queen St. W.). For more information on specially priced tickets available to young people under the age of 15, standing room, Opera Under 30 presented by TD Bank Group, student groups and rush seating, visit coc.ca.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
BMO Financial Group: Season Sponsor
Mercedes-Benz Canada: Official Automotive Sponsor of the COC at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts
TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite Privilege*: Preferred Credit Card
TD Bank Group: Presenting Sponsor Opera Under 30

About the Canadian Opera Company
Based in Toronto, the Canadian Opera Company is the largest producer of opera in Canada and one of the largest in North America. The COC enjoys a loyal audience support-base and one of the highest attendance and subscription rates in North America. Under its leadership team of General Director Alexander Neef and Music Director Johannes Debus, the COC is increasingly capturing the opera world’s attention. The COC maintains its international reputation for artistic excellence and creative innovation by creating new productions within its diverse repertoire, collaborating with leading opera companies and festivals, and attracting the world’s foremost Canadian and international artists. The COC performs in its own opera house, the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, hailed internationally as one of the finest in the world. Designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects, the Four Seasons Centre opened in 2006. For more information on the COC, visit coc.ca.

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For more information or to request photography, please contact:
Jennifer Pugsley, Media Relations Manager, tel: 416-306-2303, e-mail: jenniferp@coc.ca
Kristin McKinnon, Publicist, tel: 416-306-2383, e-mail: kmckinnon@coc.ca

Posted by Public Relations / in Press Releases / comments (0) / permalink

1/3/2017

CANADIAN OPERA COMPANY WELCOMES FIVE PLAYERS TO 2017 COC ORCHESTRA ACADEMY

Read the PDF version here.

Toronto – The Canadian Opera Company Orchestra Academy returns for its fourth year on January 8, 2017, welcoming five student musicians to its annual three-week intensive training program. This year’s instrumentalists perform opening night of the COC’s production of Götterdämmerung with the COC Orchestra, give public performances featuring members of the COC Orchestra and COC opera singers, and take part in masterclasses and private sessions with singers, members of the COC artistic administration and visiting music staff.

The 2017 Orchestra Academy auditions featured a wider pool of candidates than previous years with the Schulich School of Music at McGill University becoming one of the COC Orchestra Academy’s collaborating organizations, joining founding collaborators The Glenn Gould School at the Royal Conservatory of Music and the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music.

“Having the Schulich School of Music come on board marks an exciting evolution in the development of the Orchestra Academy,” says Nina Draganić, Director of the COC’s Ensemble Studio and Orchestra Academy. “It allows the COC to go beyond the borders of Toronto when connecting with student players.”

"We are so pleased to offer our students the opportunity to acquire professional experience at the highest level through the COC Orchestra Academy,” says Stéphane Lemelin, Chair of the Department of Performance at the Schulich School of Music at McGill University. “Working in a top-level opera house with leading singers under the mentorship of experienced instrumentalists from the COC Orchestra promises to be a transformative learning experience for the program’s participants. We are indeed grateful to the COC for this precious collaboration.”

Led by COC Music Director Johannes Debus, and developed in collaboration with The Glenn Gould School at the Royal Conservatory of Music, the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music and McGill University’s Schulich School of Music, the COC Orchestra Academy offers its student musicians professional insight and experience in their pursuit of a career in an opera orchestra.

“There’s a palpable excitement from these students about the opportunity offered through our program,” adds Draganić. “There are orchestra academies elsewhere in the world, in Toronto even. What distinguishes ours is the connection to the human voice. We give them opportunities and valuable hands-on experience that they can’t get elsewhere.”

The five students who join the Orchestra Academy this year were selected from a pool of 13 musicians who were recommended by the partnering institutions, and they were auditioned in October 2016 by Debus, Draganić and members of the COC Orchestra. The five Orchestra Academy members are GGS violist Madlen Breckbill, cellist James Churchill and bassist Jesse Dietschi, UofT violinist Heng-Han Hou and Schulich violinist Jung Tsai.

The student players will be paired up with mentors from the COC Orchestra, learning from them in a one-on-one capacity. This year’s mentors are Sandra Baron, first violin; Elizabeth Johnston, second violin; Sheila Jaffé, viola; Paul Widner, cello; and Robert Speer, bass. The COC Orchestra is the oldest opera orchestra in Canada, and has received worldwide acclaim for its musical versatility and range of expression. Created in 1977, the orchestra has a permanent membership of more than 50 instrumentalists.

As part of the Orchestra Academy experience, students are featured in multiple public performances. This year they play with the COC Orchestra at the company’s 2017/2018 Season Launch event on January 12. They’ll also perform a recital in the COC’s Free Concert Series in the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre on January 26, alongside Orchestra Academy mentors in a program of chamber music from the Baroque era, featuring Canadian soprano and COC Ensemble Studio alumna Jacqueline Woodley. Orchestra Academy students join the COC Orchestra in the pit of the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts on February 2 for opening night of the COC’s winter production of Wagner’s Götterdämmerung, playing some of the most complex and riveting music in the operatic repertoire.

The 2017 Orchestra Academy continues to expand on the efforts of years past. This year, the students will have increased group sessions with COC Music Director Johannes Debus and with COC Concertmaster Marie Bérard. They’ll also have additional opportunities to go behind-the-scenes and experience a backstage tour, a concept discussion with a member of the Götterdämmerung creative team, and attend a piano technical rehearsal, as part of the Orchestra Academy’s larger objective to give its participants a deeper understanding of the art form and the role played by the orchestra within an operatic production.

Orchestra Academy students are exposed to all aspects of playing as part of an opera orchestra. They experience how an operatic performance comes together, how to prepare their part of a score, and the development and improvement of an orchestra over the course of rehearsals and performances. Additional opportunities include:

• studying rehearsal and performance etiquette, as well as developing the awareness, co-ordination, reaction, flexibility and listening skills required to play in an opera orchestra;
• learning endurance techniques and how to focus for long periods of time;
• gaining an understanding of sound production, articulation and blending as well as tuning within the orchestra, the section and with the singers, and the subtleties of balancing sound intensity;
• and studying different styles and levels of expressiveness in musicianship.

The COC Orchestra Academy is an extra-curricular program that launched in January 2014 as a pilot program with the intention of growing the initiative to include more students and members of the COC Orchestra. Members of the COC Orchestra participate in the COC Orchestra Academy voluntarily.

2017 COC Orchestra Academy Members
Violist Madlen Breckbill recently completed an artist diploma from The Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music, where she is currently studying as an orchestral fellow on viola. As an orchestral player, Breckbill has served as concertmaster and principal second of the University of Wisconsin Chamber and Symphony orchestras; principal second, assistant concertmaster and principal viola for the Royal Conservatory Orchestra; as well as concertmaster of the Kent/Blossom Chamber Orchestra. She has performed under the batons of Johannes Debus, James Feddeck, Leon Fleischer, Tania Miller, and Sir Roger Norrington. In the summer of 2016, Breckbill was a member of the fellowship quartet at Music by the Sea, and appeared in performance at the Madeline Island, Meadowmount and Kent/Blossom music festivals.

Cellist James Churchill is currently pursuing an artist diploma at The Glenn Gould School at the Royal Conservatory of Music, having previously earned an Honours Bachelor of Music degree from the National University of Singapore and graduating from the advanced performance program at the Australian National Academy of Music. His extensive orchestral and chamber experience includes engagements with Orchestra Victoria performing operas and ballets and with orchestras in the Melbourne Arts Centre addition to regional tours throughout Victoria, Australia. Churchill was principal cellist for the Australian tour of Les Misérables in Sydney and Melbourne and recently performed at Toronto’s Koerner Hall as principal cello with the Royal Conservatory Orchestra in presentations of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade and Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No.1.

Bassist Jesse Dietschi is currently pursuing an artist diploma at The Glenn Gould School at the Royal Conservatory of Music having previously earned a master’s degree in jazz performance from the University of Toronto and a master’s degree in composition from Brandon University. He performed for the premiere of Juliet Palmer’s opera Shelter with Tapestry Opera in Edmonton, and was part of the remounting of R. Murray Schafer’s Apocalypsis as part of the 2015 Luminato Festival. Dietschi has appeared in CBC’s Sounds of the Season and NBC’s Hannibal, and is a member of the contemporary jazz ensemble Tunnel Six, as well as the principal double bassist with Kindred Spirits Orchestra. He has performed, toured, and recorded with a wide range of artists, including The Headstones, the Gryphon Trio’s Jamie Parker, Robi Botos, the Canadian Tenors’ Ken Lavigne, Tapestry Opera, Richard Underhill, Brownman Ali, Irene Torres and the Sugar Devils, and Mexico’s Northern Lights chamber music festival. He has also performed in the Winnipeg Jazz Festival, the TD Toronto Jazz Festival and Toronto’s Beaches International Jazz Festival, among others.

Violinist Heng-Han Hou is pursuing a doctor of musical arts degree at the University of Toronto. An active and versatile musician, Hou has appeared in performance in Taiwan, Canada, Hong Kong, China, Japan, the United States, Israel and Argentina. While participating in the prestigious Orford Music Festival in 2014, Hou was appointed orchestra concertmaster and performed at Maison symphonique de Montréal. He returned upon invitation in 2015. Hou currently holds teaching assistant positions for Jonathan Crow at UofT as well as with the University of Toronto Symphony Orchestra.

Violinist Jung Tsai received a bachelor of music in performance from Mannes College in New York and a master’s degree in music performance from DePaul School of Music in Chicago. She is currently pursuing an artist diploma with Schulich School of Music at McGill University. In addition to solo performances, Tsai is an orchestral and chamber musician. She played with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago from 2012 to 2014, serving as assistant concertmaster from 2012 to 2013. Tsai has been invited to perform at the Schleswig-Holstein and Britten-Pears music festivals and in 2015, her string quartet was invited to Festival de Música de Santa Catarina in Brazil. She is also the recipient of the 2015 Luminarts Fellowship in the string category.

About the Canadian Opera Company
Based in Toronto, the Canadian Opera Company is the largest producer of opera in Canada and one of the largest in North America. The COC enjoys a loyal audience support-base and one of the highest attendance and subscription rates in North America. Under its leadership team of General Director Alexander Neef and Music Director Johannes Debus, the COC is increasingly capturing the opera world’s attention. The COC maintains its international reputation for artistic excellence and creative innovation by creating new productions within its diverse repertoire, collaborating with leading opera companies and festivals, and attracting the world’s foremost Canadian and international artists. The COC performs in its own opera house, the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, hailed internationally as one of the finest in the world. Designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects, the Four Seasons Centre opened in 2006. For more information on the COC, visit www.coc.ca.

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For more information or to request photographs, please contact:

Jennifer Pugsley, Media Relations Manager, tel: 416-306-2303, e-mail: jenniferp@coc.ca
Kristin McKinnon, Publicist, tel: 416-306-2383, e-mail: kmckinnon@coc.ca

Posted by Public Relations / in Press Releases / comments (0) / permalink

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