Parlando: The COC Blog

8/15/2013

Catching up with Ensemble Studio Member Claire de Sévigné

By Jennifer Pugsley, Media Relations Manager

Soprano Claire de Sévigné has spent much of her summer studying at the prestigious Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, California. We at the COC wanted to find out exactly what she’s been learning, what kind of performances she’s been giving and if she’s been having any fun in that California sun.

What have you been doing at the Music Academy of the West?

At Music Academy of the West there are two public masterclasses a week, in addition to Italian, German and French diction coaching sessions, as well as voice lessons and coachings. At the beginning of the summer, we did a three-hour scenes program and I performed a scene from Rossini’s La Cenerentola, in which I sang the role of Clorinda (see photo below).

Back in mid-July, we had the Marilyn Horne Song Competition. Each singer had to perform three songs, one being in English. I sang "An die Nacht" by Strauss, "À Cupidon" by Milhaud and "Black Anemones" by Schwantner. Although I didn't place, I enjoyed the experience so much. I got to perform with a fellow Canadian, pianist Ronny Michael Greenberg from Montreal. We had such a positive experience collaborating that we’re now planning to schedule a recital tour, making it possible for us to work again in the near future. We’re now staging Mozart’s The Magic Flute in which I’m singing the Queen of the Night (see photo above). At the end of the summer, I’ll also be performing in the Cabaret concert and sing "Il bacio" by Arditi, a great coloratura waltz.

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Posted by Danielle D'Ornellas / in Ensemble Studio / comments (0) / permalink

8/13/2013

From MET Live in HD... to LIVE at the COC!

By Gianmarco Segato, Adult Programs Manager

As opera lovers the world over eagerly anticipate the return of live opera with the start of the fall season, increasingly, fans are also learning to anticipate a specific date each August: the day tickets go on sale for the Metropolitan Opera’s series of live HD transmissions. 

This year those dates are Wednesday, August 14 (for Met Members, and for Cineplex Odeon SCENE cardholders) and Wednesday, August 21 for the general public. Many local HD enthusiasts still do things “old school”, lining up very early in the morning for tickets at venues across the Greater Toronto Area. You can also buy your tickets online, choosing the specific seat you want to sit in – but don’t dawdle as theatres sell out quickly.

The upcoming Met Live in HD season features a large number of artists and productions which have specific COC connections – here are some of the highlights:

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Posted by Danielle D'Ornellas / in Opera Appreciation / comments (0) / permalink

8/9/2013

Artist Basics: Eric Owens

What he's doing with us: American bass-baritone Eric Owens makes his COC debut in Peter Sellars' contemporary take on Handel's Hercules. Eric previously performed the role for the premiere of this new COC and Lyric Opera of Chicago co-production in 2011 to enthusiastic reviews, and is reuniting with the full cast at the COC this spring. 

Where you might have seen him: Equally at home on the operatic stage and in recital, Eric is particularly well-known to Met Live in HD audiences for his performance as the scene-stealing Alberich in the Metropolitan Opera’s latest Ring Cycle. He is also a popular choice with composers looking to create new, contemporary operas! In addition to the acclaim Eric received for his performance of the title character in the world premiere of Elliot Goldenthal’s Grendel, composer John Adams created both the roles of General Leslie Groves in Doctor Atomic and The Storyteller in A Flowering Tree for Eric.

His background: Would you believe that this world-famous bass-baritone was almost a pianist, or an oboist instead? In his final year of high school, Eric switched his musical focus to vocal studies and went on to earn a bachelor of music in vocal performance from Temple University. He continued his studies in the graduate program at the Curtis Institute of Music and joined the young artist program at the Houston Grand Opera.

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Posted by Danielle D'Ornellas / in Hercules / comments (0) / permalink

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Sara Fulgoni in the COC production of Bluebeard's Castle. Photo: Michael Cooper © 2001