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November 16, 2011

Opera competition spotlights rising vocal stars

Eight voice and opera students at the Eastman School will compete in the finals of the Friends of Eastman Opera Voice Competition at 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 19, in Kilbourn Hall. The event gives local audiences the opportunity to hear rising vocal talents early in their careers while providing singers the chance to compete for cash prizes and perform for a recognized conductor, stage director, or impresario serving as judge.

This year’s adjudicator is Lenore Rosenberg, a major casting director for the Metropolitan Opera in New York and currently the Met’s associate artistic administrator as well as the former director of the Met’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program.

For the finals, singers prepare three arias in two different languages; each sings a work of his or her choice, with the adjudicator picking the second aria. The top three winners will be announced at the end of the recital and will receive prizes totaling $3,250. The first prize of $1,500 is the Lynne Clarke Vocal Prize, donated by Friends of Eastman Opera founding member John Clarke in memory of his wife. A reception open to everyone will be held on the Cominsky Promenade following the competition.

This year’s finalists are:
Joshua Bouillon, tenor, second-year master’s degree student
Tracy (Hsin-Mei) Chang, soprano, first-year master’s degree student
Tamar Greene, tenor, second-year master’s degree student
Matthew Grills, tenor, second-year master’s degree student
Laura Osgood, soprano, second-year doctoral degree student
Elizabeth Smith, soprano, second-year master’s degree student
Matthew Valverde, tenor, second-year master’s degree student
Caleb (Wing-Ching) Woo, baritone, second-year master’s degree student
Alternate: Noelle McMurtry, soprano, second-year master’s degree student

The Friends of Eastman Opera is a volunteer group that supports Eastman opera students, programs, and productions, and promotes Eastman Opera Theatre in the Rochester community.

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