Participants 2011
Luis Alvarado Zeshan Bagewadi Isaac Bray John Cabrali Joshua Conyers Kristi Cori Andre Courville
Katie Dixon Joan Estep Jacuelyn Familant Lenora Green Ryan Green Patrick Guetti Jaime Hartzell
Branden Hood Briana Hunter Charles Hyland Jonathan Jurgens Keiko Kai Taesung Kim Andrew Klima
Seung Hee Lee Erica Moon Jonathan Morales Young Chul Park Yunnie Park Katelyn Parker Rogerlio Penaverde
Meghan Picerno Alexander Pikarsky Laura Puzio Sarah Shecktman Jasmine Thomas Diana Thompson Marcos Vigil
Brian Wahlstrom Carline Waugh Clara Heikyung Yu        
 

A native of Puerto Rico, Luis Alvarado, has sung Colline in La Bohème with the Maryland-based touring company Teatro Lirico D'Europa and Simone in Gianni Schicchi with the International Vocal Arts Institute in Israel during the summer of 2010. He recently performed the role of Masetto in Don Giovanni with Teatro de la Opera in his native Puerto Rico. As part of Mannes Opera, he appeared in Così fan tutte, La Traviata and Falstaff. Mr. Alvarado is a graduate of Mannes College The New School for Music in New York.

   

A native of Chicago, Zeshan Bagewadi completed his Master's Degree in Voice and Literature at Northwestern University's Bienen School of Music in June of 2011. Recent credits with Northwestern University Opera Theater include Lippo Fiorentino in Street Scene, Bégearss in The Ghosts of Versailles, Don Curzio in The Marriage of Figaro, Nika Magadoff in The Consul and Njegus in The Merry Widow. He made his New York City stage debut at the Apollo Theater in 2010, where he was a featured soloist in the IMAN at the Apollo Concert. Zeshan is trained in Hindustani Classical Music and is trilingual.

   

Isaac Bray received his B.M.E. degree from Abilene Christian University where he studied with Michael Scarbrough. With A.C.U. Opera Theatre, he sang the roles of Betto in Gianni Schicchi, Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, and Pandolfe in Cendrillon. Bray has twice been a finalist in the Texoma Region NATS competition, earning third place in both the senior and graduate divisions. He was recently a young artist in residence at the Natchez Festival of Music. Bray is currently pursuing his M.M. degree at The Boston Conservatory where he studies with Rebecca Folsom. With Boston Conservatory Opera, he has sung the role of the Father in Hãnsel und Gretel.

   

John Cabrali has appeared with the Seagle Music Colony in the title role of Le Nozze di Figaro and as Alidoro in Rossini's La Cenerentola. He is currently a master's candidate at Florida International University, where he has performed the roles of Pandolfe in Massenet's Cendrillon, Buonafede in Haydn's Il Mondo della Luna, and performed as the bass soloist in Handel's Messiah. John holds a bachelor's degree from New World School of the Arts, where he appeared as Don Alfonso in Così fan tutte, the Chief of Police in Amelia al Ballo, and Matthew in La Divina. His future engagements include Figaro (cover) in Le Nozze di Figaro, Sciarrone in Tosca, and Bion in Lysistrata with Fort Worth Opera

   
Joshua Conyers is a student at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music pursuing a M.M. in Vocal Performance and is a student of Timothy Noble. He made his professional operatic debut as the Mandarin in Puccini's Turandot at Piedmont Opera in Winston Salem, NC. Recently, he sang the role of The Vicar in Benjamin Britten's Albert Herring, Lord Guglielmo Cecil in Donizetti's Maria Stuarda, Buonafede in Haydn's Il mondo della luna, Henry Davis in Kurt Weill's Street Scene, Bob in Menotti's The Old Maid and the Thief, and the Devil Gate Keeper in Dvorak's The Devil and Kate at the A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute. Other recent roles include Horace Tabor in Douglas Moore's The Ballad of Baby Doe.
   

A Louisiana native, Kristi Bulot attended Louisiana State University where she completed the Bachelor of Arts and Master of Music in Vocal Performance degrees as a student of Dr. Loraine Sims. Most recently she performed the role of Donna Anna in Don Giovanni at the La Musicia Lirica in Novafeltria, Italy. She was the 3rd Place Winner in the 2010 National Opera Association (NOA) National Vocal Competition. As the winner of the Louisiana District and the Southern Regional Winner of the NATS Artist Award Competition, she competed in the National Finals in Salt Lake City at the NATS National Conference in July 2010 and won 4th place.

   

A gifted baritone, André Courville recently made his operatic debut in New York City as Hermann, Schlémil, and Crespel in Les Contes d’Hoffmann with the Martina Arroyo Foundation. Other operatic roles include Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Simone in Gianni Schicchi, and Marquis d’Obigny in La Traviata at Opera in the Ozarks. He performed roles in Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Gondoliers and Delibes’ Lakmé with the Loyola Opera Theatre, and has performed with the New Orleans Opera Association. In 2005, he had the honor of performing the bass solo in Dave Brubeck’s Pange Lingua Variations with members of the Buffalo Philharmonic and the composer at the piano. Concert performances include Schumann’s Liederkreis Op. 39.

   

Katie Dixon is a currently a Master's candidate at Mannes College, studying privately with Arthur Levy. This year she sang Ann Putnam in Act I of The Crucible, Amina in La Sonnambula, Zerlina in Don Giovanni, and Tatyana in Eugene Onegin in the Mannes Opera Class Concert Scenes. Last summer she attended the International Vocal Arts Institute under Joan Dornemann and Paul Nadler. She graduated with a B.M. in Vocal Performance from Chapman University, where she studied privately with Carol Neblett. She is a former winner of the Robert Kunz Scholarship for outstanding opera achievement. Katie was also a previous winner for both the Orange County Cappie and Macy Award for the Best Vocalist.

   

Joan Estep is a recent graduate of Georgia State University in Atlanta, where she received her B.M. in Vocal Performance while minoring in sociology. She has studied and performed the roles of La Face in Cendrillon, Frasquita in Carmen, Blanche in Dialogues of the Carmelites, Gilda in Rigoletto, Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Anna Bolena in Anna Bolena, Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, Fido in Paul Bunyan, The Governess in The Turn of the Screw, and Singer #1 in Conrad Susa’s Transformations.  Her concert work includes Saints-Säens’ Oratorio de Noel, Bach's Magnificat, Handel’s Messiah, Mozart’s Requiem, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Orff’s Carmina Burana, and Cage’s Forever and Sunsmell.

   

Jacquelyn Familant holds a Master of Music degree from the Curtis Institute of Music and a Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music. The soprano has appeared with Staatsoper Stuttgart, Opera Tampa, New Jersey State Opera, American Music Festival, Chautauqua Institution, Summer Stars of Ocean Grove, Ocala Symphony Orchestra, Opera Company of Brooklyn, Festival Lyrique-en-Mer, the Vermont Festival of the Arts, and the Chamber Music Society of Philadelphia. Ms. Familant has won numerous awards, and was named a winner of the Classical Singer Convention 2010. She is featured on the Naxos recording of Paul Salerni's opera, Tony Caruso's Final Broadcast.

   

Lenora Green has performed leading roles throughout Europe and the US. Her roles include Suor Angelica and Eurydice (Offenbach). She also performed in Postcard from Morocco, Dialogues of the Carmelites, Le Nozze di Figaro, and Un Ballo in Maschera, and created the role of Joanne in Love Theories by Linda Lister. In 2009 Ms. Green was the recipient of a Metropolitan Opera National Council Encouragement Award, and has taken top honors in the National Association of Teachers of Singing and the William Knight Competitions. Ms. Green is a student of Metropolitan Opera soprano Carol Vaness, and holds a M.M. degree from the University of Michigan and a Performance Diploma from Indiana University.

   

Ryan Speedo Green was the Grand Prize winner in the 2011 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, as well as the recipient of the 2011 Sarah Tucker Grant in the Richard Tucker Music Foundation Competition. His operatic roles include: Don Magnifico in Cenerentola, Colline in La Bohème, Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte, Don Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia, and Bottom in Midsummer Night’s Dream, with companies such as Opera Colorado, and Martina Arroyo’s Prelude to Performance. In August 2011, Ryan will join the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program of the Metropolitan Opera.

   

Patrick Guetti holds a B.M. degree in Musical Theatre and is currently completing a M.M. degree in Voice Performance, both from The Catholic University of America. At CUA he has sung Il Conte in Le Nozze di Figaro, Frank in Die Fledermaus, and most recently Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte. In the summer of 2010, he also sang Sarastro in Bel Cantanti Opera’s Summer Program. Patrick will be attending The Academy of Vocal Arts this fall. He studies with Rick Christman.

   

Jaime Hartzell mezzo-soprano, is currently pursuing her M.M. in Vocal Performance at The Ohio State University. Ms. Hartzell’s most recent roles include Florence Pike in Albert Herring, Rosimonda in the American stage premiere of Handel’s Faramondo, and Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro. These were under the direction of A. Scott Parry and Peter Kozma. She also has performed in Opera Columbus’ Outreach Program where she appeared as Rosina in their abridged version of Il Barbiere di Siviglia. Other roles performed include Mistress Page in Nicolai’s The Merry Wives of Windsor and The Friend in Menotti’s Amelia Goes to the Ball. Ms. Hartzell is a student of Dr. John Robin Rice.

   

Brandon Hood was recently awarded an Encouragement Award from the Michigan District of The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. He has been a young artist with the Pine Mountain Music Festival, Opera Saratoga, and Dayton Opera. He earned his Bachelor of Music in Opera Emphasis/Vocal Performance at The Boston Conservatory in 2005. There he received The Presser Foundation Award and won the Encouragement Award from the Mario Lanza Institute. He received his M.M. from The University of Michigan in 2007, and studied with the late Shirley Verrett. In 2009, Mr. Hood received his Specialist Degree at The University of Michigan, studying with his current teacher Prof. Stephen West.

   

Briana Hunter is currently a Master’s degree candidate at Manhattan School of Music under the tutelage of Hilda Harris. Previous credits include Rosa Gonzales in Summer and Smoke with the Manhattan School of Music Opera Department, Joanne in Godspell with Carolyn Marlowe’s American Musical Theater Ensemble. Scene work includes Countess in Le nozze di Figaro, 2nd Lady in Die Zauberflöte, and Louisa in A Betrothal in a Monastery. Additionally, she has worked under the direction of The Royal Shakespeare Company as both actress (Hippolyta in Midsummer Night’s Dream) and soloist (Rossini’s “The Willow Song”). She was also in For Every Passion Something performed at the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland.

   

Charles Hyland, is a recent graduate of Catholic University’s Benjamin T. Rome School of Music. His previous roles include Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro, Dr. Falke in Die Fledermaus, Haly in L’Italiana in Algeri, Schaunard and Colline in La Bohème, Dulcamara in L’Elisir d’Amore, and Lorenzo in I Capuleti e i Montecchi. He has also been the baritone soloist for performances of The Seven Last Words of Christ and Bach’s Coffee Cantata. Charles currently studies voice with Rick Christman, and will be entering the opera program at Binghamton University this fall.

   
Jonathan Jurgens earned his M.M. from The Ohio State University. There, he was most recently seen as Mr. Upfold in the university’s production of Britten’s Albert Herring. While there he performed the title role in the American stage premiere of Handel’s Faramondo, and Don Basilio in Le Nozze di Figaro, both under the direction of Peter Kozma. He has also worked with Opera Columbus, performing in outreach programs as Roméo in Roméo et Juliette and Rodolfo in La Bohème. Jonathan was a winner of The Ohio State University 2009 concerto competition. He earned his B.M. from Otterbein University, where he sang the role of Rinuccio in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi. Currently he is a student of Dr. John Robin Rice.
   

Keiko Kai has performed with Dell’Arte Opera, New York Lyric Opera, Pocket Opera of NY, Camerata Baroque, Amato Opera, and Opera Company of Brooklyn, where she was a resident artist in 2009-2010. Currently, she is a chorister at Lyric Opera of Chicago. She received a Master of Music and Professional Studies Diploma from Mannes College the New School for Music.

   

Taesung Kim recently received a Certificate of Opera Performance from the Boston University Opera Institute. His operatic roles include the Count and Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro, Leporello in Don Giovanni, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor, David in L'Amico Fritz, Gasparo in Rita, Metifio in L'Arlesiana, Marcello in La Bohème, Creon in Antigone, M. Barfield in Tobermory, Ben in The Telephone, and Forester in The Cunning Little Vixen, among others

   

Andrew Klima was most recently seen as Tamino in New York City Opera Studio's production of Die Zauberflöte, where he was honored to be coached by Nico Castel. Andrew has appeared onstage as Don Basilio and Don Curzio in Le Nozze di Figaro and as Bill in A Hand of Bridge. Additionally, he has been seen as Fenton, Jaquino, Ferrando, Nemorino, Arturo and Candide in opera scenes. A current Master's Candidate at Manhattan School of Music, Andrew studies with Mark Oswald.

   

A native of South Korea, Seung Hee Lee recently performed Pamina in Die Zauberflöte at Bay View Music Festival in Michigan, and also appeared at The Art Song Festival at Baldwin Wallace College in 2010. She was a prize winner in the 2008 David Adams Art Song Competition. Previous credits include Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, the Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro, Agathe in Der Freischötz, Flavia Gemmira in Cavalli's opera Eliogabalo, and Mimi in La Bohème. She received a B.M. degree from Chonnam National University in South Korea, graduating with an Honors Award, and continued with her M.M. degree from the Manhattan School of Music. She is currently pursuing her D.M.A. degree at Stony Brook University

   

Erica Moon made her professional debut singing Adele in Johann Strauss’s Die Fledermaus with the Martina Arroyo Foundation in 2009. She also performed Gilda in Rigoletto with Bleecker Street Opera and Musetta in La Bohème with Amato Opera of New York City. Her stage credits at MSM Opera Studio include Cupcake in All that Glitters directed by Dona D. Vaughn in the Opera Outreach production, and Minerva in Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria. Other performances include Despina in Così fan Tutte with New York Soloist Ensemble Foundation, Gretel in Hansel and Gretel with the International Institute of Vocal Arts in Italy, and Ruggiero in Alcina, as well as Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Norina in Don Pasquale, and Nanetta in Falstaff.

   

Last spring, Jonathan Morales garnered praise for his tenor debut in the Wolf's Italienisches Liederbuch as an "...appealing tenor at once both clear and beefy" (The Dallas Morning News). As a baritone he was seen with The Living Opera as Bob in The Old Maid and the Thief and as Top in The Tender Land. With The Living Opera’s touring ensemble, he appeared as Bluff in The Impresario. In 2006, he was regarded for his portrayal of Ramón in Robert Rodriguez premiere La Curandera with Opera Colorado as, "...most impressive of the group..". He has also performed as Albert in Werther, Raimbaud in Le Comte Ory, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte.

   

Young Chul Park is currently a Professional Studies Diploma candidate at Mannes, studying with Arthur Levy. He sang the role of Riccardo in Un Ballo in Maschera in The Mannes Opera’s Evenings of Opera Scenes in January 2010. He has also performed the roles of Alfredo in La Traviata and Lensky in Eugene Onegin. He earned his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at the Gnesin Academy of Music in Moscow where he studied with Arthur Eizen. Mr. Park was a winner in the 2004 Bella Voce International Competition.

   

Yunnie Park began her studies at the University of Arizona in 2009, and is currently a graduate student of Professor Faye Robinson. She earned her Master’s degree from the University of Northern Iowa in 2008, and her Bachelor's degree from The Catholic University of Korea in 2005, where she was named concerto competition winner. Recently she won the President’s Concerto Competition and Amelia Rieman Opera Competition, and was awarded first place in the Southern Arizona Opera Guild Vocal Competition and Margarett Ough Vocal Competition at U. of A.

   

Katelyn Parker is working towards her Master’s in Opera Performance from The Boston Conservatory. She received her undergraduate degree in Vocal Performance from Oklahoma City University, where she studied with William N. Christensen. Originally from Maine, she has performed such roles as Norina in Donizetti’s Don Pasquale, Adele in Johann Strauss’ Die Fledermaus, Veronique in Pasatieri’s Hotel Casablanca, Celie in Pasatieri’s Signor Deluso, Gretel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel, and Yum-Yum in Gilbert & Sullivan’s Mikado. Katelyn is excited to be making her debut as Lisette in La Rondine with Prelude to Performance!

   

Rogelio B. Peñaverde Jr. is a native of Manila, Philippines. Praised as a singer “with engaging presence” and displaying “strong, dependable vocal equipment which flawlessly soars and sustains high notes long and firmly,” he began the year performing the role of Lorenzo in Auber’s Fra Diavolo with The Bronx Opera Company. Last year he was engaged for the following roles: Leon in Pasatieri’s Signor Deluso with the Encanta Collective; Ernesto in Donizetti’s Don Pasquale with the Bronx Opera Company; and Tamino in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with the Martina Arroyo Foundation, as well as with the New York Lyric Opera Theater.

   

Receiving a Masters degree from Manhattan School of Music last year, Meghan Picerno is currently enrolled in the Professional Studies Program at The Manhattan School of Music. Last year, she made her Off Broadway debut as Liza in the musical revue Falling in Love with Love. She was last seen at MSM and with America Opera Projects as Marisa in the new opera, Henry’s Wife. Meghan’s upcoming performances this spring include La Princesse/Le Feu/ Le Rossignol in L’Enfant et les Sortilèges, cast member in the Kurt Weill revue “September Songs” with the American Musical Theatre Ensemble, and various performances with the Contemporary Opera Ensemble.

   

Alexander Pikarsky is excited to be returning to Prelude to Performance, where in earlier seasons he sang in Les Contes d’Hoffmann and Un Ballo in Maschera. With Opera at Rutgers, Alex has played Elder Hayes in Susannah, and has appeared in Il Mondo della Luna, Il Campanello di Notte, and Le Pescatrice. He has sung at Lincoln Center with the Kirkpatrick Choir in the Verdi Requiem and Orff’s Carmina Burana. Recently, Alex played Beadle Bamford in Sweeney Todd.

   

Laura Puzio has performed as a mainstage artist with the Amore Opera, New York Lyric Opera Theatre, Opera Company of Brooklyn, and the International Vocal Arts Institute, and as a Young Artist with the Saint Louis Opera Theatre and the New Israeli Opera Studio. Her operatic roles include Adele in Die Fledermaus, Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Polissena in Radamisto, Chocholka in The Cunning Little Vixen, Papagena and Erster Knabe in Die Zauberflöte, and Nightingale in The Nightingale. This summer, she will cover the role of Najade in Ariadne Auf Naxos with The Dell’Arte Opera Ensemble.

   

Sarah Shecktman, a native of Barrington, RI, is a second year graduate student studying vocal performance at The Boston Conservatory of Music. She received her B.M degree from The Boston Conservatory in May 2009. She has appeared in operatic and musical theater productions throughout the New England area. Her roles included the feisty maid Lisette in Puccini's La Rondine, First Spirit in Mozart's Die Zauberflóte, and Little Red in Little Red's Most Unusual Day. This past summer, she sang the role of Amor in Orfeo ed Euridice in Parma, Italy with the Flagstaff in Fidenza program, and also appeared as Suor Osmina in Suor Angelica. Sarah is a student of Patty Thom.

   

Jasmine Thomas is a recent graduate of Purchase College Conservatory of Music where she received a B.M. degree in Voice and Opera Performance. She has performed the roles of the Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors, and Pamina and Second Lady in Die Zauberflóte. This past April, she portrayed the role of the High Priestess in Verdi's Aida with the New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera. She currently studies with Evelyn LaQuaif. She has been a guest soloist with the Brooklyn Philharmonic, the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, the Independent Democrats, the Union League Club (honoring former Justice Sandra Day O’Connor), the Merrill Lynch Board of Directors, Channel Thirteen and WLIW21.

   

Diana Thompson, a native of Augusta, GA, has been seen as Millie in Libby Larsen’s Picnic, Peep-Bo in The Mikado, Belinda in Dido and Aeneas, Miss Silverpeal in The Impresario, and Sister Genevieve in Suor Angelica. Díana earned her M.M. in Voice at UNCG under Nancy Walker, and her B.M. in Voice at Augusta State University under Linda Banister. Díana recently performed the role of Adele in the May 2011 production of Die Fledermaus with Greenville Light Opera Works. She is also a member of the prestigious group, The American Spiritual Ensemble, founded and directed by Everett McCorvey.

   

Marcos Vigil holds a Bachelor of Music Degree from New Mexico State University as well as both a Masters Degree and Professional Studies Certificate from the Manhattan School of Music. Recent performances include Don Ramiro in La Cenerentola with Capital Heights Lyric Opera of New York, and Count Almaviva in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with the Opera Company of Brooklyn. Mr. Vigil also performed the role of Beppe in Donizetti’s Rita with the Martina Arroyo Foundation’s Prelude to Performance Summer Program in 2010, in which Opera News hailed his performance as “a comedic and vocal tour de force.” Mr. Vigil currently studies with tenor Eduardo Valdes from the Metropolitan Opera.

   

Brian Wahlstrom is a recent graduate from the Master’s program at the Manhattan School of Music. His recent opera credits include Manuel in Falla’s La Vida Breve, Archie Kramer in Lee Hoiby’s Summer and Smoke, the title role in Gianni Schicchi, and Mr. Gedge in Albert Herring. As a two-year member of the American Musical Theater Ensemble, Brian was Judas in Godspell and a baritone soloist in “September Songs, The Legacy of Kurt Weill” at MSM. Later this summer Brian will be travelling to China for a new opera training program, “I Sing Beijing”. Brian is also the touring pianist for international recording artists Joey Cape (Lagwagon) and Tony Sly (No Use for a Name); they will be touring in Europe this fall.

   

Carline Waugh is a native of Jamaica and is currently pursuing a M.M. in Vocal Performance at The University of Mississippi under the tutelage of Nancy Maria Balach. She completed her B.M. in Performance at the Atlantic Union College where she studied with Faith Esham. She has been featured as an emerging artist at the OperaWorks program, and is a past winner of the National Association of Negro Business and Professional Women's Clubs Emerging Artist Competition on Long Island. Having recently sung the role of Gianetta in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Gondoliers at The Gertrude C. Ford Center for the Performing Arts, Carline is currently preparing the roles of Zerlina in Don Giovanni and Nannetta in Verdi’s Falstaff.

   

Clara Heikyung Yu has more than 15 years of classical vocal training and performance experience. A native of South Korea, she has been training and singing in the U.S. for the past 5 years. She holds a Master’s in Musical Arts from the Manhattan School of Music in New York City, and graduated at the top of her class from Seoul University in Korea. Miss Yu has played a number of soprano roles across the U.S., Europe and Asia, including Mimi in La Bohème, Miss Jessel in The Turn of the Screw, and Pamina in Die Zauberflöte with the Charlemagne Orchestra. She is a Long Leaf Opera finalist, and a Lois Alba finalist, and she was the first place delegate from South Korea for the Tachigawa Opera Festival in Japan.