Emmy Award Winning International Opera Star Michael Chioldi is one of the worlds most sought after Dramatic Baritones. His interpretations of the Verdi, Puccini and Strauss repertoire has been praised by critics and audiences across the world. Recently Michael made his Teatro Liceu (Spain) debut as Gerard in Andrea Chenier along side Sondra Radvanovsky and Jonus Kaufman. The following season he returned as Miller in Verdi’s Louisa Miller with Piotr Beczala. His portrayal of Henry VIII by Saint-Seans with Odyssey Opera in Boston was heralded by Ed Tapper with Edge Media as “world class baritone singing…..Moments such as Henry's Act IV monologue and the final passages of the opera were nothing short of thrilling.” During the pandemic he was fortunate to be able to perform Tonio in Pagliacci with Palm Beach Opera where “Michael dominated the stage. His flawless diction, commanding acting skills and multi-colored instrument were a real showstopper.” (Palm Beach Daily News) He also made his Seattle Opera debut as Scarpia in Tosca, a role that he was honored to relaunch NYCO with in 2016. Upcoming Michael will see a return to the Metropolitan Opera to cover the title role of Rigoletto, Scarpia in Tosca and Enrico in Lucia.
Hailed by the New York Times for her "warm, ample voice" and "distinctive earthy coloring," and by Opera News for her "sumptuous, mid-weight soprano," Brandie Sutton has performed with the National Symphony Orchestra, Radio Orpheus Symphony Orchestra in Moscow, the Krasnoyarsk Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Danish Symphony Orchestra, Flint Symphony Orchestra, and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra. She has won several awards and competitions including, most recently, Harlem Opera Theater. Ms. Sutton has debuted principal roles at the Palacio de Bellas Artes, the Grand Théâtre de Genève, Hamburgische Staatsoper, Semperoper Dresden, AlterOper Frankfurt, New York City Opera, and was a featured artist at Carnegie Hall.
Won Whi Choi
The Duke of Mantua
Won Whi Choi has been busy captivating and thrilling audiences worldwide with his lustrous and ringing voice, elegant musicianship, and sensitive artistry. He spent the last three seasons at Theatre Erfurt in Germany, in which he sang a variety of leading roles, including, Il Duca in Rigoletto, Don José in Carmen, Roméo in Roméo et Juliette, Ferrando in Così fan tutte, Tamino in Die Zauberflöte, Hyllus in Hercules, Andres in Wozzeck, Il Cantatore in Giulietta e Romeo, and Prince Sou Chong in Lehár’s Das Land des Lächelns. In his first New York City performance, Choi was praised for his portrayal of Rodolfo in La bohème and his “big, virile sound that rocketed fearlessly up to a high C, so secure he dared to run across the stage while holding the note,” by The New York Observer.
Lisa Chavez was most recently seen with NYCO in a “star turn” as Maggie in the premiere of Bell’s Stonewall. Other roles performed with the company include Dolores in Dolores Claiborne, Paula in Florencia en el Amazonas, Carmen in Carmen, and was also involved in the Hal Prince production of Candide. She has been described as possessing a “plush storm of a voice” and for being “a powerhouse vocally and emotionally”. Other recent performances include Dido in Dido and Aeneas, Carmen in Carmen, Rosina in Il Barbiere di Sevillia, Fenena in Nabucco, and Madame de Criossy in Dialogues of the Carmelites with Sarasota Opera. For the 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 season she was a principal resident artist with Opera San Jose. Roles sung with Opera San Jose were; Isabella in L’Italiana in Algeri, Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Hansel in Hansel and Gretel, Maddalena in Rigoletto, Harriet Herriton in the professional premiere of Where Angels Fear to Tread, Suzuki in Madama Butterfly, Meg Page in Falstaff, Third Lady in Die Zauberflöte. Lisa returned in 2016 as a guest artist in the title role of Carmen. Memorable roles include; Amneris in Aida, Elizabeth Proctor in The Crucible (telecast live on Mezzo TV), Federico García Lorca in Ainadamar, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti, Secretary in The Consul.
Versatile American bass-baritone Kevin Short is thrilling audiences around the globe in repertoire ranging from the depths of Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail and Monteverdi’s L’Coronazione di Poppea to Verdi’s Attila, Bizet's Escamillo in Carmen and Wagner’s Der Fliegende Holländer. He last appeared onstage with NYCO as Jack Rance in the acclaimed 2017 production of La fanciulla del West. A sampling of his North America appearances include performances with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Washington National Opera, Seattle Opera, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Opera Pacific, Florida Grand Opera, Opera Festival of New Jersey, Sarasota Opera, Spoleto Opera Festival, Canadian Opera Company, Vancouver Opera, Edmonton Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Opera Theater of St. Louis, and the Opera de las Americas. His European and Asian credits include appearances with multiple opera companies, orchestras, and festivals, a few of which include Paris’ Opera Comique, Welsh National Opera, Kazan State Theater-Russia, Theatre Caen, Grand Theatre du Luxembourg, Oper der Stadt Köln, Semperoper Dresden, Stadttheater Stuttgart, Theater Aachen, Theater Basel, Theater Bern, Theater St. Gallen, Teatro Nacional de Sao Carlos, Teatro di Catania, Teatro di San Carlo, Maggio Musicale, Savonlinna Festival-Finland; Bregenzer Festspiele-Austria, Baden-Baden Festspiele-Germany, Festival d’Aix-en-Provence-France, Festival Montpellier-France, l’Opéra de Rouen-France, l’Opéra de Reims-France, Saito Kinen Festival in Matsumoto, Japan and festivals in Beijing, China; Hanoi, Vietnam; and Granada, Valencia, Gran Canaria and Santiago de Compostela, Spain.
Bill Van Horn
The Ghost of Monterone
Bill Van Horn is an actor, writer, and director who works at The Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia, The Philadelphia Artist Collective, The Theater at Monmouth in Maine, and many other theatres around the country. He recently directed the national tour of The Hound of the Baskervilles by Ken Ludwig starring Ian Peakes. His next project will be a production of An Iliad by Lisa Peterson and Dennis O’Hare at The Theater at Monmouth. This spring, his original adaptation of Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Speckled Band will premiere at The Walnut Street Theatre. He has provided voiceovers for many documentaries including Wagner’s Jews, God’s Fiddler, and Workshop for Peace. He is the co-writer of the documentaries Khachaturian and Caruso, the latter written with Michael Capasso. He has written several musicals with librettist Gene Scheer, including Jane Hawkins, an adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Treasure Island.” Favorite roles include King Lear, Shylock, Walt Whitman, and Bottom the Weaver.
Michael Capasso ( Director )
Michael Capasso is the General Director of the New York City Opera. He has produced, directed, and toured opera and musical theater productions in the U.S. and abroad for over 30 years. In June of 2014, he led the successful effort to bring the New York City Opera out of bankruptcy. The revitalized New York City Opera returned to the stage in January 2016 with a celebratory production of Tosca. In 1981, he, along with Diane Martindale, founded New York’s Dicapo Opera Theatre. Over the 30 years of his leadership, Dicapo Opera Theater presented a diverse programming to the New York public. In addition to his work with the Dicapo Opera Theatre, Mr. Capasso has directed operas at l’Opéra de Montréal; Mallorca Opera; Toledo Opera; Connecticut Opera; New Jersey State Opera; Opera Carolina; and Orlando Opera among others. Mr. Capasso founded the National Lyric Opera in 1991, a touring company that has brought fully staged operas to communities in the American Northeast.
Constantine Orbelian ( Conductor )
Born in San Francisco to Russian and Armenian émigrés parents, Constantine Oberlian made his debut as a piano prodigy with the San Francisco Symphony at the age of 11. After graduating from The Juilliard School, he embarked on a career as a piano virtuoso that included appearances with major symphony orchestras throughout the United States, the United Kingdom, Europe and Russia. Mr. Oberlian has been a central figure in Russian and Eastern European musical life - as Music
Director of the Moscow Chamber Orchestra and the Philharmonia of Russia, as well as founder of the annual Palaces of St. Petersburg International Music Festival, as Chief Conductor of the Kaunas City Symphony Orchestra in Lithuania, and as Artistic Director of the State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater in Yerevan, Armenia. He is the first American to become music director of an ensemble in Russia and, in recognition of his efforts championing Russian-American cultural exchange, was awarded the coveted title “Honored Artist of Russia” in 2004. In 2012 the Russian Consulate in San Francisco awarded the maestro the Russian Order of Friendship Medal, honoring his efforts to the betterment of international relations between the U.S and the Russian Federation, joining the likes of Van Cliburn and Riccardo Muti in being so honored. The California-based conductor tours and records with American stars such as Sondra Radvanovsky and Lawrence Brownlee. Among his concert and televised appearances are collaborations with Renée Fleming, Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Anna Netrebko and Mr. Cliburn, including the legendary pianist’s farewell performance in a sentimental return to Moscow. Mr. Oberlian’s recordings include a series of celebrated releases on the Delos label with Mr. Hvorostovsky, before the great singer’s untimely death. In 2001, Constantine Oberlian was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, an award given to immigrants, or children of immigrants, who have made an outstanding contribution to the United States.