Taste of Opera takes place on January 27, 2013, at Crowne Plaza Expo Center. Special guest performers will be Galen Bower, Metropolitan Opera baritone, Barbara LeMay, New York City mezzo-soprano, and Susan Belcher, Lyric Opera of Chicago soprano.
Galen Bower is one of America’s most exciting up-and-coming operatic performers. A graduate of the Master of Music and Artist Development programs at Yale University, Mr. Bower has received significant critical and public acclaim for his rich baritone voice and commanding stage presence at the Metropolitan Opera and Lyric Opera of Chicago.
Barbara LeMay, an audience charmer par excellence with a fresh, youthful aura, is on of opera’s most promising young mezzo-sopranos. Her success has been at New York City Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, and Yale Opera Theatre.
Mrs. Susan Belcher gained her professional opera training as a young artist with the Chicago Lyric Opera Center for American Artists in Chicago, Illinois, where she debuted to critical acclaim the role of the angel Zephon in the world premiere of Pendereski’s Paradise Lost. Her many opera credits include Clorinda in La Cenerentola with the Opera Company of Philadelphia opposite Maria Ewing, Norina in Don Pasquale opposite Sir Geraint Evans, Adele in Die Fledermaus with Jerry Hadley, Papagena in The Magic Flute with both the Chicago Opera Theatre and the Chicago Lyric Grant Park Series, Despina in Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte, Mimi in La Boheme, Lucy in The Telephone and Jenny in the Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagony.
Asheville Opera Guild’s Student Scholarship
The second annual Asheville Opera Guild Student Scholarship, presented by guild president Pat Heuermann, honors three Asheville area singers-in-training. This year, the opera guild selected three area schools to participate: Brevard College, Mars Hill College, and Western Carolina University. Music faculty from each school select one student to represents their program. Each student receivs a $200 scholarship from funds raised by the Asheville Opera Guild. The following students are scheduled to perform operatic selections at this year’s Taste of Opera.
Corinne Minor (WCU) - Corinne Anne Minor is a 20yrs old, Dramatic Soprano and a Junior BM Vocal Performance Major at Western Carolina University. She comes from Monroe Ohio and found her way to Western on a whim. When she tripped over Western’s site decided to audition and completely fell in love. With a vast variety of Musical theatre, Sacred, Classical Ensemble and solo music, Corinne has fell in love over the years of Performing and sharing her talents with others. She aspires to become a Classical and Operatic Performer and hopes one day to make her Debut at the Sydney Opera House is Australia. She Thanks God and her Family for the support of the years, as she works her way to a Bright Future.
Blake Ellege (Brevard College) - Tenor Blake Ellege is a junior majoring in Music at Brevard College. A native of Western North Carolina, Blake began performing and recording gospel music with his parents at the age of four. While a student at Brevard College, he has performed in solo recitals, opera scenes, jazz and choral concerts and musical theatre productions. He placed second in his category at last year's NC-NATS auditions, and he has qualified for the Mid-Atlantic Regional Auditions twice. Blake sang in the chorus for ALO's production of La Boheme, and he has performed on two masterclasses with ALO artists. He is thrilled to have this opportunity to perform again with the Asheville Lyric Opera.
Dalton Woody (Mars Hills College) –Baritone Dalton Woody grew up in Burnsvills, NC. He is currently a sophomore pursuing a vocal performance degree at Mars Hill College. Dalton studies under Adjunct Professor David Craig Starky. Dalton made his opera debut as a chorus member in Asheville Lyric Opera’s recent production of La Traviata.