CoOPERAtive Program Presents Operas in Concert

Young artists perform Don Giovanni and La Bohème January 19 and 20
Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Westminster Choir College's CoOPERAtive Program will present concert performances of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Don Giovanni on Saturday, January 19 at 7 p.m. and Giacomo Puccini's La Bohème on Sunday, January 20 at 2 p.m. in Bristol Chapel on the campus of Westminster Choir College of Rider University in Princeton. Admission is $25.

The performances will feature alumni of the CoOPERAtive Program, a summer opera training program. Music director of Don Giovanni is William Hobbs and music director of La Bohème is Anthony V. Manoli. David Paul is stage director for both productions.

Westminster Voice Department Chair Margaret Cusack will present a pre-performance lecture 45 minutes before each performance.

The CoOPERAtive program is a three-week intensive program with private coaching, focusing on operatic style, performance techniques, dramatic presentation, language and diction, body awareness, resume and application advice. Directed by Westminster voice faculty members Laura Brooks Rice and Christopher Arneson, the program is presented in cooperation and consultation with professionals in the field of opera. It is designed to help young singers prepare for the essential next step toward acceptance into an advanced young artist or summer apprentice program. Graduates of this program have been finalists in the Metropolitan Opera Council’s National Auditions and have gone on to work with opera companies throughout the United States.

William Hobbs works at many of the world’s major opera houses as conductor and coach, including the Opéra National de Paris, the Salzburg Festival, San Francisco Opera, Chicago Lyric Opera, Seattle Opera, Washington Opera and the Opéra de Monte-Carlo. He has assisted conductors Claudio Abbado, Sir Charles Mackerras, Jiří Bělohlávek, Sir Andrew Davis, James Conlon, Robert Spano, Richard Bonynge, Donald Runnicles, Jiří Kout, Marco Armiliato and many others. He is a member of the piano and voice faculty at Westminster Choir.

Anthony V. Manoli has worked with some of the leading opera companies throughout the world including the Theatre Des Champs-Elysees, Gran Teatre del Liceu, Opera Lausanne and L’Opera Du Rhin as assistant conductor and coach. In addition, the Spoleto Festival in Italy and the United States, The Los Angeles Opera, The Washington Opera, Opera Company of Boston, Opera New England, Lake George Opera Festival and L’Opera Français de New York have engaged him as conductor, pianist and coach. Mr. Manoli is currently a coach for the Young Artists Program at the Washington Opera. He is also a faculty member of the Mannes College of Music in New York City where he lives and maintains an active coaching studio. He appears frequently in recitals with prominent singers worldwide.

David Paul has worked as a stage director at opera houses, theater companies and educational institutions throughout the United States and abroad. Recent operatic directing credits include critically acclaimed productions of Stravinsky's The Rake's Progress for Music Academy of the Wes); Verdi's Il trovatore for North Carolina Opera and Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro at the Kennedy Center Opera House. He made his Lincoln Center debut directing a double-bill of Rossini one-act operas at the Juilliard School. Equally at home in the theater, he enjoys a strong connection to the Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington, D.C., where he directed Julius Caesar on the main stage; adapted and directed Hamlet and served as assistant director for productions of King Lear, Julius Caesar, Romeo and Juliet and Euripides' Ion. He was assistant director for the Broadway production of Terrence McNally's Master Class, featuring Tyne Daly.

Margaret Cusack, soprano, is a winner of the International American Music Competition at Carnegie Hall and made her New York recital debut at Weill Recital Hall of Carnegie Hall in 1987. She made her New York City Opera debut in 1985 as Micaela in Carmen and her Metropolitan Opera debut in Elektra in 1999 under the baton of James Levine. She has sung extensively in regional opera throughout the country. Ms. Cusack is currently professor of voice and chair of the Piano and Voice Department at Westminster Choir College where she teaches opera literature and vocal pedagogy. She is also a member of the artist faculty at the Brevard Music Center. Ms. Cusack’s current and former students have sung at the San Francisco Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Washington Opera, Virginia Opera, Opera Theater of St. Louis, Glimmerglass Opera, Mississippi Opera, Eugene Opera, and the Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden and the Stuttgart Opera in Germany.

For tickets call 609-921-2663 or order online at www.rider.edu/arts.  

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