Opera Bites

Our Third Annual Feast

of 10-Minute Operas

IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE BOSTON NEW MUSIC INITIATIVE AND
LONGY SCHOOL OF MUSIC OF BARD COLLEGE
NOVEMBER 10 – 12, 2017

People Love Opera Bites!

"Delightfully thought-provoking and fun...a delicious program celebrating life’s sweetest and sometimes most sour moments with cleverness and heart."

 

"The snappy selection of short-form pieces was very palatable to the viewer. From a love triangle amongst goddesses and mortals to a fetus’ existential crisis in utero, each “bite” had a different flavor."

"Boston Opera Collaborative struck gold again with this refined selection of short and sweet works."

The Theatre Times Review

The Experience

Another fabulous evening of opera and revelry in a cabaret style setting, featuring seven short works — including three brand new commissions and world-premieres!

 

For our third annual evening of Opera Bites we have again partnered with Longy School of Music of Bard College and, for the first time, with Boston New Music Initiative (BNMI). 

 

A delicious program of bite-sized opera — performed in English and accompanied by a small instrumental ensemble — along with festive food and drink!

This program was made possible in part by a George Henschel Community Award from the Harvard Musical Association.

On This Page

Symposium, Opera Bites 2017
Symposium, Opera Bites 2017

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Voice on the Wire, Opera Bites 2017
Voice on the Wire, Opera Bites 2017

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A Womb with a View, Opera Bites 2017
A Womb with a View, Opera Bites 2017

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Symposium, Opera Bites 2017
Symposium, Opera Bites 2017

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Cast & Creative Team

Cast

Scott Ballantine
Scott Ballantine

American baritone, Scott Ballantine, has returned to Boston for the 2017-2018 season after a summer with the Utah Festival of Opera and Musical Theatre, where he rehearsed and performed for twelve weeks in four productions. The day he returned to the east coast, he jumped immediately into a new performance schedule--joining the Southern Vermont Lyric Theatre as Schaunard in La Bohème. Now, Ballantine is thrilled to join Boston Opera Collaborative (BOC) as a member for the season.

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Junhan Choi
Junhan Choi

Baritone Junhan Choi, a native of South Korea, was recently awarded three special prizes at the 54th Viñas international voice competition in Barcelona which are ‘Mercedes Viñas’, ‘Victoria de los Ángeles’, and ‘Franz Schubert’. He also won 1st place in MetroWest Opera’s Vocal Competition and placed 4th with Audience Favorite prize at Rochester’s Classiac Idol Vocal Competition in 2017. Mr. Choi holds Master’s degree and Graduate Diploma from New England Conservatory of Music.

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Carley DeFranco
Carley DeFranco

Carley DeFranco has been commended for her “stunningly exquisite, silvery smooth voice” (Melrose Free Press) and “warm, supple soprano” (Boston Musical Intelligencer). Recent credits include the title role in Alcina (Opera del West), Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro (Greater Worcester Opera), Yvette in La Rondine: Remix, Clara in a staged, immersive presentation of Fraunenliebe und Leben and From the Diary of Virginia Woolf (BOC). Carley received her MM from Longy School of Music of Bard College.

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Mitch Fitzdaniel
Mitch Fitzdaniel

Mieczyslaw is thrilled to be a member of the Boston Opera Collaborative this season. Performances this past season include Philip Glass’ Hydrogen Jukebox (Baritone) and Tobias Picker’s Emmeline (Simon Fenton) at Boston University, as well as Conrad Susa’s Dangerous Liaisons (Bertrand/Ensemble) with the BOC. He was a fellow of the Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar in 2017 and is currently an artist for the Boston Art Song Society. Mieczyslaw received his MM in Vocal Performance from BU.

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Celeste Godin
Celeste Godin

Celeste Godin recently performed as “a completely brilliant Rodolfo” (Boston Musical Intelligencer) in MetroWest Opera's La Femme Bohème, Echo in Ariadne auf Naxos (Lowell House Opera), Andeng in Noli Me Tangere (Opera Brittenica), and Annio (La Clemenza di Tito) with Promenade Opera Project. Between shows, she placed second in the Five Towns Music and Art Young Musicians Competition in New York.

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ShannonGrace_Headshot
ShannonGrace_Headshot

Shannon Grace obtained her MM from The Boston Conservatory in Vocal Performance in 2013 and her BM in Voice from Ithaca College in 2010. This year she will be performing in BOC’s Opera Bites as Lucy in Lucy. Past performances include: Dangerous Liaisons (Madame de Volanges), Mirror (Virginia Woolf in From the Diary of Virginia Woolf), Opera Bites 2016 (American Flag), Opera Bites 2015 (Tempo Fuori del Tempo & The Act) and Our Town (Mrs. Webb).

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Alyssa Hensel
Alyssa Hensel

Soprano, Alyssa Hensel is excited to be working with Boston Collaborative Opera this season. Her previous 2017 performances include: Vitellia (La Clemenza di Tito), Eliza (Dark Sisters) and Louisa Berry (A Letter to Vanguard, new commission). Hensel attended Oberlin Conservatory of Music (B.M. ‘14, Voice) and recently graduated from The Boston Conservatory (M.M. ‘17, Voice). For more info and updates on Ms. Hensel’s performance schedule, please visit: www.alyssahensel.com

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Stephanie Hollenberg
Stephanie Hollenberg

Stephanie Hollenberg recently made her Italy debut as Papagena (Die Zauberflöte) with Music Academy International, also covering the role of Zerlina (Don Giovanni) and singing the role of an Esprit (Cendrillon). Additionally, Stephanie has appeared in Orontea (Tibrino) in Haymarket Opera’s Summer Course, Hansel & Gretel (Sandman), An Embarrassing Position (Eva), and Dido & Aeneas (Dido). Stephanie received her MM from Longy School of Music of Bard College.

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Rebecca Krouner
Rebecca Krouner

Rebecca Krouner’s performances as Carmen have been praised as “fiery and sultry” with a “luscious, powerful voice of wide range and dynamics.” Resident Artist at Opera San Jose and MM from Manhattan School of Music. Past roles include Azucena, Orlofsky, Komponist, Abbess, Cherubino, Meg Page, and Dritte Dame. Local performances with Panopera, Lowell House Opera, MetroWest Opera, Boston Civic Symphony, Wellesley Symphony Orchestra, Harvard Radcliffe Chorus, Odyssey Opera.

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Natalie Logan
Natalie Logan

Natalie Logan makes her debut with Boston Opera Collaborative, Handel + Haydn Society, Metropolitan Chorale, Opera Steamboat, Symphony Nova, and Newburyport Choral Society this season. Finalist of the 2017 MetroWest Opera competition, she was 2016-17 Winner of The American Prize in Vocal Performance. Roles include Morgana (Alcina), Susanna (Le nozze di Figaro), and Anne Trulove (The Rake’s Progress). B.M. Louisiana State University; M.M., P.S.C Voice Performance from Boston Conservatory.

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Jenny Marguiles
Jenny Marguiles

Jenny Searles Margulies trained at Butler University (BM), Southern Methodist University (MM) and Indiana University (PD). She has performed with Indianapolis Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Opera North, Bronx Opera, Manhattan Opera Repertory Theater and Regina Opera. Previous roles include Tosca, Susannah, Alice Ford, Nedda, Countess (Nozze di Figaro), Woglinde (Das Rheingold), Helena (A Midsummer Night's Dream). She has performed with BOC as Mabrouka (Sumeida’s Song).

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Fran Rogers
Fran Rogers

Tenor Fran Rogers’ recent opera credits include Ruggero in Puccini’s La Rondine, Danceny in Susa’s The Dangerous Liaisons, Ramiro in Rossini's La Cenerentola. Upcoming performances include Art in Solitro’s Triangle, and Rodolfo in Puccini’s La Boheme. Fran makes his Symphony Hall debut this October with the Terezin Music Foundation singing a collection of songs by Pavel Haas and Gideon Klein.

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Tamara Ryan
Tamara Ryan

Soprano Tamara Ryan has been hailed by The Boston Globe as a "breathtakingly solid" soprano,” by the New England Theater Geek as "a performer of note," and by the Boston Musical Intelligencer as having "the comedic genius of Madeline Kahn" and a "captivatingly expressive strength.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer finds her "charming" and "fearless.”

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Sirgourney Tanner
Sirgourney Tanner

Sirgourney Calven Fate Tanner, a Chicago, IL native, completed her graduate education at Longy School of Music of Bard College in Cambridge, MA where for two years; she was named a Presidential Scholar and earned a Master of Music Degree in Opera Performance, May 2016. There, she studied with Bass-Baritone, Robert Honeysucker. Among many performance opportunities, Sirgourney was privileged to perform for the Following In Her Footsteps Awards.

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Susannah Thornton
Susannah Thornton

New England based mezzo-soprano Susannah Thornton is equally at home performing operatic roles and interpreting art song. While earning her undergraduate degree at the University of New Hampshire, Thornton performed the role of L’Enfant (Ravel, “L’Enfant et les Sortileges:) as well as studying Hermia (Britten, “Midsummer Night’s Dream”), Dorabella (Mozart, “Cosi fan Tutte”), and Cherubino (Mozart, “The Marriage of Figaro”).

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Creative Team

Jean Anderson Collier
Jean Anderson Collier
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BorisHeadshot
BorisHeadshot
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Nathan Lofton
Nathan Lofton
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Tian Hui Ng
Tian Hui Ng
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Beth Ratay
Beth Ratay
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Brendon Shapiro
Brendon Shapiro
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Greg Smucker
Greg Smucker
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Patricia Weinmann
Patricia Weinmann
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Chelsea Whitaker
Chelsea Whitaker
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The Shows

 

Symposium

Music by Oliver Caplan, libretto by Anne Ray

Connecting with other people is so hard – especially when you can’t stop arguing with yourself. Three singers play one woman deciding whether to risk embarrassment for a chance at love.

DIRECTION
Nathan Lofton, conductor
Jean Anderson Collier, music director
Adrienne Boris, stage director
CAST
Tamara Ryan, April 1
Alyssa Hensel, April 2
Susannah Thornton, April 3
Mitch Fitzdaniel, Man

Voice on the Wire

Music by Carrie Magin, libretto by Kendall A

She sacrificed much to help bring her husband’s technology to the world. But Mabel Bell, a Cambridge native deaf from childhood, would never get to hear or use her husband’s masterpiece: the telephone.

DIRECTION
Jean Anderson Collier, music director
Greg Smucker, stage director
CAST
Rebecca Krouner, Mabel

Wish You Were Here

Music by Eva Kendrick, libretto by Claudia Haas

Every once in a while, you meet someone who might have been your soulmate – had your paths taken different turns. Of course, when the street lights in Paris begin to glow, anything is possible.

DIRECTION
Nathan Lofton, conductor
Chelsea Whitaker, music director
Adrienne Boris, stage director
CAST
Carley DeFranco, Ashley
Scott Ballantine, Jean-Louis

Triangle

Music by Tony Solitro, libretto by Jane Martin

Love triangles are never easy. But when the “other woman” your boyfriend has fallen in love with is a goddess? OMG. How do you compete with that?

DIRECTION
Tian Hui Ng conductor
Brendon Shapiro, music director
Greg Smucker, stage director
CAST
Celeste Godin, Joyce
Fran Rogers, Art
Sirgourney Tanner, The Other Woman

Rapture

Music and libretto by David Wolfson

As a mother eagerly awaits The Rapture that will deliver her to Heaven, her doubtful and resentful daughter realizes that the two of them are not so different after all

DIRECTION
Tian Hui Ng conductor
Brendon Shapiro, music director
Patricia-Maria Weinmann, stage director
CAST
Stephanie Hollenberg, Holly
Jenny Marguiles, Sylvia

Lucy
Music and libretto by Tom Cipullo

When an elderly woman living alone wishes for some company, a strange man who swears he isn't Death keeps dropping to entertain and comfort her.

DIRECTION
Chelsea Whittaker, music director/pianist
Greg Smucker, stage director
CAST
Shannon Grace, Lucy
Junhan Choi, Young Man

Womb with a View
Music by Beth Ratay, libretto by Rich Orloff

Baby is due! But before she enters the world, she has a few questions and needs some last minute adjustments.

DIRECTION
Tian Hui Ng, conductor
Brendon Shapiro, music director
Patricia-Maria Weinmann, stage director
CAST
Jenny Marguiles, Supervisor
Natalie Logan, New Kid
Celeste Godin, Assistant A
Alyssa Hensel, Assistant B