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HANSEL AND GRETEL

by Engelbert Humperdinck

December 6, 2019 @ 7 pm
December 7, 2019 @ 5 pm
December 8, 2019 @ 2 pm

Great seats start at just $25!

A fairy-tale favorite for audiences of all ages!

Enjoy an enchanting production at Delray Beach’s Crest Theatre starring Palm Beach Opera’s Benenson Young Artists and Bailey Apprentice Artists. Based on the beloved Brothers Grimm fairy tale, this charming classic features a lush folk-inspired score. a LIVE orchestra, and an imaginative set made entirely out of paper! Young Singers of The Palm Beaches will also perform as the Children’s Chorus. Sung in English with English supertitles above the stage.

Acts 1 & 2 – 60 minutes (combined)
Intermission – 25 minutes
Act 3 – 45 minutes

(Our HANSEL AND GRETEL production is not part of our 19-20 season subscription.)

 Header Photo: Cory Weaver

  • David Stern
    David Stern
    Chief Conductor
  • Fenlon Lamb
    Fenlon Lamb
    Director
  • Maria Vasilevskaya^
    Maria Vasilevskaya^
    Hansel
  • Patricia Westley^
    Patricia Westley^
    Gretel
  • Cara Collins^
    Cara Collins^
    The Mother/The Witch
  • Ted Allen Pickell^
    Ted Allen Pickell^
    The Father
  • Emily Blair^
    Emily Blair^
    Sandman
  • Emily Helenbrook#
    Emily Helenbrook#
    Dew Fairy

*Palm Beach Opera Debut
^Benenson Young Artist
#Apprentice Artist
+Former Young Artist

Additional cast information will be listed as it becomes available.
Cast subject to change.

CAST
  • David Stern
    David Stern
    Chief Conductor
  • Fenlon Lamb
    Fenlon Lamb
    Director
  • Maria Vasilevskaya^
    Maria Vasilevskaya^
    Hansel
  • Patricia Westley^
    Patricia Westley^
    Gretel
  • Cara Collins^
    Cara Collins^
    The Mother/The Witch
  • Ted Allen Pickell^
    Ted Allen Pickell^
    The Father
  • Emily Blair^
    Emily Blair^
    Sandman
  • Emily Helenbrook#
    Emily Helenbrook#
    Dew Fairy

*Palm Beach Opera Debut
^Benenson Young Artist
#Apprentice Artist
+Former Young Artist

Additional cast information will be listed as it becomes available.
Cast subject to change.

SYNOPSIS
David Stern
Chief Conductor

Palm Beach Opera Chief Conductor David Stern’s musical leadership is spread across three continents. He is the founder and director of the Paris-based opera company and period-instrument ensemble, Opera Fuoco, as well as artistic advisor and principal conductor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival and music director of opera at the Crested Butte Music Festival in Colorado.

Stern is known for his extensive range of repertoire. In his time as music director of the Israel and the St. Gallen Opera houses, he championed 18th century opera and eclectic works such as Simone Mayr’s Medea, Berg’s Wozzeck, Britten’s Turn of the Screw and Weill’s Mahagonny. He has premiered four new operas since 2010 – Gil Shohat’s The Child Dreams at the Israel Opera, Nicolas Bacri’s Così fanciulli, commissioned by Opera Fuoco and performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, Ben Moore’s Enemies, A Love Story in Palm Beach and Jan Sandström’s The Rococo Machine in Drottningholm, Sweden in June 2016.

Stern has enjoyed collaborations with many international stage directors. Stern is a frequent guest around the globe with symphonic and chamber orchestras. He is regularly invited to the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Shanghai and Guangzhou Symphonies, the China Philharmonic, the New Russian Symphony, the National Orchestra of Mexico, and has had recent appearances with the Vienna Symphony and the Hong Kong Philharmonic.

Since launching the Aix Festival Academy in 1998, David Stern has been committed to developing young voices. He created Opera Fuoco in 2003 as a platform to train young French singers in repertoire ranging from Monteverdi to John Cage, combining both an opera studio offering regular master classes and an opera company producing and co-producing larger concertante and staged productions. As artistic advisor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival, he involves singers from the Shanghai Conservatory and the Opera Fuoco Studio, and he works regularly with the Young Artist Programs in Palm Beach and Crested Butte, Colorado.

Stern received his Bachelor of Arts from Yale and his Masters of Music from the Juilliard School. He resides in Paris with his wife and two daughters.

Fenlon Lamb
Director

Opera News called Fenlon Lamb “moving and convincing” and Seen and Heard International praised her “well-honed theatrical sensibility.” Ms. Lamb brings these qualities of experience and perspective as an outstanding singing actress to her work as a stage director. Fenlon returns for her fifth season with Palm Beach Opera to direct Tosca. Previous seasons have included a “delightful” Don Pasquale an “opulent” La bohème, and a “madcap” Il barbiere di Siviglia along with several critically acclaimed Young Artist productions. Last season, Fenlon returned to Arizona Opera for the world premiere production of Riders of the Purple Sage. She made her directorial debut in Carmen with Dayton Opera and directed a new production of Tosca for Finger Lakes Opera. Fenlon also conceived and directed a unique operatic installation of Elvis Costello’s The Juliet Letters for Lyric Opera of Kansas City.

Recently, Ms. Lamb made her company debut at Opera Santa Barbara with a “superb” Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi. Other productions at opera houses across the U.S. have included Don Pasquale at the Crested Butte Music Festival, The Pearl Fishers with Dayton Opera, Die fliegende Holländer for Opera Carolina, Werther with Mobile Opera, and both Rigoletto and Lucia di Lammermoor at Arizona Opera. Fenlon is the Director of Opera and Vocal Programming for the Bar Harbor Music Festival where she has directed Carmen, L’elisir d’amore, Madama Butterfly, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Le nozze di Figaro, La bohème, La cenerentola, and Don Giovanni. She is currently in her third season as Director of Opera at UMKC Conservatory of Music (Cendrillon, Little Women, Die Zauberflöte, The Turn of the Screw, Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi, Hänsel und Gretel). Fenlon is the co-creator and Artistic Director of Papermoon Opera Productions.

Maria Vasilevskaya^
Hansel

Mezzo-soprano Maria Vasilevskaya, comes from the heart of Siberia, city of Novosibirsk, (Russia) and is making her name in the United States as a “strong and resilient” performer (CITY Newspaper). Maria is a recent graduate from Eastman School of Music, where she earned her Master of Music Degree in Performance and Literature (Voice).

In the 2019-2020 season Maria will join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program, where will perform Hansel in Hansel and Gretel and Rosina in The Barber of Seville Family Performance. She will be also covering roles of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Olga in Eugene Onegin.

In summer 2019, Maria will return to Seagle Music Colony as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, where in the summer of 2018 she performed the role of Myrtle Wilson in John Harbison’s opera The Great Gatsby.

Maria was a winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Buffalo/Toronto District and an Encouragement award recipient at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Great Lakes Regional Final.  Ms. Vasilevskaya was also one of the semi-finalists in the 2019 Lotte Lenya Competition. In winter 2018, Maria was the First prize winner of the Friends of Eastman Opera Competition. Same year she won an Eastman School of Music Jury Award for an outstanding jury performance.

Maria’s recent operatic engagements include participation in Eastman Opera Theatre productions as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Mezzo II in Ricky Ian Gordon’s opera The Tibetian Book of The Dead, as well as Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi (EOT Black Box Scene Showcase).

Together with Eastman Philarmonia and Eastman School Symphony orchestra, Maria was featured as a soloist in multiple concert performances, including Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bizet’s Carmen Suite, Songs and Dances of Death by Modest Mussorgsky, Kurt Weill’s Die Sieben Todsünden, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Bach’s Cantatas.

Ms. Vasilevskaya completed her Bachelor’s Degree (summa cum laude) at Komitas State Conservatory of Yerevan, Armenia in 2017, where she was part of an Opera Studio and participated in many scene performances from Il barbiere di Siviglia, Così fan tutte and Werther. In 2016, Maria performed the role of Madame Larina in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at the Armenian National Opera and Ballet Young Artist Program.

 

Patricia Westley^
Gretel

Recently praised by the San Francisco Chronicle as a “hugely impressive artist” with a “deep velvety tone” and “bright streams of bubbly coloratura”, New Zealand-American soprano Patricia Westley is thrilled to join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program for the 2019 – 2020 season, where she will sing Gretel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel.

In the 2018 – 2019 season, Ms. Westley debuted with the Pacific Symphony singing La bergère Louis XV, Une pastourelle, La chauve-souris and La chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, and the Oakland Symphony as the soprano soloist in Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem. Most recently, she premiered the role of Selena in Jake Heggie’s If I Were You with the Merola Opera Program.

Additional operatic credits include: Elisa (Mozart’s Il re pastore) with the Merola Opera Program, Musetta  (La Bohème), Despina (Così fan Tutte), and Hodel (Fiddler on the Roof) with Shreveport Opera, Adele (Die Fledermaus) with Pocket Opera, and Zerlina (Don Giovanni) with the OK Mozart International Music Festival.

Currently Ms. Westley can be heard on Spotify as Yum-Yum in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado, recently produced by Lamplighters Music Theatre. Additional recordings of Elsie in The Yeomen of the Guard, and Casilda in The Gondoliers will be released in the coming months.

Ms. Westley is a two time participant in the prestigious Merola Opera Program, a former Resident Artist with Shreveport Opera, and a proud alumna of the University of Oklahoma and Carnegie Mellon University.

Cara Collins^
The Mother/The Witch

Praised for the “sweet and seductive” tones of her voice, mezzo-soprano Cara Collins is establishing herself through rich singing and dynamic acting. Collins most recently performed the title role of the shapeshifting devil Brittomara in Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s World Premiere of If I Were You at the prestigious Merola Opera Program, and is scheduled to perform in Amarillo Opera’s performance of Die Fledermaus as Prince Orlofsky. Previously, she performed Third Lady in The Magic Flute as a Sarasota Opera Apprentice Artist, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti at Opera on the James as a Tyler Young Artist, and at Opera North as a Resident Artist, noticeably receiving acclaim for her “hilarious romp as Bartolo’s housekeeper Berta” in Il barbiere di Siviglia. Collins received training from SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music, Westchester Summer Vocal Institute, Taos Opera Institute, and Classical Lyric Arts – Italy.

Ted Allen Pickell^
The Father

Hailed for his “powerful voice” (CASA Magazine) and “tremendous” singing (San Diego Reader), bass-baritone Ted Allen Pickell is a distinguished and accomplished young artist on the rise. This 2019/20 season, Mr. Pickell returns to the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program.

In the 2017/18 season, Mr. Pickell made his San Diego Operadebut as Samuel in The Pirates of Penzance, alongside Greer Grimsley as the Pirate King. Additional engagements included a return to the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, and spending the summer of 2018 at the San Francisco Opera’s prestigious Merola Opera Program, where he sang the role of Father Trulove in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also joined the San Diego Opera’s Apprentice Artist training program for singers, where he performed in selections from Faust and Billy Budd.

He was also a San Diego District winner, as well as the Audience Choice Award winner, of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, an award winner in the Loren. L Zachary competition, a semi-finalist in the George London Foundation, and the winner of the “Most Promising Singer” award from the La Jolla Symphony & Chorus vocal competition.

In the 2016/17 season, Mr. Pickell appeared as the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, Der Vater in Hänsel und Gretel with Point Loma Opera Theatre, The Giant in Jack and the Beanstalk and Basilio in The Barber of Seville with Opera Iowa’s young artist outreach ensemble, and joined Des Moines Metro Opera’s roster of Apprentice Artists, where he sang Arthur Jones and study covered the role of John Claggart in Billy Budd, and performed the role of Nick Shadow in scenes from Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also performed as a soloist in the Margo Garrett Master Class at Carnegie Hall, as part of Marilyn Horne’s The Song Continues.

Other notable operatic performances include Blitch in Susannah, Sam in Trouble in Tahiti, The Warden in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking and the title role in Mozart’s The Impresario with the Northwestern University Opera Theatre, covering Zuniga in Carmen and singing Micha in The Bartered Bride with Music Academy of the West, Leporello in Don Giovanni with Point Loma Opera Theatre, Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Opera Academy of California, Mars in Orpheus in the Underworld, Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor, and Armed Man in The Magic Flute, all with the University of the Pacific Opera Theatre.

On the concert stage Mr. Pickell has sung the bass soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, the featured soloist in Dougherty’s 3 Folk Songs with the Music Academy of the West, Handel’s Brocke’s Passion and Britten’s St. Cecelia at the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a winner of the 2016 & 2017 MONC Western Region San Diego district, the recipient of an encouragement award from the 2015 MONC Central Regional finals, a 2014 Ryan Opera Center finalist, the winner of the Anne Ferraro Stone Memorial Award from the Bel Canto Foundation, and the recipient of scholarships for excellence in vocal performance from Northwestern University and the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a recent graduate of the Masters in Vocal Performance at Northwestern University. He received his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from University of the Pacific.

Emily Blair^
Sandman

American soprano, Emily Blair, has performed throughout North America and Europe. She is a graduate of Mannes College The New School for Music in New York City with a master’s degree in Vocal Performance, under the tutelage of Professor Amy Burton.

In 2017, Emily was named Semi-Finalist in both the Young Patronesses of Opera Competition and the Opera Birmingham Competition. She is also honored to be returning to Portland to sing Angelica in Handel’s Orlando with Ping and Woof Opera later this season.

In 2016, Miss Blair joined Portland Opera singing The Mother in Hansel and Gretel in their outreach program. She also joined the CoOperative program as a Fellow, where she studied with Susan Ashbaker, Gina Lapinski and Nova Thomas

Emily Helenbrook#
Dew Fairy

24-year-old soprano, Emily Helenbrook, has performed several times as a featured soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic under the direction of JoAnn Falletta. Emily performed on From the Top at the Chautauqua Amphitheatre and again as an alumni in Kodak Hall at the Eastman School of Music. She has studied at the Oxford Lieder Festival led by Roger Vignoles, Imogen Cooper, Ann Murray, and Robert Holl.

She received her B.M. in Vocal Performance and B.A. in Political Science at the Eastman School of Music and University of Rochester Dual Degree Program. She has performed with the Eastman Opera Theatre as Suor Genovieffa and Suor Cristina in Suor Angelica and Mese Mariano and as Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro. Last summer, Emily spent the summer as a vocal fellow at the Aspen Opera Center covering the roles of La Bergère and La Chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges. She performed as the soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 and Mozart’s Exultate Jubilate with the Livermore-Amador Symphony in California.

Miss Helenbrook also premiered the song cycle, Tippet Rise Songs by Antón Garcia-Abril at the TippetRise Art Center in Montana with pianist Christopher O’Riley. Emily recently won the Getting to Carnegie Competition which was held at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall. She was then invited to the Water Island Music Festival in the Virgin Islands, where she performed in various concerts at the festival.  Emily performed Adele in Die Fledermaus at the 2018 Opera in the Ozarks summer festival. Emily is pursuing her Master’s of Music in Vocal Performance at the Shepherd School of Music, Rice University with Dr. Stephen King.

David Stern
Chief Conductor

Palm Beach Opera Chief Conductor David Stern’s musical leadership is spread across three continents. He is the founder and director of the Paris-based opera company and period-instrument ensemble, Opera Fuoco, as well as artistic advisor and principal conductor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival and music director of opera at the Crested Butte Music Festival in Colorado.

Stern is known for his extensive range of repertoire. In his time as music director of the Israel and the St. Gallen Opera houses, he championed 18th century opera and eclectic works such as Simone Mayr’s Medea, Berg’s Wozzeck, Britten’s Turn of the Screw and Weill’s Mahagonny. He has premiered four new operas since 2010 – Gil Shohat’s The Child Dreams at the Israel Opera, Nicolas Bacri’s Così fanciulli, commissioned by Opera Fuoco and performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, Ben Moore’s Enemies, A Love Story in Palm Beach and Jan Sandström’s The Rococo Machine in Drottningholm, Sweden in June 2016.

Stern has enjoyed collaborations with many international stage directors. Stern is a frequent guest around the globe with symphonic and chamber orchestras. He is regularly invited to the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Shanghai and Guangzhou Symphonies, the China Philharmonic, the New Russian Symphony, the National Orchestra of Mexico, and has had recent appearances with the Vienna Symphony and the Hong Kong Philharmonic.

Since launching the Aix Festival Academy in 1998, David Stern has been committed to developing young voices. He created Opera Fuoco in 2003 as a platform to train young French singers in repertoire ranging from Monteverdi to John Cage, combining both an opera studio offering regular master classes and an opera company producing and co-producing larger concertante and staged productions. As artistic advisor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival, he involves singers from the Shanghai Conservatory and the Opera Fuoco Studio, and he works regularly with the Young Artist Programs in Palm Beach and Crested Butte, Colorado.

Stern received his Bachelor of Arts from Yale and his Masters of Music from the Juilliard School. He resides in Paris with his wife and two daughters.

Fenlon Lamb
Director

Opera News called Fenlon Lamb “moving and convincing” and Seen and Heard International praised her “well-honed theatrical sensibility.” Ms. Lamb brings these qualities of experience and perspective as an outstanding singing actress to her work as a stage director. Fenlon returns for her fifth season with Palm Beach Opera to direct Tosca. Previous seasons have included a “delightful” Don Pasquale an “opulent” La bohème, and a “madcap” Il barbiere di Siviglia along with several critically acclaimed Young Artist productions. Last season, Fenlon returned to Arizona Opera for the world premiere production of Riders of the Purple Sage. She made her directorial debut in Carmen with Dayton Opera and directed a new production of Tosca for Finger Lakes Opera. Fenlon also conceived and directed a unique operatic installation of Elvis Costello’s The Juliet Letters for Lyric Opera of Kansas City.

Recently, Ms. Lamb made her company debut at Opera Santa Barbara with a “superb” Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi. Other productions at opera houses across the U.S. have included Don Pasquale at the Crested Butte Music Festival, The Pearl Fishers with Dayton Opera, Die fliegende Holländer for Opera Carolina, Werther with Mobile Opera, and both Rigoletto and Lucia di Lammermoor at Arizona Opera. Fenlon is the Director of Opera and Vocal Programming for the Bar Harbor Music Festival where she has directed Carmen, L’elisir d’amore, Madama Butterfly, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Le nozze di Figaro, La bohème, La cenerentola, and Don Giovanni. She is currently in her third season as Director of Opera at UMKC Conservatory of Music (Cendrillon, Little Women, Die Zauberflöte, The Turn of the Screw, Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi, Hänsel und Gretel). Fenlon is the co-creator and Artistic Director of Papermoon Opera Productions.

Maria Vasilevskaya^
Hansel

Mezzo-soprano Maria Vasilevskaya, comes from the heart of Siberia, city of Novosibirsk, (Russia) and is making her name in the United States as a “strong and resilient” performer (CITY Newspaper). Maria is a recent graduate from Eastman School of Music, where she earned her Master of Music Degree in Performance and Literature (Voice).

In the 2019-2020 season Maria will join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program, where will perform Hansel in Hansel and Gretel and Rosina in The Barber of Seville Family Performance. She will be also covering roles of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Olga in Eugene Onegin.

In summer 2019, Maria will return to Seagle Music Colony as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, where in the summer of 2018 she performed the role of Myrtle Wilson in John Harbison’s opera The Great Gatsby.

Maria was a winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Buffalo/Toronto District and an Encouragement award recipient at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Great Lakes Regional Final.  Ms. Vasilevskaya was also one of the semi-finalists in the 2019 Lotte Lenya Competition. In winter 2018, Maria was the First prize winner of the Friends of Eastman Opera Competition. Same year she won an Eastman School of Music Jury Award for an outstanding jury performance.

Maria’s recent operatic engagements include participation in Eastman Opera Theatre productions as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Mezzo II in Ricky Ian Gordon’s opera The Tibetian Book of The Dead, as well as Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi (EOT Black Box Scene Showcase).

Together with Eastman Philarmonia and Eastman School Symphony orchestra, Maria was featured as a soloist in multiple concert performances, including Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bizet’s Carmen Suite, Songs and Dances of Death by Modest Mussorgsky, Kurt Weill’s Die Sieben Todsünden, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Bach’s Cantatas.

Ms. Vasilevskaya completed her Bachelor’s Degree (summa cum laude) at Komitas State Conservatory of Yerevan, Armenia in 2017, where she was part of an Opera Studio and participated in many scene performances from Il barbiere di Siviglia, Così fan tutte and Werther. In 2016, Maria performed the role of Madame Larina in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at the Armenian National Opera and Ballet Young Artist Program.

 

Patricia Westley^
Gretel

Recently praised by the San Francisco Chronicle as a “hugely impressive artist” with a “deep velvety tone” and “bright streams of bubbly coloratura”, New Zealand-American soprano Patricia Westley is thrilled to join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program for the 2019 – 2020 season, where she will sing Gretel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel.

In the 2018 – 2019 season, Ms. Westley debuted with the Pacific Symphony singing La bergère Louis XV, Une pastourelle, La chauve-souris and La chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, and the Oakland Symphony as the soprano soloist in Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem. Most recently, she premiered the role of Selena in Jake Heggie’s If I Were You with the Merola Opera Program.

Additional operatic credits include: Elisa (Mozart’s Il re pastore) with the Merola Opera Program, Musetta  (La Bohème), Despina (Così fan Tutte), and Hodel (Fiddler on the Roof) with Shreveport Opera, Adele (Die Fledermaus) with Pocket Opera, and Zerlina (Don Giovanni) with the OK Mozart International Music Festival.

Currently Ms. Westley can be heard on Spotify as Yum-Yum in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado, recently produced by Lamplighters Music Theatre. Additional recordings of Elsie in The Yeomen of the Guard, and Casilda in The Gondoliers will be released in the coming months.

Ms. Westley is a two time participant in the prestigious Merola Opera Program, a former Resident Artist with Shreveport Opera, and a proud alumna of the University of Oklahoma and Carnegie Mellon University.

Cara Collins^
The Mother/The Witch

Praised for the “sweet and seductive” tones of her voice, mezzo-soprano Cara Collins is establishing herself through rich singing and dynamic acting. Collins most recently performed the title role of the shapeshifting devil Brittomara in Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s World Premiere of If I Were You at the prestigious Merola Opera Program, and is scheduled to perform in Amarillo Opera’s performance of Die Fledermaus as Prince Orlofsky. Previously, she performed Third Lady in The Magic Flute as a Sarasota Opera Apprentice Artist, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti at Opera on the James as a Tyler Young Artist, and at Opera North as a Resident Artist, noticeably receiving acclaim for her “hilarious romp as Bartolo’s housekeeper Berta” in Il barbiere di Siviglia. Collins received training from SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music, Westchester Summer Vocal Institute, Taos Opera Institute, and Classical Lyric Arts – Italy.

Ted Allen Pickell^
The Father

Hailed for his “powerful voice” (CASA Magazine) and “tremendous” singing (San Diego Reader), bass-baritone Ted Allen Pickell is a distinguished and accomplished young artist on the rise. This 2019/20 season, Mr. Pickell returns to the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program.

In the 2017/18 season, Mr. Pickell made his San Diego Operadebut as Samuel in The Pirates of Penzance, alongside Greer Grimsley as the Pirate King. Additional engagements included a return to the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, and spending the summer of 2018 at the San Francisco Opera’s prestigious Merola Opera Program, where he sang the role of Father Trulove in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also joined the San Diego Opera’s Apprentice Artist training program for singers, where he performed in selections from Faust and Billy Budd.

He was also a San Diego District winner, as well as the Audience Choice Award winner, of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, an award winner in the Loren. L Zachary competition, a semi-finalist in the George London Foundation, and the winner of the “Most Promising Singer” award from the La Jolla Symphony & Chorus vocal competition.

In the 2016/17 season, Mr. Pickell appeared as the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, Der Vater in Hänsel und Gretel with Point Loma Opera Theatre, The Giant in Jack and the Beanstalk and Basilio in The Barber of Seville with Opera Iowa’s young artist outreach ensemble, and joined Des Moines Metro Opera’s roster of Apprentice Artists, where he sang Arthur Jones and study covered the role of John Claggart in Billy Budd, and performed the role of Nick Shadow in scenes from Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also performed as a soloist in the Margo Garrett Master Class at Carnegie Hall, as part of Marilyn Horne’s The Song Continues.

Other notable operatic performances include Blitch in Susannah, Sam in Trouble in Tahiti, The Warden in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking and the title role in Mozart’s The Impresario with the Northwestern University Opera Theatre, covering Zuniga in Carmen and singing Micha in The Bartered Bride with Music Academy of the West, Leporello in Don Giovanni with Point Loma Opera Theatre, Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Opera Academy of California, Mars in Orpheus in the Underworld, Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor, and Armed Man in The Magic Flute, all with the University of the Pacific Opera Theatre.

On the concert stage Mr. Pickell has sung the bass soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, the featured soloist in Dougherty’s 3 Folk Songs with the Music Academy of the West, Handel’s Brocke’s Passion and Britten’s St. Cecelia at the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a winner of the 2016 & 2017 MONC Western Region San Diego district, the recipient of an encouragement award from the 2015 MONC Central Regional finals, a 2014 Ryan Opera Center finalist, the winner of the Anne Ferraro Stone Memorial Award from the Bel Canto Foundation, and the recipient of scholarships for excellence in vocal performance from Northwestern University and the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a recent graduate of the Masters in Vocal Performance at Northwestern University. He received his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from University of the Pacific.

Emily Blair^
Sandman

American soprano, Emily Blair, has performed throughout North America and Europe. She is a graduate of Mannes College The New School for Music in New York City with a master’s degree in Vocal Performance, under the tutelage of Professor Amy Burton.

In 2017, Emily was named Semi-Finalist in both the Young Patronesses of Opera Competition and the Opera Birmingham Competition. She is also honored to be returning to Portland to sing Angelica in Handel’s Orlando with Ping and Woof Opera later this season.

In 2016, Miss Blair joined Portland Opera singing The Mother in Hansel and Gretel in their outreach program. She also joined the CoOperative program as a Fellow, where she studied with Susan Ashbaker, Gina Lapinski and Nova Thomas

Emily Helenbrook#
Dew Fairy

24-year-old soprano, Emily Helenbrook, has performed several times as a featured soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic under the direction of JoAnn Falletta. Emily performed on From the Top at the Chautauqua Amphitheatre and again as an alumni in Kodak Hall at the Eastman School of Music. She has studied at the Oxford Lieder Festival led by Roger Vignoles, Imogen Cooper, Ann Murray, and Robert Holl.

She received her B.M. in Vocal Performance and B.A. in Political Science at the Eastman School of Music and University of Rochester Dual Degree Program. She has performed with the Eastman Opera Theatre as Suor Genovieffa and Suor Cristina in Suor Angelica and Mese Mariano and as Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro. Last summer, Emily spent the summer as a vocal fellow at the Aspen Opera Center covering the roles of La Bergère and La Chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges. She performed as the soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 and Mozart’s Exultate Jubilate with the Livermore-Amador Symphony in California.

Miss Helenbrook also premiered the song cycle, Tippet Rise Songs by Antón Garcia-Abril at the TippetRise Art Center in Montana with pianist Christopher O’Riley. Emily recently won the Getting to Carnegie Competition which was held at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall. She was then invited to the Water Island Music Festival in the Virgin Islands, where she performed in various concerts at the festival.  Emily performed Adele in Die Fledermaus at the 2018 Opera in the Ozarks summer festival. Emily is pursuing her Master’s of Music in Vocal Performance at the Shepherd School of Music, Rice University with Dr. Stephen King.

David Stern
Chief Conductor

Palm Beach Opera Chief Conductor David Stern’s musical leadership is spread across three continents. He is the founder and director of the Paris-based opera company and period-instrument ensemble, Opera Fuoco, as well as artistic advisor and principal conductor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival and music director of opera at the Crested Butte Music Festival in Colorado.

Stern is known for his extensive range of repertoire. In his time as music director of the Israel and the St. Gallen Opera houses, he championed 18th century opera and eclectic works such as Simone Mayr’s Medea, Berg’s Wozzeck, Britten’s Turn of the Screw and Weill’s Mahagonny. He has premiered four new operas since 2010 – Gil Shohat’s The Child Dreams at the Israel Opera, Nicolas Bacri’s Così fanciulli, commissioned by Opera Fuoco and performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, Ben Moore’s Enemies, A Love Story in Palm Beach and Jan Sandström’s The Rococo Machine in Drottningholm, Sweden in June 2016.

Stern has enjoyed collaborations with many international stage directors. Stern is a frequent guest around the globe with symphonic and chamber orchestras. He is regularly invited to the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Shanghai and Guangzhou Symphonies, the China Philharmonic, the New Russian Symphony, the National Orchestra of Mexico, and has had recent appearances with the Vienna Symphony and the Hong Kong Philharmonic.

Since launching the Aix Festival Academy in 1998, David Stern has been committed to developing young voices. He created Opera Fuoco in 2003 as a platform to train young French singers in repertoire ranging from Monteverdi to John Cage, combining both an opera studio offering regular master classes and an opera company producing and co-producing larger concertante and staged productions. As artistic advisor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival, he involves singers from the Shanghai Conservatory and the Opera Fuoco Studio, and he works regularly with the Young Artist Programs in Palm Beach and Crested Butte, Colorado.

Stern received his Bachelor of Arts from Yale and his Masters of Music from the Juilliard School. He resides in Paris with his wife and two daughters.

Fenlon Lamb
Director

Opera News called Fenlon Lamb “moving and convincing” and Seen and Heard International praised her “well-honed theatrical sensibility.” Ms. Lamb brings these qualities of experience and perspective as an outstanding singing actress to her work as a stage director. Fenlon returns for her fifth season with Palm Beach Opera to direct Tosca. Previous seasons have included a “delightful” Don Pasquale an “opulent” La bohème, and a “madcap” Il barbiere di Siviglia along with several critically acclaimed Young Artist productions. Last season, Fenlon returned to Arizona Opera for the world premiere production of Riders of the Purple Sage. She made her directorial debut in Carmen with Dayton Opera and directed a new production of Tosca for Finger Lakes Opera. Fenlon also conceived and directed a unique operatic installation of Elvis Costello’s The Juliet Letters for Lyric Opera of Kansas City.

Recently, Ms. Lamb made her company debut at Opera Santa Barbara with a “superb” Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi. Other productions at opera houses across the U.S. have included Don Pasquale at the Crested Butte Music Festival, The Pearl Fishers with Dayton Opera, Die fliegende Holländer for Opera Carolina, Werther with Mobile Opera, and both Rigoletto and Lucia di Lammermoor at Arizona Opera. Fenlon is the Director of Opera and Vocal Programming for the Bar Harbor Music Festival where she has directed Carmen, L’elisir d’amore, Madama Butterfly, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Le nozze di Figaro, La bohème, La cenerentola, and Don Giovanni. She is currently in her third season as Director of Opera at UMKC Conservatory of Music (Cendrillon, Little Women, Die Zauberflöte, The Turn of the Screw, Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi, Hänsel und Gretel). Fenlon is the co-creator and Artistic Director of Papermoon Opera Productions.

Maria Vasilevskaya^
Hansel

Mezzo-soprano Maria Vasilevskaya, comes from the heart of Siberia, city of Novosibirsk, (Russia) and is making her name in the United States as a “strong and resilient” performer (CITY Newspaper). Maria is a recent graduate from Eastman School of Music, where she earned her Master of Music Degree in Performance and Literature (Voice).

In the 2019-2020 season Maria will join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program, where will perform Hansel in Hansel and Gretel and Rosina in The Barber of Seville Family Performance. She will be also covering roles of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Olga in Eugene Onegin.

In summer 2019, Maria will return to Seagle Music Colony as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, where in the summer of 2018 she performed the role of Myrtle Wilson in John Harbison’s opera The Great Gatsby.

Maria was a winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Buffalo/Toronto District and an Encouragement award recipient at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Great Lakes Regional Final.  Ms. Vasilevskaya was also one of the semi-finalists in the 2019 Lotte Lenya Competition. In winter 2018, Maria was the First prize winner of the Friends of Eastman Opera Competition. Same year she won an Eastman School of Music Jury Award for an outstanding jury performance.

Maria’s recent operatic engagements include participation in Eastman Opera Theatre productions as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Mezzo II in Ricky Ian Gordon’s opera The Tibetian Book of The Dead, as well as Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi (EOT Black Box Scene Showcase).

Together with Eastman Philarmonia and Eastman School Symphony orchestra, Maria was featured as a soloist in multiple concert performances, including Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bizet’s Carmen Suite, Songs and Dances of Death by Modest Mussorgsky, Kurt Weill’s Die Sieben Todsünden, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Bach’s Cantatas.

Ms. Vasilevskaya completed her Bachelor’s Degree (summa cum laude) at Komitas State Conservatory of Yerevan, Armenia in 2017, where she was part of an Opera Studio and participated in many scene performances from Il barbiere di Siviglia, Così fan tutte and Werther. In 2016, Maria performed the role of Madame Larina in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at the Armenian National Opera and Ballet Young Artist Program.

 

Patricia Westley^
Gretel

Recently praised by the San Francisco Chronicle as a “hugely impressive artist” with a “deep velvety tone” and “bright streams of bubbly coloratura”, New Zealand-American soprano Patricia Westley is thrilled to join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program for the 2019 – 2020 season, where she will sing Gretel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel.

In the 2018 – 2019 season, Ms. Westley debuted with the Pacific Symphony singing La bergère Louis XV, Une pastourelle, La chauve-souris and La chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, and the Oakland Symphony as the soprano soloist in Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem. Most recently, she premiered the role of Selena in Jake Heggie’s If I Were You with the Merola Opera Program.

Additional operatic credits include: Elisa (Mozart’s Il re pastore) with the Merola Opera Program, Musetta  (La Bohème), Despina (Così fan Tutte), and Hodel (Fiddler on the Roof) with Shreveport Opera, Adele (Die Fledermaus) with Pocket Opera, and Zerlina (Don Giovanni) with the OK Mozart International Music Festival.

Currently Ms. Westley can be heard on Spotify as Yum-Yum in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado, recently produced by Lamplighters Music Theatre. Additional recordings of Elsie in The Yeomen of the Guard, and Casilda in The Gondoliers will be released in the coming months.

Ms. Westley is a two time participant in the prestigious Merola Opera Program, a former Resident Artist with Shreveport Opera, and a proud alumna of the University of Oklahoma and Carnegie Mellon University.

Cara Collins^
The Mother/The Witch

Praised for the “sweet and seductive” tones of her voice, mezzo-soprano Cara Collins is establishing herself through rich singing and dynamic acting. Collins most recently performed the title role of the shapeshifting devil Brittomara in Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s World Premiere of If I Were You at the prestigious Merola Opera Program, and is scheduled to perform in Amarillo Opera’s performance of Die Fledermaus as Prince Orlofsky. Previously, she performed Third Lady in The Magic Flute as a Sarasota Opera Apprentice Artist, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti at Opera on the James as a Tyler Young Artist, and at Opera North as a Resident Artist, noticeably receiving acclaim for her “hilarious romp as Bartolo’s housekeeper Berta” in Il barbiere di Siviglia. Collins received training from SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music, Westchester Summer Vocal Institute, Taos Opera Institute, and Classical Lyric Arts – Italy.

Ted Allen Pickell^
The Father

Hailed for his “powerful voice” (CASA Magazine) and “tremendous” singing (San Diego Reader), bass-baritone Ted Allen Pickell is a distinguished and accomplished young artist on the rise. This 2019/20 season, Mr. Pickell returns to the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program.

In the 2017/18 season, Mr. Pickell made his San Diego Operadebut as Samuel in The Pirates of Penzance, alongside Greer Grimsley as the Pirate King. Additional engagements included a return to the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, and spending the summer of 2018 at the San Francisco Opera’s prestigious Merola Opera Program, where he sang the role of Father Trulove in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also joined the San Diego Opera’s Apprentice Artist training program for singers, where he performed in selections from Faust and Billy Budd.

He was also a San Diego District winner, as well as the Audience Choice Award winner, of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, an award winner in the Loren. L Zachary competition, a semi-finalist in the George London Foundation, and the winner of the “Most Promising Singer” award from the La Jolla Symphony & Chorus vocal competition.

In the 2016/17 season, Mr. Pickell appeared as the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, Der Vater in Hänsel und Gretel with Point Loma Opera Theatre, The Giant in Jack and the Beanstalk and Basilio in The Barber of Seville with Opera Iowa’s young artist outreach ensemble, and joined Des Moines Metro Opera’s roster of Apprentice Artists, where he sang Arthur Jones and study covered the role of John Claggart in Billy Budd, and performed the role of Nick Shadow in scenes from Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also performed as a soloist in the Margo Garrett Master Class at Carnegie Hall, as part of Marilyn Horne’s The Song Continues.

Other notable operatic performances include Blitch in Susannah, Sam in Trouble in Tahiti, The Warden in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking and the title role in Mozart’s The Impresario with the Northwestern University Opera Theatre, covering Zuniga in Carmen and singing Micha in The Bartered Bride with Music Academy of the West, Leporello in Don Giovanni with Point Loma Opera Theatre, Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Opera Academy of California, Mars in Orpheus in the Underworld, Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor, and Armed Man in The Magic Flute, all with the University of the Pacific Opera Theatre.

On the concert stage Mr. Pickell has sung the bass soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, the featured soloist in Dougherty’s 3 Folk Songs with the Music Academy of the West, Handel’s Brocke’s Passion and Britten’s St. Cecelia at the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a winner of the 2016 & 2017 MONC Western Region San Diego district, the recipient of an encouragement award from the 2015 MONC Central Regional finals, a 2014 Ryan Opera Center finalist, the winner of the Anne Ferraro Stone Memorial Award from the Bel Canto Foundation, and the recipient of scholarships for excellence in vocal performance from Northwestern University and the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a recent graduate of the Masters in Vocal Performance at Northwestern University. He received his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from University of the Pacific.

Emily Blair^
Sandman

American soprano, Emily Blair, has performed throughout North America and Europe. She is a graduate of Mannes College The New School for Music in New York City with a master’s degree in Vocal Performance, under the tutelage of Professor Amy Burton.

In 2017, Emily was named Semi-Finalist in both the Young Patronesses of Opera Competition and the Opera Birmingham Competition. She is also honored to be returning to Portland to sing Angelica in Handel’s Orlando with Ping and Woof Opera later this season.

In 2016, Miss Blair joined Portland Opera singing The Mother in Hansel and Gretel in their outreach program. She also joined the CoOperative program as a Fellow, where she studied with Susan Ashbaker, Gina Lapinski and Nova Thomas

Emily Helenbrook#
Dew Fairy

24-year-old soprano, Emily Helenbrook, has performed several times as a featured soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic under the direction of JoAnn Falletta. Emily performed on From the Top at the Chautauqua Amphitheatre and again as an alumni in Kodak Hall at the Eastman School of Music. She has studied at the Oxford Lieder Festival led by Roger Vignoles, Imogen Cooper, Ann Murray, and Robert Holl.

She received her B.M. in Vocal Performance and B.A. in Political Science at the Eastman School of Music and University of Rochester Dual Degree Program. She has performed with the Eastman Opera Theatre as Suor Genovieffa and Suor Cristina in Suor Angelica and Mese Mariano and as Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro. Last summer, Emily spent the summer as a vocal fellow at the Aspen Opera Center covering the roles of La Bergère and La Chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges. She performed as the soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 and Mozart’s Exultate Jubilate with the Livermore-Amador Symphony in California.

Miss Helenbrook also premiered the song cycle, Tippet Rise Songs by Antón Garcia-Abril at the TippetRise Art Center in Montana with pianist Christopher O’Riley. Emily recently won the Getting to Carnegie Competition which was held at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall. She was then invited to the Water Island Music Festival in the Virgin Islands, where she performed in various concerts at the festival.  Emily performed Adele in Die Fledermaus at the 2018 Opera in the Ozarks summer festival. Emily is pursuing her Master’s of Music in Vocal Performance at the Shepherd School of Music, Rice University with Dr. Stephen King.

David Stern
Chief Conductor

Palm Beach Opera Chief Conductor David Stern’s musical leadership is spread across three continents. He is the founder and director of the Paris-based opera company and period-instrument ensemble, Opera Fuoco, as well as artistic advisor and principal conductor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival and music director of opera at the Crested Butte Music Festival in Colorado.

Stern is known for his extensive range of repertoire. In his time as music director of the Israel and the St. Gallen Opera houses, he championed 18th century opera and eclectic works such as Simone Mayr’s Medea, Berg’s Wozzeck, Britten’s Turn of the Screw and Weill’s Mahagonny. He has premiered four new operas since 2010 – Gil Shohat’s The Child Dreams at the Israel Opera, Nicolas Bacri’s Così fanciulli, commissioned by Opera Fuoco and performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, Ben Moore’s Enemies, A Love Story in Palm Beach and Jan Sandström’s The Rococo Machine in Drottningholm, Sweden in June 2016.

Stern has enjoyed collaborations with many international stage directors. Stern is a frequent guest around the globe with symphonic and chamber orchestras. He is regularly invited to the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Shanghai and Guangzhou Symphonies, the China Philharmonic, the New Russian Symphony, the National Orchestra of Mexico, and has had recent appearances with the Vienna Symphony and the Hong Kong Philharmonic.

Since launching the Aix Festival Academy in 1998, David Stern has been committed to developing young voices. He created Opera Fuoco in 2003 as a platform to train young French singers in repertoire ranging from Monteverdi to John Cage, combining both an opera studio offering regular master classes and an opera company producing and co-producing larger concertante and staged productions. As artistic advisor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival, he involves singers from the Shanghai Conservatory and the Opera Fuoco Studio, and he works regularly with the Young Artist Programs in Palm Beach and Crested Butte, Colorado.

Stern received his Bachelor of Arts from Yale and his Masters of Music from the Juilliard School. He resides in Paris with his wife and two daughters.

Fenlon Lamb
Director

Opera News called Fenlon Lamb “moving and convincing” and Seen and Heard International praised her “well-honed theatrical sensibility.” Ms. Lamb brings these qualities of experience and perspective as an outstanding singing actress to her work as a stage director. Fenlon returns for her fifth season with Palm Beach Opera to direct Tosca. Previous seasons have included a “delightful” Don Pasquale an “opulent” La bohème, and a “madcap” Il barbiere di Siviglia along with several critically acclaimed Young Artist productions. Last season, Fenlon returned to Arizona Opera for the world premiere production of Riders of the Purple Sage. She made her directorial debut in Carmen with Dayton Opera and directed a new production of Tosca for Finger Lakes Opera. Fenlon also conceived and directed a unique operatic installation of Elvis Costello’s The Juliet Letters for Lyric Opera of Kansas City.

Recently, Ms. Lamb made her company debut at Opera Santa Barbara with a “superb” Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi. Other productions at opera houses across the U.S. have included Don Pasquale at the Crested Butte Music Festival, The Pearl Fishers with Dayton Opera, Die fliegende Holländer for Opera Carolina, Werther with Mobile Opera, and both Rigoletto and Lucia di Lammermoor at Arizona Opera. Fenlon is the Director of Opera and Vocal Programming for the Bar Harbor Music Festival where she has directed Carmen, L’elisir d’amore, Madama Butterfly, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Le nozze di Figaro, La bohème, La cenerentola, and Don Giovanni. She is currently in her third season as Director of Opera at UMKC Conservatory of Music (Cendrillon, Little Women, Die Zauberflöte, The Turn of the Screw, Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi, Hänsel und Gretel). Fenlon is the co-creator and Artistic Director of Papermoon Opera Productions.

Maria Vasilevskaya^
Hansel

Mezzo-soprano Maria Vasilevskaya, comes from the heart of Siberia, city of Novosibirsk, (Russia) and is making her name in the United States as a “strong and resilient” performer (CITY Newspaper). Maria is a recent graduate from Eastman School of Music, where she earned her Master of Music Degree in Performance and Literature (Voice).

In the 2019-2020 season Maria will join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program, where will perform Hansel in Hansel and Gretel and Rosina in The Barber of Seville Family Performance. She will be also covering roles of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Olga in Eugene Onegin.

In summer 2019, Maria will return to Seagle Music Colony as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, where in the summer of 2018 she performed the role of Myrtle Wilson in John Harbison’s opera The Great Gatsby.

Maria was a winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Buffalo/Toronto District and an Encouragement award recipient at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Great Lakes Regional Final.  Ms. Vasilevskaya was also one of the semi-finalists in the 2019 Lotte Lenya Competition. In winter 2018, Maria was the First prize winner of the Friends of Eastman Opera Competition. Same year she won an Eastman School of Music Jury Award for an outstanding jury performance.

Maria’s recent operatic engagements include participation in Eastman Opera Theatre productions as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Mezzo II in Ricky Ian Gordon’s opera The Tibetian Book of The Dead, as well as Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi (EOT Black Box Scene Showcase).

Together with Eastman Philarmonia and Eastman School Symphony orchestra, Maria was featured as a soloist in multiple concert performances, including Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bizet’s Carmen Suite, Songs and Dances of Death by Modest Mussorgsky, Kurt Weill’s Die Sieben Todsünden, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Bach’s Cantatas.

Ms. Vasilevskaya completed her Bachelor’s Degree (summa cum laude) at Komitas State Conservatory of Yerevan, Armenia in 2017, where she was part of an Opera Studio and participated in many scene performances from Il barbiere di Siviglia, Così fan tutte and Werther. In 2016, Maria performed the role of Madame Larina in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at the Armenian National Opera and Ballet Young Artist Program.

 

Patricia Westley^
Gretel

Recently praised by the San Francisco Chronicle as a “hugely impressive artist” with a “deep velvety tone” and “bright streams of bubbly coloratura”, New Zealand-American soprano Patricia Westley is thrilled to join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program for the 2019 – 2020 season, where she will sing Gretel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel.

In the 2018 – 2019 season, Ms. Westley debuted with the Pacific Symphony singing La bergère Louis XV, Une pastourelle, La chauve-souris and La chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, and the Oakland Symphony as the soprano soloist in Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem. Most recently, she premiered the role of Selena in Jake Heggie’s If I Were You with the Merola Opera Program.

Additional operatic credits include: Elisa (Mozart’s Il re pastore) with the Merola Opera Program, Musetta  (La Bohème), Despina (Così fan Tutte), and Hodel (Fiddler on the Roof) with Shreveport Opera, Adele (Die Fledermaus) with Pocket Opera, and Zerlina (Don Giovanni) with the OK Mozart International Music Festival.

Currently Ms. Westley can be heard on Spotify as Yum-Yum in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado, recently produced by Lamplighters Music Theatre. Additional recordings of Elsie in The Yeomen of the Guard, and Casilda in The Gondoliers will be released in the coming months.

Ms. Westley is a two time participant in the prestigious Merola Opera Program, a former Resident Artist with Shreveport Opera, and a proud alumna of the University of Oklahoma and Carnegie Mellon University.

Cara Collins^
The Mother/The Witch

Praised for the “sweet and seductive” tones of her voice, mezzo-soprano Cara Collins is establishing herself through rich singing and dynamic acting. Collins most recently performed the title role of the shapeshifting devil Brittomara in Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s World Premiere of If I Were You at the prestigious Merola Opera Program, and is scheduled to perform in Amarillo Opera’s performance of Die Fledermaus as Prince Orlofsky. Previously, she performed Third Lady in The Magic Flute as a Sarasota Opera Apprentice Artist, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti at Opera on the James as a Tyler Young Artist, and at Opera North as a Resident Artist, noticeably receiving acclaim for her “hilarious romp as Bartolo’s housekeeper Berta” in Il barbiere di Siviglia. Collins received training from SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music, Westchester Summer Vocal Institute, Taos Opera Institute, and Classical Lyric Arts – Italy.

Ted Allen Pickell^
The Father

Hailed for his “powerful voice” (CASA Magazine) and “tremendous” singing (San Diego Reader), bass-baritone Ted Allen Pickell is a distinguished and accomplished young artist on the rise. This 2019/20 season, Mr. Pickell returns to the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program.

In the 2017/18 season, Mr. Pickell made his San Diego Operadebut as Samuel in The Pirates of Penzance, alongside Greer Grimsley as the Pirate King. Additional engagements included a return to the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, and spending the summer of 2018 at the San Francisco Opera’s prestigious Merola Opera Program, where he sang the role of Father Trulove in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also joined the San Diego Opera’s Apprentice Artist training program for singers, where he performed in selections from Faust and Billy Budd.

He was also a San Diego District winner, as well as the Audience Choice Award winner, of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, an award winner in the Loren. L Zachary competition, a semi-finalist in the George London Foundation, and the winner of the “Most Promising Singer” award from the La Jolla Symphony & Chorus vocal competition.

In the 2016/17 season, Mr. Pickell appeared as the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, Der Vater in Hänsel und Gretel with Point Loma Opera Theatre, The Giant in Jack and the Beanstalk and Basilio in The Barber of Seville with Opera Iowa’s young artist outreach ensemble, and joined Des Moines Metro Opera’s roster of Apprentice Artists, where he sang Arthur Jones and study covered the role of John Claggart in Billy Budd, and performed the role of Nick Shadow in scenes from Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also performed as a soloist in the Margo Garrett Master Class at Carnegie Hall, as part of Marilyn Horne’s The Song Continues.

Other notable operatic performances include Blitch in Susannah, Sam in Trouble in Tahiti, The Warden in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking and the title role in Mozart’s The Impresario with the Northwestern University Opera Theatre, covering Zuniga in Carmen and singing Micha in The Bartered Bride with Music Academy of the West, Leporello in Don Giovanni with Point Loma Opera Theatre, Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Opera Academy of California, Mars in Orpheus in the Underworld, Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor, and Armed Man in The Magic Flute, all with the University of the Pacific Opera Theatre.

On the concert stage Mr. Pickell has sung the bass soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, the featured soloist in Dougherty’s 3 Folk Songs with the Music Academy of the West, Handel’s Brocke’s Passion and Britten’s St. Cecelia at the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a winner of the 2016 & 2017 MONC Western Region San Diego district, the recipient of an encouragement award from the 2015 MONC Central Regional finals, a 2014 Ryan Opera Center finalist, the winner of the Anne Ferraro Stone Memorial Award from the Bel Canto Foundation, and the recipient of scholarships for excellence in vocal performance from Northwestern University and the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a recent graduate of the Masters in Vocal Performance at Northwestern University. He received his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from University of the Pacific.

Emily Blair^
Sandman

American soprano, Emily Blair, has performed throughout North America and Europe. She is a graduate of Mannes College The New School for Music in New York City with a master’s degree in Vocal Performance, under the tutelage of Professor Amy Burton.

In 2017, Emily was named Semi-Finalist in both the Young Patronesses of Opera Competition and the Opera Birmingham Competition. She is also honored to be returning to Portland to sing Angelica in Handel’s Orlando with Ping and Woof Opera later this season.

In 2016, Miss Blair joined Portland Opera singing The Mother in Hansel and Gretel in their outreach program. She also joined the CoOperative program as a Fellow, where she studied with Susan Ashbaker, Gina Lapinski and Nova Thomas

Emily Helenbrook#
Dew Fairy

24-year-old soprano, Emily Helenbrook, has performed several times as a featured soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic under the direction of JoAnn Falletta. Emily performed on From the Top at the Chautauqua Amphitheatre and again as an alumni in Kodak Hall at the Eastman School of Music. She has studied at the Oxford Lieder Festival led by Roger Vignoles, Imogen Cooper, Ann Murray, and Robert Holl.

She received her B.M. in Vocal Performance and B.A. in Political Science at the Eastman School of Music and University of Rochester Dual Degree Program. She has performed with the Eastman Opera Theatre as Suor Genovieffa and Suor Cristina in Suor Angelica and Mese Mariano and as Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro. Last summer, Emily spent the summer as a vocal fellow at the Aspen Opera Center covering the roles of La Bergère and La Chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges. She performed as the soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 and Mozart’s Exultate Jubilate with the Livermore-Amador Symphony in California.

Miss Helenbrook also premiered the song cycle, Tippet Rise Songs by Antón Garcia-Abril at the TippetRise Art Center in Montana with pianist Christopher O’Riley. Emily recently won the Getting to Carnegie Competition which was held at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall. She was then invited to the Water Island Music Festival in the Virgin Islands, where she performed in various concerts at the festival.  Emily performed Adele in Die Fledermaus at the 2018 Opera in the Ozarks summer festival. Emily is pursuing her Master’s of Music in Vocal Performance at the Shepherd School of Music, Rice University with Dr. Stephen King.

David Stern
Chief Conductor

Palm Beach Opera Chief Conductor David Stern’s musical leadership is spread across three continents. He is the founder and director of the Paris-based opera company and period-instrument ensemble, Opera Fuoco, as well as artistic advisor and principal conductor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival and music director of opera at the Crested Butte Music Festival in Colorado.

Stern is known for his extensive range of repertoire. In his time as music director of the Israel and the St. Gallen Opera houses, he championed 18th century opera and eclectic works such as Simone Mayr’s Medea, Berg’s Wozzeck, Britten’s Turn of the Screw and Weill’s Mahagonny. He has premiered four new operas since 2010 – Gil Shohat’s The Child Dreams at the Israel Opera, Nicolas Bacri’s Così fanciulli, commissioned by Opera Fuoco and performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, Ben Moore’s Enemies, A Love Story in Palm Beach and Jan Sandström’s The Rococo Machine in Drottningholm, Sweden in June 2016.

Stern has enjoyed collaborations with many international stage directors. Stern is a frequent guest around the globe with symphonic and chamber orchestras. He is regularly invited to the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Shanghai and Guangzhou Symphonies, the China Philharmonic, the New Russian Symphony, the National Orchestra of Mexico, and has had recent appearances with the Vienna Symphony and the Hong Kong Philharmonic.

Since launching the Aix Festival Academy in 1998, David Stern has been committed to developing young voices. He created Opera Fuoco in 2003 as a platform to train young French singers in repertoire ranging from Monteverdi to John Cage, combining both an opera studio offering regular master classes and an opera company producing and co-producing larger concertante and staged productions. As artistic advisor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival, he involves singers from the Shanghai Conservatory and the Opera Fuoco Studio, and he works regularly with the Young Artist Programs in Palm Beach and Crested Butte, Colorado.

Stern received his Bachelor of Arts from Yale and his Masters of Music from the Juilliard School. He resides in Paris with his wife and two daughters.

Fenlon Lamb
Director

Opera News called Fenlon Lamb “moving and convincing” and Seen and Heard International praised her “well-honed theatrical sensibility.” Ms. Lamb brings these qualities of experience and perspective as an outstanding singing actress to her work as a stage director. Fenlon returns for her fifth season with Palm Beach Opera to direct Tosca. Previous seasons have included a “delightful” Don Pasquale an “opulent” La bohème, and a “madcap” Il barbiere di Siviglia along with several critically acclaimed Young Artist productions. Last season, Fenlon returned to Arizona Opera for the world premiere production of Riders of the Purple Sage. She made her directorial debut in Carmen with Dayton Opera and directed a new production of Tosca for Finger Lakes Opera. Fenlon also conceived and directed a unique operatic installation of Elvis Costello’s The Juliet Letters for Lyric Opera of Kansas City.

Recently, Ms. Lamb made her company debut at Opera Santa Barbara with a “superb” Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi. Other productions at opera houses across the U.S. have included Don Pasquale at the Crested Butte Music Festival, The Pearl Fishers with Dayton Opera, Die fliegende Holländer for Opera Carolina, Werther with Mobile Opera, and both Rigoletto and Lucia di Lammermoor at Arizona Opera. Fenlon is the Director of Opera and Vocal Programming for the Bar Harbor Music Festival where she has directed Carmen, L’elisir d’amore, Madama Butterfly, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Le nozze di Figaro, La bohème, La cenerentola, and Don Giovanni. She is currently in her third season as Director of Opera at UMKC Conservatory of Music (Cendrillon, Little Women, Die Zauberflöte, The Turn of the Screw, Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi, Hänsel und Gretel). Fenlon is the co-creator and Artistic Director of Papermoon Opera Productions.

Maria Vasilevskaya^
Hansel

Mezzo-soprano Maria Vasilevskaya, comes from the heart of Siberia, city of Novosibirsk, (Russia) and is making her name in the United States as a “strong and resilient” performer (CITY Newspaper). Maria is a recent graduate from Eastman School of Music, where she earned her Master of Music Degree in Performance and Literature (Voice).

In the 2019-2020 season Maria will join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program, where will perform Hansel in Hansel and Gretel and Rosina in The Barber of Seville Family Performance. She will be also covering roles of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Olga in Eugene Onegin.

In summer 2019, Maria will return to Seagle Music Colony as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, where in the summer of 2018 she performed the role of Myrtle Wilson in John Harbison’s opera The Great Gatsby.

Maria was a winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Buffalo/Toronto District and an Encouragement award recipient at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Great Lakes Regional Final.  Ms. Vasilevskaya was also one of the semi-finalists in the 2019 Lotte Lenya Competition. In winter 2018, Maria was the First prize winner of the Friends of Eastman Opera Competition. Same year she won an Eastman School of Music Jury Award for an outstanding jury performance.

Maria’s recent operatic engagements include participation in Eastman Opera Theatre productions as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Mezzo II in Ricky Ian Gordon’s opera The Tibetian Book of The Dead, as well as Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi (EOT Black Box Scene Showcase).

Together with Eastman Philarmonia and Eastman School Symphony orchestra, Maria was featured as a soloist in multiple concert performances, including Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bizet’s Carmen Suite, Songs and Dances of Death by Modest Mussorgsky, Kurt Weill’s Die Sieben Todsünden, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Bach’s Cantatas.

Ms. Vasilevskaya completed her Bachelor’s Degree (summa cum laude) at Komitas State Conservatory of Yerevan, Armenia in 2017, where she was part of an Opera Studio and participated in many scene performances from Il barbiere di Siviglia, Così fan tutte and Werther. In 2016, Maria performed the role of Madame Larina in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at the Armenian National Opera and Ballet Young Artist Program.

 

Patricia Westley^
Gretel

Recently praised by the San Francisco Chronicle as a “hugely impressive artist” with a “deep velvety tone” and “bright streams of bubbly coloratura”, New Zealand-American soprano Patricia Westley is thrilled to join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program for the 2019 – 2020 season, where she will sing Gretel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel.

In the 2018 – 2019 season, Ms. Westley debuted with the Pacific Symphony singing La bergère Louis XV, Une pastourelle, La chauve-souris and La chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, and the Oakland Symphony as the soprano soloist in Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem. Most recently, she premiered the role of Selena in Jake Heggie’s If I Were You with the Merola Opera Program.

Additional operatic credits include: Elisa (Mozart’s Il re pastore) with the Merola Opera Program, Musetta  (La Bohème), Despina (Così fan Tutte), and Hodel (Fiddler on the Roof) with Shreveport Opera, Adele (Die Fledermaus) with Pocket Opera, and Zerlina (Don Giovanni) with the OK Mozart International Music Festival.

Currently Ms. Westley can be heard on Spotify as Yum-Yum in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado, recently produced by Lamplighters Music Theatre. Additional recordings of Elsie in The Yeomen of the Guard, and Casilda in The Gondoliers will be released in the coming months.

Ms. Westley is a two time participant in the prestigious Merola Opera Program, a former Resident Artist with Shreveport Opera, and a proud alumna of the University of Oklahoma and Carnegie Mellon University.

Cara Collins^
The Mother/The Witch

Praised for the “sweet and seductive” tones of her voice, mezzo-soprano Cara Collins is establishing herself through rich singing and dynamic acting. Collins most recently performed the title role of the shapeshifting devil Brittomara in Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s World Premiere of If I Were You at the prestigious Merola Opera Program, and is scheduled to perform in Amarillo Opera’s performance of Die Fledermaus as Prince Orlofsky. Previously, she performed Third Lady in The Magic Flute as a Sarasota Opera Apprentice Artist, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti at Opera on the James as a Tyler Young Artist, and at Opera North as a Resident Artist, noticeably receiving acclaim for her “hilarious romp as Bartolo’s housekeeper Berta” in Il barbiere di Siviglia. Collins received training from SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music, Westchester Summer Vocal Institute, Taos Opera Institute, and Classical Lyric Arts – Italy.

Ted Allen Pickell^
The Father

Hailed for his “powerful voice” (CASA Magazine) and “tremendous” singing (San Diego Reader), bass-baritone Ted Allen Pickell is a distinguished and accomplished young artist on the rise. This 2019/20 season, Mr. Pickell returns to the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program.

In the 2017/18 season, Mr. Pickell made his San Diego Operadebut as Samuel in The Pirates of Penzance, alongside Greer Grimsley as the Pirate King. Additional engagements included a return to the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, and spending the summer of 2018 at the San Francisco Opera’s prestigious Merola Opera Program, where he sang the role of Father Trulove in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also joined the San Diego Opera’s Apprentice Artist training program for singers, where he performed in selections from Faust and Billy Budd.

He was also a San Diego District winner, as well as the Audience Choice Award winner, of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, an award winner in the Loren. L Zachary competition, a semi-finalist in the George London Foundation, and the winner of the “Most Promising Singer” award from the La Jolla Symphony & Chorus vocal competition.

In the 2016/17 season, Mr. Pickell appeared as the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, Der Vater in Hänsel und Gretel with Point Loma Opera Theatre, The Giant in Jack and the Beanstalk and Basilio in The Barber of Seville with Opera Iowa’s young artist outreach ensemble, and joined Des Moines Metro Opera’s roster of Apprentice Artists, where he sang Arthur Jones and study covered the role of John Claggart in Billy Budd, and performed the role of Nick Shadow in scenes from Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also performed as a soloist in the Margo Garrett Master Class at Carnegie Hall, as part of Marilyn Horne’s The Song Continues.

Other notable operatic performances include Blitch in Susannah, Sam in Trouble in Tahiti, The Warden in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking and the title role in Mozart’s The Impresario with the Northwestern University Opera Theatre, covering Zuniga in Carmen and singing Micha in The Bartered Bride with Music Academy of the West, Leporello in Don Giovanni with Point Loma Opera Theatre, Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Opera Academy of California, Mars in Orpheus in the Underworld, Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor, and Armed Man in The Magic Flute, all with the University of the Pacific Opera Theatre.

On the concert stage Mr. Pickell has sung the bass soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, the featured soloist in Dougherty’s 3 Folk Songs with the Music Academy of the West, Handel’s Brocke’s Passion and Britten’s St. Cecelia at the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a winner of the 2016 & 2017 MONC Western Region San Diego district, the recipient of an encouragement award from the 2015 MONC Central Regional finals, a 2014 Ryan Opera Center finalist, the winner of the Anne Ferraro Stone Memorial Award from the Bel Canto Foundation, and the recipient of scholarships for excellence in vocal performance from Northwestern University and the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a recent graduate of the Masters in Vocal Performance at Northwestern University. He received his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from University of the Pacific.

Emily Blair^
Sandman

American soprano, Emily Blair, has performed throughout North America and Europe. She is a graduate of Mannes College The New School for Music in New York City with a master’s degree in Vocal Performance, under the tutelage of Professor Amy Burton.

In 2017, Emily was named Semi-Finalist in both the Young Patronesses of Opera Competition and the Opera Birmingham Competition. She is also honored to be returning to Portland to sing Angelica in Handel’s Orlando with Ping and Woof Opera later this season.

In 2016, Miss Blair joined Portland Opera singing The Mother in Hansel and Gretel in their outreach program. She also joined the CoOperative program as a Fellow, where she studied with Susan Ashbaker, Gina Lapinski and Nova Thomas

Emily Helenbrook#
Dew Fairy

24-year-old soprano, Emily Helenbrook, has performed several times as a featured soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic under the direction of JoAnn Falletta. Emily performed on From the Top at the Chautauqua Amphitheatre and again as an alumni in Kodak Hall at the Eastman School of Music. She has studied at the Oxford Lieder Festival led by Roger Vignoles, Imogen Cooper, Ann Murray, and Robert Holl.

She received her B.M. in Vocal Performance and B.A. in Political Science at the Eastman School of Music and University of Rochester Dual Degree Program. She has performed with the Eastman Opera Theatre as Suor Genovieffa and Suor Cristina in Suor Angelica and Mese Mariano and as Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro. Last summer, Emily spent the summer as a vocal fellow at the Aspen Opera Center covering the roles of La Bergère and La Chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges. She performed as the soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 and Mozart’s Exultate Jubilate with the Livermore-Amador Symphony in California.

Miss Helenbrook also premiered the song cycle, Tippet Rise Songs by Antón Garcia-Abril at the TippetRise Art Center in Montana with pianist Christopher O’Riley. Emily recently won the Getting to Carnegie Competition which was held at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall. She was then invited to the Water Island Music Festival in the Virgin Islands, where she performed in various concerts at the festival.  Emily performed Adele in Die Fledermaus at the 2018 Opera in the Ozarks summer festival. Emily is pursuing her Master’s of Music in Vocal Performance at the Shepherd School of Music, Rice University with Dr. Stephen King.

David Stern
Chief Conductor

Palm Beach Opera Chief Conductor David Stern’s musical leadership is spread across three continents. He is the founder and director of the Paris-based opera company and period-instrument ensemble, Opera Fuoco, as well as artistic advisor and principal conductor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival and music director of opera at the Crested Butte Music Festival in Colorado.

Stern is known for his extensive range of repertoire. In his time as music director of the Israel and the St. Gallen Opera houses, he championed 18th century opera and eclectic works such as Simone Mayr’s Medea, Berg’s Wozzeck, Britten’s Turn of the Screw and Weill’s Mahagonny. He has premiered four new operas since 2010 – Gil Shohat’s The Child Dreams at the Israel Opera, Nicolas Bacri’s Così fanciulli, commissioned by Opera Fuoco and performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, Ben Moore’s Enemies, A Love Story in Palm Beach and Jan Sandström’s The Rococo Machine in Drottningholm, Sweden in June 2016.

Stern has enjoyed collaborations with many international stage directors. Stern is a frequent guest around the globe with symphonic and chamber orchestras. He is regularly invited to the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Shanghai and Guangzhou Symphonies, the China Philharmonic, the New Russian Symphony, the National Orchestra of Mexico, and has had recent appearances with the Vienna Symphony and the Hong Kong Philharmonic.

Since launching the Aix Festival Academy in 1998, David Stern has been committed to developing young voices. He created Opera Fuoco in 2003 as a platform to train young French singers in repertoire ranging from Monteverdi to John Cage, combining both an opera studio offering regular master classes and an opera company producing and co-producing larger concertante and staged productions. As artistic advisor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival, he involves singers from the Shanghai Conservatory and the Opera Fuoco Studio, and he works regularly with the Young Artist Programs in Palm Beach and Crested Butte, Colorado.

Stern received his Bachelor of Arts from Yale and his Masters of Music from the Juilliard School. He resides in Paris with his wife and two daughters.

Fenlon Lamb
Director

Opera News called Fenlon Lamb “moving and convincing” and Seen and Heard International praised her “well-honed theatrical sensibility.” Ms. Lamb brings these qualities of experience and perspective as an outstanding singing actress to her work as a stage director. Fenlon returns for her fifth season with Palm Beach Opera to direct Tosca. Previous seasons have included a “delightful” Don Pasquale an “opulent” La bohème, and a “madcap” Il barbiere di Siviglia along with several critically acclaimed Young Artist productions. Last season, Fenlon returned to Arizona Opera for the world premiere production of Riders of the Purple Sage. She made her directorial debut in Carmen with Dayton Opera and directed a new production of Tosca for Finger Lakes Opera. Fenlon also conceived and directed a unique operatic installation of Elvis Costello’s The Juliet Letters for Lyric Opera of Kansas City.

Recently, Ms. Lamb made her company debut at Opera Santa Barbara with a “superb” Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi. Other productions at opera houses across the U.S. have included Don Pasquale at the Crested Butte Music Festival, The Pearl Fishers with Dayton Opera, Die fliegende Holländer for Opera Carolina, Werther with Mobile Opera, and both Rigoletto and Lucia di Lammermoor at Arizona Opera. Fenlon is the Director of Opera and Vocal Programming for the Bar Harbor Music Festival where she has directed Carmen, L’elisir d’amore, Madama Butterfly, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Le nozze di Figaro, La bohème, La cenerentola, and Don Giovanni. She is currently in her third season as Director of Opera at UMKC Conservatory of Music (Cendrillon, Little Women, Die Zauberflöte, The Turn of the Screw, Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi, Hänsel und Gretel). Fenlon is the co-creator and Artistic Director of Papermoon Opera Productions.

Maria Vasilevskaya^
Hansel

Mezzo-soprano Maria Vasilevskaya, comes from the heart of Siberia, city of Novosibirsk, (Russia) and is making her name in the United States as a “strong and resilient” performer (CITY Newspaper). Maria is a recent graduate from Eastman School of Music, where she earned her Master of Music Degree in Performance and Literature (Voice).

In the 2019-2020 season Maria will join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program, where will perform Hansel in Hansel and Gretel and Rosina in The Barber of Seville Family Performance. She will be also covering roles of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Olga in Eugene Onegin.

In summer 2019, Maria will return to Seagle Music Colony as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, where in the summer of 2018 she performed the role of Myrtle Wilson in John Harbison’s opera The Great Gatsby.

Maria was a winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Buffalo/Toronto District and an Encouragement award recipient at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Great Lakes Regional Final.  Ms. Vasilevskaya was also one of the semi-finalists in the 2019 Lotte Lenya Competition. In winter 2018, Maria was the First prize winner of the Friends of Eastman Opera Competition. Same year she won an Eastman School of Music Jury Award for an outstanding jury performance.

Maria’s recent operatic engagements include participation in Eastman Opera Theatre productions as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Mezzo II in Ricky Ian Gordon’s opera The Tibetian Book of The Dead, as well as Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi (EOT Black Box Scene Showcase).

Together with Eastman Philarmonia and Eastman School Symphony orchestra, Maria was featured as a soloist in multiple concert performances, including Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bizet’s Carmen Suite, Songs and Dances of Death by Modest Mussorgsky, Kurt Weill’s Die Sieben Todsünden, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Bach’s Cantatas.

Ms. Vasilevskaya completed her Bachelor’s Degree (summa cum laude) at Komitas State Conservatory of Yerevan, Armenia in 2017, where she was part of an Opera Studio and participated in many scene performances from Il barbiere di Siviglia, Così fan tutte and Werther. In 2016, Maria performed the role of Madame Larina in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at the Armenian National Opera and Ballet Young Artist Program.

 

Patricia Westley^
Gretel

Recently praised by the San Francisco Chronicle as a “hugely impressive artist” with a “deep velvety tone” and “bright streams of bubbly coloratura”, New Zealand-American soprano Patricia Westley is thrilled to join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program for the 2019 – 2020 season, where she will sing Gretel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel.

In the 2018 – 2019 season, Ms. Westley debuted with the Pacific Symphony singing La bergère Louis XV, Une pastourelle, La chauve-souris and La chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, and the Oakland Symphony as the soprano soloist in Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem. Most recently, she premiered the role of Selena in Jake Heggie’s If I Were You with the Merola Opera Program.

Additional operatic credits include: Elisa (Mozart’s Il re pastore) with the Merola Opera Program, Musetta  (La Bohème), Despina (Così fan Tutte), and Hodel (Fiddler on the Roof) with Shreveport Opera, Adele (Die Fledermaus) with Pocket Opera, and Zerlina (Don Giovanni) with the OK Mozart International Music Festival.

Currently Ms. Westley can be heard on Spotify as Yum-Yum in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado, recently produced by Lamplighters Music Theatre. Additional recordings of Elsie in The Yeomen of the Guard, and Casilda in The Gondoliers will be released in the coming months.

Ms. Westley is a two time participant in the prestigious Merola Opera Program, a former Resident Artist with Shreveport Opera, and a proud alumna of the University of Oklahoma and Carnegie Mellon University.

Cara Collins^
The Mother/The Witch

Praised for the “sweet and seductive” tones of her voice, mezzo-soprano Cara Collins is establishing herself through rich singing and dynamic acting. Collins most recently performed the title role of the shapeshifting devil Brittomara in Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s World Premiere of If I Were You at the prestigious Merola Opera Program, and is scheduled to perform in Amarillo Opera’s performance of Die Fledermaus as Prince Orlofsky. Previously, she performed Third Lady in The Magic Flute as a Sarasota Opera Apprentice Artist, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti at Opera on the James as a Tyler Young Artist, and at Opera North as a Resident Artist, noticeably receiving acclaim for her “hilarious romp as Bartolo’s housekeeper Berta” in Il barbiere di Siviglia. Collins received training from SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music, Westchester Summer Vocal Institute, Taos Opera Institute, and Classical Lyric Arts – Italy.

Ted Allen Pickell^
The Father

Hailed for his “powerful voice” (CASA Magazine) and “tremendous” singing (San Diego Reader), bass-baritone Ted Allen Pickell is a distinguished and accomplished young artist on the rise. This 2019/20 season, Mr. Pickell returns to the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program.

In the 2017/18 season, Mr. Pickell made his San Diego Operadebut as Samuel in The Pirates of Penzance, alongside Greer Grimsley as the Pirate King. Additional engagements included a return to the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, and spending the summer of 2018 at the San Francisco Opera’s prestigious Merola Opera Program, where he sang the role of Father Trulove in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also joined the San Diego Opera’s Apprentice Artist training program for singers, where he performed in selections from Faust and Billy Budd.

He was also a San Diego District winner, as well as the Audience Choice Award winner, of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, an award winner in the Loren. L Zachary competition, a semi-finalist in the George London Foundation, and the winner of the “Most Promising Singer” award from the La Jolla Symphony & Chorus vocal competition.

In the 2016/17 season, Mr. Pickell appeared as the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, Der Vater in Hänsel und Gretel with Point Loma Opera Theatre, The Giant in Jack and the Beanstalk and Basilio in The Barber of Seville with Opera Iowa’s young artist outreach ensemble, and joined Des Moines Metro Opera’s roster of Apprentice Artists, where he sang Arthur Jones and study covered the role of John Claggart in Billy Budd, and performed the role of Nick Shadow in scenes from Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also performed as a soloist in the Margo Garrett Master Class at Carnegie Hall, as part of Marilyn Horne’s The Song Continues.

Other notable operatic performances include Blitch in Susannah, Sam in Trouble in Tahiti, The Warden in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking and the title role in Mozart’s The Impresario with the Northwestern University Opera Theatre, covering Zuniga in Carmen and singing Micha in The Bartered Bride with Music Academy of the West, Leporello in Don Giovanni with Point Loma Opera Theatre, Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Opera Academy of California, Mars in Orpheus in the Underworld, Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor, and Armed Man in The Magic Flute, all with the University of the Pacific Opera Theatre.

On the concert stage Mr. Pickell has sung the bass soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, the featured soloist in Dougherty’s 3 Folk Songs with the Music Academy of the West, Handel’s Brocke’s Passion and Britten’s St. Cecelia at the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a winner of the 2016 & 2017 MONC Western Region San Diego district, the recipient of an encouragement award from the 2015 MONC Central Regional finals, a 2014 Ryan Opera Center finalist, the winner of the Anne Ferraro Stone Memorial Award from the Bel Canto Foundation, and the recipient of scholarships for excellence in vocal performance from Northwestern University and the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a recent graduate of the Masters in Vocal Performance at Northwestern University. He received his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from University of the Pacific.

Emily Blair^
Sandman

American soprano, Emily Blair, has performed throughout North America and Europe. She is a graduate of Mannes College The New School for Music in New York City with a master’s degree in Vocal Performance, under the tutelage of Professor Amy Burton.

In 2017, Emily was named Semi-Finalist in both the Young Patronesses of Opera Competition and the Opera Birmingham Competition. She is also honored to be returning to Portland to sing Angelica in Handel’s Orlando with Ping and Woof Opera later this season.

In 2016, Miss Blair joined Portland Opera singing The Mother in Hansel and Gretel in their outreach program. She also joined the CoOperative program as a Fellow, where she studied with Susan Ashbaker, Gina Lapinski and Nova Thomas

Emily Helenbrook#
Dew Fairy

24-year-old soprano, Emily Helenbrook, has performed several times as a featured soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic under the direction of JoAnn Falletta. Emily performed on From the Top at the Chautauqua Amphitheatre and again as an alumni in Kodak Hall at the Eastman School of Music. She has studied at the Oxford Lieder Festival led by Roger Vignoles, Imogen Cooper, Ann Murray, and Robert Holl.

She received her B.M. in Vocal Performance and B.A. in Political Science at the Eastman School of Music and University of Rochester Dual Degree Program. She has performed with the Eastman Opera Theatre as Suor Genovieffa and Suor Cristina in Suor Angelica and Mese Mariano and as Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro. Last summer, Emily spent the summer as a vocal fellow at the Aspen Opera Center covering the roles of La Bergère and La Chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges. She performed as the soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 and Mozart’s Exultate Jubilate with the Livermore-Amador Symphony in California.

Miss Helenbrook also premiered the song cycle, Tippet Rise Songs by Antón Garcia-Abril at the TippetRise Art Center in Montana with pianist Christopher O’Riley. Emily recently won the Getting to Carnegie Competition which was held at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall. She was then invited to the Water Island Music Festival in the Virgin Islands, where she performed in various concerts at the festival.  Emily performed Adele in Die Fledermaus at the 2018 Opera in the Ozarks summer festival. Emily is pursuing her Master’s of Music in Vocal Performance at the Shepherd School of Music, Rice University with Dr. Stephen King.

David Stern
Chief Conductor

Palm Beach Opera Chief Conductor David Stern’s musical leadership is spread across three continents. He is the founder and director of the Paris-based opera company and period-instrument ensemble, Opera Fuoco, as well as artistic advisor and principal conductor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival and music director of opera at the Crested Butte Music Festival in Colorado.

Stern is known for his extensive range of repertoire. In his time as music director of the Israel and the St. Gallen Opera houses, he championed 18th century opera and eclectic works such as Simone Mayr’s Medea, Berg’s Wozzeck, Britten’s Turn of the Screw and Weill’s Mahagonny. He has premiered four new operas since 2010 – Gil Shohat’s The Child Dreams at the Israel Opera, Nicolas Bacri’s Così fanciulli, commissioned by Opera Fuoco and performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, Ben Moore’s Enemies, A Love Story in Palm Beach and Jan Sandström’s The Rococo Machine in Drottningholm, Sweden in June 2016.

Stern has enjoyed collaborations with many international stage directors. Stern is a frequent guest around the globe with symphonic and chamber orchestras. He is regularly invited to the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, the Shanghai and Guangzhou Symphonies, the China Philharmonic, the New Russian Symphony, the National Orchestra of Mexico, and has had recent appearances with the Vienna Symphony and the Hong Kong Philharmonic.

Since launching the Aix Festival Academy in 1998, David Stern has been committed to developing young voices. He created Opera Fuoco in 2003 as a platform to train young French singers in repertoire ranging from Monteverdi to John Cage, combining both an opera studio offering regular master classes and an opera company producing and co-producing larger concertante and staged productions. As artistic advisor of the Shanghai Baroque Festival, he involves singers from the Shanghai Conservatory and the Opera Fuoco Studio, and he works regularly with the Young Artist Programs in Palm Beach and Crested Butte, Colorado.

Stern received his Bachelor of Arts from Yale and his Masters of Music from the Juilliard School. He resides in Paris with his wife and two daughters.

Fenlon Lamb
Director

Opera News called Fenlon Lamb “moving and convincing” and Seen and Heard International praised her “well-honed theatrical sensibility.” Ms. Lamb brings these qualities of experience and perspective as an outstanding singing actress to her work as a stage director. Fenlon returns for her fifth season with Palm Beach Opera to direct Tosca. Previous seasons have included a “delightful” Don Pasquale an “opulent” La bohème, and a “madcap” Il barbiere di Siviglia along with several critically acclaimed Young Artist productions. Last season, Fenlon returned to Arizona Opera for the world premiere production of Riders of the Purple Sage. She made her directorial debut in Carmen with Dayton Opera and directed a new production of Tosca for Finger Lakes Opera. Fenlon also conceived and directed a unique operatic installation of Elvis Costello’s The Juliet Letters for Lyric Opera of Kansas City.

Recently, Ms. Lamb made her company debut at Opera Santa Barbara with a “superb” Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi. Other productions at opera houses across the U.S. have included Don Pasquale at the Crested Butte Music Festival, The Pearl Fishers with Dayton Opera, Die fliegende Holländer for Opera Carolina, Werther with Mobile Opera, and both Rigoletto and Lucia di Lammermoor at Arizona Opera. Fenlon is the Director of Opera and Vocal Programming for the Bar Harbor Music Festival where she has directed Carmen, L’elisir d’amore, Madama Butterfly, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Le nozze di Figaro, La bohème, La cenerentola, and Don Giovanni. She is currently in her third season as Director of Opera at UMKC Conservatory of Music (Cendrillon, Little Women, Die Zauberflöte, The Turn of the Screw, Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi, Hänsel und Gretel). Fenlon is the co-creator and Artistic Director of Papermoon Opera Productions.

Maria Vasilevskaya^
Hansel

Mezzo-soprano Maria Vasilevskaya, comes from the heart of Siberia, city of Novosibirsk, (Russia) and is making her name in the United States as a “strong and resilient” performer (CITY Newspaper). Maria is a recent graduate from Eastman School of Music, where she earned her Master of Music Degree in Performance and Literature (Voice).

In the 2019-2020 season Maria will join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program, where will perform Hansel in Hansel and Gretel and Rosina in The Barber of Seville Family Performance. She will be also covering roles of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia and Olga in Eugene Onegin.

In summer 2019, Maria will return to Seagle Music Colony as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, where in the summer of 2018 she performed the role of Myrtle Wilson in John Harbison’s opera The Great Gatsby.

Maria was a winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Buffalo/Toronto District and an Encouragement award recipient at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Great Lakes Regional Final.  Ms. Vasilevskaya was also one of the semi-finalists in the 2019 Lotte Lenya Competition. In winter 2018, Maria was the First prize winner of the Friends of Eastman Opera Competition. Same year she won an Eastman School of Music Jury Award for an outstanding jury performance.

Maria’s recent operatic engagements include participation in Eastman Opera Theatre productions as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Mezzo II in Ricky Ian Gordon’s opera The Tibetian Book of The Dead, as well as Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e i Montecchi (EOT Black Box Scene Showcase).

Together with Eastman Philarmonia and Eastman School Symphony orchestra, Maria was featured as a soloist in multiple concert performances, including Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bizet’s Carmen Suite, Songs and Dances of Death by Modest Mussorgsky, Kurt Weill’s Die Sieben Todsünden, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Bach’s Cantatas.

Ms. Vasilevskaya completed her Bachelor’s Degree (summa cum laude) at Komitas State Conservatory of Yerevan, Armenia in 2017, where she was part of an Opera Studio and participated in many scene performances from Il barbiere di Siviglia, Così fan tutte and Werther. In 2016, Maria performed the role of Madame Larina in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at the Armenian National Opera and Ballet Young Artist Program.

 

Patricia Westley^
Gretel

Recently praised by the San Francisco Chronicle as a “hugely impressive artist” with a “deep velvety tone” and “bright streams of bubbly coloratura”, New Zealand-American soprano Patricia Westley is thrilled to join the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program for the 2019 – 2020 season, where she will sing Gretel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel.

In the 2018 – 2019 season, Ms. Westley debuted with the Pacific Symphony singing La bergère Louis XV, Une pastourelle, La chauve-souris and La chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, and the Oakland Symphony as the soprano soloist in Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem. Most recently, she premiered the role of Selena in Jake Heggie’s If I Were You with the Merola Opera Program.

Additional operatic credits include: Elisa (Mozart’s Il re pastore) with the Merola Opera Program, Musetta  (La Bohème), Despina (Così fan Tutte), and Hodel (Fiddler on the Roof) with Shreveport Opera, Adele (Die Fledermaus) with Pocket Opera, and Zerlina (Don Giovanni) with the OK Mozart International Music Festival.

Currently Ms. Westley can be heard on Spotify as Yum-Yum in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado, recently produced by Lamplighters Music Theatre. Additional recordings of Elsie in The Yeomen of the Guard, and Casilda in The Gondoliers will be released in the coming months.

Ms. Westley is a two time participant in the prestigious Merola Opera Program, a former Resident Artist with Shreveport Opera, and a proud alumna of the University of Oklahoma and Carnegie Mellon University.

Cara Collins^
The Mother/The Witch

Praised for the “sweet and seductive” tones of her voice, mezzo-soprano Cara Collins is establishing herself through rich singing and dynamic acting. Collins most recently performed the title role of the shapeshifting devil Brittomara in Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s World Premiere of If I Were You at the prestigious Merola Opera Program, and is scheduled to perform in Amarillo Opera’s performance of Die Fledermaus as Prince Orlofsky. Previously, she performed Third Lady in The Magic Flute as a Sarasota Opera Apprentice Artist, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti at Opera on the James as a Tyler Young Artist, and at Opera North as a Resident Artist, noticeably receiving acclaim for her “hilarious romp as Bartolo’s housekeeper Berta” in Il barbiere di Siviglia. Collins received training from SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music, Westchester Summer Vocal Institute, Taos Opera Institute, and Classical Lyric Arts – Italy.

Ted Allen Pickell^
The Father

Hailed for his “powerful voice” (CASA Magazine) and “tremendous” singing (San Diego Reader), bass-baritone Ted Allen Pickell is a distinguished and accomplished young artist on the rise. This 2019/20 season, Mr. Pickell returns to the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program.

In the 2017/18 season, Mr. Pickell made his San Diego Operadebut as Samuel in The Pirates of Penzance, alongside Greer Grimsley as the Pirate King. Additional engagements included a return to the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, and spending the summer of 2018 at the San Francisco Opera’s prestigious Merola Opera Program, where he sang the role of Father Trulove in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also joined the San Diego Opera’s Apprentice Artist training program for singers, where he performed in selections from Faust and Billy Budd.

He was also a San Diego District winner, as well as the Audience Choice Award winner, of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, an award winner in the Loren. L Zachary competition, a semi-finalist in the George London Foundation, and the winner of the “Most Promising Singer” award from the La Jolla Symphony & Chorus vocal competition.

In the 2016/17 season, Mr. Pickell appeared as the title role in The Mikado with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, Der Vater in Hänsel und Gretel with Point Loma Opera Theatre, The Giant in Jack and the Beanstalk and Basilio in The Barber of Seville with Opera Iowa’s young artist outreach ensemble, and joined Des Moines Metro Opera’s roster of Apprentice Artists, where he sang Arthur Jones and study covered the role of John Claggart in Billy Budd, and performed the role of Nick Shadow in scenes from Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress. Mr. Pickell also performed as a soloist in the Margo Garrett Master Class at Carnegie Hall, as part of Marilyn Horne’s The Song Continues.

Other notable operatic performances include Blitch in Susannah, Sam in Trouble in Tahiti, The Warden in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking and the title role in Mozart’s The Impresario with the Northwestern University Opera Theatre, covering Zuniga in Carmen and singing Micha in The Bartered Bride with Music Academy of the West, Leporello in Don Giovanni with Point Loma Opera Theatre, Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Opera Academy of California, Mars in Orpheus in the Underworld, Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor, and Armed Man in The Magic Flute, all with the University of the Pacific Opera Theatre.

On the concert stage Mr. Pickell has sung the bass soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Northwest Indiana Symphony, the featured soloist in Dougherty’s 3 Folk Songs with the Music Academy of the West, Handel’s Brocke’s Passion and Britten’s St. Cecelia at the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a winner of the 2016 & 2017 MONC Western Region San Diego district, the recipient of an encouragement award from the 2015 MONC Central Regional finals, a 2014 Ryan Opera Center finalist, the winner of the Anne Ferraro Stone Memorial Award from the Bel Canto Foundation, and the recipient of scholarships for excellence in vocal performance from Northwestern University and the University of the Pacific.

Mr. Pickell is a recent graduate of the Masters in Vocal Performance at Northwestern University. He received his Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from University of the Pacific.

Emily Blair^
Sandman

American soprano, Emily Blair, has performed throughout North America and Europe. She is a graduate of Mannes College The New School for Music in New York City with a master’s degree in Vocal Performance, under the tutelage of Professor Amy Burton.

In 2017, Emily was named Semi-Finalist in both the Young Patronesses of Opera Competition and the Opera Birmingham Competition. She is also honored to be returning to Portland to sing Angelica in Handel’s Orlando with Ping and Woof Opera later this season.

In 2016, Miss Blair joined Portland Opera singing The Mother in Hansel and Gretel in their outreach program. She also joined the CoOperative program as a Fellow, where she studied with Susan Ashbaker, Gina Lapinski and Nova Thomas

Emily Helenbrook#
Dew Fairy

24-year-old soprano, Emily Helenbrook, has performed several times as a featured soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic under the direction of JoAnn Falletta. Emily performed on From the Top at the Chautauqua Amphitheatre and again as an alumni in Kodak Hall at the Eastman School of Music. She has studied at the Oxford Lieder Festival led by Roger Vignoles, Imogen Cooper, Ann Murray, and Robert Holl.

She received her B.M. in Vocal Performance and B.A. in Political Science at the Eastman School of Music and University of Rochester Dual Degree Program. She has performed with the Eastman Opera Theatre as Suor Genovieffa and Suor Cristina in Suor Angelica and Mese Mariano and as Barbarina in Le Nozze di Figaro. Last summer, Emily spent the summer as a vocal fellow at the Aspen Opera Center covering the roles of La Bergère and La Chouette in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges. She performed as the soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 and Mozart’s Exultate Jubilate with the Livermore-Amador Symphony in California.

Miss Helenbrook also premiered the song cycle, Tippet Rise Songs by Antón Garcia-Abril at the TippetRise Art Center in Montana with pianist Christopher O’Riley. Emily recently won the Getting to Carnegie Competition which was held at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall. She was then invited to the Water Island Music Festival in the Virgin Islands, where she performed in various concerts at the festival.  Emily performed Adele in Die Fledermaus at the 2018 Opera in the Ozarks summer festival. Emily is pursuing her Master’s of Music in Vocal Performance at the Shepherd School of Music, Rice University with Dr. Stephen King.

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