The Barber of Seville
Gioachino Antonio Rossini (February 29, 1792 – November 13, 1868) was an Italian composer who wrote 39 operas as well as sacred music, chamber music, songs, and some instrumental and piano pieces. Rossini's best-known operas include the Italian comedies The Barber of Seville and La Cenerentola, and the French-language epics Moïse et Pharaon and William Tell. A tendency for inspired, song-like melodies is evident throughout Rossini's scores, which led to the nickname "The Italian Mozart." Until his retirement in 1829, Rossini had been the most popular opera composer in history.
|January 27, February 3 & 4
“Impressive coloratura soprano” (The New York Times) Elizabeth Sutphen has garnered praise for her sparkling voice and her ability to “soar deftly through stratospheric trills and arpeggios” (Financial Times). Praised as “Exquisite” by The Guardian, Sutphen looks forward to the 2022/23 Season, which includes a return to the role of Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier at the Salzburger Landestheater, and a company debut with Detroit Opera as Atalante in Handel’s Xerxes. The 2021/22 Season included Sutphen's Palm Beach Opera debut as Valencienne in The Merry Widow and her debut with the Atlanta Opera as Chrisann Brennan in The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs by Mason Bates and Mark Campbell. Sutphen has performed leading roles in houses around the world, including Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier with the Glyndebourne Festival, Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos with both the Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse and Oper Frankfurt, and Faustina in Tarik O’Regan and John Caird’s The Phoenix with the Houston Grand Opera. Most recently, Sutphen was praised by Schmopera for her “impeccable comedic delivery” and “ability to sing flawlessly…with dexterity and finesse” for her Des Moines Metro Opera debut as the delightfully zany La Folie in Rameau’s Platée.
The beginning of Sutphen’s 2019/20 Season saw Sutphen's debuts as Gilda in Rigoletto with the Houston Grand Opera, as the Rossini heroine Lisetta in La gazzetta with Oper Frankfurt, and as the soprano soloist in Bach’s Weihnachts-Oratorium with the Tiroler Festspiele. Sutphen’s 2019/20 Season was also slated to include her debut as the charming Philine in Thomas’s Mignon with Oper Frankfurt, her debut with the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Singer 1/Witness 1/Woman 1 in George Benjamin’s Lessons in Love and Violence, her debut with The Dallas Opera as il voce dal cielo in Don Carlo under the baton of Maestro Emmanuel Villaume and directed by the late, unparalleled Edward Berkeley, and the cover of Cleopatra in Rossini’s Giulio Cesare with The Metropolitan Opera, all sadly cancelled due to COVID-19.
Just before the pandemic began in 2020, Sutphen had the distinct honor of presenting a very special solo recital with the Dallas Opera’s Scultping Sounds – joined by her dear friend and collaborator John Arida. Sutphen has enjoyed many memorable moments on the concert and orchestral stage, including her debut with the Orchestre Nationale de Lille in a several week run of an all-Bernstein program, her debut with the Vienna Boy Choir singing as the soprano soloist in Carmina Austriaca, her debut with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra singing Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater, and her debut with The Saint Louis Symphony as the featured soloist in their 2019 New Year’s Gala. Sutphen was slated to return to The Saint Louis Symphony to perform the role of The Blessed Virgin in Honegger’s Jeanne d’Arc au Bûcher in their 2020 Season, but the concert was cancelled due to COVID-19. Sutphen joined Juilliard 415 singing Telemann’s Die Tageszeiten under the baton of Nicholas McGegan before touring with the ensemble to Vancouver and Berkeley, California, where they performed the piece with the Philharmonia Baroque. Sutphen has performed Queen of the Night in concert with The Albany Symphony and New York’s Little Orchestra Society. Sutphen made her Messiah debut with the Milwaukee Symphony in 2015, and looks forward to reprising its soprano solos in 2021 with the San Antonio Symphony.
Sutphen joined the renowned International Opern Studio with Oper Frankfurt in 2016 where she was lauded as “astonishing and mature member” (Frankfurter Neue Presse), and has enjoyed returning to their roster as a guest every season since her graduation from the studio in 2018. Roles at Oper Frankfurt have included both Romilda and Atalanta in Handel’s Xerxes (which can be seen on DVD and Blu-ray through Unitel), Tiny Bunyan in Britten’s Paul Bunyan under the direction of Brigitte Fassbender, Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos, The Blessed Virgin in Honegger’s Jean D’arc au Bûcher, Lisetta in Rossini’s La Gazzetta, and Lisa in La Sonnambula.
On screen, Sutphen was asked to be one of the inaugural video creators during the pandemic for The Dallas Opera’s TDO Network. Sutphen's opera themed comedy show, which she created, wrote, directed and starred in, “Late Nite With Liz,” included interviews, monologues, and skits that went viral – and which were the most-viewed content on the TDO Network.
Sutphen is a graduate of The Juilliard School (Bachelor of Music, 2012, Master of Music, 2014) as well as a proud alumna of The Opera Theatre of Saint Louis (Gerdine Young Artist 2014, 2015/ Richard Gaddess Festival Artist 2016), The Internationale Meistersinger Akadamie (2015), and the Solti Accademia (2016). Sutphen has enjoyed successes on many competition stages including receiving a Career Development Grant from the Sullivan Foundation, 2nd Prize in the Gerda Lissner International Vocal Competition, an Encouragement Award from the George London Foundation, and 2nd Prize from the FAVA Grand Concours Competition. Sutphen was a Finalist in The Dallas Opera Competition, and a semi-finalist at Operalia in Lisbon, Portugal. Sutphen represented Oper Frankfurt in the prestigious Stella Maris Competition where she won Second Place, and was awarded the Novick Career Grant from the Juilliard School.
Praised for her "expressive, lovingly shaded soprano" and "dazzling coloratura and lithe stage presence [used] to piquant comedic effect" (Opera News), French-American soprano Véronique Filloux spends the 2022/23 Season with Arizona Opera, making several exciting role debuts including Zerbinetta (Ariadne auf Naxos), Liesl (The Sound of Music), Pamina (The Magic Flute), and Agatha (Frankenstein - workshop). Filloux also joins Washington Concert Opera as Miss Ellen (Lakmé) and Pacific Opera Project as Martesia in the US premiere of Vivaldi's Ercole su'l Termodonte. Filloux is delighted to spend her summer with Wolf Trap Opera as a Filene Artist, singing Iris (Semele), singing on Steve Blier's recital "Night and Day, USA," and giving a Parlor Recital. In the 2023/24 Season, Filloux looks forward to debuts with companies including Berkshire Opera Festival as Musetta (La Bohème) and Livermore Valley Opera as Curley’s Wife (Of Mice and Men), as well as two returns to Arizona Opera as Rosina (The Barber of Seville) and Zerlina (Don Giovanni).
Filloux has spent the past two summers with Des Moines Metro Opera, singing Peaseblossom/Tytania (cover) in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and L'Amour/La Folie (cover) in Rameau's Platée. As a Pittsburgh Opera Resident Artist for the 2020/21 and 2021/22 Seasons, her roles included Papagena (The Magic Flute), The Girl/Luna (The Rose Elf, staged premiere), Frasquita (Carmen), Despina (Così fan tutte), Chan Parker (Charlie Parker’s Yardbird), and the title role in Handel’s Semele. Filloux also performed recitals with Salt Marsh Opera and Musicians Club of Women and was scheduled to debut with the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra in Beethoven's Mass in C.
Active in competition, Filloux has won 1st Place in the 2022 Zenith Opera Competition, the 2023 Dorothy Lincoln-Smith Competition- Arizona, the 2022 Mildred Miller Vocal Competition, and the 2021 Camille Coloratura Awards. Filloux is a prize winner in the 2022 Young Patronesses of the Opera Competition, 2023 Dorothy Lincoln-Smith Competition- National Finals, 2022 Annapolis Opera Competition, 2021 Orpheus Vocal Competition 2021 Dorothy Lincoln-Smith Competition- DC, and the 2020 Musicians Club of Women Competition, as well as a Pittsburgh District Winner of the 2020 Laffont Competition.
In past seasons, Filloux has been proud to work with opera companies including Opera Lafayette, Chicago Opera Theater, Salt Marsh Opera, Opera NEO, and Central City Opera, with whom she spent two summers, singing Papagena (The Magic Flute) and the title role in Debussy’s La damoiselle élue, earning the 2019 Opera Guild Artist Sponsorship and winning both the company’s Young Artist Award and Apprentice Artist Award. Filloux made her Kennedy Center debut as Tigrane (Radamisto) with Opera Lafayette. On the concert stage, Filloux has performed solos in Carmina Burana, Handel’s Dixit Dominus, Messiah, and several Bach cantatas with organizations including the Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra, Bach Collegium San Diego, Maryland Bach Cantata Project, and Chicago’s Music of the Baroque, with whom she has enjoyed several collaborations. Filloux is a proud graduate of Northwestern University and the University of Maryland Opera Studio.
|January 27, February 3 & 4
Argentinian tenor Santiago Ballerini is recognized as one of the leading tenors in the Bel Canto repertoire, having performed at many of the major opera houses throughout North and South America from Opera Nacional de Chile, Teatro Colón, Canadian Opera Company, as well as a long side leading international orchestras such as the National Symphony Orchestra in DC, Porto Symphony Orchestra in Portugal, and more. On the concert platform, the tenor performed Carmina Burana with the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington D.C. under Gianandrea Noseda, and began the 2020/21 Season in concert with the Porto Symphony Orchestra in Portugal. Last season, Ballerini debuted the role of Frederic in The Pirates of Penzance with the Atlanta Opera, as well as his first Duke of Mantua in Rigoletto with Opera San Antonio, a role he reprised in concert with Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in the Spring of 2022. The tenor began the 2021/22 Season with his first Contino Belfiore in La Finta Giardiniera at Teatro Colón, and later made his role and house debut as Alzaga in The Magic Opal at Teatro de la Zarzuela in Madrid.
This season, Ballerini’s engagements include La Traviata at Opera Nacional de Chile, Roméo and Juliette at Opera Naples, and Rigoletto with the Pacific Symphony. Ballerini reprised the role of Ernesto in Don Pasquale for his triumphant debut at Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona this September 2022. This season marks a series of exciting roles and theatre debuts for the young tenor. Following his debut in Barcelona, Ballerini debuted the role of Romeo in Gounod’s Roméo and Juliette. This winter 2023, Ballerini reprises the role of Count Almaviva in The Barber of Seville at Teatro Regio di Torino. Ballerini will reprise the role of the Duke in Rigoletto this spring in concert with Pacific Symphony followed by his role and house debut as Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor with Cincinnati Opera. This summer 2023, Ballerini debuts as the title role of Gaetano Donizetti’s tragedia lirica – Poliuto with Teatro Nuovo in New York City.
Before starting his professional singing career, Ballerini was a pianist for nine years and studied Music Therapy at the Universidad de Buenos Aires, specializing in addiction treatment. Ballerini was a semifinalist in the Francisco Vinas Competition at the Gran Teatre del Liceu and the Argentine Finalist at the Neue Stimmen Competition in Dresden, Germany. Ballerini also won First Prize at the Festivals Musicales Competition, American Society Competition and San Juan Opera Competition. In 2014, Ballerini was named Argentina’s “Upcoming Opera Singer” by the Congress of Argentina and the Argentine Association of Critics and received a scholarship to study with Sherrill Milnes. In January of 2016, Ballerini was awarded the Grand Prize at the Laguna Magica International Vocal Competition in Chile, receiving invitations to sing Cassio in Otello with the Teatro Argentino and to sing with the Tenerife Opera.
In the 2019/20 Season, Ballerini made his debut at the Canadian Opera Company as Count Almaviva in The Barber of Seville. Ballerini began the season with his return to the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires as Ernesto in Don Pasquale, after which he returned to the Atlanta Opera as Count Almaviva. In the 2018/19 Season, Ballerini debuted at the Teatro Regio di Torino as Nemorino, a role which he later sang for his debut with Opéra de Toulon. Ballerini then returned to the United States for his debut with Opera Saratoga as Tonio in La fille du regiment and to sing concerts in New York, Savannah and Atlanta. Ballerini also appeared at the Teatro Colon, singing Mozart’s Requiem. In the 2017/18 Season, Ballerini made his European debut as Gualtiero in Il pirata at the Opéra National de Bordeaux, after which he appeared for the first time in Bilbao as Ernesto in Don Pasquale and debuted as Tonio at the Atlanta Opera. Ballerini also returned to the Teatro Colon as Lindoro in L’italiana in Algeri, appeared at the Teatro Nuovo’s inaugural festival at SUNY Purchase’s Performing Arts Center as Argiro in Tancredi, and sang a concert of arias at the Dallas Opera.
In the 2016/17 Season, Ballerini sang Il Tenor Italiano in Der Rosenkavalier at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, Don Ramiro in La Cenerentola at the Teatro Argentino, and Ernesto in Don Pasquale at the Atlanta Opera. Ballerini also covered the roles of Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni and Count Almaviva in The Barber of Seville at The Metropolitan Opera in New York City. In July of 2017, Ballerini returned to the Caramoor Festival in New York to sing Gualtiero in Bellini’s Il pirata opposite Angela Meade. In the 2015/16 Season, he made his acclaimed United States debut at the Caramoor Festival as Fernand in La Favorite and sang the role of Tybalt in The Atlanta Opera’s production of Roméo and Juliette. After singing the role of Conte di Libenskof in Il Viaggio a Reims at the Teatro Bellas Artes in Mexico City, the tenor returned to the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires to sing Jünge Graf in Zimmerman’s Die Soldaten.
Other highlights from previous seasons include Nemorino in The Elixir of Love at the Teatro Solis in Montevideo alongside baritone Erwin Schrott, and performances at the Teatro Colon as the title role in Luigi Nono’s Prometeo and Arbace in Mozart’s Idomeneo. Ballerini also sang Lindoro in L’italiana in Algeri at the Teatro Argentino; Belmonte in Die entführung aus dem Serail, Lord Perci in Anna Bolena, Gennaro in Lucrezia Borgia, Ferrando in Così fan tutte, Ernesto in Don Pasquale, Alfred in Die Fledermaus and Tebaldo in I Capuleti e i Montecchi at the Teatro Avenida; Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, Romeo and Tybalt in Roméo and Juliette and Jaquino in Fidelio at the Teatro Municipal in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Tamino in The Magic Flute at the Teatro Libertador in Cordoba; and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 at the Colsubsidio Theatre’s re-opening in Bogotá, Colombia.
Praised for his “finely focused and well-mannered” voice (Dallas Morning News), tenor Brian Wallin has “proved [to be] another gifted tenor...who took the stage with flair and commitment” (Opera Today). The 2022/23 Season includes performances with Arizona Opera (Ariadne auf Naxos), Annapolis Opera (The Marriage of Figaro), and Pacific Opera Project (Pirates of Penzance). Appearances in the 2022/23 Season include Male Chorus in The Rape of Lucretia with An Opera Theatre, L’Abate de Chazeuil in Adriana Lecouvreur with Opera Baltimore, and as Tamino in The Magic Flute with Opéra de Montréal.
|January 27, February 3 & 4
Baritone Alexander Birch Elliott, a native of Florence, South Carolina, is a graduate of Florida State University and the Merola Opera Program at San Francisco Opera. In the 2023/24 Season, Elliott will return to The Metropolitan Opera as Papageno in The Magic Flute. Recent and career highlights include a role and house debut as Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor with Los Angeles Opera; Leandro in Sergei Prokofiev’s The Love for Three Oranges with Des Moines Metro Opera; Schaunard in La Bohème with the Metropolitan Opera; Zurga in The Pearl Fishers with both the Met and Houston Grand Opera; Marcello in La Bohème with San Diego Opera; and the title role in Eugene Onegin at Opera Omaha.
University of Arizona alumni, Mexican-American baritone Octavio Moreno participated in the artist program at the Academy of Vocal Arts (AVA) in Philadelphia and the Houston Grand Opera Studio. His previous engagements include the roles of John Proctor in The Crucible, Figaro in The Barber of Seville, Zurga in The Pearl Fishers, Don Alfonso in Così fan tutte, Xihuitl in Pasado Nunca Se Termina, Laurentino in Cruzar la Cara de la Luna, Germont in La Traviata, Malatesta in Don Pasquale, Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor the title role in Rigoletto, Belcore in The Elixir of Love, and Tonio in Pagliacci.
Andrew Gilstrap is quickly rising to be one of the premiere bass-baritones of his generation, known for his dramatic interpretations and musical sophistication. He is an alumnus of the respective studios/apprentice programs of the Bayerische Staatsoper, Des Moines Metro Opera, Minnesota Opera, and Wolf Trap Opera. Career highlights include the roles of Leporello in Don Giovanni with Wolf Trap Opera, Antonio in The Marriage of Figaro and Il padre di Nencio in L’infedeltà delusa with the Bayerische Staatsoper, Basilio in The Barber of Seville, and Immigration Officer in Flight with Minnesota Opera, and Sourin in Pique Dame with Des Moines Metro Opera. This year, he performed the roles of Horace Derwent in The Shining and Masetto in Don Giovanni with The Atlanta Opera. Gilstrap will make multiple concert debuts this season, namely in Frankenstein with The Atlanta Opera, Messiah with the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera, and Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem with the Georgia Tech Symphony Orchestra. He will also appear in Atlanta Opera’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream this season in the role of Starveling. Gilstrap holds degrees from the University of Houston’s Moores School of Music, where he studied with Timothy Jones. He graduated with a Bachelor of Music in 2016 and a Master of Music in 2018. In his spare time, Gilstrap enjoys cooking and baking for his family and long walks with his Yorkie mix, Westley.
Peter Barber is an American bass-baritone and Resident Artist at the Academy of Vocal Arts. In October of 2021, Barber made his professional role and company debut with Salt Marsh Opera, performing Escamillo in Carmen. In February of 2022, Barber made with role debut with AVA as Prince Gremin in Eugene Onegin, followed just a few months later by Schaunard in La Bohème, under the baton of Maestro Christofer Macatsoris. Last summer, Barber joined The Santa Fe Opera as an Apprentice Singer, covering Fiorello in The Barber of Seville, and performing Truffaldin in Ariadne auf Naxos during the Apprentice Scenes program. In the Fall, Barber performed the role of Barone Douphol in La Traviata, and is currently preparing the title role in Mozart’s Don Giovanni to be performed in April/May 2023 with AVA. Next summer, Barber will be returning to Music Academy of the West (’19) to perform Colline in La Bohème with Daniela Candillari conducting.
Throughout the virtual 2020/21 Season, Barber performed in three recitals with the Academy of Vocal Arts, earning reviews like, "...command over the full range of his voice from top to bottom was unshakeable" for his presentation of Schubert's Der Wanderer. In January of 2020, Barber made his professional debut with Pacific Opera Project, performing Amantio in POP's double-bill production of Gianni Schicchi and L'enfant et les Sortilèges. Also with POP, Barber was to perform his first professional lead role as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, but the shows were cancelled due to COVID-19. Some of his other role highlights include: Bottom in Midsummer Night's Dream, Figaro in The Marriage of Figaro, Stobrod/Blindman in Cold Mountain, Sarastro in The Magic Flute, and Don Alfonso in Così fan tutte. Barber is currently in the voice studio of Bill Schuman.
Outside of the opera world, Barber has grown a substantial audience on YouTube, surpassing 80,000 subscribers via videos with in-depth musical analysis of contemporary music, as well as creating non-operatic musical covers. He is also one of the founding members of a musical group called The Bass Gang (Bobby Bass, Peter Barber, Tomi P, and Marwan Ayman), which was formed during the pandemic, and consists of four bass singers that collaborate virtually from all over the world. The Bass Gang released their first EP in May of 2021 (May the Bass Be With You, Vol. 1), and released their second EP in May of 2022 (May the Bass Be With You, Vol. 2), collaborating with some of the most exciting singers in the virtual landscape (MALINDA, Jonathan Young, Colm McGuinness, and Elliott Robinson). Just recently, The Bass Gang collaborated with Tim Foust, the bass singer for world-famous acapella group, Home Free. So far, The Bass Gang has amassed over 2 million views/streams between YouTube and Spotify alone.
Praised for her captivating stage presence, “full bodied" (Indie Opera) and "nuanced voice” (Boston Musical Intelligencer), mezzo-soprano Lauren Cook is quickly establishing a name for herself in repertoire ranging from Monteverdi to Mazzoli. During the 2021 Season, Cook made her company debuts with Painted Sky Opera performing Hannah After in the Oklahoma Premiere of Laura Kaminsky’s As One, Opera Saratoga performing Antonia in Man of La Mancha, and Virginia Opera performing Wellgunde in Das Rheingold. Cook was most recently seen performing Edwin the Avatar/Eddie in the film version of Frances Pollock’s Earth to Kenzie.
Other notable stage credits include Poppea (L’incoronazione di Poppea), Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (Scalia-Ginsburg), Blanche de la Force (Dialogues of the Carmelites), Mélisande (Impressions de Pelléas), and Tisbe (La Cenerentola). Cook has appeared with Opera Philadelphia, Des Moines Metro Opera, Opera Naples, Opera Iowa, Opera Company of Middlebury, Opera Louisiane, Guérilla Opera, Odyssey Opera, Seagle Festival, and the Louisiana Opera Outreach Program, and has performed as a soloist in Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center, and Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts. Cook was also a featured soloist in Boston Symphony Hall at a gala hosted by Alan Cumming.
As a contemporary repertoire advocate, Cook premiered Evan Mack's Roscoe, and was most recently seen workshopping the role of LeAnn in Missy Mazzoli's upcoming opera: The Listeners, with Opera Philadelphia. Cook was also featured in a collaborative project with Guerilla Opera, where she premiered excerpts from The Desert, Lazy Citizen, War is a Racket, and Malice in the Palace. Other notable projects include the workshop and premiere recording of The Leopard (Dellaira) as the role of Angelica with American Opera Projects, the premiere recording of The Wake World (Hertzberg) with Opera Philadelphia, a recording of Haroun and the Sea of Stories (Wuorinen) with Boston Modern Orchestra Projects, and a pre-workshop of Permadeath (Visconti) as Aphrodite in association with Friends of Madame White Snake. Prior to the pandemic, Cook was also scheduled to perform Elder #2 in the New York Premiere of Lembit Beecher’s Sky on Swings with Opera Saratoga.
Cook will close out 2021 with the World Premiere of Molly Joyce’s Our Way of Being Small in the World with Fresh Squeezed Opera in NYC, followed by a recording with Opera Philadelphia of Daniel Belquer’s piece Religare Resonare, composed specifically for use with Vibrotextile wearable technology by Music: Not Impossible Labs. In the 2022 Season, Cook returned to Virginia Opera to perform Cherubino in their mainstage production of The Marriage of Figaro.
Nathan De'Shon Myers is a versatile artist with a hybrid international career that includes performance in opera, jazz and gospel, choral, and opera conducting. He has been a soloist with opera companies and orchestras throughout the United States and across Europe including Albany Symphony, Salzburg Landestheater, Berlin Staatsoper, Theatre Magdeburg, Dallas Opera, Nevada Opera, and the Amalfi Coast Festival in Italy. As a fest soloist with the Deutsche Oper Berlin, he performed roles such as Dandini in La Cenerentola, Dancairo in Carmen, Schaunard in La Bohème, Ping in Turandot, Marullo in Rigoletto, Figaro (cover) in The Barber of Seville, and more. Other roles performed include Gianni Schicchi, Don Giovanni, Johnny in Ernst Krenek’s Johnny Spielt Auf, and the role of Julian in the World Premiere of the American opera Wading Home. He was a member of the recording ensemble for Kirk Franklin’s Grammy Award-Winning album, Losing My Religion and lent his voice and musicianship to the soundtracks of the movies Kingdom Come, Hidden Figures, Everyday People, and The Star. Myers currently serves as Assistant Professor of Voice at Arizona State University in Tempe, AZ.
Mauricio Perusquia, baritone, holds an Masters of Music in Opera Performance from Arizona State University and a Bachelors of Music in Voice Performance from the University of Texas at El Paso. Perusquia has engaged in many new Opera works such as Arizona Opera’s Silent Night and the New Works reading of the jazz interactive opera, Marie Begins, as well as concert works such as Cipher. With Arizona State University’s Music Theatre and Opera, Perusquia performed the roles of Frank in Street Scene and Simone in Gianni Schicchi, as well as participating in many productions including Trouble in Tahiti and Bernstein’s Mass. Perusquia has also performed many roles with Gilbert and Sullivan Company of El Paso for which he is on the board of directors, and is a past Joan Quarm Scholarship winner. Perusquia is a proud alumnus of the music fraternity Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, a former member of First Presbyterian Church of El Paso’s scholarship singer program, and a current Valley Singer at Valley Presbyterian Church.
Baritone Jeffrey Stevens has appeared in comic roles throughout the United States and loves to sing and act. In Phoenix, he has sung with Arizona Opera’s Arlyn M. Brewster OperaTunity Troupe, OperAntics, the Phoenix Symphony, Phoenix Bach Choir, Phoenix Opera, Arizona Broadway Theater, and Arizona Opera. He is an alumnus of Arizona State University (DMA), Boston University (Opera Institute), and Peabody Conservatory. Stevens is very interested in both opera education and theater education for kids. He is a member of the Arizona Opera chorus. He is often cast in the comedic parts and teaches at Chandler-Gilbert Community College and Mesa Community College.
Mexican-born conductor Roberto Kalb is the newly appointed music director of Detroit Opera. Kalb makes multiple debuts in the 2022/23 Season, including with the San Francisco Opera, Compañía Nacional de Ópera at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City, San Diego Opera, and Lyric Opera of Kansas City. The 2021/22 Season marked a debut with the Opéra Orchestre National Montpellier, as well as return collaborations with Wolf Trap Opera and the National Symphony Orchestra for La Traviata, and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, for the world premiere of Tobias Picker’s Awakenings.
In 2019, Kalb concluded his five season tenure as resident conductor and head of music at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis with a critically acclaimed run of Rigoletto in collaboration with the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, which Opera News lauded: “The orchestra sounded sublime under the baton of Roberto Kalb, whose buoyant conducting simultaneously led and followed the singers.”
Additional highlights include productions at the Michigan Opera Theatre, Florida Grand Opera, Tulsa Opera, Kentucky Opera, Opera Maine, as well as performances with the Orquesta Carlos Chavez in Mexico City, and the Orquestra Sinfonica da USP in São Paulo. Kalb also worked as cover / assistant conductor for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and the Canadian Opera Company in Toronto.
Kalb is one of the recipients of the 2021 Solti Foundation U.S. Career Assistance Awards and holds degrees from the University of Michigan, and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Kalb is married to soprano, Mane Galoyan.
Joshua Borths is a stage director, writer, educator, and arts administrator with over twelve years of experience in the opera industry. Borths has directed dozens of professional productions, given over five hundred public lectures, and written more than eight children's operas that have introduced hundreds of thousands of young audiences to opera across the country.
Originally from Cincinnati, OH, Borths is currently the Resident Scholar of Virginia Opera and a member of the stage directing staff of Des Moines Metro Opera. Borths comes to Virginia after having served as the Director of Opera & Musical Theater and Professor of Music History at Capital University in Columbus, OH and as Director of Education and Resident Stage Director at Arizona Opera.
At Capital University, Borths produced and managed all of the opera and musical theatre programming while also teaching the music history curriculum. Additionally, Borths created a joint Resident Artist Program with Opera Columbus, creating innovative programming for both institutions. With Arizona Opera, Borths more than doubled the reach and scope of department through innovative programming and cultural engagement. By the end of Borths' tenure, the Department of Education reached 70,000 people annually.
Past favorites include directing productions of The Falling and the Rising and Beauty and the Beast for Des Moines Metro Opera; Rusalka, Florencia en el Amazonas, and The Barber of Seville for Arizona Opera; Hansel and Gretel and The Tragedy of Carmen for Opera Memphis; Madame Butterfly at Pensacola Opera, La Clemenza di Tito for the University of Maryland, Suor Angelica for Crested Butte Music Festival, and The Elixir of Love for Opera Las Vegas. As a stage director of musical theatre, Borths has directed Parade; Camelot; Kiss Me, Kate; and The Music Man.
Borths has also directed gala performances featuring Frederica von Stade and Joyce DiDonato, and staged the southeastern premieres of Soldier Songs and La Hija de Rappaccini.
As an assistant director, Borths has worked with many opera companies including Arizona Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, Michigan Opera Theater, Des Moines Metro Opera, and the Festival della Valle d'Itria. Additionally, Borths has hosted podcasts, written acclaimed surtitle translations of popular operas, and publicly interviewed many illustrious artists including Jake Heggie, Gregory Spears, David T. Little, Jonathan Dove, novelist Thomas Mallon, and Pulitzer Prize-Winning Author Jane Smiley.
As an educator, Borths has taught at Shenandoah University, been a Visiting Professor at the Crane School of Music (SUNY Potsdam), directed Maryland Opera Studio, and was a guest panelist at the Opera America Conference. Borths collaborated with TED Ed on their first opera resources and was featured in Opera News for his innovative approach to opera education.
Borths holds undergraduate degrees from the University of Michigan and a masters degree in Opera Production from Florida State University.
Barry Steele has created designs for opera, dance, and music productions in 56 countries for three decades. Notable engagements include San Francisco Opera Center, Lucinda Childs Dance Company, Ballet Stars of Moscow, Carnegie Hall and New York City Opera. New operas such as Vincent, and The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat as well as rarities like The Fall of the House of Usher, and La Voix Humaine complement Steele’s considerable list of standard opera repertory gained from designing over one hundred productions as Resident Lighting Designer for Sarasota Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, and New Jersey Opera.