Hercules vs Vampires
Composer Patrick Morganelli holds degrees in music from both California State University Northridge and the USC Thornton School of Music where he studied Piano with Daniel Pollack and Composition with Frederick Lesemann and Tamar Diesendruck, graduating with distinction. He also holds a postgraduate certificate in Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television from USC, where he was the first recipient of the prestigious Joe Harnell Memorial Scholarship.
Morganelli composed the music and adapted the text for Hercules vs Vampires which combines opera and midcentury pop culture, synchronizing live music with the cult fantasy film Hercules in the Haunted World, a 1961 sword-and-sandal epic directed by Mario Bava and starring Reg Park (a three-time Mr. Universe) and Christopher Lee. The work had its premiere in Portland at Opera Theater Oregon in 2010. The LA Opera production, which runs April 23, 25 and 26 at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, will include a cast of 10 singers from the Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program, a 26-piece orchestra and be conducted by Christopher Allen. Hercules vs Vampires is being presented in association with American Cinematheque and the Italian Cultural Institute of Los Angeles.
Critics have lauded Morganelli’s work in film and television as being uniquely evocative and haunting in a way that persists long after the music has ended. He has worked with filmmakers such as Academy Award nominee Randall Wallace and composers Christopher Young and Michael Giacchino. In 2014 he was invited by the Yosemite Conservancy to become an Artist-In-Residence there in 2015, and he recently was selected to be featured on the California State University San Bernardino Distinguished Artist Series. In addition to his work in film, television and opera, he also is active in the world of concert music. Recent commissions include a Violin Concerto and a large work for solo piano. His song cycle Songs of Late Summer for mezzo-soprano and orchestra premiered in the fall of 2015. He lives and works in Los Angeles.
Shawn Galvin is the Curator of New Music Raleigh (NMR), “the Southeast's most plugged-in musical collective devoted to the work of living composers” (Indy Week). NMR presents cutting-edge new works and collaborations that challenge the traditional perception of classical music, engage and inspire diverse audiences, and give voice to today's most innovative and relevant modern music. Recent NMR projects have featured music written by composers Missy Mazzoli, Sarah Kirkland Snider, D.J. Sparr, John Supko, and Linda Catlin Smith. NMR’s newest recording of Brett William Dietz’s Headcase: An Opera Introspective recently released on Centaur Records.
Shawn serves as a regular extra percussionist with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra where he has toured internationally and performed under leading conductors including Lorin Maazel, Mariss Jansons, Manfred Honeck, Chales Dutoit, Leonard Slatkin, David Zinman, Rafeal Fruahbeck de Burgos, and Gianandrea Noseda. Prior to his current positions, Shawn served as Principal Timpanist of the United States Navy Band, Washington, DC, and as a member of Tempus Fugit Percussion Ensemble. He has also performed with the North Carolina Symphony, the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra, the Colorado Music Festival Orchestra, and the Washington Bach Consort.
Shawn has been invited to perform at five Percussive Arts Society International Conventions. He has appeared as percussion soloist with the Lancaster Symphony Orchestra, the Great Falls Symphony, Hamiruge (LSU Percussion Group) and the United States Navy Band. Shawn can be heard on recordings with New Music Raleigh, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Tempus Fugit Percussion Ensemble, and Michael Burritt.
Originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Shawn holds a Bachelor of Music degree in percussion performance from Duquesne University and a Master of Science in Arts Administration at Drexel University.
American soprano, Lacy Sauter, is quickly becoming known for her vocal and dramatic versatility. She returns to Arizona Opera for the 2017/18 season as Dianara, Hesperide 1, City Woman and Peasant Woman in Hercules vs Vampires and Welgunde in Das Rheingold.
In the 2016/17 season, she made her company debut with Arizona Opera as the Second Woodsprite in Rusalka and also created the role of Julia Lowell in a workshop performance of Borzoni’s The Copper Queen. She bowed as the Countess in The Marriage of Figaro for her company debut with the Livermore Valley Opera. Lacy Sauter also returned to the Missouri Symphony as a Resident Artist for various concert performances and as Violetta in La Traviata.
The 2015/16 season brought role and company debuts as Micaela in Carmen with Heartland Opera Theatre and Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte with Nashville Opera. She spent the summer as a Resident Artist performing with the Missouri Symphony as Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus and as a soloist in both the POPS and Classical Concert Series.
In the fall of 2014 she completed her graduate studies at the prestigious Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University under the tutelage of world-renowned soprano, Carol Vaness. While at IU, she sang Mimi in La Bohème, Violetta in La Traviata, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus and Juliette in Roméo et Juliette. Lacy Sauter started 2015 with a 1st Place win in Phoenix Opera’s Southwest Vocal Competition competing in the final round with orchestra at the Orpheum Theater. In February 2015, she covered Nadine Sierra as Gilda and sang Countess Ceprano in Rigoletto with The Atlanta Opera. She returned to Union Avenue Opera as Gilda in Rigoletto after having made her company debut as Blanche DuBois in A Streetcar Named Desire the previous summer.
Ms. Sauter finished her tenure as a Young Artist at the Florida Grand Opera in the spring of 2013. During her time at FGO she sang 1st Lady in Die Zauberflöte, Flora in La Traviata, and Bianca in La Rondine. In addition, she covered the roles of Mimi and Musetta in La Bohème, Violetta in La Traviata, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, Magda in La Rondine, Gilda in Rigoletto and Juliette in Roméo et Juliette. She spent two summers as an Apprentice Singer with The Santa Fe Opera where she performed the role of Albina in La Donna del Lago starring Joyce DiDonato and conducted by Stephen Lord. Ms. Sauter also served as the cover for Wanda in the Grand Duchess of Gerolstein and Violetta in La Traviata. In addition, she was featured as Magda in La Rondine, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus and the Overseer in Elektra for the Apprentice Scenes Showcase.
As a Young Artist at the 2011 Glimmerglass Festival, she sang the role of Valentina Scarcella in Later the Same Evening and covered the roles of Frasquita in Carmen and the Young Woman in the world premiere of A Blizzard on Marblehead Neck. She was a Festival Artist at Utah Festival Opera in 2009, where she covered the roles of Frasquita in Carmen and Peep-Bo in The Mikado. As a studio artist at Chautauqua Opera, in 2008 and 2010, she played the roles of the Baby Vixen in The Cunning Little Vixen and the Second Graduate in Street Scene.
Lacy Sauter hails from Scottsdale, Arizona and completed her undergraduate degree at Arizona State University. She was a winner of the Arizona and the Middle-East Tennessee Districts of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions in 2008 and 2011 and the 2nd Place Winner of the Orpheus Vocal Competition in 2014. She was also honored to be nominated for a Sara Tucker Study Grant in 2011.
The Oregonian praises soprano Katrina Galka for her recent performances of Adina in L’elisir d’amore, exclaiming that she “looked like a young Glenn Close, projecting power over Nemorino as she thrilled with fine coloratura filigree and pure high notes.” In the 2020/21 Season, she makes her role and company debut as Olympia in Les contes d’Hoffmann at the Opernhaus Zürich as well as sings a solo digital recital for Portland Opera. Her San Francisco Opera debut as Janine (Ofwarren) in Ruder’s The Handmaid’s Tale was unfortunately cancelled by the COVID-19 pandemic, as were the roles she added to her repertoire last season: Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos and the Charmeuse in Thais for performances at Arizona Opera and Utah Opera. In the first half of last season, she returned to the Wiener Staatsoper to reprise Fritzi in Staud’s Die Weiden following her debut with the company in the work’s world premiere in the season prior. She sang her first performances of the Controller in Dove’s Flight with Minnesota Opera and returned to the Las Vegas Philharmonic for Handel’s Messiah.
Galka recently role and company debuts as Blondchen in Die Entführung aus dem Serail with Atlanta Opera—followed by reprisals at New Orleans Opera and Opera San Jose, Atalanta in Xerxes at the Glimmerglass Festival, and Serpetta in La finta giardiniera with On Site Opera at the Caramoor International Music Festival, and Aithra in Die ägyptische Helena with Odyssey Opera. She sang her first performances of Gilda in Rigoletto in a return to Portland Opera, where she was previously a resident artist and host of role debuts that include Adina in L’elisir d’amore, Johanna in Sweeney Todd, Elvira in L’italiana in Algeri, Papagena in Die Zauberflöte, and Frasquita in Carmen. With Arizona Opera Opera, she sang Cunegonde in Candide, Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Woglinde in Das Rheingold, and a quartet of roles in Morganelli’s Hercules vs Vampires, the First Wood Nymph in Rusalka and Clorinda in La cenerentola as a resident artist. She joined the Seiji Ozawa Music Academy as a guest artist for Frasquita in Carmen and sang prior performances of Papagena in Die Zauberflöte with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis at which she has been both a Festival Artist and a Gerdine Young Artist. She joined the CoOperative Program as Marie in La fille du régiment and sang the Cat in Schuller’s The Fisherman and his Wife with Odyssey Opera and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project. She also joined Dallas Opera as Voice I in Cuomo's Arjuna's Dilemma, presented as the company hosted the annual Opera America conference.
On the concert stage, she has joined the Rhode Island Civic Chorale for the Angel in Respighi's Laude to the Nativity and Handel's Messiah and returned to the latter previously with the Las Vegas Philharmonic. With the Florida Orchestra, she sang Bernstein favorites in a concert celebrating his work on Broadway. She sang Elvira in excerpts of L’italiana in Algeri with the Oregon Symphony and Violetta in excerpts of La traviata with the Metropolitan Youth Symphony. With various Dallas-based chamber ensembles and orchestras, she has sung Fauré’s Requiem, Mozart’s Exsultate Jubilate, and Bach’s St. John Passion. In 2011, Katrina performed in the east coast premiere of Jake Heggie’s Pieces of 9/11 as the Girl Soprano, with Mr. Heggie at the piano.
Galka is a three-time regional award winner in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. She is the first-place winner of the Mario Lanza Scholarship and has received further awards from the National Opera Association Vocal Competition, Marcello Giordani International Vocal Competition, and the Heida Hermanns International Vocal Competition.
She holds a Master of Music from Boston University, at which she sang Servilia in La clemenza di Tito, Carolina in Il matrimonio segreto, and Rosalba in Catan’s Florencia en el Amazonas. She earned a Bachelor of Music from Southern Methodist University, from which she graduated summa cum laude.
Praised by Opera News for her "polished, Italinate mezzo,” Stephanie Sanchez is quickly creating a name for herself as an exciting mezzo-soprano on the rise. In the fall of 2021, Sanchez joined the roster of the Lyric Opera of Chicago for the Barrie Kosky production of Die Zaüberflote and will return to Lyric Opera in the 2022/23 season for Carmen and the world premiere of Four Portraits. During the summer of 2022, Sanchez returned to Opera Theater of Saint Louis as Third Lady in The Magic Flute and sang the role of the Mother/Other Mother in the American premier of Coraline at West Edge Opera.
She is the recipient of several awards including the "Audience Choice Award" from the 2021 Jensen Foundation, the sole recipient of the prestigious 2018 Igor Gorin Memorial Award, first place in the Young Texas Artist Music Competition, and has received grants from the Hispanic Scholarship Association. Sanchez is an alumna of training programs at Arizona Opera, The Glimmerglass Festival, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Opera San Jose, Teatro Nuovo, and Rice University. Stephanie Sanchez was born and raised in Las Cruces, NM and currently lives in Chicago with her husband and fellow singer, Peter Morgan.
Tenor Anthony Ciaramitaro, a Florida native, is currently pursuing his Master’s degree at Florida State University under David Okerlund, and has recently performed the role of Don Ramiro in Rossini’s La Cenerentola with Florida State Opera.
Mr. Ciaramitaro had the privilege to perform as a Studio Artist with Wolf Trap Opera during their 2015 season as Basilio from Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, The Messenger from Verdi's Aida, and among the ensemble of Corigliano's The Ghosts of Versailles.
In previous seasons, Mr. Ciaramitaro made his professional debut with Florida Opera Theater as Ferrando in Mozart's Così fan tutte, the 2nd trio member in Leonard Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti, Piquillo from Jacques Offenbach's La Perichole with the Franco-American Vocal Academy in Perigueux, France, and scenes from Verdi's La forza del destino, La Traviata and Mozart's Don Giovanni in Oberaudorf, Germany with Music Theater Bavaria.
Mr. Ciaramitaro graduated in 2014 with his Bachelor's in music from Rollins College, where he studied under Richard Owens, who has been a great inspiration to the advancement of his career. Mr. Ciaramitaro has been a concert soloist for The Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, The Messiah Choral Society, and The Villages Philharmonic.
Mr. Ciaramitaro has an avid love of the stage and is eager to one day have an illustrious career as a singer of opera, oratorio, and concert repertoire.
D. Justin Carpenter currently teaches voice at Grand Canyon University and Scottsdale Community College. He has been a Bonfils-Stanton Young Artist with Central City Opera where he covered the role of Joe Crowell in Ned Rorem’s Our Town. He has also been a Regional Finalist in The Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions. He is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Musical Arts at Arizona State University where he has received two Bachelors and a Masters degrees. Some of the roles he performed during his time there include the title role in Albert Herring, Don Basilio (The Marriage of Figaro), Gherardo (Gianni Schicchi), Archibald Craven (The Secret Garden), and Tobias (Sweeney Todd).
Paul Nicosia, an American tenor, most recently appeared at Opera Theater of Montclair singing the role of Acis in their production of Acis and Galatea. Following that he performed the role of Danny in Arizona Opera’s premiere of Arizona Lady by composer Emmerich Kálmán. Previously at Utah Festival Opera he covered the roles of Rodolfo in Puccini’s La bohème and Enoch Snow in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel. During the 2014/15 season, Nicosia finished his second year as a Resident Artist at Sarasota Opera. While there, he sang the Ufficiale in Rossini’s The Barber of Seville, Villager in Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci, and 1st Boyar in Rimsky-Korsakov’s Zolotoy petushok (The Golden Cockerel). Nicosia has also appeared on the stages of Opera New Jersey as Normanno in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, and at Des Moines Metro Opera where he covered Howard Bucher in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking.
Nicosia received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Rowan University where he performed the roles of Tamino in Mozart’s The Magic Flute, Count Tassilo in Emmerich Kálmán’s Gräfin Mariza and Mayor Upfold in Britten’s Albert Herring. Nicosia received his Master’s degree from Arizona State University where he performed the roles of Ramiro in Rossini’s Cinderella, Prologue in Britten’s Turn of the Screw and Pirelli in Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd.
Praised for his “imposing baritone” and “supple vibrant baritone that he deploys with unaffected lyricism and manifest honesty” by Opera News, American baritone Jarrett Porter is quickly making a name for himself with a fearless talent and commanding intellect. Porter is currently a member of the Artist Diploma in Opera Studies at The Juilliard School.
In the 2020/21 Season, Jarrett makes his professional debut at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis as Neil Armstrong in the world premiere of Steve Mackey’s Moon Tea, and as the Adjudicator in the world premiere of Damien Sneed’s The Tongue & The Lash. He joins Internationale Meistersinger Akademie in Neumart, Germany where he will make appearances on Bavaria Radiofunk, as well as with the Nürnburg Symphony. At Juilliard, he appears in their Liederabend series, with New York Festival of Song@Juilliard, and as Polyphemus in Händel’s Acis & Galatea with Juilliard415.
In the 2021/22 Season he looks forward to making his professional debut at Arizona Opera as Guglielmo in Così fan tutte. He will return to Opera Theater of Saint Louis to create the role of Oliver Sacks in the world premiere of Tobias Picker’s Awakenings, based on the memoir of the same name.
Porter’s 2019/20 Season included his principal debut at Tulsa Opera as Dancaïre in Carmen. At the Santa Fe Opera in his second year as an Apprentice, he sang the Sergeant in La boheme, covered Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, appeared in scenes as the title role in Il barbiere di Siviglia, and joined Renée Fleming and the Santa Fe Opera Orchestra under the baton of Harry Bicket as a soloist in Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music.
In the 2018/19 Season he finished his second and final year as a Marion Roose Pullin Studio Artist at Arizona Opera, where he performed as Antonio and the cover of Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, Father Palmer in Silent Night, and Baron Douphol in La traviata. In the 2017/18 Season at Arizona Opera, he was seen as the title role in Patrick Morganelli’s Hercules vs. Vampires, Maximilian in Candide, Sciarrone in Tosca, and Fiorello in Il barbiere di Siviglia. He joined Santa Fe Opera in 2018 as a member of the company’s Apprentice Program, singing Der Perückenmacher in Ariadne auf Naxos, and covering Maximilian in Candide. Role engagements elsewhere have included the title role of Don Giovanni and Eugene Onegin, Le Chevalier des Grieux in Massenet’s Le portrait de Manon, Sid in Albert Herring, Harry Easter in Weill’s Street Scene, and Morales in Carmen. Other programs include Opera Saratoga (2016) and The Glimmerglass Festival (2017), as well as Houston Grand Opera’s Young Artist Vocal Academy (2014).
As a sought after recitalist, Porter has held fellowships at the Ravinia Stean’s Music Institute at The Ravinia Festival, and at SongFest at the Hidden Valley Music Festival under the mentorship of Sir Thomas Allen and Graham Johnson. Accompanied by narration from Allen and Johnson, he made his National Public Radio debut with selections from Schubert’s Die schöne Müllerin and Winterreise, and in the spring of 2018 joined pianist Taylor Hutchinson in recital to present Winterreise in Katzin Hall at Arizona State University.
Awards include: winner of The Sullivan Foundation (2019), winner of the 2019 St. Louis District of the Metropolitan Opera National Council, the Lisa and Bernie Kalvelage Award at the 2018 Holt Competition, the 2017 Grand Prize Winner of the Pacific Music Society Competition, the Ellie Silver Award Winner at the 2017 Holt Competition, and the First Prize of the inaugural Esther C. Weill Competition. A native of coastal New Jersey, he holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music (2015) and a Master of Music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music (2017), where he was a James Schwabacher Fellow. He can be seen in the June 2020 issue of Opera News, where he was the magazine’s Soundbite. A student of Darrell Babidge, Porter resides on the Upper East Side in New York City.
Born and raised in Illinois, American bass-baritone Zachary Owen has performed with such companies as the Glimmerglass Festival, Arizona Opera, Cincinnati Opera, Kentucky Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Central City Opera, Opera North, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, and Opera Santa Barbara.
He has performed the roles of Dulcamara in Elixir of Love, Alidoro in La Cenerentola, Ashby in La fanciulla del West, Don Fernando in Fidelio, Matouš in Smetana’s The Kiss, Figaro in The Marriage of Figaro, Haly in L’italiana in Algeri, Nick Shadow in The Rake’s Progress, Frank Maurrant in Street Scene, the Commendatore in Don Giovanni, der Sprecher in The Magic Flute, Spencer Coyle in Owen Wingrave, and the title role in Don Pasquale. A strong advocate for new music, he has participated in a composer’s workshop at Cincinnati Opera in which he worked alongside Jake Heggie, Jack O’Brien, and Terrence McNally to develop two characters for Heggie’s new Opera, Great Scott. In the 2017/18 season, Mr. Owen will be returning to the Marion Roose Pullin Studio at Arizona Opera and performing several roles including Don Basilio in The Barber of Seville, Angelotti in Tosca, and Lycos in Hercules vs Vampires.
Mr. Owen is the recipient of numerous awards including the Grace Keagy Award at the Lotte Lenya Competition, the Brudos Family Prize for Opera Performance and was a national semifinalist at the 2015 Metropolitan Opera National Council Competition. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Luther College in Decorah Iowa and a master’s degree from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.
Acclaimed by Opera News as a “standout,” young American bass, Brent Michael Smith, is a rising star whose rich voice and dynamic stage presence have attracted the attention of companies across the United States. This Fall, Brent joins the roster of resident artists at the esteemed Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia, where he will study with Bill Schuman. He will sing Ferrando in Il trovatore, Fafner in Das Rheingold and Truffaldino in Ariadne auf Naxos. He also makes his debut with Arizona Opera singing The God of Evil and Procrustes in their production of Hercules vs Vampires, a new score by Patrick Morganelli synchronized to the 1961 cult classic film Hercules in the Haunted World. This summer, Brent made his mainstage debut with The Glimmerglass Festival as Ariodate in Xerxes. He also starred as The Commentator in Derrick Wang’s Scalia/Ginsburg, which featured a talk back by the notorious RBG herself.
Brent recently finished his time as a Resident Artist at Michigan Opera Theatre (MOT). His roles at MOT this past season included: Zuniga in Carmen, the British Major in the Pulitzer Prize winning opera, Silent Night, by Kevin Puts, Friedrich Bhaer in Little Women, Ashby in La fanciulla del West and Marquis de Brisaille in David DiChiera’s Cyrano. In February, Brent made his debut with Toledo Opera, performing Antonio in The Marriage of Figaro.
During his first season as a Resident Artist with MOT, Brent made his debut as Colline in La bohème. Other notable roles that season were the Second SS Officer in The Passenger, Grandpa Moss in The Tender Land, The Doctor in Macbeth and the Speaker in The Magic Flute. In 2015, Brent sang Harry Hopkins in the world premiere of Daron Hagen’s A Woman in Morocco, as a part of Kentucky Opera’s American Opera Initiative. Brent has also been young artist with Sarasota Opera, Central City Opera and with Des Moines Metro Opera where Colorado Music Buzz praised him for “making the most of his brief appearances” as Billy Jackrabbit in La fanciulla del West.
Brent received his master of music degree from the University of Northern Iowa (UNI), singing under the tutelage of John Hines. He received his bachelor’s degree in music from Hope College (Holland, MI), majoring in piano performance and minoring in Spanish. He studied voice with Linda Dykstra. Brent is a first-place winner of the Grand Rapids Opera Competition (2012).