Kimberly Sogioka (Mature Kara), mezzo-soprano, recently performed the roles of Suzuki (Madama Butterfly) and Siébel (Faust) with the Michigan Opera Theatre. Other recent roles include Sara (Roberto Devereux), Nerone (Agrippina) and Dulcinée (Don Quichotte). A supporter of new music, she created the role of Nurse 3 in the Metropolitan Opera/English National Opera workshop of Michael Torke’s Senna, and Janine in Francois Dompierre's Is Paris Burning with the Center of Contemporary Opera. www.uzanartists.com/portfolio/kimberly-sogioka/
Nina Riley, Young Kara
Nina Riley (Young Kara), soprano, has performed many roles with numerous companies, and has had several rave reviews by the press. Among her performances, she is especially proud of her solo Tohoku Relief benefit concerts held in Tokyo and Fukushima, Japan, which included a concert at a temporary housing shelter for the victims of the tsunami in Fukushima. Her performances were praised by the Fukushima Newspaper. More details can be found at www.ninarileysoprano.com.
Thomas Meglioranza, Takashi Kondo
Thomas Meglioranza (Takashi Kondo), baritone, a winner of the Naumburg and the Concert Artists Guild competitions, is “an immaculate and inventive recitalist”, according to The New Yorker. He has performed with many major orchestras and baroque ensembles. Favorite roles include Chou Enlai in Nixon in China, Fritz in Die tote Stadt, and the title character in Eight Songs for a Mad King. His discography includes albums of Schubert, Fauré, Virgil Thomson, Bach, and Buxtehude. www.meglioranza.com
Silvana Chu, Marge
Silvana Chu (Marge), mezzo-soprano, was born in Hong Kong. She received her Master’s degree in Music at the Manhattan School of Music. Her operatic roles include Suzuki in Madama Butterfly, Mary in The Flying Dutchman, and Gertrude in Romeo and Juliet. In contemporary opera, she has premiered the Japanese opera Nasu Yoichi (那須与一) by Kazuko Hara, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight by Richard Peaslee, and Shangri-La by Susie Ibarra. http://silvanachu.com/
Tara Ohrtman, Amy
Tara Naoko Ohrtman (Amy), soprano, was most recently seen singing Gilda and the Queen of the Night in a workshop at American University. She received her BA in Politics from Princeton University, where she created numerous roles with the Princeton Music Department, and performed and directed regularly with the Princeton Opera Company. Tara recently completed a year as the Daniel K. Inouye Fellow at the D.C. office of the Japanese American Citizens League. www.taranaokoohrtman.com.
Ryan Bede, The Speculator
Ryan Bede (The Speculator), baritone, has appeared in roles with many companies in the Northwest, including Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Mercutio in Roméo et Juliette, the Pirate King in The Pirates Of Penzance, Zuniga in La tragédie de Carmen, Schaunard in La Boheme, Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, Captain Corcoran in H.M.S. Pinafore, and Guglielmo in Cosi fan tutte. www.ryanbede.com/
Ross Hauck, Sergeant Pete
Lyric Tenor Ross Hauck is a specialist in the sacred oratorio work, but is well-known for his versatility and range of expression. Highlights of this season include Tamino in Magic Flute with Pacific MusicWorks, Evangelist in both Bach Passions, and Handel's Messiah with the Baltimore Symphony, Seattle Symphony, and the Cleveland Baroque Orchestra, with whom he recorded the work in 2011. Recent credits include the symphonies of Phoenix, Chicago, Grand Rapids, Kansas City, Portland, and the National Symphony.
Opera credits include lead roles with companies in Tacoma, Sacramento, Indianapolis, and Cincinnati, among others. Mr. Hauck is a distinguished alum of the Cincinnati-College Conservatory of Music, with further training at Tanglewood, Ravinia, Aspen and 2 seasons at the prestigious Filene Center at Wolf Trap.
Stephen Stubbs, Conductor
Stephen Stubbs, who won the Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording 2015, spent a 30 year career in Europe. He returned to his native Seattle in 2006 as one of the world’s most respected lutenists, conductors, and baroque opera specialists and in 2014 was awarded the Mayor’s Arts Award. In 2007, Stephen established his new production company, Pacific MusicWorks, based in Seattle, reflecting his lifelong interest in both early music and contemporary performance. Stephen is also the head of the Boston Early Music Festival’s permanent artistic co-director along with his long time colleague Paul O’Dette. Stephen and Paul are also the musical directors of all BEMF operas, recordings of which were nominated for three Grammy awards, in addition to this year’s win. In 2013, Stephen was appointed Senior Artist in Residence at the University of Washington School of Music tasked with creating professional opera productions at the University.
Sarah Mattox, Composer
Sarah Mattox is a 2014 John Duffy Composers Institute Fellow, and won the 2013 Boston Metro Opera International Composers' Competition ‘OPERA PUPPETS Mainstage Award’ for her piece, "Rumpelstiltskin and the Falcon King." Called "entertaining, exuberant," and "just incredible," her compositions have been praised for their "natural sense of phrasing and flow," and "the just plain beauty of the music."Mattox’s compositions have been programmed by the Sunriver Music Festival, the Oyster Bay Distinguished Artists Concert Series, the Maud Powell Music Festival, Inverse Opera, Transylvania University, the First Sundays Concert Series on Bainbridge Island, the Governor’s Chamber Music Series, the Yakima Symphony and Yakima Valley Museum, Asbury University, the Triple Door in Seattle, and the Panache Jazz Series on Vashon Island. Her work has also been featured on Woodsongs Old Time Radio Hour, and KING FM’s Northwest Focus Live with Sean MacLean, as well as the Women in Music radio series in Toronto, Canada.
Jo Nardolillo, Violinist/Percussionist
Jo Nardolillo performs as a concerto soloist, recitalist, concertmaster, chamber musician and orchestra member throughout the United States and in Europe. As a champion of music by living American composers, she has commissioned, recorded, and given the world premieres of many new works. Recent performances include the world premiere of a new viola concerto written for her by renowned American composer Thomas Pasatieri, the Berg Violin Concerto with the St. Petersburg State Symphony in Russia, and the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the Olympia Chamber Orchestra. Dr. Nardolillo is a founding member of the innovative new-music ensemble TangleTown Trio and the eclectic jazz quintet Touché. She serves as concertmaster of Seattle’s 5th Avenue Theatre. Dr. Nardolillo earned degrees from the Cleveland Institute of Music, Rice University, and the Eastman School of Music. She is the author of three books published by Rowman & Littlefield.
Dan Wallace Miller, Stage Director
Dan Wallace Miller is the Artistic Director of Vespertine Opera Theater. He has directed and produced a variety of unusual productions in unique spaces with Vespertine, including the U.S. premiere of Britten’s English adaptation of Poulenc’s Les mamelles de Tirésias at Seattle’s oldest Vaudeville theater and bar, and Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia in Seattle’s biggest landmark cathedral. He most recently directed Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with Stephen Stubbs’ Pacific MusicWorks at the University of Washington. In addition to being the Resident Assistant Director at Seattle Opera for their 2015/16 season, he has worked on many of their productions, including Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen and Trisan und Isolde, Puccini’s Madama Butterfly and Tosca, and others. He returns with Vespertine Opera Theater this fall with Fauré’s Pénelope for the University of Washington’s International Fauré Conference.