Michael Capasso is the General Director of the New York City Opera. He has produced, directed, and toured opera and musical theater productions in the U.S. and abroad for over 30 years. In June of 2014, along with philanthropist Roy Niederhoffer, he led the successful effort to bring the New York City Opera out of bankruptcy, laying the artistic, administrative, and fiscal groundwork for the company’s upcoming seasons.
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August 6, 2022 @ 8:30 pm - 11:59 pm$40.00
Following New York City Opera’s star-studded production of Rigoletto at The Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice this past summer, they’ll be returning on Saturday, August 6, 2022 with another Verdi classic, La Traviata.
Soprano Ekaterina Siurina and tenor Charles Castronovo will star along with Michael Chioldi, world-renowned baritone and star of last summer’s Rigoletto (a role he recently stepped into at the MET for a series of critically acclaimed performances), in what is sure to be another triumph in the Catskills with City Opera Music Director Maestro Constantine Orbelian at the helm. This storied company which created so many stars in the past will stay with Verdi and bring their own, classical touch to “La Traviata”- a beautiful, Parisian courtesan finally finds true love only to have her life cut short by a fatal disease. New York City Opera has given us some of the great Violettas of our times such as Beverly Sills, Diana Soviero and Ashley Putnam- and we are sure they will deliver yet another budding star, Ms Siurina, in the role to capture our hearts and minds. NY City opera brings Verdi’s “La Traviata’ to the Phoenicia Int. Festival of the Voice on Saturday, Aug. 6th at 8pm.
Featuring one of the most iconic, romantic and tragic scores of all time, Verdi’s masterpiece, La Traviata, contrasts spectacular party scenes with tender, intimate moments. La Traviata (which means ‘one who has lost her way’) tells the story of the tragic love between the courtesan Violetta and the romantic Alfredo Germont. Played out against the hypocrisy of upper-class fashionable society, Alfredo and Violetta’s love threatens to shame his family. When his father directly appeals to Violetta to relinquish her one chance of happiness, Violetta submits and her act of self-sacrifice leads to her paying the ultimate price.
Act I Paris
Violetta, a courtesan of renown desire, is hosting a lavish party with the upper-class gentlemen of Paris and her fellow courtesans, all funded by her admiring patron, Baron Douphol. Amidst the champagne, she is introduced to a middle-class gentleman, Alfredo Germont, who has been in love with her for over a year – since, we learn, her illness began. Alfredo is pressured to make a toast in which Violetta joins him, urging everyone to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of life. As the guests retire to other rooms, Violetta suddenly grows ill. While left alone with Violetta, Alfredo protests his love, which she discourages at first, but then accepts in a sudden reversal. As dawn breaks, the gentlemen must all go home, and Violetta is left alone to contemplate the idea of having a true love for herself. Instead, she resolves to plunge herself headlong into the vortex of hollow pleasures that make up her existence. Interval of 25 minutes
Scene 1 A house in the country, three months later Violetta and Alfredo are now living together in the idyllic countryside. When Alfredo learns from her servant Annina that Violetta has sold her possessions to support the life they lead, he returns to the city to raise the necessary funds. In his absence, Violetta receives an unexpected visit from Alfredo’s father. He begs her to end their relationship, otherwise his daughter’s marriage into a respectable family will be threatened. After a relentless breakdown of her character, Violetta agrees to sacrifice her love – despite it breaking her will to live. Germont leaves and Violetta writes a farewell note to Alfredo: she will return to the city and Douphol’s patronage. Alfredo returns, and Violetta arranges for him to be given the note after she has gone. When he reads it, he refuses the consolation of his father, who has been watching from nearby, and rushes back to the city to avenge himself.
Scene 2 Paris, that same night A party is in progress, enlivened by a masque of gypsies and bullfighters. Alfredo appears alone and witnesses Violetta on the arm of Douphol. The two men play an aggressive round of cards which Alfredo wins. When she has an opportunity, Violetta speaks to Alfredo alone and begs him to leave and avoid a deadly fight with Douphol; pressed by Alfredo, she maintains her promise to Alfredo’s father and tells Alfredo that she loves Douphol. In a fury, Alfredo summons the guests to witness the repayment of his debts as he flings his winnings at her. Germont enters in time to witness his son’s outburst and shames him. Alfredo must leave the party – and Violetta. Interval of 20 minutes
Violetta’s bedroom, a few months later The doctor tells Annina that her mistress will soon die. Violetta instructs Annina to give what little money they have left to the poor, and re-reads a letter from Germont telling her that Alfredo now knows of her sacrifice and is returning to beg her forgiveness. She believes it is now too late for a reunion with Alfredo. She bids farewell to all her hopes and prays to be released from this suffering. The sounds of a carnival in the street summon false hopes of Alfredo’s return. Then, to her astonishment, Alfredo returns to hold his beloved. Germont arrives to give his blessing, full of remorse at the pain he has caused. But it is too late.
Louis Otey Artistic Director The Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice
Alfredo Germont – Charles Castronovo
Giorgio Germont – Michael Chioldi
Flora Bervoix – Melanie Long
Annina – Tatev Baroyan
Barone Douphol – Markos Simopoulos
Dottore Grenvil – Walter DuMelle
Marchese d’Obigny – Christopher Nazarian
Gastone de Letorières – Drew Seigla
Four-time Grammy-nominated conductor Constantine Orbelian has been called “the singer’s dream collaborator” by Opera News, which hailed him for conducting vocal repertoire “with the sensitivity of a lieder pianist.”
In 1999, while still a student, Ms. Siurina made her professional role debut as Gilda in Rigoletto singing opposite renowned baritone, Dimitri Hvorostovsky.
Since completing her studies, she has performed the title roles of Donizetti’s Maria Stuarda and Rimski-Korsakov’s Snowmaiden, and again appeared as Gilda in Rigoletto in a co-production at the Savonlinna Festival, Finland. Prominent solo debuts include appearances as Giulietta in I Capuleti e i Montecchi at the Opera de Montpellier, Royal Opera de Wallonie, and Brussels; I Puritani at the Opera de Monte-Carlo; and also Adina in L’elisir d’amore at the Staatsoper Berlin and Staatsoper Hamburg. Significant debuts have included Gilda at the Royal Opera, Covent Garden, Deutsche Oper Berlin, and Bordaux Opera; and Servilia in Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito at the Paris Opera Garnier, also available on DVD. Ms. Siurina’s Italian debut was as Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro at Teatro alla Scala. Ms. Siurina made her Metropolitan Opera debut in 2006 singing the role of Gilda with Juan Pons. She returned to the MET in 2007 to sing the role of Susanna, performing with Bryn Terfel, who sang his final Figaro during these performances. In recent seasons, Ms. Siurina has added role debuts as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni, Mimì in La bohème and a much-anticipated house debut as Gilda at the Arena di Verona.
Acclaimed internationally as one of the finest lyric tenors of his generation,
Castronovo has also sung at most of the world’s leading opera houses such as the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Vienna State Opera, Berlin State Opera, Paris Opera, Bavarian State Opera, Munich, Theatre Royale de la Monnaie, Brussels, and many others including at the Salzburg and Aix en Provence Festivals. His repertoire spans from the great Mozart tenor roles in Don Giovanni, Cosi Fan Tutte, and Die Zauberflöte, to Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor, Nemorino in L’elisir d’amore, and Alfredo in La traviata. In recent seasons Castronovo has also won wide acclaim for his performances as the title role in Faust, Romeo in Romeo et Juliette, the Duke in Rigoletto, Rodolfo in La bohème, and Tom Rakewell in The Rakes Progress. He starred in the title role of Daniel Catan’s Il Postino opposite Placido Domingo in the work’s world premiere in Los Angeles, as well as Paris and Santiago. Other roles in Castronovo’s repertoire include Massenet’s Werther, Offenbach’s Hoffmann, the title role in Donzietti’s Roberto Devereux, and Oronte in Verdi’s I Lombardi.
Emmy Award-winning, international opera star Michael Chioldi is one of the world’s most sought-after dramatic baritones.
His interpretations of the Verdi, Puccini, and Strauss repertoire have been praised by critics and audiences across the world. Recently, Michael made his Teatro Liceu (Spain) debut as Carlo Gérard in Andrea Chénier alongside Sondra Radvanovsky and Jonas Kaufmann. The following season he returned as Miller in Verdi’s Louisa Miller with Piotr Beczała. His portrayal of the title role in Henry VIII by Saint-Saëns with Odyssey Opera in Boston was heralded by Ed Tapper with Edge Media as “…world class baritone singing…Moments such as Henry’s Act IV monologue and the final passages of the opera were nothing short of thrilling.” During the pandemic he was fortunate to be able to perform Tonio in Pagliacci with Palm Beach Opera where “Michael dominated the stage. His flawless diction, commanding acting skills and multi-colored instrument were a real showstopper.” (Palm Beach Daily News) He also made his Seattle Opera debut as Scarpia in Tosca, a role that he was honored to relaunch NYCO with in 2016. Future engagements at the Metropolitan Opera will see Michael return to cover the title role in Rigoletto, Scarpia in Tosca, and Enrico in Lucia di Lamermoor.
Melanie Long’s unique vocal prowess has been described as “easily switch-hitting from high coloratura to Broadway belt” (New York Post).
In high demand as a soloist and for her and powerfully interpretive stagecraft, Ms. Long has been featured in several premieres including the East Coast premiere of Stewart Wallace’s Hopper’s Wife with New York City Opera. Ms. Long recently starred as Anna in Encompass New Opera Theatre’s world premiere of Anna Christie by Edward Thomas, and was featured on the cast album which was nominated for a Grammy in 2020. She recently made her Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre debut, creating several complex characters in the company’s commission of The Grant Wood Operas: Strokes of Genius, by Michael Ching and Jean-Francois Charles. Ms. Long performed in the ensemble cast of New York City Opera’s Stonewall by Iain Bell and is frequently featured in New York City’s annual PROTOTYPE Festival with Beth Morrison Projects. She will make her Arizona Opera debut this season as Petra in Stephen Sondheim’s A Little Night Music. www.americandiva.com | @themelanielong
Tatev, native of Yerevan, Armenia, is making her mark in the US with her “warm and unique sound” and “soaring top notes.”
She recently earned third place in The Premiere Opera Foundation International Vocal Competition after receiving an Encouragement Award from the Georgia District of The Metropolitan Opera Laffont Competition. In 2021, Tatev returned to Teatro Nuovo as a Studio Artist where she covered the role of Berta in the first post-pandemic, full-cast, live concert production of Il barbiere di siviglia in NYC. As an Apprentice Artist with Sarasota Opera, Ms. Baroyan appeared as Papagena in Die Zauberflöte. Other operatic roles include: Alaide study-cover (La Straniera) with Teatro Nuovo, Nuri cover (Tiefland) with Sarasota Opera, the title role in Le nozze di Figaro, Adele (Die Fledermaus) with Komitas Conservatory, Zerlina (Don Giovanni), and others. Some partial roles she has sung during her studies in the Komitas Conservatory: Manon (Manon), Nanetta (Falstaff), and Musetta (La bohème). In 2019, she was the winner of the Florida District of The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. In concert, she has performed the B Minor Mass (Bach) at the Church of St. Hagob, Exultate Jubilate (Mozart), and has been featured in Stabat Mater (Rossini).
Baritone Markos Simopoulos from Chapel Hill, North Carolina has been praised for his notable “dark chocolate” vocal tone.
His recent role as Parson Peele in Hunter College’s Patience and Sarah received a range of glowing reviews describing his performance as “comic and poignant” and having a “manly thrust with sparkle.” He has performed internationally since childhood from St. Lambertus Basilica in the Netherlands to The Festival of the Aegean in Syros, Greece, where he was honored with the Emerging Leading Artist Award. In 2017, he was a featured young artist for Woodstock’s Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice. His favorite roles include Silvio (Pagliacci), Figaro (Il barbiere di Siviglia) and Dr. Malatesta (Don Pasquale).
Bass Walter DuMelle has been engaging audiences both here and abroad for over thirty years with his wide range of vocal styles and genres.
Representative of over fifty roles, his operatic repertoire has included Leporello, Osmin, Sarastro, Colline, Basilio, Alidoro and Rev. Hale with companies and festivals which include San Diego, Skylight, Des Moines Metro, Central City, Chautauqua, Natchez, Intermountain, Bronx, Connecticut Grand, Utah Festival, Ash Lawn and the Opera Theaters of Chicago, Rochester and Connecticut. Local engagements include performances with Lyric Opera SD (Sulpice, Dr. Bartolo, Basilio, Sergeant of Police, Prince Joachim) and in their premiere of the Reveles/Montgomery setting of Rumpelstiltskin as the King. With the La Jolla Symphony Orchestra & Chorus, he has sung the bass solos in their sing-along Messiah and Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex. With Bach Collegium San Diego he was a soloist in Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610.
He has performed frequently with Opera de Tijuana, singing such roles as Timur (Turandot), Frère Laurent (Roméo et Juliette), Bartolo (Il barbiere de Seville), Sacristano (Tosca) and Bonze (Madama Butterfly). DuMelle has been a long time section leader with the St. James by-the-Sea Choir. In 2012 he co-founded, with his wife Diana DuMelle, Bodhi Tree Concerts, a performing arts non-profit presenting concerts and donating profits to charitable organizations, with whom he’s performed the G&S roles Pooh-Bah, Dick Deadeye, Arac, Usher, and Don Alhambra and presented Voices of the Spirit, Songs of Love, A Lenten Journey, Best of Bodhi Tree, and Jacques Brel Cabaret.
Other recent engagements include the roles of the Boatman/Charles Redmond in ion theatre company’s production of the San Diego premiere of Sondheim’s Sunday in the Park with George, as well as his debut with CabaretCaccia singing the protest songs of Hans Eisler & Bertolt Brecht. DuMelle returned to the San Diego Opera stage performing the role of Baron Douphol in Verdi’s La traviata, Male Ensemble in Maria de Buenos Aires and All Is Calm. In 2017 he performed the title role in Bodhi Tree Concerts’ production of Sir Peter Maxwell Davies’ 8 Songs for a Mad King, winning “Best in Fest” and “Best Actor in a Musical/Opera” at the San Diego International Fringe Festival. In 2018 he was seen as Benjamin Stone in Coronado Playhouse’s production of Follies.
Upcoming engagements include the role of the Colonel in The Falling and the Rising with San Diego Opera. He received his Masters in Music from the Eastman School of Music.
This season, Christopher Nazarian will be returning to St Petersburg Opera, to perform Cadmus/ Somnus/ Priest (Semele), Archbishop (Juana) with dell’Arte Opera, and Angelotti (Tosca) with New Rochelle Opera.
In recent seasons, he performed Leporello (Don Giovanni), Maestro Spinelloccio and covered Simone (Gianni Schicchi) with St. Petersburg Opera Florida, Zaccaria (Nabucco), Le Duc (Roméo et Juliette), Count Ceprano and covered Sparafucile (Rigoletto), Timur (Turandot), Benoit (La bohème) with Sarasota Opera, Colline (La bohème), Dr Grenvil (La traviata) with New Rochelle Opera, Pistola (Falstaff) with Martina Arroyo Foundation-Prelude to Performance, and The King (Aida) with Gateway to Classical Music NYC. Career highlights include bass solos in Bernstein’s Mass at the Sydney Opera House and Handel’s Messiah with the Penrith Symphony Orchestra. Awards include Outstanding Lead Actor by Theatre Tampa Bay 2019 in the role of Leporello (Don Giovanni) with St. Petersburg Opera, winner of Russian Song (Sydney Eisteddfod 2014), Finalist in Opera Awards and Male Operatic Voice (Sydney Eisteddfod 2015), and Finalist with the Opera Foundation for Young Australians (Lady Fairfax NYC Scholarship 2015). Christopher attended the Sydney Conservatorium of Music where he received a master’s in Piano and a master‘s in Opera Performance. He will be making his Carnegie Hall Debut this year as a featured artist of the Armenian General Benevolent Union.
Richmond, VA native Drew Seigla is a standout among theatre and opera audiences, recognized for his “stunning tenor voice” by BroadwayWorld.com.
He made his Off-Broadway debut as Matt; The Mute in The Fantasticks where he continued for a solid two-year stint. He gained his second NYC credit after joining the cast of Sweeney Todd as their Standby Anthony/Tobias/Beadle at Barrow St. Theatre. Regional Theatre highlights include Kiss Me Kate at Flat Rock Playhouse & Jack in Into the Woods at Barksdale Theatre. Seigla was last seen as Pertshik in the Off-Broadway hit Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish at NYTF & Stage 42, directed by theatre legend, Joel Grey. Seigla made his Opera debut with Lyric Opera Virginia, where he sang Gastone in La traviata. He finished their inaugural season singing Le Remendado in Carmen and returned the following year to cover Roméo in Roméo et Juliette. This past November, Seigla sang Frederic in The Pirates of Penzance as a guest artist for the University of Arkansas Monticello. Seigla has gone on to sing numerous tenor solos in classical oratorio masterpieces. His concert repertoire includes the Tenor Soloist in Messiah with the Arkansas Choral Society in Little Rock, Bob Chilcott’s Requiem, conducted by Maestro Chilcott himself, Beethoven’s C Major Mass, W.A. Mozart’s Requiem, as well as Mozart’s Missa in C with the Greenwich Choral Society in Connecticut. Drew holds a B.M. from The Juilliard School and attended Elon University two years preceding. Thanks to God, Mom & Dad, Steph, my agent, my friends, and my teachers. @drewseigla | drewseigla.com
Bill Van Horn
Bill Van Horn is an actor, writer, and director who works at The Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia, The Philadelphia Artist Collective, The Theater at Monmouth in Maine, and many other theatres around the country.
He recently directed the national tour of The Hound of the Baskervilles by Ken Ludwig starring Ian Peakes. His next project will be a production of An Iliad by Lisa Peterson and Dennis O’Hare at The Theater at Monmouth. This spring, his original adaptation of Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Speckled Band will premiere at The Walnut Street Theatre. He has provided voiceovers for many documentaries including Wagner’s Jews, God’s Fiddler, and Workshop for Peace. He is the co-writer of the documentaries Khachaturian and Caruso, the latter written with Michael Capasso. He has written several musicals with librettist Gene Scheer, including Jane Hawkins, an adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Treasure Island.” Favorite roles include King Lear, Shylock, Walt Whitman, and Bottom the Weaver.
Fiorela Miria, Giuseppina
Fiorela Miria, 17 years old, is a Vocal Music student at LaGuardia High School and at Juilliard Pre-College.
Operatic roles include Genovieffa in Suor Angelica, Chorus in Cavalleria Rusticana, Annina/Gypsy in La Traviata and 1st Lady in The Magic Flute with Hudson Lyric Opera, Children’s Chorus in Carmen with New Rochelle Opera, Cherubino arias with the Northern Westchester Symphony Orchestra, Barbarina in Le nozze di Figaro with New York Lyric Opera Theater Summer Program, and a concert appearance with New York City Opera. Fiorela won 2nd place in the 2019 Junior High New York Lyric Opera Competition, 1st place in Voice for the Little Mozarts Crescendo Competition, with a solo performance of “O mio babbino caro” at Carnegie Hall, 1st place in the NATS competitions in both Classical and Musical Theatre, 2nd prize in the 2020 and 1st prize in the 2022 eVoco Young Artist Award, 1st place in the 2020 and 2022 Talent Hunt Competition with the Omega Fraternity-The Rockland Ques, 1st place in the 2021 International Grande Music Competition, 1st place in the NATS NYC Lower High School Classical division, 1st place in the NATS Eastern Region Lower High School Treble Voice Classical division, a scholarship prize from The George London Foundation, and 1st place in the 2022 New York Laureate International Music Competition.
Dylan DuMelle, Fabrizio
Dylan DuMelle is thrilled to be making his New York City Opera debut as Fabrizio in La traviata.
Dylan is a sophomore at Mission Bay High School where he plays on the football team as well as electric bass in their award-winning Mambo Orchestra. Dylan’s past performances include Brundibar (Krása), The Little Sweep (Britten), and The Tears of the Knife (Martinů), all with Bodhi Tree Concerts in San Diego.
Carmine Aufiero, Assistant Conductor
Mr. Aufiero made his New York conducting debut with Chelsea Opera’s Suor Angelica, and has since led performances with the company of Cavalleria Rusticana, Pagliacci, William Walton’s The Bear and the 50th anniversary production of Lee Hoiby’s The Scarf, Don Giovanni, Gianni Schicchi, Glory Denied, Madama Butterfly, and The Ballad of Baby Doe.
He was engaged as pianist and assistant conductor for the American Symphony Orchestra’s production of Janacek’s Osud under Leon Botstein after completing his studies in orchestral conducting with Harold Farberman, and in composition, theory, and improvisation with Robert Abramson. From 2005-2008 Mr. Aufiero served as coach and conductor for Martina Arroyo’s Prelude to Performance. Mr. Aufiero has been a guest conductor for the Marcello Giordani Foundation Gala Concert, La Musica Lirica’s summer festival in Novafeltria, Italy, the Viennese OperaBall Gala at the Waldorf Astoria, Opera on the James, and Opera Carolina, as well as a guest lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania with the International Opera Theater and Pi-Philly, as part of their panel, “The Power of Italian Language in the Arts.” An active vocal coach and accompanist, since 2008 Mr. Aufiero has been pianist and studio coach to renowned vocal pedagogue and Metropolitan Opera soprano Diana Soviero, collaborating on master classes for vocal technique, style and repertoire study.
Kathryn Olander, Assistant Music Director and Pianist
Recently hailed by Opera News for her “impressive playing,” Kathryn Olander is a frequent assistant conductor/pianist with New York City Opera as well as many regional opera houses.
In addition to coaching privately she has held coaching positions with the Juilliard School of Music, Manhattan School of Music, and Chautauqua Institute. An avid recitalist, highlights include performances at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Hall and Zankel Hall, The Appel Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bryant Park’s concert series, the Hungarian Consulate of New York and the Polish Consulate of New York, and Bechstein Hall. Ms. Olander is a regular pianist with Reaching for the Arts and Opportunity Music Project, specializing in bringing music to underserved communities and Creative Stage. Ms. Olander began teaching piano at Northeastern University while earning her Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance at New England Conservatory and has since maintained a studio of private piano students.