POCATELLO, ID – Highlights of Idaho State University’s mid-November Opera Week include a performance by Idaho Opera and ISU hosting the Metropolitan Opera National Council District Auditions.
On Nov. 14, Idaho State University’s Season of Note concert series will host Opera Idaho’s production of Mozart’s “Le nozze di Figaro” at Jensen Grand Concert Hall in the Stephens Performing Arts Center. This will be the first time a full-length opera has been presented in the hall. “Figaro” will be sung in Italian with English supertitles.
Other events surrounding Opera Idaho’s visit include a residency with the lead performers at each Pocatello high school, and a pre-opera discussion with Mark Junkert,executive director for Opera Idaho. Tickets for the opera will cost $25 for adults and $15 for children in the lower balcony, and $21 for adults and $11 for children in the upper balcony.
On Nov. 16, ISU will again host the Metropolitan Opera National Council District Auditions. The National Council Auditions program is designed to discover promising young opera singers and to assist in the development of their careers. Judges for the competition will be Grammy-nominated opera conductor Sara Jobin, internationally-renowned soprano Sally Wolf, and collaborative artist Thomas Muraco from the Manhattan School of Music.
The Department of Music has four students who will compete to advance to the Metropolitan Opera regional auditions: Emma Doupé, from Middleton; Jerrica Matthews, Liberty, Bear Lake County; John Punt, Idaho Falls; and Lakota Terrace, Mackay. Audience members will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite. Tickets for the competition on Saturday are $8 for adults, $6 for ISU faculty and staff and $4 for pre-college students. ISU students are admitted free of charge.
Opera Week will finish on Nov. 17 with a masterclass featuring ISU music majors working with Thomas Muraco. Admission to the master class with Thomas Muraco is free.
ISU’s participants will present their programs at Pocatello’s First Friday Artwalk on Nov. 1 at Trinity Episcopal Church. The public is invited to the free preview of the students’ performances. For information, contact Diana Livingston Friedley at firstname.lastname@example.org or 282-2611.
Background information about this year’s Metropolitan Opera judges:
Grammy-nominated opera conductor Sara Jobin has a passion for American and new music. She has conducted the San Francisco Opera and was Music Director of the Center for Contemporary Opera. At age 16, Jobin attended Harvard and Radcliffe Colleges, where she was a Leonard Bernstein Music Scholar. In 2004, she made history as the first woman to conduct mainstage subscription performances at San Francisco Opera.
Thomas Muraco has earned accolades through a combination of technical virtuosity, tonal beauty, and a unique understanding of the underlying poetry of music. Highlights of his career include appearances at The White House, the Library of Congress, numerous music festivals and recital series globally
In a career spanning 34 years, soprano Sally Wolf has sung her dramatic coloratura and lyric repertoire all over Europe and North America. Wolf is an accomplished interpreter of the Mozart repertoire. A former interpreter of Queen of the Night, she performed 192 career performances of the role in many of the world’s prestigious opera houses.
An update on ISU students who competed in MONCDA in past years:
Teaira Burge spent a year studying in Portland, Ore. After spending the year auditioning for graduate schools, Burge now attends the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University in Chicago.
Jared Michael Johnson now lives in Missouri, where he is pursing a Master of Music in Vocal Performance at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance.