Illustration by Edward Sorel, courtesy of

CCM Opera Presents the Cabaret Songs of William Bolcom, Oct. 23 – 25

From Oct. 23 – 25, CCM’s Department of Opera will present the cabaret songs of acclaimed American composer and pianist William Bolcom in a series of special performances in CCM’s intimate Cohen Family Studio Theater. Cincinnati audiences will have a rare opportunity to hear all of the Pulitzer Prize and Grammy Award-winning composer’s cabaret songs in one evening during this Studio Series production.

Admission to William Bolcom: Cabaret Songs is free, but reservations are required. Tickets become available at the CCM Box Office at noon on Monday, Oct. 19.

Illustration by Edward Sorel, courtesy of known for his work on the operas McTeague and A View from the Bridge, Bolcom and his longtime collaborator/lyricist Arnold Weinstein wrote 29 cabaret songs from 1963 to 1996.

Rarely performed in one night, CCM Opera has combined these witty, thought-provoking and frequently hilarious songs into a showcase of one of the greatest living composers of our time.

CCM Associate Professor of Music in Opera/Voice Coaching Lydia Brown  is the music director for this Studio Series production. A personal friend of Bolcom’s, Brown chose CCM’s Cohen Family Studio Theater as the setting for this show because of the intimacy of the music.

“These songs are a real hybrid of concert song and musical theatre,” she explains. “Like traditional cabaret, these songs are text-centered so I wanted a space where the audience would be able to feel the emotion. In a space like CCM’s Studio Theater, the choices about each word become really important.”

Bolcom’s compositions are deftly set to Weinstein’s lyrics. In 2003, New York Times Chief Music Critic Anthony Tommasini observed, “In these works Mr. Bolcom always finds apt, smart and evocative music to convey the shifting moods and often elaborate predicaments in Mr. Weinstein’s lyrics.”

Brown agrees with Tommasini’s assessment. “Bolcom instinctively knew how to set Arnold’s words,” she says. “ When you hear these songs, you can’t imagine any other music for them.”

A Professor Emeritus of Composition at University of Michigan, Bolcom is in residence at CCM for the week prior to the show to extensively coach the cast and attend opening night. In addition, he will give two master classes, one to voice students and the other to the composition department.

With free admission and limited seating, CCM’s Studio Series productions remain one of the hottest tickets in town. Learn more about how secure your tickets by visiting

This production contains mature subject matter.

Performance Times

  • 8 p.m. Friday, October 23
  • 8 p.m. Saturday, October 24
  • 2 p.m. Sunday, October 25

Cohen Family Studio Theater, CCM Village
University of Cincinnati

Reserving Tickets
Admission is free, but reservations are required. Tickets become available at noon on Monday, Oct. 19. Visit the CCM Box Office or call 513-556-4183 to reserve. Limit two tickets per order.

Parking and Directions
Parking is available in the CCM Garage (located at the base of Corry Boulevard off Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. Please visit for more information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit Additional parking is available off-campus at the new U Square complex on Calhoun Street and other neighboring lots.

For directions to CCM Village, visit

CCM Season Presenting Sponsor and Musical Theatre Program Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Community Partner: ArtsWave

CCM News

CCM Opera Presents Two One-Acts by Kurt Weill and Paul Hindemith in Free Production Oct. 24 – 26

CCM’s Department of Opera will present a mini recreation of the legendary Baden-Baden Contemporary Music Festival of 1927 with a cabaret lab production running Friday, Oct. 24, through Sunday, Oct. 26 in the Cohen Family Studio Theater.

Like all Studio Series productions, admission to Baden-Baden 1927 is free, but reservations are required. Tickets become available at noon on Monday, Oct. 20.

During the original composer-organized summer festival, which occurred in Baden-Baden, Germany, in 1927, four one-act operas were presented in one evening. CCM’s recreation will present two of these mini-operas: Kurt Weill’s Mahagonny Songspiel and Paul Hindemith’s Hin und Zurük (There and Back). Despite being nearly 100 years old, each of these pieces will resonate with audiences today.

According to graduate student Frances Rabalais (AD Opera, Stage Directing) who is directing Baden-Baden 1927 under the guidance of CCM Assistant Professor of Opera/Directing Emma Griffin, post-Word War I Germany was a time and place of great artistic exploration as artists rejected past understanding and searched for new ways to ask, “How can we use art to better society? How can we find new ways [to involve] the audience in a fulfilling opera experience?”

“The intimacy of a smaller venue like the Cohen Family Studio Theater is thrilling and special,” says Rabalais. “The audience can experience the art in a way that’s very personal.” A single piano accompanist will compliment the talented singers in both performances. Baden-Baden 1927 features musical preparation by graduate student Levi Hammer (DMA, Orchestral Conducting), under the guidance of Junghyun Cho. Hammer and Kihwa Kim provide accompaniment.

This up-close performance is an especially unique experience because the pieces by Hindemith and Weill contrast both stylistically and narratively. Hin und Zurük is a kind of dramatic palindrome, a tragedy unfolds involving jealousy, murder and suicide. It is then replayed with the lines sung in reverse order to produce a happy ending. “Mahagonny Songspiel takes a dark approach to tackling questions about society and authority,” says Rabalais. Visually, the pieces will be styled similarly and use the same scenic elements. “I think the unified look will heighten the contrasting strengths and emphasize the stylistic impact of each opera,” explains Rabalais.

CCM News

CCM Alumni Featured on Stage and Behind the Scenes of Eight Tony Nominated Productions

Tony Awards LogoNominations for the 2014 American Theatre Wing’s Tony Awards were announced earlier this week and more than a dozen CCM alumni are involved in this year’s nominated productions!

Composer Stephen Flaherty (BM, 1982) scored the musical adaptation of Rocky, which received four nominations this year.

Josh Prince (BFA, 1996) choreographed Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, which also features alumni Alysha Deslorieux (BFA, 2012), Daniel Torres (BFA, 2001), Sara Sheperd (BFA, 2008) and Melvin Tunstall III (BFA, 1998) in the cast.

Pamela Bob (BFA, 1999) is in the cast of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, which leads the Tony nominations with 10 nods.

Alums Eric Santagata (BFA, 2004), Betsy Wolfe (BFA, 2004) and Preston Boyd (BFA, 2008) are all in the cast of Woody Allen’s Bullets Over Broadway, which received six nominations.

Alumnus Damian Baldet (BFA, 1995) is featured in the cast of Machinal, which received four nominations.

The revival of Les Misérables features Max Quinlan (BFA, 2008) and Adam Monley (BFA, 2000) in its cast.

Katie Klaus (BFA, 2006) is in the cast of The Bridges of Madison County and Leeds Hill (BFA, 2011) is in the cast of Cabaret, where he recently filled in for Alan Cumming in the iconic role of the Emcee.

The 68th Annual Tony Awards will be broadcast live at 8/7 central on Sunday, June 8, on CBS. Hugh Jackman returns to host this year’s ceremony. Find out more by visiting

CCM Alumni Applause CCM News

CCM Musical Theatre Presents Annual Senior Showcase on March 13 and 15

Moveable Feast 2012, Musical Theatre Choir

CCM’s Class of 2014 in Musical Theatre, performing during CCM’s 2012 Moveable Feast. Photography by Dottie Stover.

Cincinnati audiences will get a sneak peek of an original showcase created by the 2014 graduating class from CCM’s Department of Musical Theatre during the annual “Not Famous Yet” Showcase, which runs on March 13 (Friends of CCM benefit performance) and March 15 in UC’s Patricia Corbett Theater.

The March 13 benefit performance starts at 7 p.m. and features dinner by the bite and a post-performance celebration. Tickets for this benefit event are on sale now. For tickets and additional information, click here.

The March 15 performances take place at 5 and 8 p.m. and are free, but reservations are required. Tickets for these free performances become available at noon on Monday, March 10.

CCM Alumni Applause CCM News Student Salutes

CCM Students Present the Fourth Annual Carols for a Cause Benefit Concert

RohsStreetCafeStudents from CCM’s Departments of Drama and Musical Theatre are joining forces to present the fourth annual “Carols for a Cause” benefit concert at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 26. This year’s holiday cabaret will take place at the Rohs Street Café (located at 245 W. McMillan Street, right next to the campus of the University of Cincinnati). Doors open at 7:30 p.m.

Admission to “Carols for a Cause” is “pay what you can” and all proceeds benefit the Great Globe Foundation, an organization founded by CCM alumni Michael Littig and Julianna Bloodgood. Learn more about the Great Globe Foundation and CCM Drama’s Dadaab Theater Project here.

About the Great Globe Foundation
The Great Globe Foundation uses the power of the arts to inspire the voices of youth throughout the world in creating their own opportunities and platforms for positive personal and community change through education and arts engagement. Learn more by visiting

CCM News

CCM Musical Theatre Celebrates the Songs of Kurt Weill with ‘Into a Lamplit Room’

Celebrated music theatre composer Kurt Weill.

Celebrated music theatre composer Kurt Weill.

CCM continues to study and celebrate the work of composer Kurt Weill with Into a Lamplit Room: The Songs of Kurt Weill presented by CCM’s Department of Musical Theatre at 7 p.m. on both Sunday, March 3, and Sunday, March 10.

Devised and directed by CCM Distinguished Chair of Musical Theatre Aubrey Berg with musical direction by Julie Spangler and musical staging by Joey Dippel, this evening of cabaret-style entertainment offers a compilation of Weill songs in the intimate setting of UC’s Cohen Family Studio Theater.

CCM News

CCM Presents the Iconic Musical ‘The Threepenny Opera’ Feb. 28 – March 10

Sophomore Hannah Zazzaro as Sukey Tawdry and junior Max Clayton as Macheath. Photography by Mark Lyons.

Sophomore Hannah Zazzaro as Sukey Tawdry and junior Max Clayton as Macheath. Photography by Mark Lyons.

Someone sneaking ’round the corner. Is the someone Mack the Knife? Find out for yourself when CCM presents The Threepenny Opera, Feb. 28 through March 10, 2013!

With The Threepenny Opera, composer Kurt Weill and playwright Bertolt Brecht weave the riveting story of notorious bandit and womanizer MacHeath (“Mack the Knife”) and his seedy companions in London’s underworld, inventing a new form of musical theatre in the process!

Influencing shows like Chicago and Cabaret, this jazz-infused musical comes to life in UC’s Patricia Corbett Theater for two consecutive weekends courtesy of CCM’s stars of tomorrow!

Directed by Robin Guarino, with musical direction by Roger Grodsky, choreography by Patti James and set designs by Tony Award-winning guest artist John ArnoneThe Threepenny Opera is the must-see theatre event of the year! Learn more here.

This production contains mature subject matter.

CCM News