CCM Alumnus John Holiday Wins 2017 Marian Anderson Vocal Award

johnholidayCCM is proud to report that countertenor John Holiday (MM Voice, 2012) is the winner of this year’s Marian Anderson Vocal Award, which celebrates the excellence and vocal promise of one young American singer. The award, which was first offered in 2002, is presented by the Kennedy Center and Washington National Opera.

Holiday’s prizes include $10,000 cash and the opportunity to perform a recital on Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018 in the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater. He will also have an educational residency at Washington’s Duke Ellington School of the Arts that will include master classes and other workshops for vocal music students at the magnet school.

This is far from the first major award that Holiday has won; he recently won first place in the Dallas Opera Guild Vocal Competition, he won third prize at Plácido Domingo’s Operalia Competition in 2014, and he was a Grand Finals Winner of the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Auditions that same year and he was first place winner in his district of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions in 2007. Additionally, he won a 2014 Sara Tucker Grant for young vocal artists and first prize in the Gerda Lissner Foundation’s 2013 International Vocal Competition, among other awards. A career highlight includes an invitation by Pope John Paul II to sing as soloist for High Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica and the Sistine Chapel in 2002.

Holiday’s recent roles include the Sorceress in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas at LA Opera and the title role in Handel’s Giulio Cesare at Wolf Trap Opera. He made his Carnegie Hall debut in a performance of Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms with Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony, and he recently joined the Metropolitan Opera to cover Nireno in Giulio Cesare.

This season, he will appear with the Nashville Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, Boston Baroque, the Glimmerglass Festival and Opera Philadelphia.

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About Marian Anderson

American contralto Marian Anderson was one of the most celebrated singers of the 20th century. She became an important figure in the struggle for African American artists to overcome racial prejudice in the United States, when in 1939, the Daughters of the American Revolution refused permission for her to sing to an integrated audience in Constitution Hall. With the aid of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and her husband President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Anderson performed a critically acclaimed open-air concert on Easter Sunday, April 9, 1939, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. before a crowd of more than 75,000 people and a radio audience of millions. She continued to break barriers, becoming the first African American artist to perform at the Metropolitan Opera in New York on January 7, 1955. She later worked for several years as a delegate to the United Nations Human Rights Committee and for the U.S. Department of State, giving concerts all over the world. She participated in the civil rights movement in the 1960s, singing at the March on Washington in 1963. She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1963, a Kennedy Center Honors in 1978, the National Medal of Arts in 1986 and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1991.

This story has been updated to reflect a correction in John Holiday’s list of major awards.

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Cherished by music-lovers since its 1843 premiere, DON PASQUALE will delight audiences of all ages. Mark Gibson conducts this beloved opera buffa, with stage direction by Omer Ben-Seadia. Photography by Mark Lyons.

CCM Announces 2016 Opera Scholarship Competition Results

Five voice students were named winners of CCM’s 2016 Opera Scholarship Competition, which was held on Saturday, March 12, in UC’s Corbett Auditorium.

Since its inauguration in 1976, the annual competition welcomes current and incoming CCM voice students to compete for scholarships and cash prizes, and a panel of judges composed of opera industry professionals selects each year’s class of prizewinners.

The 2016 CCM Opera Scholarship Competition winners are:

Kayleigh Decker (first year Master of Music student)
From Woodstock, Md., studying with William McGraw
Prize: Full-tuition scholarship and the Corbett Award ($15,000)
The Corbett Award is supported by the Corbett Foundation in cooperation with the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

Christian Pursell (first year Master of Music student)
From Aptos, Calif., studying with Thomas Baresel
Prize: Full-tuition scholarship and the Italo Tajo Memorial Award ($15,000)
This award is supported by the Italo Tajo Memorial Scholarship Fund (established by Mr. Tajo’s wife, Mrs. Inelda Tajo) in cooperation with the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

Erica Intilangelo (second year Master of Music student)
From Fairfield, Conn., studying with William McGraw
Prize: Full-tuition scholarship and the Andrew White Memorial Award ($12,500)
This award is supported by the Andrew White Memorial Scholarship Fund in cooperation with the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

Murrella Parton (first year Master of Music student)
From Seymour, Tenn., studying with William McGraw
Prize: Full-tuition scholarship and the Seybold-Russell Award ($10,000)
The Seybold-Russell Award is supported by the Seybold-Russell Scholarship Fund in cooperation with the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

Grace Newberry (first year Master of Music student)
From San Rafael, Calif., studying with William McGraw
Prize: Full-tuition scholarship and the John Alexander Memorial Award ($10,000)
This award is sponsored by the John Alexander Memorial Scholarship Fund in cooperation with the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

The following student also received an award as part of the competition:

Alexandra Schoeny (incoming Doctor of Musical Arts student)
From Cincinnati, Ohio
Prize: Corbett Incentive Award for new graduate students ($2,000)
This award is supported by the Corbett Foundation in cooperation with the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

The judges’ panel for CCM’s 2016 Opera Scholarship Competition included:

  • Michael Heaston, Director of the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program and Advisor to the Artistic Director at Washington National Opera and Associate Artistic Director of Glimmerglass Festival
  • Peter Kazaras, Professor of Music and Director of Opera at UCLA Herb Albert School of Music
    Stage Director
  • Viswa Subbaraman, Artistic and Music Director of the Skylight Music Theatre in Milwaukee

About CCM Opera
The Department of Opera at CCM boasts one of the most comprehensive training programs for opera singers, coaches and directors in the United States. Students at CCM work with some of the most renowned teachers and artists active in opera today.

CCM students frequently advance to the final rounds of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. As recently reported by the Cincinnati Enquirer, four singers with ties to CCM advanced to the semi-final round of this year’s Met Auditions.

In addition, CCM’s Mainstage and Studio Series of Opera have received some of the National Opera Association Production Competition’s highest honors throughout the years, taking home six of the 18 non-professional prizes awarded in 2010 and four prizes in 2011.

CCM Opera graduates have performed on the stages of the world’s greatest opera companies, including Cincinnati Opera, Metropolitan Opera (New York), Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, Royal Opera (London), La Scala (Italy) and more.

CCM’s 2015-16 opera season concludes next month with Janáček’s classic The Cunning Little Vixen (April 8 – 10), conducted by Mark Gibson with stage direction by Vince DeGeorge. Learn more about the production at ccm.uc.edu/boxoffice/mainstage/cunning-little-vixen.
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CCM Season Presenting Sponsor and Musical Theatre Program Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Community Partner: ArtsWave

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CCM Alumni Yi Li and Amanda Woodbury Named Grand Finalist Winners of the Metropolitan Opera’s 2014 National Council Auditions

From left to right, CCM alumni Yi Li and Amanda Woodbury.

From left to right, CCM alumni Yi Li and Amanda Woodbury.

CCM alumni Yi Li (AD, ’13) and Amanda Woodbury (MM, ’12) have been named Grand Finals Winners of the Metropolitan Opera’s 2014 National Council Auditions.

A tenor, Li is a member of the Washington National Opera’s Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program.

Woodbury, a soprano, is in her second year at the Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program at LA Opera.

Li and Woodbury were among nine singers competing in the Met’s prestigious and highly competitive Grand Finals Concert this past Sunday, March 30. The finalists were accompanied by the Met Orchestra led by Marco Armiliato. You can learn more about all of the 2014 National Council Winners here.

This marks the second consecutive year that CCM trained singers have won the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Auditions: bass-baritone Thomas Richards was named a Grand Finals Winner in 2013.

WQXR, New York’s Classical Music Radio Station, will broadcast performances and interviews with all of this year’s winners at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 1. Learn more by visiting www.wqxr.org/#!/story/video-webcast-metropolitan-opera-national-council-award-winners.

Learn more courtesy of the Cincinnati Enquirer here.

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CCM Alumna Profiled by ‘Opera News’ Magazine

Composer (and CCM alumna) Jennifer Jolley.

Composer (and CCM alumna) Jennifer Jolley.

Congratulations to CCM alumna Jennifer Jolley (DMA, 2012) on her profile in the August issue of Opera News.

Classical music critic Kyle MacMillan interviewed Jolley about the North American New Opera Workshop, or NANOWorks, which she co-founded last year.

NANOWorks is based in Cincinnati, MacMillan observes, “partly because Jolley and her collaborators live there and partly because of the rich pool of vocal talent there, due to the presence of the respected University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.”

You can read the entire article online here.

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CCM’s ‘Making Mozart’ Workshop Series Presents Two Beloved Operas This Summer

Talented young conductors will be "Finding Figaro" and "Creating Così" in a pair of semi-staged public performances in August.

While the mercury rises outdoors, a pool of talented young conductors will be generating their own heat during two groundbreaking summer workshops at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM). CCM will welcome students from all corners of the globe for “Making Mozart,” a pair of intensive workshops dedicated to the fine art of conducting Mozart opera.

Dubbed “Finding Figaro” and “Creating Così,” each workshop will culminate with a semi-staged public performance of one of Mozart’s masterworks, complete with orchestra. Le Nozze di Figaro (The Marriage of Figaro) will be performed at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 4 in Patricia Corbett TheaterCosì fan tutte will be performed at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 11 in Corbett Auditorium. Tickets for each performance are on sale now at the CCM Box Office.

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An Interview With CCM Opera Alumna Tamara Wilson

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CCM alumna Tamara Wilson shares her thoughts in an interview with Washington National Opera. This past September Wilson sang the role of Amelia in Verdi’s Un ballo in maschera with WNO and this week she is reprising the role with Teatre Principal de Maó.

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