Scene - Opera Guild of Rochester


Scene - Opera Guild of Rochester
Mercury Opera Rochester presents
(The Elixir of Love)
A Comic Opera in Two Acts
Music by Giacomo Puccini
Libretto by Felice Romani
Gerard Floriano
Conductor & Artistic Director
Steven Daigle
Stage Director
Scenery designed by Ian Fallon
Lighting designed by Nic Minetor
and Dan O’Donnell
There will be one intermission.
An Italian village, in the mid-19th century
Act I: The lawn of Adina’s farmhouse on her estate near the village.
Adina, Giannetta, and a group of peasants are resting beneath a shade tree.
Nemorino laments that he has nothing to offer Adina but love. The peasants urge
their mistress to read them a story — how Tristan won the heart of Isolde with
a magic love potion. Sergeant Belcore swaggers in and asks for Adina’s hand in
marriage. She responds that she will think it over. When Adina and Nemorino
are left alone, he awkwardly declares his love. She tells him his time would be
better spent looking after his ailing uncle than mooning over her, for she is fickle
as a breeze.
Villagers hail the traveling salesman Dr. Dulcamara, who proclaims the virtues of
his patent “medicine.” The potion is inexpensive so the villagers buy eagerly.
Nemorino asks Dulcamara if he sells the elixir of love described in Adina’s book.
Pulling out a bottle of Bordeaux, the charlatan declares this is the very draught.
Though it costs him his last cent, Nemorino buys the wine and hastily drinks it.
Adina enters to find him tipsy; certain of winning her love, he pretends indifference.
To punish him, Adina flirts with Belcore, who persuades her to marry him at once.
Horrified, Nemorino begs Adina to wait one more day, but she ignores him and
invites the entire village to her wedding feast. Nemorino rushes away, moaning
that he has been ruined by Dulcamara’s elixir.
15 Minute Intermission
Act II: The same. At the pre-wedding supper, Dulcamara and Adina entertain
with a barcarole. Adina goes off with Belcore to sign the marriage contract and
the guests disperse. Dulcamara is joined by Nemorino, who begs for another
bottle of elixir, although he has no money. Belcore returns, annoyed that Adina
has postponed the wedding until nightfall. Nemorino explains his financial plight
to Belcore, who persuades him to join the army and receive a bonus awaiting all
volunteers. Nemorino signs up, enabling him to buy more elixir.
Peasant girls hear from Giannetta that Nemorino’s uncle has died and willed him
a fortune. When he reels in, giddy from a second bottle of wine, they besiege
him with attention. Adina and Dulcamara arrive and see him leave with a bevy
of beauties, and she, angry that he has sold his freedom to Belcore, grows doubly
furious. Dulcamara claims that Nemorino’s popularity is due to the magic potion.
Adina replies she will win him back through her own charms. Reentering alone
in a pensive mood, Nemorino acts disinterested. Adina finally confesses to
Nemorino that she bought back his enlistment papers because she loves him.
Belcore marches in to find Adina affianced to Nemorino. Declaring that thousands
of women await him, Belcore accepts the situation philosophically. Attributing
Nemorino’s happiness and inheritance to the elixir, Dulcamara quickly sells more
bottles before making his escape.
As a courtesy to the performers and audience, patrons arriving
after the performance has started will be seated at intermission.
Adina, a wealthy and capricious farm-keeper ...............................Hallie Silverston
Nemorino, a young peasant in love with Adina .............................................Min Jin
Sergeant Belcore, Sergeant of the village garrison....................Ted Christopher
Doctor Dulcamara, a perambulating Physician...........................Mario Martinez
Giannetta, a peasant girl .....................................................................Holly Bewlay
Becki Boyanski, Sheila Sullivan Buck, Bob Croog, Max Denler, Jennifer Groves,
Stacie Henshaw, Bill Hearne, Bob Holmes, Lindsay Holmes, Denise Kless,
Craig Larson, Mary Menzie, Madeline Miskie, Nathan Oakes, James Pike,
Lori Romaniw, Lisa Rosenbauer, Dennis Rosenbaum, James Scott,
Elizabeth Swarthout, Laura Szymanowicz, Lynn Zicari
Brian Burdick, Kyle Knapp, Josh Fein
Production Staff
Artistic Director & Conductor............................................................Gerard Floriano
Stage Director ..........................................................................................Steven Daigle
Assistant Stage Director..........................................................................Stephen Carr
Stage Manager ........................................................................................Lindsay Baker
Scenery Design................................................................................................Ian Fallon
Lighting Design.........................................................Nic Minetor & Dan O’Donnell
Chorusmaster ..............................................................................................Amy Foster
Principal Coach/Accompanist ..............................................................Linda Boianova
Chorus Coaches/Accompanists ...............................Jason Holmes & Hyery Hwang
Wardrobe Coordinator ..............................................................................Nellica Rave
Assistants ..................Claudette Hercules, Betha Christopher, Damita Peace
Costumes provided by ......................................................................Tri-Cities Opera
Hair Stylist ................................................................................................Sue Harrison
Scenery Construction .........................................................Matt Scheidt & Ian Fallon
Projected English Language Translation.......................................Michael McConnell
Supertitle Operation ...............................................................................Galina Fesyuk
RPO Box Office Operations ..........................................................................Kate Wahl
Violin I
Lee Wilkins, concertmaster
Jo Nardolillo
Andrew Lisbin
Lauren Chauvin
Anastasiya Filippochkina
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Sherry McCarthy
Peggy Bray Warren
Sarah Camesano
Matthew Zerweck
Joanne Lowe
Shana Hobin Stewart
Janeen Wilkins
Jacinda Dudley
Melissa Burton Anderson
Randy Calistri-Yeh
Hyun Ji Choi
James Kim
Timothy Blinkhorn
Stephen Bewlay
Glennda Dove Pellito
Diane Peters
Allison Franco
Alyssa McKeithen
Margaret Quackenbush
Jun Qian
Lynn Hilemam
Kirsta Rodean
Mary Hunt
Casey Springstead
Jonathan Kruger
Neal Melley
Jillian Pritchard
Bronwynn Wyatt
Jennifer Ruggieri
Linda Boianova
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In Honor of…
Marjorie Grinols’ Birthday
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Sandra Koon
Peggy Webber’s Birthday
Joanne Prives
Claude Spingarn’s Birthday
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Gifts In Kind
Wayne Bulling, Parachute Graphics
Strathallan Hotel
Special Thanks To:
Eastman School of Music – Use of the Eastman
Theatre, meeting rooms, rehearsal space,
equipment, & support in many ways
Bethlehem Lutheran Church – Rehearsal space
Christ Episcopal Church, Pittsford –
Rehearsal space
This production is funded in part by a grant from
the Arts and Cultural Council for Greater Rochester,
the New York State Council on the Arts, and the
New York State Legislature.
Tribute gifts are a special way to remember loved
ones or commemorate special occasions such as
birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, births, or
In Memory of…
Haskell Rosenberg
Agneta D. Borgstedt, MD
Cortland & Ella Brovitz
Margaret J. Carnall
Robert Cherry
Sally Clapp
Sarah Collins
Anne Gitlin
William & Deven Hearne
Janet Irwin
Rose-Marie B. Klipstein
Tax-deductible contributions are
gratefully accepted by
Mercury Opera Rochester,
300 Winton Road South,
Rochester, NY 14610
Program Notes
Gaetano Donizetti’s opera L’Elisir d’Amore is by its own creation a true ‘elixir of
love.’ It contains all the essential elements for a true evening of romance: the Italian
countryside, whimsical courtship, sentimental tenderness, the shadows of nightfall,
cheap Bordeaux! and music that truly lifts the heart.
L’Elisir d’Amore premiered May 12, 1832 and is believed to have been composed in
two weeks. It is the earliest of Gaetano Donizetti’s operas never to have left the
standard operatic repertoire, and during his lifetime it was one of Donizetti’s most
frequently performed works. Donizetti alternates sparkling tunes with emotional
melodies. His gift for pungent characterization in his melodies and orchestration
illuminates the score. The story first originated as an Italian play, Il filtro, by Silvio
Malaperta, then became an opera by Daniel Auber called Le Philtre (1831) with a
libretto by Eugene Scribe. Donizetti, on all accounts, was a true lyric theater dramatist.
His musical inspiration was often associated with the potential emotional substance
and development of the characters in a given plot. He often made and asked for
additions and changes in the libretto to satisfy his dramatic tastes and what he thought
the audience would want. It was suggested (demanded) by Donizetti that ‘Una furtiva
lagrima’ be added to the libretto even after repeated objections by Romani. How
grateful we are that Donizetti won that battle! He enjoyed high theatrical drama in
his compositions.
Identified as an ‘opera comica’ or ‘romantic opera buffa,’ L’Elisir d’Amore reflects a
sentimental development of its characters not heard in opera of its type during the
time. Nemorino, a village simpleton, learns to assert himself, as Adina comes to
understand that a constant heart is preferable to the fickle one of a practiced womanizer
(Belcore). Our production gives special consideration to the characters’ relationships
to each other before the start of the opera. The line separating the social classes in
the eighteenth century was becoming less defined by the early nineteenth century.
Marriage was becoming less dependent on arrangements by exclusive bloodlines, and
more on ‘wealth’ in general. The working class landowners were now getting all the
cultural conveniences of the wealthy: education, art and musical instruction.
Adina comes from a family who has made their wealth from cultivating and harvesting
their land. Although she was given the best in education and instruction in deportment,
she is essentially, at heart, part of the workers that serve her. As children, Adina and
Nemorino were playmates unaware of the social class that would separate their future
lives. But as they grew older, Adina, as a cultural formality, distanced herself from casual
contact with Nemorino. At the start of the opera the audience is introduced immediately
to the conflict. During this one twelve hour period in the lives of these two characters,
two additional outside characters are introduced to heighten the conflict and resolve
it: Belcore, an arrogant sergeant of a local military garrison and Dr. Dulcamara, a
traveling salesman of bogus cures. Belcore’s interest in Adina has little to do with
heartfelt love. Winning Adina is for Belcore a conquest, with their proposed marriage
serving as a status symbol. Based on their casual contact in the second act, Dr.
Dulcamara and Adina must have met before his arrival (possibly he was known by her
parents). Adina allows his fraudulent transactions with her workers because his product
(being mostly alcohol) truly gives them hope and lifts their spirits.
Three of Donizetti’s most popular operas of today are comic in nature: L’Elisir
d’Amore, Don Pasquale and Le Fille de Regiment; but it is important to remember
that out of the over seventy operas he composed during his lifetime, only about twenty
are comedies.
Written by Steven Daigle, May 2006
Gerard Floriano – Artistic Director/Conductor
Emerging American Conductor Gerard Floriano is equally accomplished
in both the operatic and orchestral arenas. As Artistic Director of
Rochester Opera Factory, he led the rise of this ambitious company,
conducting full-scale critically acclaimed performances of Mascagni’s
Cavalleria Rusticana, Leoncavallo’s I Pagliacci, Die Fledermaus by
Johann Strauss, and Puccini’s Suor Angelica.The 2005/06 season has been
an exciting one for Mr. Floriano who, after having been named co-Artistic
Director of Mercury Opera Rochester, led Mascagni’s L’Amico Fritz and
Donizetti’s Elixir of Love. Writing about L’Amico Fritz, D&C music critic
John Pitcher wrote “Floriano proved to be nothing les than a virtuoso
conductor… He led his fine orchestra with color, precision and a welcome degree of sweep...”
ushering in a “New age of Good Opera” in western New York. In December of 2005, Mr. Floriano
led the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra in a series of five holiday concerts throughout the
Rochester region, and in March 2006, he made his Carnegie Hall conducting debut with the
Greater Buffalo Youth Orhcestra. A regular guest conductor in Europe, Mr. Floriano has led
performances in Krakow, Warsaw, Prague, Barcelona, Florence and Leipzig. Most recently, he
conducted the Orchestra di Vicenza and opera chorus and soloists of the Venice Opera in a
spectacular performance of Mozart’s Requiem. Mr. Floriano is acclaimed as an innovative
programmer and dedicated educational conductor. Under his leadership, the Greater Buffalo
Youth Orchestra has become a premiere training orchestra for the most talented young musicians
in western NY. Dr. Floriano serves as the Director of Choral Activities at the State University
of New York at Geneseo and Resident Conductor at the Brevard Summer Music Festival. He
is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music with Doctor of Musical Arts and Master of Music
degrees in Conducting.
Steven Daigle – Stage Director
Steven Daigle has served as part of the artistic staff for more than 300
lyric theater productions, along with calling over 400 professional operatic
performances as a production stage manager. Daigle’s experience as a
stage director encompasses a range of repertory for the lyric theater
stage. Extensive directing credits include the complete spectrum of grand
opera, light opera, and Broadway musical fare in companies as diverse as
Ohio Light Opera Company, Eastman School of Music, Mercury Opera
Rochester, The Lyric of Atlanta, Oberlin Conservatory, Louisiana State
University, Florida State Opera, South Georgia Opera, Columbia Theater
Players, and Kent State Opera Workshop. Articles and reviews of Daigle’s
work have been published in Opera News, Opera London, American Record Guide, Gramophone,
Fanfare, Classical Singer, and Opera Now. With the Ohio Light Opera Company in a variety of
capacities since 1990, in 1999 he was appointed artistic director for the company. He has directed
over 50 operettas and served on the artistic team in over 100 productions. As artistic director,
he has produced and directed revivals of a number of traditional operettas that have been given
an American premiere in their original form, and produced six historical reconstructions all of
which have resulted in complete recordings. In September 2003, The Ohio Light Opera was
given an Award of Achievement by Northern Ohio Live for its role in preserving operetta during
the past 25 years. Mr. Daigle presently is Associate Professor and Head of the Opera Department
at the Eastman School of Music, where he has served on the faculty since 1997.
Holly Bewlay – Giannetta
Holly Bewlay, born in Pusan, South Korea, received her vocal training at
the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Mass where she
received the Bachelor of Music degree. Ms. Bewlay then completed her
Master’s degree at the Eastman School of Music where she also received
the prestigious Performer’s Certificate in 2000. She has performed
numerous roles with Opera Rochester and Eastman Opera Theatre,
including Despina in Cosi fan Tutte, Juliette in Romeo and Juliette,Venere
and Amor in Orfeo, Laetitia in The Old Maid and the Thief, Sophie in
Werther, and as Bianca in the world premiere performance of Ray Picken’s
opera An Affair of State. Ms. Bewlay has also appeared in benefit concerts for the Friends of
Autistic People in Connecticut and the victims of September 11th. She has been a soloist in the
New Haven Choral’s performance of Bach Magnificat, the Yale Recital Chorus performance
of Mozart’s Solemn Vespers, Eastman Summer Sings performance of Brahms’ Requiem, and four
times in Handel’s Messiah with Rochester Chamber Orchestra. Ms. Bewlay will be completing
the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the Eastman School of Music this spring, and she joined
the faculty at the Buffalo State College (SUNY) in the fall of 2005.
Ted Christopher – S e r g e a n t B e l c o r e
Baritone Ted Christopher has appeared throughout the US, Canada, and
Europe in opera and concert. Trained at the Curtis Institute of Music,
he supplemented his studies as a member of the Juilliard Opera Center
and the Merola Program of San Francisco Opera. In opera,Ted has appeared
as Figaro (both Mozart’s and Rossini’s), Don Giovanni, Guglielmo in Così
Fan Tutte, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Belcore in L’Elisir d’Amore,
Marcello in La Bohème, Ford in Falstaff, and Morales in Carmen with
companies such as Cleveland Opera, Opera Company of Philadelphia,
Vancouver Opera, Anchorage Opera, and Skylight Opera Theater. Ted’s
most recent appearance was as The Bonz in Mercury Opera Rochester’s
recent production of Puccini’s Madama Butterfly. In concert, he has
appeared with ensembles such as the Seattle Symphony, the Czech Philharmonic, the Berlin
Rundfunksinfonie Orchester, and the BBC Singers in venues such as the Kennedy Center, the
Rudolfinum (Prague), the Schauspielhaus (Berlin), and Carnegie Hall. Over the past nine summers,
Ted has been a featured member of the Ohio Light Opera, appearing in over 45 productions
of both standard and obscure operetta, including the complete Gilbert and Sullivan canon.
Currently, Ted is Assistant Professor of Opera and Associate Director of Eastman Opera Theatre
at the Eastman School of Music.
Min Jin – Nemorino
As a native of South Korea, tenor Min Jin has delighted audiences with
his concert and opera performances throughout Korea and the United
States. He studied at Chong Shin University and Yon sei University before
coming to the United States, where he received his Master’s degree from
the Mannes College of Music. Min has appeared in many of the major
concert halls such as Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center as a recitalist,
opera performer, and oratorio soloist. Min has performed Haydn’s Creation,
Handel’s Messiah, Mozart’s Coronation Mass, Dubois’s The Seven Last
Word of Christ, Mendelssohn’s St. Paul, Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis,
and his Symphony No. 9, and Schubert’s Mass No. 2 in G, among others.
His opera performances include La Rondine (Ruggero), LaBohème
(Rodolfo), Lucia di Lammermoor (Edgardo), Romeo et Juliette (Romeo),
Carmen (Don Jose), Otello (Otello), Manon (Des Grieux), Werther (Werther), A Midsummer
Night’s Dream (Lysander), La Vera Costanza (Masino) and several roles with New Jersey State
Opera, Aspen Opera, Dicapo Opera, Academic Opera, Mannes Opera, Eastman Opera and
Kwangju City Opera. In the summer of 2004, he appeared with Aspen Opera where he sang the
role of the Duke in Rigoletto under the baton of Julius Rudel. Min has toured in Canada,
Singapore, Indonesia, Japan, Florida, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Atlanta, Philadelphia, and
Washington D.C, as a recitalist, and was a First Prize winner of the Artist International Music
Competition and Korean Music Association Competition and a winner of the Heida Hermann
International Voice Competition and Vocal Artist Competition. Currently, he is working on the
Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the Eastman School of Music.
Mario Mar tinez – D o c t o r D u l c a m a ra
Baritone Mario Martínez made his United States operatic debut in 1998
with the Rochester Philharmonic production of Beethoven’s Fidelio, in
the role of Don Pizarro. During his professional career, Mario has appeared
with the Rochester Philharmonic, Charleston Symphony, Western New
York Chamber Orchestra, National Symphony and Philharmonic Orchestras
of Santo Domingo, New Eastman Symphony, Eastman Philharmonia, Opera
Rochester, Orchard Park Chorale and Symphony, Buffalo Opera Unlimited,
Opera de Las Américas and Compañia Lírica Dominicana. Besides singing
professionally, Martínez serves as Coordinator of Vocal Studies at Nazareth
College, where he teaches voice, vocal pedagogy and song literature.
Mario is an active member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing and was a participant
in the NATS Intern Program in 2003. In August 2005, he was invited as guess conductor for the
National Choir’s 50th Anniversary celebrations in his native country, the Dominican Republic.
Hallie Silverston – Adina
Soprano Hallie Silverston has just completed her first year as a Masters
student at the Eastman School of Music, studying voice with Karen Holvik.
A native of Los Angeles, Hallie graduated from the University of Oregon
in June 2005, where she studied with Milagro Vargas. Roles include
Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi, Anne Egerman in A Little Night Music,
Belinda in Dido and Aeneas, and Papagena in Die Zauberflöte. Ms.
Silverston was also the soprano soloist in Bach’s Magnificat and Mozart’s
C Minor Mass conducted by Helmuth Rilling. She has been a finalist
in several competitions in the Los Angeles and Rochester areas, including
the Los Angeles Music Center Spotlight Awards and the Friends of Eastman
Opera Competition, and she recently placed third in the 2006 Lotte Lenya Competition. She
has performed in master classes with Ruth Ann Swenson, Mira Zakai, Martin Katz, John Harbison,
and Jake Heggie. Hallie is thrilled to be making her professional debut with Mercury Opera.
Lindsay W. Baker – S t a g e M a n a g e r
Lindsay Baker is pleased to join Mercury Opera Rochester for this
production of L’Elisir d’Amore. In addition to her work as the production
stage manager of Eastman Opera Theatre, Lindsay has stage managed
for the Ohio Light Opera and the Rochester Opera Factory. Lindsay is
also a director, playwright/composer, music director, performer and
teacher. Local professional associations include Roberts Wesleyan College
Community Theatre, Rochester Shakespeare Players, Irondequoit Theater
Guild’s Summer Performing Arts Camp, Downstairs Cabaret Theater
and the BOCES #1 EMCC School of Performing Arts. She received her
B.A. in theater and music from St. Olaf College (Northfield, MN) and
trained at the O’Neill National Theater Institute (Waterford, CT) and
Moscow Art Theater (Russia).
Linda Boianova – Coach/Accompanist
Bulgarian-American pianist Linda Boianova holds a Doctor of Musical
Arts degree and Performer’s Certificate from the Eastman School of
Music in Piano Performance, Theory, and Vocal Coaching. Currently on
the faculty of Nazareth College and the School of Performing Arts, she
has performed in Switzerland, Germany, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Austria, and
Japan, as well as the United States. Ms. Boianova has premiered works
by American, Chinese, and Bulgarian composers and has won scholarships
to the Mozarteum Azademy, the International Piano Workshop and the
Rome Festival; fellowships to the Quartet Program at Bucknell University,
the International Piano Academy in Hamamatsu, Japan, and the Art Song
Festival at the Cleveland Institute of Music; and a grant from the Landow
Doctoral Fund.
Stephen Carr – Assistant Stage Director
Having spent the majority of his life as a performer, Stephen Carr has
recently shifted the focus of his career onto stage directing. He is currently
pursuing a Master of Music in Stage Directing at the Eastman School of
Music where he teaches the Lyric Theater class. Stephen was last involved
with Mercury Opera as the assistant director of Madama Butterfly.
Performance credits include New York, regional, and international productions
of Jesus Christ Superstar (European Tour), The Scarlet Pimpernel, and
Ragtime, as well as engagements with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra,
Choral Arts Society,Annapolis Opera Company, Baltimore Opera Company,
and Ohio Light Opera. A winner of the Rosa Ponselle Vocal Competition’s
Silver Rose Award (laureates concert Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall,) he has participated in
master classes with Ralph Fiennes, Denyce Graves, Jeremy Sams, Philip Quast, and Julia McKenzie.
His recordings include Naughty Marietta and Utopia Limited for Newport Classics. Stephen
is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music and the Royal Academy of Music in London.
Upcoming engagements include Stage Director of Mercury’s upcoming production of Mozart’s
Die Entführung aus dem Serail in October 2006, serving as Assistant Director for Opera
North’s summer 2006 season, and Stage Director of Sondheim’s Assassins at Eastman in spring
Ian Fallon – Scenery Design
Ian Fallon earned degrees in Design and Technical Theatre from SUNY Brockport and has designed
sets for productions of Mattel Toys and Sonnenberg Gardens. He works extensively in set
construction and design for Eastman Opera Theatre.
Amy Foster – Chorusmaster
A DMA candidate in collaborative piano and chamber music at Eastman,
Amy Foster joins Mercury Opera after serving as Coach/Accompanist
with Rochester Opera Factory for two seasons. She earned degrees from
Louisiana State and Georgia State Universities in piano performance.
Her performing venues include Carnegie Hall and Spivey Hall, and she
has performed throughout Holland, France, Switzerland, Germany & Austria.
Prior to attending Eastman, Amy was director of choral activities at
Morrow High School and on the faculty of Clayton College and State
University in Atlanta.
Nic Minetor – Lighting Design
Lighting designer/director for theatre, film and TV, Nic Minetor has been
resident designer for more than 40 productions of Eastman Opera Theatre,
including Candide, La Boheme, The Medium, Dialogues of the
Carmelites, and Sweeney Todd, and many Opera Theatre of Rochester
and Geva Theatre productions, including A Christmas Carol. His work
is also seen at NITD, SUNY Brockport, Elmira and Nazareth Colleges.
Dan R. O’Donnell – Lighting Design
Daniel O’Donnell has been doing theater and lighting in Rochester, and around the country for
a quarter century. He’s lit everything from lions and tigers and bears (oh my!) to college
presidents. His work has been seen around Rochester, and as far away as Wichita, Kansas. He’s
very pleased to be continuing his association with Mercury Opera.
Nellica Rave – Wardrobe Coordinator
Nellica Rave is new to the Rochester area, having moved here in August.
She grew up on a Christmas tree farm in Washington State. She has
her MFA in Costume Design from the University of Massachussetts,
Amherst. Her favorite projects include designing West Side Stories
for New World Theater, Blithe Spirit for Pioneer Valley Summer Theater,
and shop managing the Paralympics Opening Ceremonies in Salt Lake
2002. She has worked locally for the JCC, Eastman Opera, RIT,
Irondequoit Theatre Guild and TYKES.
Just finishing its first season, Mercury Opera Rochester is a new artistic
endeavor which is the merger of Rochester Opera Factory, Opera Rochester,
and the Opera Theatre Guild of Rochester, with the support of the Rochester
Fund for Opera, the Eastman School of Music, Eastman Opera Theatre, and
Friends of Eastman Opera. All of these groups consist of people who love
opera and are willing to do what it takes to get more opera and better opera
in Rochester. This consolidation of missions and organizations is unique
among American opera companies.
The primary mission of Mercury Opera Rochester is to produce professional
opera for a growing, appreciative audience, utilizing the following principles:
Uphold high artistic standards in all endeavors.
Maintain fiscal responsibility.
Educate present and future audiences. We want people to enjoy and
appreciate opera. This includes adult education and fun events as well as
structured programs in schools and colleges.
Provide performance opportunities for local singers, both professional and
Collaborate with other like-minded organizations in the area.
For more information about Mercury Opera Rochester and any of our
upcoming performances, call 585-473-6567 or check our website at We keep patrons informed of our projects
via mail and email. If you would like to be added to our private mailing list
or would like to receive our newsletter, please let us know.
Co-Artistic Directors: Benton Hess & Gerard Floriano
Executive Director: Kristen Kessler
Board of Directors
Sarah Collins, President
William Hearne, Treasurer
Arthur Axelrod
Robert Croog
Peter Durant
Ron Fondiller
David Friedman
Jack Langerak
C. Gavin Strakosh, Vice President
Agneta Borgstedt, Secretary
Craig Larson
Mary McNamara
Mary Menzie
Rosalba Pisaturo
Barbara Reifler
Judith Ricker
Sunny Rosenberg
Justin Runke
Helga Strasser
James Undercofler
Margaret Webber
Casey Molino Dunn and Kristin Goodkin, Interns
The Future of Mercury Opera Rochester
We need your help to continue to make the vision of Mercury Opera
Rochester a reality. We are asking for financial support to help us into our
second season and beyond and keep great opera coming your way. With your
support, professional opera can flourish and grow in Rochester. If you like
our performance and our philosophy, please support our future. Consider
a donation to continue professional opera performances in Rochester and
to help more people understand and enjoy opera. Tax-deductible donations
are gratefully accepted by Mercury Opera Rochester, 300 Winton Road South,
Rochester, NY, 14610.
Future Events
The Guild of Mercury Opera Rochester presents:
First Annual Recital & Reception for Mercury Opera Donors
Sunday, May 21, 2 PM, Rochester Academy of Medicine, 334-2323 for information
Bus Tour to Glimmerglass Opera – Janácek’s Jenûfa
Monday, July 31, 586-2274 for information
Announcing Mercury Opera Rochester’s
2006-2007 Season!
October 6 & 8, 2006:
Mozart’s The Abduction from the Seraglio
Roberts Wesleyan Hale Auditorium
November 3 & 5, 2006:
Beloved Opera Choruses in Concert
January 26 & 28, 2007:
Bellini’s Norma
Eastman Theatre with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra
June 1-3, 2007:
Kern’s Showboat
Eastman Theatre
Look for our season brochure in your mailbox in June!
300 Winton Rd. South
Rochester, NY 14610
(585) 473-6567

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