Eastman’s Voice, Opera & Vocal Coaching (VOVC) Department values its relationship with a local organization known as Friends of Eastman Opera (FEO). For more than a decade, this group of vibrant opera connoisseurs has lent its support to Eastman Opera Theatre in a variety of ways, including the sponsorship of an annual vocal competition, giving a number of Eastman’s topmost singers the opportunity to perform for and receive feedback from distinguished adjudicators, while also competing for a monetary prize.
Robert Swensen, chair of the VOVC Department offers “enormous gratitude” to FEO: “The unique gifts that the Friends of Eastman Opera give to our students each year are incalculable in their value. This guild has consistently stood by our students, not only by the significant financial support of the annual voice competition and travel grants, but also by the kindness and individual interest in and attention shown to each vocalist.”
Eastman offers its congratulations to this year’s FEO Competition finalists. Following a distinguished preliminary round, about which judges Constance Fee and Kara Cornell expressed that “choosing a list of finalists was next to impossible” and that they were “extremely impressed by the depth of talent,” here are the singers (and their collaborative pianists) who are advancing to the final round of competition, in alphabetical order:
- Catherine Creed (Gregory Smith)
- Ghalip Ekber (Yusong Wu)
- Mary Fetterman (Samuel Ka Ming Leung)
- Benjamin Krutsch (Chun-Hsin (Cynthia) Liu)
- Kathryn Piña (Hannah Harnest)
- Darby Schmidt (Yeseul Kim)
- Emily Skilling (William Shi)
- Daniela Sosa (Xi Huang)
- Carolina Sullivan (Ariel Ho Tung Wong)
The finals will be held on Friday, February 16, at 7:30 p.m. in Kilbourn Hall. The adjudicator for the competition will be famed dramatic soprano, Christine Goerke. This event is free and open to the public and will be livestreamed.
To learn more about studying Voice at Eastman, visit esm.rochester.edu/voice.
About Christine Goerke:
Soprano Christine Goerke has appeared in the major opera houses of the world including the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Paris Opera, Teatro Real in Madrid, and others. She has sung much of the great soprano repertoire, starting with the Mozartand Handel heroines and now earning critical acclaim for the dramatic Strauss and Wagner roles. She has received praise for her portrayals of the title roles in Elektra, Turandot, and Ariadne auf Naxos, Kundry in Parsifal, and Madame Lidoine in Dialogues des Carmelites, to name a few.
Ms. Goerke has appeared with a number of the leading orchestras and worked with some of the world’s foremost conductors. Her recording of Vaughan Williams’ A Sea Symphony with Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra won the 2003 GRAMMY Award for Best Classical Recording and Best Choral Performance. She also received the 2001 Richard Tucker Award, the 2015 MusicalAmerica Vocalist of the Year Award, and the 2017 Opera News Award.
Click here to read Ms. Goerke’s full biography.