Meet our Class of 2009. We are proud and delighted to be able to support and provide a “career bridge” for these talented young performers.

Desiree Alejandro, soprano, received both her Bachelor and Master of Music Degrees from the University of Houston. She took Second Prize at the Regional Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions in San Antonio, and was the Grand Prize winner for the Young Texas Artists Competition This summer she will sing as an Apprentice Artist for Des Moines Metro Opera. Next year she will be the Artist in Residence with the Amarillo Opera in Texas. Future engagements include Nella in Gianni Schicchi for Amarillo Opera in 2010.

Joseph Barren, baritone, is from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is currently pursuing his Masters in Opera Performance at the Curtis Institute of Music. He received his Bachelors of Vocal performance from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. Joseph sang with the Opera Theatre of St. Louis Gerdine Young Artist Program, Opera North’s Young Artist Program, and the Oberlin in Italy Program This summer will be a member The Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program

Alyssa Cox, Soprano, has just received her masters of music degree from Oberlin College. Recently she debuted at Carnegie Hall Weill Recital Hall performing the title role in Oberlin College’s production of Massenet’s Cendrillon. Alyssa was a soloist in Grieg’s Peer Gynt under the baton of Vladimir Ashkenazy. She won first prize with the Barry Alexander International Vocal Competition, and this summer will be featured in Poulenc’s La Voix Humaine with music director Paul Keenan in Dublin, Ireland.

Samantha Grenell-Zaidman recently performed the roles of Josephine in HMS Pinafore and Hodel in Fiddler on the Roof with Ohio Light Opera. Previously, she was a Resident Artist with Lake George Opera. Ms. Grenell-Zaidman earned her Masters of Music in Voice from Manhattan School of Music, where she performed Nella in Gianni Schicchi, Griffelkin in Griffelkin (cover-run) and Adina and Susanna in scenes from L’elisir d’amore and Le Nozze di Figaro. She earned her BFA in Vocal Performance from Carnegie Mellon University where she performed Elvira in L’italiana in Algeri, Miss Wordsworth in Albert Herring, and she understudied Cunegonde in Candide. Samantha Grenell-Zaidman was a district winner of the 2008 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions in Boston.

Rachel Holmes, soprano, has just completed her Bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance at the New England Conservatory. Her upcoming engagements include performing in recital with John Musto at Songfest in Malibu, California in June, followed by singing the role of Beth March in the European premiere of Little Women by Mark Adamo, with the composer in attendance. The premiere will take place in Brugge, Belgium in July and August. In the summer of 2008, she made her European debut singing the role of Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro under the baton of Joseph Rescigno in Novafeltria, Italy.

David Krohn, Baritone, resides in New York City, where he is pursuing his Master’s degree from The Juilliard School. Mr. Krohn made his New York Philharmonic debut as a soloist last November at Carnegie Hail with Alan Gilbert conducting Bernstein’s West Side Story Suites. Operatic roles include II Conte in Le Nozze di Figaro, Tarquinius inBenjamin Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia. Recent concert engagements include singing with the New York Philharmonic, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Canadian National Arts Centre, and Mendelssohn Orchestra and Choir.

Hye Jung Lee, soprano, has just received her Masters Degree from the Mannes College of Music. In 2008 and she earned a Graduate degree from the Dresden Germany Hochshule, and in 2006 her Bachelor Degree from Seoul National University. She was finalist in the Internationaler Gesangs wettbewerb Feruucio Tagliavina Awards in Germany, and won second prize at the 5th annual Shizuoka International Opera Competition She has performed with orchestras in the United Sates, Germany and Korea. She recently performed the role of Marie in La Fille de Régiment by Donezetti at Mannes College.

Rebecca Jo Loeb, soprano, is currently a Graduate Diploma candidate at The Juilliard School studying with Edith Bers. Rebecca just finished her second summer as a Fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center where she performed he role of Jenny hi The Rise and Fall of the City ofMahagonny. Awards include First Prize in the Lotte Lenya CompetitionThis summer Rebecca will be a Young Artist at Glimmerglass Opera where she will perform Anina and cover Flora in La Traviata and perform the Sailor in Dido and Aeneas. Additionally Rebecca will be featured as Bessie in Weill’s Mahagonny Songspiele at the Ravinia Music Festival conducted by James Cordon.

Jonathan Gabriel Michie, baritone, He recently completed his Master of Music degree at the Eastman School of Music Upcoming engagements include Orff s Carmina Burana with the Shepherd Masterworks Chorale and an Apprenticeship with Lake George Opera at Saratoga.. August brings a concert of Kurt Weill’s Mahagonny Songspiel at Chicago’s Ravinia Festival, under the direction of James Conlon. He has been selected as a Resident Artist with the Florida Grand Opera for the 2009/10 season. He is the recipient of awards from the Kurt Weill Foundation’s Lotte Lenya Competition, the Licia Albanese/Puccini Foundation, the Palm Beach Opera Competition, and the Lotte Lehmann Foundation’s American Song Award among others.

Kevin Thompson, bass, Mr. Thompson a native of Washington, D.C. and is an alumnus of The Juilliard School. He sang the role of Osmin in Die Entführung with the New Jersey Summer Opera Theater and the role of Mattel in Troubled Island by Still with the New York City Opera, and with the Augusta Opera he appeared as Judge Turpin in Sweeney Todd, He has received awards and honors from the Aspen Musical Festival, the Paul Robeson Competition, the Liederkranz Competition and the Jose Iturbi International Muisic Competition among others. He has had the honor of singing under the baton of Julius Rudel.

Michelle Trovato, soprano, is a graduate of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, and has won several awards including the Metropolitan Opera National Council District Audition and the Les Azuriales Opera 1st Prize for Most Promising Singer in France. She has been selected as a young artist with the Seattle Opera Young Artists Program, the Opera Colorado Outreach Ensemble, and the Chautauqua Institute for Voice, and made her Bronx Opera Company debut as Micaela in Carmen. This summer Michelle will be a Festival Artist with Utah Festival Opera.

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