Singers In The News
Congrats to our 2014 winner Faustine de Mones! As a result of her winning the Contemporary Prize of the Georges Enescu Competition, she will soon be performing at a Georges Enesco concert in France! She was recently Soeur Constance in Poulenc’s Dialogue of the Carmelites in Aachen, Germany.
Bien Joué Faustine!
Join us in congratulating 2015 Career Bridges Winner, Megan Nielson! She was awarded the Wagner Society of New York’s 2018 Ursula Springer Award. The purpose of this award is to support young singers with outstanding potential in the Wagner repertoire. We are very proud of you Megan!
Bryan Murray, a 2016 Career Bridges winner, is singing the Cappadocian and 2nd Nazarene in Salome all the way in Germany at Deutsche Oper Berlin right now! Good luck or rather Viel Glück from your Career Bridges family!
This month we are featuring one of our most gifted winners, Teresa Castillo!
A 2017 winner of Career Bridges, Teresa is a talented soprano who has performed with New England Symphonic Ensemble (Carnegie Hall), Imperial Symphony Orchestra, San Francisco Opera, and many other prestigious companies. She is a graduate of both the Metropolitan State University of Denver (bachelor’s degree) and the Lamont School of Music (master’s degree). Last summer she appeared as Creusa in Medea in Corinto, at the SUNY Purchase Performing Arts Center under the baton of Will Crutchfield. We are very proud of Teresa’s accomplished career, and we can’t wait to see what’s next for her!
Facebook— Teresa Castillo
Hear her amazing voice!
We are also featuring Baritone Joshua Conyers this month!
A 2018 Career Bridges winner, and an accomplished performer, Joshua continues to be recognized as one the promising young dramatic voices of today. Mr. Conyers is a member of the Washington National Opera’s Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program, a program of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for the 2018-2019 season. He made his Carnegie Hall Debut in 2018 as the Baritone Soloist performing Mozart’s Regina Cœli, K. 276, Vaughn Williams’ Serenade to Music, Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy and Mark Hayes’ Te Deum.
Mr. Conyers will be a Guest Artist at Opera Wilmington/UNC Wilmington annual Opera Symposium, in celebration of Caterina Jarboro, in conjunction with Black History Month as a Recitalist and presenting a Masterclass. Joshua has done Career Bridges proud through his skilled voice, brilliant performances, and compassionate personality. Come see him in Frank Martin’s Le Vin herbé at the Wolf Trap Opera/Washington Concert Opera, February 9 & 10, 2019!
Listen to his exceptional voice:
Career Bridges congratulates 2017 winner Sylvia D’Eramo on her winning the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Audition Florida District Auditions. She is now a National Semifinalist and will be competing on stage in March. Sylvia is a graduate of SUNY Purchase and the Yale School of Music, where in the 2016-17 Season she sang the challenging role of Abigail in Robert Wards’ “The Crucible” recorded by Albany Records. She has Joined the Palm Beach Opera apprentice program and is featured as as Adele in “die Fledermaus: In 2018 she was a member of the prestigious Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program
What the press is saying about 2007 Career Bridges winner, Robert Balonek’s turn as Shaunard in last month’s highly successful run of La Bohème with the Piedmont Opera in Winston-Salem, NC:
“Steven LaCosse, the stage director, uses the physicality of his singers to great effect, especially Balonek, who might well be the most acrobatic opera singer I have ever seen. His antics are dazzling, and his voice is, too.” (Winston-Salem Journal)
“Schaunard, the musician, was beautifully sung by Robert Balonek, whose acting was convincing and comedy hilarious.” (CVNC)
Herbert Zapiór (Career Bridges 2018 winner), is a recent winner of the Marcella Sembrich International Voice Competition. Meche Kroop in her Meche di voce column: “He gave an unforgettable performance of Figaro’s aria from Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia. We wanted to become his client that very minute! To add to the interest, the patter part was perfectly realized–rapidly but with no loss of clarity…(Later) he sang ‘Ah!, per sempre…Bel sogno beato’, Riccardo’s aria from Bellini’s I Puritani. There was legato to spare, some gorgeous melismatic measures, and warmth of tone.”
Career Bridges to pleased to note that one of our 2017 Grant Winners, Bass-Baritone Lawson Anderson was given the $10,000 George London Award in memory of Kirsten Flagstad in the recent 47th annual George London Foundation Awards Competition for young American and Canadian opera singers. Lawson said, “It was a tremendous honor to sing Wotan, one of Mr. London’s legendary roles, for such an esteemed jury and audience at the Morgan Library, and I’m thrilled to continue to study and work this beautiful music out of respect for Mr. London’s legacy and the opportunity this foundation has created for so many emerging artists.”
We have wonderful news to share about our Career Bridges Winners. We are very proud of the accomplishments of our singers, and our three-year mentoring and nurturing program has enabled many of them to fulfill their dream of a career. Barbara and I are deeply appreciative of your continuing interest and support which makes this all possible and look forward to seeing you at our future events.
Group Bridges is delighted to congratulate the eight career bridges winners who are apprentice artists at Santa Fe this summer. A wonderful valuable experience, in wonderful surroundings.
Singers in the Collage
From Top Left: Alyssa Martin, Tyler Putnam, Anne Marie Stanley
Center: Heather Phillips,
From Bottom Left: Jorrell Williams, Rebecca Krynski, Kevin Thompson
Exciting news about César Delgado, our 2014 Career Bridges Grant Winner. He has been chosen to participate in a master class given by Placido Domingo March 29, 2015, at the Bruno Walter Theater in Lincoln Center. In addition, César is the Grand Prize Winner of Concurso Opera De San Miguel, a prestigious Award.
Born in Guadalajara, Mexico, tenor César Delgado was a finalist in the Gerda Lissner Foundation International Voice Competition in 2014, a winner of a Goldsmith Foundation Award in 2013, a winner of “Best Performance Award” in the International Singing Competition of Sinaloa, Mexico in 2013, and a finalist in the Opera de San Miguel Competition 2012. He has sung Mario Ruoppulo in “Il Postino,” Conte di Libenskof in “Il Viaggio a Reims,” Rodolfo in”La Bohème” and Rinuccio in”Gianni Schicchi.” Currently he is studying at Mannes College of Music on a President’s Full Scholarship. His teachers are Enrique Patrón de Rueda, Carlos Serrano and Ruth Falcon.
After her successful American debut as Aglaonice in Philip Glass’ Orphée at the Virginia Opera Company, young Polish mezzo-soprano Marta Wryk came to the attention of European audiences and the press when she stepped in the role of Smeton in Anna Bolena at Oper Köln. Critics praised her for having “the most promising voice with spectacular high notes” (ResMusica) and for her “remarkable Italianitá” (Der nueu Merker ). In 2012-2013 she was also seen on the stage of Oper Köln as Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, Suora Dolcina in Suora Angelica as well as Blumenmädchen and Knappe in Parsifal. Next season, while still a member of the Oper Köln Opera Studio, she will be featured in several leading roles, including Hänsel in Hänsel und Gretel, Oberto in Alcina and Gianetta in the new production of L’elisir d’amore.
Her last season appearance as Aglaonice in “a strong and thought provoking” [Washington Post] production of Philip Glass’ Orphée also captivated the critics. Her performance was described as “great” by the Washington City Paper. The Washington Times wrote: “special hat tips due to Marta Wryk”. The busy 2011-2012 season took her also to the Republic of Trindad and Tobago, where she performed L’enfant in L’enfant et Les Sortilièges. She also covered the roles of Mother and the Witch in Hänsel and Gretel and Katisha in The Mikado at Virginia Opera as well as the title role in Carmen at Lyric Opera Virginia. This was followed by singing the role of Marianne and covering the role of Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier at Chautauqua Music Festival in New York.
A recent graduate of Manhattan School of Music, Ms. Wryk has sung the roles of Mirtillo in Händel’s Il Pastor Fido and Prince Orlofsky in Die Fledermaus. For these portrayals she has been praised in Q on Stage for her “radiance [and her] clear sound and assured presence”. The Polish Daily News singled out her “noble sound and natural stage presence”. Other opera credits include Third Lady in The Magic Flute with Manhattan School of Music Outreach Program and Elisabeth Proctor in The Crucible with Chautauqua Institution. She also covered Gondi in Maria di Rohan and Clotilde in Norma at the Bel Canto at Caramoor Festival.
Equally at home on the recital stage, Marta Wryk performed in Symphony Space in New York with pianist Anne-Marie McDermott and in Kiva Auditorium in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with the pianist Kevin Kenner and the cellist William De Rosa. She has appeared in the Music at the White Hall concert series at the invitation of the Henryk Wieniawski Music Society in Poznan, Poland, and has performed at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory at the invitation of Dr. James Watson, the Nobel Prize laureate. Other important concert appearances include the Caramoor Music Festival, the Chopin Foundation of the United States and the Kosciuszko Foundation. In Europe she has appeared at Kammeroper Schloss Rheinsberg in Germany, the University Hall in Poznan, the International Festival Art-Connection in Rotterdam and at the Chopin Konfrontacje Festival in Antonin.
Ms. Wryk received prizes from the Career Bridges Competition and the Marcella Sembrich Voice Competition. She also won first prize at the International Voice Competition in Gorizia, Italy.
In addition to musical performance, Ms. Wryk is a musicologist and writer. Her work has been published in Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland’s major daily newspaper, and in literature journals and magazines including Zeszyty Literackie and Arkusz. Her music journalism appeared in Polish Daily News. She teaches classes about opera to gifted children through the Polish Children’s Fund’s Summer Workshop. She has received awards from the Prime Minister of Poland and the Ministry of Education, and scholarships from the Leszek Czarnecki Foundation, the Business and Professional Women`s Club, the Lions Club Polonia and the Polish and Slavic Federal Credit Union. She was also awarded the Carolyn Marlow Vocal Scholarship from the Manhattan School of Music. Ms Wryk holds a degree from the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warsaw and from Manhattan School of Music. She participated in Young Artist Programs at Virginia Opera, Lyric Opera Virginia, Chautauqua Institution and Bel Canto at Caramoor.
Robert Balonek, baritone, hails from Rochester NY. At Purchase College where he received his bachelors and masters degrees in music, he performed; Figaro; Le Nozze di Figaro, Prospero and Ferdinand; Hoibys Tempest (NY Premiere), Ottone; Poppea, Gêolier; Carmelites, Gianni Schicchi; Schicchi, and Confession; Francis (World Premiere). At Mannes School of music, he performed Guglielmo in Cosi as well as Ford in Fallstaff, the Bach Mathew Passion Soloist and Fauré Requiem soloist.
Professionally, he has performed the role of Count Robinson in Pine Mountin’s Il Matrimonio Segreta, Figaro at Chelsea Opera and Richard Coeur de Lion with the American Classical Orchestra. He has also performed roles with Opera Omaha, Central City Opera, Westchester Group Theater, and Quisisana.
Robert is a Liederkranz Competition winner, MONC NYC district finalist and a Career Bridges Scholarship winner. Robert has also recorded for Albany Records; Hoibys Tempest as Prospero and Francis in Confessions.
This Summer, Robert will be performing the world premiere of “Steal a Pencil for me” as Jaap, the “Boston Tea Party Opera” as Paul Revere and in the Phoenicia festival of the voice, Marullo and Rigoletto cover in Rigoletto. In the fall, he will be performing Escamillo for Opera Hamilton, Bass soloist for ACO’s production of Handels Alceste at Alice Tully Hall and with Chelsea Opera with La Pizza con Funghi/Winners. For more, go to www.robertbalonek.com