OSJ Fans, we begin our countdown of past winners of the Irene Dalis Vocal Competition with the year 2011. Last year’s first place and Audience Choice winner, Alexandra LoBianco (soprano), also took first place at the 2011 Liederkranz Vocal Competition in New York City. Ms. LoBianco recently sang the role of Cio-Cio San in Baltimore Concert Opera’s performance of Madama Butterfly, and Kitty Hart for Tulsa Opera’s production of Dead Man Walking. In the coming season, she will be making her debut with Madison Opera in October, singing the role of Amelia in Verdi’s A Masked Ball, and embarking on a major European tour in December.
Last year’s 2nd and 3rd place winners were gentlemen who are near and dear to Opera San José. We were pleased to welcome Evan Brummel (baritone) to the resident artist ensemble in the 2011-12 season (he thrilled audiences with his performances in Pagliacci, La traviata and Faust), and delighted in having former resident Christopher Bengochea (tenor) back on stage at the California for our company premiere of Mozart’s Idomeneo. Mr. Brummel will be returning as a resident in the 2012-13 season, and we’re looking forward to his performance in The Pearl Fishers, opening in September.
OSJ fans also delighted in seeing resident soprano Jouvanca Jean-Baptiste win the 2011 Wagnerian award after a blockbuster first season that included “fearless” performances in Anna Karenina, Tosca and La bohème. Ms. Jean-Baptiste continued to win rave reviews in the 2011-2012 season, with roles in Pagliacci, La traviata and Faust.
Join us tomorrow, for a catch-up with the winners of the 2010 competition!