A sunny afternoon at the home of member Carmen Dolny provided the setting for great singing by Asleif Willmer and delicious Spanish cuisine by Maria Teresa Limón, as OGSA threw a pre-Valentine’s Day party. Thanks also to Leslie Clark, who produced a slide show of the festivities. (When you’re on the page, click the right-pointing arrow to the right of the headline to start the show.)
Asleif, who won the Guild’s Quest for the Best in 2011 as an undergraduate, enchanted the gathering with two arias from Don Giovanni, in the role of Zerlina, and two from The Marriage of Figaro, as Susanna. Her lyric coloratura soared as she brought these characters to life. Then, audience members bid to hear two additional arias, the Silver Song from The Ballad of Baby Doe, and “Je veux vivre” from Romeo and Juliet.
With her DMA at Arizona State University completed, Asleif has already been hired by Saratoga Opera for this summer. She will also be Juliette in a cabaret production of Romeo and Juliet in Manhattan. Asleif is marked for stardom, and those at Quest in 2011 saw and heard her here first! Discover more future stars and enjoy a reception at this year’s Quest for the Best, on March 24 at Holsclaw Hall.
If you have not yet been to one of our previews, you will definitely want to explore this bite-sized operatic adventure! If you have, you know they are not to be missed. Talented student artists, top Tucson professionals, UA faculty, and local opera experts make these one-hour introductions the perfect way to whet your appetite for opera. Both locations, Brown Bag Opera at Grace-St. Paul’s Episcopal Church and Say Hello to Opera at Oro Valley Public Library, give a live musical experience in an intimate setting. And it’s the best priced ticket in town!
This season we will once again offer five previews; please see the full schedule. Our first, presented October 4 at 3:00 p.m. in OV and October 6 at noon in Tucson, is a new concept. Entitled “Tucson Opera Showcase,” it features three of the venues that help make Tucson a great opera town. Our tradition of previewing AZ Opera’s productions continues with the innovative Hercules vs Vampires. Don’t be afraid! It’s a real opera that has been staged in Portland, Oregon, and Los Angeles, and we’ll tip you off about the unique format! The second opera venue in this preview is the University of Arizona’s Opera Theater. Student artists from the Opera Scenes class will be featured in this segment. And finally, the young Arizona Rose Opera Theater will be represented by two of their performing artists. Popular narrator Betty Allen will weave these three diverse groups into an appealing program for you.
Undergraduate HD Videos
- Brianna Barnhart, soprano: Les oiseaux dans la charmille, from Les contes d’Hoffmann, by Jacques Offenbach (1819–1880)
Olympia, a mechanical doll, sings an aria that enchants Hoffmann, despite her needing to be wound up along the way.
- Dan Marino, tenor: A tenor, all singers above, from Utopia, Limited, by Arthur Sullivan (1842–1900)
Captain Fitzbattleaxe tells his love, Zara, that his passion is adversely affecting his singing voice.
Clare Demer, soprano: O quante volte, from I Capuleti ed i Montecchi, by Vincenzo Bellini (1801–1835)
Juliet expresses her longing for Romeo.
- Joseph Gouge, tenor: Vainement ma bien-aimee, from Le roi d’Ys, by Edouard Lalo (1823–1892)
Mylio, a young warrior, tries to convince his fiancée to join him in the wedding procession.
- Emily Garcia, soprano: Ach ich fühl’s, from Die Zauberflöte, by W. A. Mozart (1756–1791)
Pamina fears that the absent Tamino does not love her.
- Kristen Fabry, mezzo-soprano: En vain pour éviter,from Carmen, by Georges Bizet (1838–1875)
In the cards Carmen foresees death for both her and José.
(tie) Antonio Cruz, baritone: Come Paride vezzoso, from L’elisir d’amore, by Gaetano Donizetti (1797–1848).
Sgt. Belcore is confident of success as he woos Adina, since no girl can resist the sight of a military uniform.
(tie) Taylor Trolia-Giron, soprano: Mi chiamano Mimì, from La bohème, by Giacomo Puccini (1858–1924).
Mimì describes her life as an embroidress in her tiny room overlooking the rooftops of Paris.
2017 Undergraduate Audio Files
If you missed our 14th annual Quest for the Best vocal competition, now for the first time you can see, hear, and download all the graduate and undergraduate arias. If you prefer, you can hear and download all the graduate and undergraduate arias in uncompressed WAV audio format. You can also see the list of winners and amounts of the awards.