WE ARE BRINGING ITALY TO YOU
March 11, 2021
OPERA COLUMBUS’ 2021 GALA INCLUDED…
Getting dressed up in glamorous evening attire for an engaging at-home gala experience where you will enjoy amazing Opera performances by OC alumni and friends, indulge in a decadent Italian meal delivered to your home, and celebrate our season and the operatic experience.
Your extra gift to the Opera Columbus Gala today will ensure we re-open strong!
You can donate at the button below, or you can send a gift via check: payable to Opera Columbus Gala, 55 E. State St. Columbus, OH 43215.
American operatic baritone Eric McKeever has won consistent praise for his voice of “power and brilliance” (Chicago Tribune) and “considerable flexibility and a communicative presence enhanced by expressive, crystalline diction.” (Opera News)
Eric’s 2020-2021 season includes recording Kamala Sankaram’s Looking at You and Experiments in Opera’s Aqua Net and Funyuns podcast opera, performing Dandini in Opera on Tap’s digital version of La Cenerentola, performing live in Salt Marsh Opera’s outdoor “Music at the Lighthouse” concert, joining Little Opera Theatre of NY in a live-stream of Zemlinksy’s Eine florentische tragödie, and returning to Opera Columbus for Marcello in a new production of La bohème.
Eric is a frequent performer with Opera Columbus having recently appeared as Sharpless (Madama Butterfly), Betto (Gianni Schicchi) and Marcello in 2016’s La bohème.
A winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, Miles Mykkanen has garnered recognition on the world’s concert and operatic stages for his “focused, full-voiced tenor” (The New York Times).
Highlights of the recent past include performances with the Canadian Opera Company, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Cleveland Orchestra, Metropolitan Opera, Minnesota Opera, New York Philharmonic, Opera Philadelphia, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, with the symphonies of Detroit, Pittsburgh, and San Antonio, and at the Mostly Mozart, Ravinia, and Tanglewood festivals.
A champion of new music, he has collaborated in the world premieres of works by Matthew Aucoin, Mohammed Fairouz, Ricky Ian Gordon, and Jack Perla amongst others.
The tenor enjoys robust relationships with the Marlboro Music Festival and New York Festival of Song with whom he has given many performances joined by Michael Barrett, Steven Blier, Malcolm Martineau, Ken Noda, Mitsuko Uchida, and Roger Vignoles.
Miles Mykkanen earned his Artist Diploma in Opera Studies, along with his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees, from The Juilliard School under the tutelage of Cynthia Hoffmann.
Soprano Marcy Richardson has brought the craft of marrying aerial arts and acrobatic pole with live classical singing and burlesque to opera and entertainment companies worldwide. Based in Brooklyn, she has become a staple of the NYC nightlife scene, where she performs with Company XIV, Duane Park, and the Bartschland Follies. She is equally at home on the operatic and concert stage, and has performed as a soloist in many of New York’s most acclaimed concert halls, including Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center. Obviously furloughed, she’s been hanging in a hoop from fire escapes in both her backyard and over the street at Duane Park for “outdoor dining with ambient street performance” in sub zero temps while singing in a mask without batting an eyelash. She was the 2018 Dora Mavor Moore Award winner for Best Female Performance in an opera for her portrayal of Amour in Gluck’s Orphée with Against the Grain Theater and Opera Columbus. She recently appeared as Star in the movie “Hustlers.”
Highly praised for her warm quality of voice and unique timbre, soprano Larisa Martínez has established a strong, unique presence in the classical performance world. Ms Martínez was recently seen as Violetta in Wichita Opera’s production of La Traviata, and as Maria from selections of West Side Story with Lawrence Foster and Michael Fabiano at Festival Napa Valley. She has also collaborated with violinist Joshua Bell on the Emmy-nominated PBS special, Live from Lincoln Center: Seasons of Cuba. As part of the same project, she has traveled to Cuba as part of the artistic delegation sent by former president Barack Obama to expand cultural collaboration and bonds of friendship between the two countries.
Ms. Martinez made her Kennedy Center recital debut in September 2019 and her Carnegie Hall debut In October 2019 at the Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage singing Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 “Resurrection” with the Athens Philharmonic led by Yiannis Hadjiloizou. For the last two years, Ms. Martínez has been touring with Andrea Bocelli, debuting at Madison Square Garden and throughout North America, South America, and Europe. Notable appearances in the 2019-20 season include with the Grand Rapids Symphony, the San Diego Symphony, and a return to Festival Napa Valley. In 2020, Ms. Martínez made her debuts at the Vilar Performing Arts Center and with the Wheeling Symphony, and returned with the Grand Rapids Symphony, performing a Voice & the Violin program with Joshua Bell.
Ms. Martínez made her debut in 2010 as Luisa Fernanda in Zarzuela, presented at the Centro de Belles Artes de Puerto Rico. In New York, she sang Corinna in Rossini’s Il Viaggio a Reims, earning the praise of Fred Cohen from Opera News, who wrote, “Ms. Martínez cut an elegant figure, the grace of her stage deportment matched that of her singing.” She also earned raves from Roark Littlefield for Musetta in Loft Opera’s critically acclaimed production of La Bohème in 2014. “As Musetta, Larisa Martinez is delightful, embodying every nuance of that infamously charismatic character.” She was also lauded for her roles of Fire/Rossignol from L’enfant et les Sortilèges and Rosario in Granados’ Goyescas with Bare Opera in New York. In July 2016, she created the role of Isaura in the world premiere of Mercadante’s Francesca da Rimini in Martina, Franca, Italy conducted by the Metropolitan Opera’s Principal Conductor, Fabio Luisi. Other roles in her repertoire include Gilda, Juliette, Adina, Norina, Susanna, Giulietta and Lucía di Lammermoor.
An avid recitalist with a passion for art song and theater, Ms. Martínez has been showcased at the American Songbook with Michael Feinstein, Lyric Chamber Music Society and Music Talks Series in New York, the Savannah Voice Festival, Bay View Music Festival in Michigan and internationally with the Franz Schubert Society in Austria, and L’Art du Chant Francais across southern France. Her concert appearances include Mahler’s Symphony No.4, Mozart’s Requiem in D minor and Voci di Domani concert presented by Renata Scotto and recorded by Euroclassics in Rome, Italy.
Ms. Martínez is a winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Audition PR district in 2016, where she also received the Angel Ramos Foundation Award and the Audience Prize. She was invited by the Metropolitan Opera Guild 2018 Annual Gala as a guest artist to honor Anna Netrebko. In 2018, Ms. Martínez also recorded Voices of Opera with tenor Carlton Moe, a new virtual instrument produced by EastWest Sounds in Los Angeles.
Ms. Martínez studied at the Music Conservatory of Puerto Rico, received her Bachelor’s degree with high honors in Environmental Sciences from the University of Puerto Rico, and holds a Master’s degree from Mannes the New School for Music. Ms. Martínez is a proud artistic resident of Turnaround Arts, led by the Presidential Committee on the Arts and the Humanities.
With a career spanning almost four decades, Joshua Bell is one of the most celebrated violinists of his era. Having performed with virtually every major orchestra in the world, Bell continues to maintain engagements as soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, conductor and Music Director of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields.
In a moment when COVID-19 has shut down the majority of live performances, Bell has joined the movement to bring world-class performances online. On August 16, 2020, PBS presented “Joshua Bell: At Home With Music,” a nationwide broadcast directed by Tony and Emmy award winner, Dori Berinstein. The program includes core classical material as well as new arrangements of beloved works, including a West Side Story medley. The special features guest artists Larisa Martínez, Jeremy Denk, Peter Dugan, and Kamal Khan.
Born in Bloomington, Indiana, Bell began the violin at age four, and at age twelve, began studies with his mentor, Josef Gingold. At age 14, Bell debuted with Riccardo Muti and the Philadelphia Orchestra, and made his Carnegie Hall debut at age 17 with the St. Louis Symphony. At age 18, Bell signed with his first label, London Decca, and received the Avery Fisher Career Grant. In the years following, Bell has been named 2010 “Instrumentalist of the Year” by Musical America, a 2007 “Young Global Leader” by the World Economic Forum, nominated for six GRAMMY® awards, and received the 2007 Avery Fisher Prize. He has also received the 2003 Indiana Governor’s Arts Award and a Distinguished Alumni Service Award in 1991 from the Jacobs School of Music. In 2000, he was named an “Indiana Living Legend.”
Bell has performed for three American presidents and the sitting justices of the Supreme Court of the United States. He participated in former president Barack Obama’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities’ first cultural mission to Cuba, joining Cuban and American musicians on a 2017 Live from Lincoln Center Emmy nominated PBS special, Joshua Bell: Seasons of Cuba, celebrating renewed cultural diplomacy between Cuba and the United States.