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Call for a Volunteer

Enjoy meeting others in Rochester's opera community and contributing to the availability of opera activities by volunteering for the Opera Guild!  Learning a small job or part of a larger one will pay off in numerous ways for anyone who wants to participate.  Currently there is one job posted: Assistant Publisher.

If you would like to volunteer in some other way, just let us know what your interest is and we will certainly find a place to accommodate it.  Contact Carol Crocca, Director of Development, at


Edition Viva Voce, September 2015
The Opera Guild of Rochester, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization with a mission to support opera and opera education in the greater Rochester area.

The Guild presents free opera lectures at local libraries, tours to productions of local opera companies and the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, and our popular Beat-the-Blahs, Haskell Rosenberg Memorial Series, at Temple B'rith Kodesh in Brighton.

Our Website serves as a clearinghouse for local and regional opera, concert, and recital information, with links to other music organizations on our area. Please visit us at   

This newsletter is sent via eMail each month, currently to over 3,000 subscribers.  For a free subscription send your contact details, including your eMail address, to

The Opera Guild of Rochester is also on facebook. For up-to-date information on opera-related news and events, please visit us on

Reader Article submission deadline for the next issue is the 15th of the previous month.

LyricRochester Lyric Opera
Celebrates its 10th Anniversary
440 East Avenue




Rochester Lyric Opera's  
10th Anniversary Celebration


Following a celebratory reception on Aug 28
at 6:30 PM, enjoy a concert  performance of Mozart's The Impresario, complemented by a suite of scenes and arias featuring Grant Knox and the Rochester Lyric Artists.

The reception is limited to 100 persons.  The concert begins at 8:00 PM. 
Click Here for more details and background information.
Click here for Rochester Lyric Opera Website.

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Rochester Lyric Opera
Opera Under the Stars

Rochester Lyric Opera presents Opera under the Stars, to be held on the front steps of the splendid Lyric Theater at 440 East Ave., as part of the Rochester Fringe Festival. In true Fringe style, RLO will present scenes from La Boheme and Rent, intertwined-reminiscent of RLO's edgy "Opera Rocks" performance in 2011-featuring the talents of regional professional singers. Enjoy an enchanted evening of gorgeous music beneath Rochester skies, enhanced by the backdrop of our fabulous new Lyric Theater.

In case of rain or otherwise uncomfortable weather, the event will be in the main hall of the Lyric Theater.

September 19th, 2015, 8 p.m. (the performance lasts 55 minutes)

Cabaret seating $18.00, Theater-style seating $10.00 and lawn seating $ 5.00  (bring a chair)

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Rochester Lyric Opera
Local Vocal
Scenes from Opera and Broadway

Sunday, October 4, at 3pm Lyric Theatre

Allyn Van Dusen and Susanna Adams will direct twenty talented area singers, who will perform scenes from Jane Eyre, Cosi fan tutte, Die Fledermaus, Street Scene, The Secret Garden, and Der Rosenkavalier. Kevin Nitsch will be accompany on the piano.

$15.00 general admission / $10.00 students and Seniors

Click Here for more details.

eastmanEastman Opera Theatre Season

Fall 2015, Kilbourn Hall
Hydrogen Jukebox by Philip Glass
Winter 2016, 804 Annex
Suor Angelica by Puccini
April 2016
Le Nozze di Figaro by Mozart
More information can be obtained at 

festivalGlimmerglass Festival Season 2016

La Boheme
Puccini / Illica & Giacosa

July 8 - August 26, 2016
Sweeney Todd
Sondheim / Wheeler
July 9 - August 27, 2016
The Thieving Magpie (La Gazza Ladra) 
Rossini / Gherardini
July 16 - August 25, 2016
The Crucible
Ward / Stambler
July 23 - August 27, 2016
More information can be obtained at
or by calling (607) 547-2255

Single tickets from $26.00 on sale January 25, 2016

Syracuse Opera Season

2015-2016 Season

Glory Denied 

Nov. 6, 2015 at 8 p.m. 

La Boheme

Feb. 5, 2016 at 8 p.m.

West Side Story

Apr. 8, 2016 at 8 p.m

For season tickets call the box office (315) 476 7372

Click Here for more details

Tri-Cities Opera Season

Barber of Seville
Sweeney Todd
Oct. 23 & 25, 2015
Nov. 12-15, 2015
April 29 & May 1, 2016

The Telephone / Trouble in Tahiti

Feb. 18-21, 2016


For season tickets call the box office ( 607) 797-6344


For more information click here.


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CanadaCanadian Opera Company
2015-2016 Season

Verdi's La Traviata
October 8, 13, 16, 17, 21, 24, 29, 30 and
November 1, 4, 6, 2015

Barbara Monk Feldman

  • Pyramus and Thisbe

Claudio Monteverdi

  • IL Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda
  • Lamento d'Arianna
October 20, 23, 25, 28 and
November 5, 7, 2015

Wagner's Siegfried
January 23, 27, 30 and
February 2, 5, 11, 14, 2016

Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro
February 4, 7, 9, 13, 17, 19, 21, 22, 23, 25, 27,  2016
Bizet's CarmenApril 12, 17, 20, 23, 28, 30 and
May 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 2016

Rossini's Maometto II
April 29, and
May 1, 3, 5, 7, 11, 14,  2016

Subscribe by phone: 

(416) 363-8231

1 800-250-4653

by mail:

Ticket Services Canadian Opera Company

227 Front St. E.

Toronto, ON M5A 1E8

Click Here for more information.

ReaderArticlesReader Articles

This section brings you articles written by anyone involved in opera, from impresarios, to singers, to fans.  If you have seen a performance that you want to review, or have attended a class or workshop that you want to write about, or have a story or a review that would interest others, we encourage you to submit it to us and we will schedule it for inclusion.  Please send your submissions to and please limit them to 500 words.  All submissions are subject to editorial review.

Reader Article #1

A Prohibition Elixir 
Rachel Stuhlman

What do you get when you set Donizetti's beloved comedy L'Elisir d'Amore in Prohibition Era Chicago? Well, in the Finger Lakes Opera's recent production at Geneseo, you get an Adina who runs a newspaper as a front for her illicit distillery and speakeasy, a Nemorino who is not just her lovelorn admirer but also her employee, carrying around heavy bundles of paper in ignorance of the bootlegging operation on the other side of the wall. You also get a young, energetic Dulcamara, whose vaudeville shtick complements his patter songs brilliantly, and a Belcore transformed into a crooked cop on the take. All of this was shaken and stirred by a talented production team led by Gerard Floriano, Artistic Director and Conductor of the FLO and E. Loren Meeker, a young stage director with a nationwide reputation. Maestro Floriano conducted two lively performances to almost sold-out houses on August 7 and 9.
The singers kept to the original libretto while the supertitles, sets, costumes and stage business updated the action to the Roaring Twenties. When the Chorus watches Dulcamara's entrance as he descends to peddle his wears to the gullible crowd, their excitement translates overhead as
Big news! Come and see! A stranger has just arrived in a golden elevator! 
If you saw his attitude, his clothing, his style! He must be someone very important. He seems so slick, like a rumrunner, or a gangster, travelling around. 
Some racketeer, maybe even a mob boss or higher? 
Look here he comes!

The small forces of the pit orchestra and chorus performed marvelously. All that was missing was the onstage banda, commonly used in Italian opera of the period. Even the harpsichordist had her moment, in the scene between Adina and Dulcamara where he gropes for the name of the queen whose love potion he has just sold to the na´ve Nemorino. As the quack doctor sputters and looks wildly around for the name of this legendary queen whose story Adina had related at the beginning of the opera, the harpsichordist steps in with the "Tristan chord" from the famous motif in Wagner's
Tristan und Isolde. Bingo, she's la Regina Isotta, and Adina's realization of the depth of Nemorino's love for her melts a little more of her icy heart. The laugh this musical aide-memoire got from the audience revealed their sophistication while it sailed right over my head.
Andrea Carroll, our Adina, sang with a clear sweet tone and negotiated the fioritura beautifully, though to my mind she made the spirited Adina into someone rather bitchy. (My opinion was not shared by friends.) Rolando Sanz sang more softly than the baritone and bass, a fitting touch that renders the lovelorn Nemorino gentler and more tender than the others. Sanz proved an excellent comic actor who knew when to stop hamming it up and express his deep emotions clearly. He gave a quiet, beautiful but not heart-stopping rendition of Una furtiva lagrima, an aria almost too well known for its own good. In the first performance he unfortunately came over as a would-be bigamist wearing a gleaming golden wedding band on his finger. Two days later the ring had vanished.
Liam Bonner projected Sergeant Belcore's grandiosity and self-infatuation, singing loudly and skillfully, though in the first performance he strayed from the beat during one of the difficult ensemble passages. Corey Crider as Dr. Dulcamara ate up the scenery, strutting and posturing as a huckster with boundless self-confidence, utter shamelessness and balletic grace, while singing impeccably. As this production followed the norm of only two full orchestral rehearsals before performance, it was no surprise that the second performance was tighter, the fine orchestra was more audible, and the balance of music and ensemble singing was better.

I have only two regrets about this Finger Lakes Opera production: that it had only two performances, and that too many music loving Rochesterians don't know how to get to Geneseo, a mere 40 minutes away.

All in all it was a cocktail to savor.

Reader Article #2

Midsummer Night Opera's Cosi fan tutte
Carol Crocca

The young men burst onto the stage with their tennis rackets and proceeded to post-game stretches; later there are a beach ball toss, conga line and dance moves - it was delightful to watch the young cast of MNO's Cosi fan tutte romp exuberantly through much of the production. The decision of stage director Alberto Carrillo Casas to use this energy and enthusiasm provided the perfect antidote to the lack of scenery, space and orchestra in this shoestring marvel.

Midsummer Night Opera was founded just this spring by Kimberly Merrill and Paulina Swierczek, Eastman graduate students, who have taken their own destinies in hand and created an outlet for their own and other young singers' talents, which are considerable. There were four performances of Cosi, two in Gowanda, and two in Rochester at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation, the second of which I attended. There were two casts, with some overlap.
First, kudos to Taylor Hutchinson, who accompanied the singers with panache on the piano score of Mozart's wonderful music, and, as the only instrumentalist, was "on" for the entire performance.

Second, I will leave any real critique of the singing to the cast's mentors and teachers; from a layperson's point of view, all the singers had grand voices, sang excellently, and also acquitted themselves well during the ensembles. Kimberly Merrill as Fiordiligi, especially, negotiated the difficulties of "Come scoglio" and "Per pieta" with the same skill she evidenced in her appropriately-pitched acting. Hannah Roberts as Despina successfully conveyed her wily servant character, and also carried off her turns as 'doctor' and 'notary' in disguise with comic flair. The talents of Mary Kate von Lehn as Dorabella, Jeffrey Thompson as Ferrando, Alan Cline as Guglielmo and Cody Muller as Don Alfonso all contributed to creating a well-meshed ensemble.

A few bits of stage business missed the mark in my view. Bubble blowing and paper party horn tooting did not seem motivated by any action of the drama; their sole purpose seemed to be to elicit a quick laugh and give some characters something to do while another sang. Understandable devices during a long Baroque aria, but here merely distracting. The absence of a synopsis in the program will no doubt be remedied in future productions.

The tricky part of Mozart is to execute the broad comedy while leaving room for the more serious emotions of Act II, when the pathos of Dorabella's surrender, Guglielmo's consternation, Ferrando and Fiordiligi's mutual and sincere attraction, and all the lovers' sense of betrayal and confusion should be played without exaggeration or sentiment. Not an easy balance to achieve! Although it was not fully realized here, this did not prevent it from being a thoroughly enjoyable evening. How satisfying to witness what can be accomplished by young musicians without a Met (or even an Eastman School) budget.

Happy Birthday, MNO!   And I think I speak for the audience in hoping for many happy returns!

recitalFrom your Opera Guild


Tenor Joseph Mancini, a long time Opera Guild of Rochester donor and volunteer, will present his first ever recital on Friday, September 11th at 7:30 PM.
Mr. Mancini, a student of Dr. Sandra Boysen Sluberski, will be giving a recital of art songs and show tunes. He will also be be singing duets with Dr. Sluberski from the musicals Sunset Boulevard ("As If We Never Said Goodbye" and "The Perfect Year") and The Phantom of the Opera ("All I Ask of You").
The program also features O sole mio by Eduardo Di Capua, Caro mio ben by Giuseppe Giordani, as well as selections from from Showboat, South Pacific, and Gigi.

Joseph has been a passionate opera and music lover all his life and will be making his debut at age 86 years. Admission to the recital is free.


Click here to view the program cover.

Please consider the Opera Guild of Rochester among your charitable organizations for 2015. Donations to the Opera Guild of Rochester are fully tax deductible and donors will receive an invitation to a free Annual Recital in May 2016, which is our gift to our donors, followed by dessert reception with the artists.

Enjoy our free Lecture/Listening series, which you can download from the web site at by clicking on Reading Room. While at our Website you can also learn about our opera program at Temple B'rith Kodesh, our opera trips to regional opera companies including the Glimmerglass Festival, and our Metropolitan Opera trips.

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Submission deadline for the next issue is the 15th of the previous month