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Author: Jill Kimball

Future opera stars to perform at CU-Boulder

Vocalists inspire with arias and show tunes at Macky Auditorium March 1

CU Presents’ 2015-16 season continues with a rare opportunity to hear international opera stars in the making. On Tuesday, March 1, New York’s Metropolitan Opera brings a handful of its most promising young singers to Macky Auditorium for a dazzling performance of classic arias and new music.

The Metropolitan Opera’s Rising Stars Concert Series has already impressed audiences all over North America.

Of a performance earlier this season in Springfield, Illinois, audience member Bob Vaughn says, “It was an absolutely delightful evening of spectacular vocal performance and highly accomplished piano accompaniment.”

For more than 125 years, the Metropolitan Opera has been home to the greatest singers in the world. But the Met is also the launching pad for the opera stars of the future. Many of today’s leading artists got their first big break by winning the company’s national auditions after participating in its young artist program or catching the attention of Met talent scouts. Stephanie Blythe, Renée Fleming, Susan Graham, Deborah Voigt, Thomas Hampson, and Mariusz Kwiecien are just a few of the major artists to have come through the Met ranks.

Today, another generation of young singers is waiting in the wings to be discovered.

In March, Macky Auditorium audience members will be treated to the voices of “rapturous” (Los Angeles Times) soprano Janai Brugger, “consistently beautiful” (The Washington Post) mezzo-soprano Sarah Mesko, “delectably colorful” (Baltimore Sun) baritone Trevor Scheunemann and former “America’s Got Talent” competitor Sean Panikkar, who has been praised for his “bright, defiant voice” (The New York Times).

The up-and-coming stars are set to perform a wide variety of songs, from popular arias to classic show tunes to hidden gems by Franz Lehár and Ralph Vaughan Williams. Highlights will include famous duets from “Lakmé” and “The Pearl Fishers,” catchy hits from “My Fair Lady” and “South Pacific” and an emotional delivery of George Gershwin’s bluesy favorite, “Summertime.”

“The selections were perfect, the presentation was perfect and the singers all had great stage presence,” says Leo McCarthy of a performance in St. Augustine, Florida. “[We] were treated to an evening of exceptional musicality that [we] will long remember.”

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