Friday, June 04, 2010

GSU School of Music presents 27th Harrower Summer Opera Workshop

Georgia State University’s School of Music will host the Harrower Summer Opera Workshop June 7 - 27, featuring international opera stars Jane Bunnell, mezzo-soprano, and Mark Embree, bass baritone, as artists-in-residence.

The husband and wife team will lead master classes for workshop participants, who include 40 aspiring opera singers from across the United States. Acclaimed tenor and stage director Carroll Freeman will serve as the workshop’s artistic director.

The 27th Harrower Summer Opera Workshop also includes daily acting and movement classes, private coaching, instruction in stage makeup and stage combat, as well as public presentations of staged and costumed operatic scenes.

The workshop was founded by Irene Calloway Harrower, a renowned vocal coach and her late husband, Peter Harrower, who was a professor of music at Georgia State. Since its inception, close to 800 talented young artists have studied and sung together during the summer workshop.

The workshop will culminate in performances of opera scenes at 7:30 p.m. on June 25 and 3 p.m. on June 27. Selections will include scenes from Britten’s Albert Herring and The Turn of the Screw; Mozart’s La clemenza di Tito, Don Giovanni’s Idomeneo and Die Zauberflöte; Ward’s The Crucible; Sondheim’s A Little Night Music; Puccini’s Madama Butterfly and many other notable operas.

Tickets, available at the door, are $20 general admission and $10 for students with Panther IDs. Both performances will be held at the Florence Kopleff Recital Hall, located at the corner of Gilmer Street and Peachtree Center Avenue, inside the Arts & Humanities Building. Parking is available for a fee at the Recital Hall “I” Lot. The entrance to the parking lot is on Peachtree Center Avenue.

Bunnell, a 16-year veteran of the Metropolitan Opera, has appeared in a wide variety of roles throughout the world and with companies as such as the New York City Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, Dallas Opera and the Minnesota Opera. Embree has performed in Europe, Canada, Mexico and in the United States with the New York City Opera and opera houses in New Orleans, Houston, St. Louis and Seattle.

In 2006, he joined his wife as a member of the voice faculty at the DePaul University School Music in Chicago. Freeman, Classical Singer magazine’s 2010 Opera Director of the Year, began performing professionally as a child with Leonard Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic. He has also performed with New York City Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Baltimore Opera, San Diego Opera, Florida Grand Opera, New Orleans Opera, among others.

The 2010 Summer Opera Workshop also boasts an impressive faculty, such as W. Dwight Coleman, director of the GSU School of Music; Copeland Woodruff, acting teacher and stage director at the University of Memphis, Reed Woodhouse of The Juilliard School, New England Conservatory and Chautauqua Opera and many other well known professionals in the opera field.

Bunnell and Embree will also serve as special guests at the Opera Gala Dinner at the Commerce Club from 6-10 p.m. on June 20. This fundraiser for opera studies at Georgia State will feature a gourmet three-course dinner, accompanied by operatic performances by singers from the Summer Opera Workshop.

For the first time, this year’s gala will include a silent auction featuring unique items—including a private, in-home concert performed by a quartet of singers and instrumentalists. Gala tickets are $100 per person. A special package, at $120 per person, is also available, which includes dinner plus one ticket to both Opera Scenes Performances on June 25 and 27.

The Commerce Club is located at 34 Broad St. NW, Atlanta, GA 30303. Complimentary valet parking is included. Reservations are requested by June 14 and can be made by calling the School of Music at 404-413-5914. For additional information, visit 

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