Pictures from Mezzo-soprano Ying Wu’s Graduate Recital

Photos by Mr. Yonghua Gao

Cambridge, Mass., Jan. 24, 2016, — Despite of a snowstorm going on outside, the concert hall at Longy School of Music was packed with over 200 enthusiastic music fans for Mezzo-soprano Ying Wu’s Graduate Recital. The program features classic pieces by Ms. Ying Wu and musicians from Longy School, as well as performances by dozens students of Ms. Ying Wu’s vocal classes.
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“I’m so glad that we can make it tonight in spite of the bad weather. Ms. Wu is a wonderful vocal teacher for my daughter. I really enjoyed a fun night of music and dance,” said a parent of Ms. Wu’s vocal class.


The following is the program of the recital, and notes from Ms. Ying Wu.

Excerpts from Carmen, Georges Bizet (1838-1875)
Act I, Scene 3. Chorus of Street-boys: Avec la garde montante

As soldiers march into a square in Seville, they are followed by street-boys who imitate Dragoons and sing a chorus with regard to their marching rhythm. The boys continue to follow the soldiers till they march out, singing the chorus.

Children’s chorus

Trumpet: Junyu Ge
Piccolos: Jeffrey Zhou, Ammi Lopez
Flute: Wei Zhao

Act I, Scene 5. Habanera: L’amour est un oiseau rebelle

Followed by young men who hopes to win her love, Carmen gives her answer: Love is a rebellious bird, and she does not know when she will fall in love with any of them. She, however, has fallen in love with a soldier of the guard, Don Jose, who is not interested in her. At the end of the song, Carmen provocatively throws a flower to Don Jose and leaves.  

Tambourine: Te Hu

Act I, Scene 10. Seguidilla and Duet: Près des remparts de Séville

Carmen is arrested for cutting another woman’s face during a fight, and Don Jose is appointed to take her to prison. Knowing that the flower that she threw to Don Jose has done its work, Carmen is determined to charm Don Jose more so she can escape. Don Jose demands Carmen to be silent, but Carmen insists that she is just thinking of a handsome officer whom she can make very happy. Eventually Don Jose admits that his is bewitched by Carmen and unties her hands.

Don José: Gabriel Pang
Flute: Ammi Lopez

Act II, Scene 12. Gypsy Song: Les tringles des sistres tintaient

Dinner is coming to an end in Pastia’s tavern: Officers are smoking cigarettes and music is being played as Frasquita and Mercedes are dancing. Carmen suddenly decides to stand up and sing to entertain the crowd. 

Frasquita: Leah Fallon

Mercedes: Sirgourney Tanner
Dancer: Todd McNeel Jr.
Guitar: Guillermo Ortiz
Flutes: Ammi Lopez, Wei Zhao
Tambourine: Te Hu

Entr’acte to Act III

Don Jose follows Carmen into the mountains with a group of gypsy smugglers. The mountains are peaceful with mist in the forest and birds chirping.

Harp: Sofija Sibinovic
Flute: Wei Zhao

Act III, Scene 20. Trio: Melons! coupons!

Frasquita and Mercedes are amusing themselves by reading their fortunes from tarot  cards. They find the endless love and wealth that they long for in the cards.  Carmen joins them but finds that the cards are foretelling death: first her, and then Don Jose.

Frasquita: Leah Fallon

Mercedes: Sirgourney Tanner

Intermission

  1. Mama Ge Sang La Lyrics:  Donghui Zhang  Composer: Changqun Ao (B1950)

A child sees his/her mother as the safest shelter place and the most beautiful fairy tale, and expresses his/her wishes that the mother will always be blessed and happy.

Children’s Chorus

  1. The Plum Blossom on Snow Lyrics: Xuean Li (1905一1985) Composer: Zi Huang (1904-1938)

It has stopped snowing and the sun comes out. Young students are excited and happy as they ride donkeys to seek out plum flowers on the snow.

Children’s chorus

  1. Nobles Seigneurs Les Huguenots            Giacomo Meyerbeer(1791- 1864)

Nevers is hosting a feast at his castle and Urbain, the page of Queen Marguerite de Valois, enters. She announces that she is here to search for a gentleman, and conduct him to a meeting with a gracious and noble lady whose name is not disclosed.

  1. Va! laisse couler mes larmes Werther           Jules Massenet (1842-1912)

Charlotte is alone at home rereading old letters from her lover Werther, on Christmas Eve. She had hardheartedly turned him away, since she promised her mother that she would marry Albert. Charlotte’s sister, Sophie, visits and brings news about Werther. Charlotte finally breaks down and bursts into tears.

  1. Una voce poco fa    Il barbiere di Siviglia       Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868)

Hearing Lindoro’s beautiful singing from the window, Rosina falls in love with him. Feeling the voice echoing in her heart, Rosina is determined to use her wits to escape her guardian, the old Dr. Bartolo,who wants to marry her.

  1. On the Top of the East Hill Lyrics: Cang Yang Jia Cuo(1683-1706) Composer: Zhang Qianyi Zhang(B1959)

A bright moon rising over the East hill reminds a young man of his beautiful sweetheart. He sighs in sorrow of not being beside her, wondering if he would be less sad if they had never met.

Duet:  Te Hu

Guitar: Guillermo Ortiz

Violin: Monica Li

  1. The Flowing Stream Folk Song Rearranged by Ying Wu

 

The rising moon shining on the hills reminds a young girl of her lover. She sings and hopes that the flowing stream and light winds will help her deliver her messages to her lad.

Duet:  Te Hu
Guitar: Guillermo Ortiz
Violin: Monica Li
Flute: Wei Zhao

Introduction of Performers

Born in Shaoxing, the hometown of the Chinese Yue Opera, and being exposed to a rich performance culture as she grew up, Ms. Wu established a love for stage performance when she was very young. In 2004, she graduated with a B.A. in Vocal Performance from Hangzhou Normal University (Now Zhejiang Conservatory) in China. From 2004-2007, she was a soloist in Beijing Postal Performance Arts Troupe, and was invited to sing the role of “Carmen” with Zhejiang Opera and Dance Drama Theatre.  Since arriving in America, she has  studied with  Edna Garabedian from 2007 to 2008, Wellesley College voice faculty member Gale Fuller from 2009-2011, and New England Conservatory professor D’Anna Fortunato from 2011-2013. From 2013-2015, Ms. Wu enrolled in  the Longy School of Music of Bard College for a M.M. degree in Opera, where  she studied with Robert Honeysucker. During her time in Boston, Ms. Wu has performed in many productions, including  La Cenerentola, Clemenza di Tito, Sweeney Todd, Der Rosenkavalier, Gondoliers, Mignon, and Our Town. In addition to performing, Ms.Wu established her own Boston vocal studio in 2009. She currently teaches music lessons at the Newton Chinese School and Winchester Chinese School, and has taught vocal lessons at Angel Performance arts, Acton Chinese School and Westwood Chinese School. She has taught  several hundred students in the Greater Boston area with her unique vocal pedagogy.

Music Director of the opera department at the Longy School of Music of Bard College, Thomas Enman has been a long-time collaborator with the  director of the department, Donna Roll. They have performed together, and worked with young singers for many years, including a residency at the Great Woods Festival with Operafest.  At Longy, he has prepared the world or American premieres of the operas of Nancy de Vate, Where the Cross is Made and In the Shadow of the Glen, and the New England premiere of Amy Beach’s Cabildo. In 2006, he was made a National Arts Associate of Sigma Alpha Iota, and has lectured before them on topics ranging from American Wagnerians to the vocal music of Louis Moreau Gottschalk. His performances have taken him from three tours of Central America for the State Department to the Marmorsaal  in Salzburg, where he assisted his student competition winners in recital. He is a past president of the Boston chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing, and this summer coordinated the NATSAA competition at the national conference in Boston.  Known for his skill at working with young singers, Mr. Enman has been a faculty member of the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music Salzburg summer program for the past eleven years. He has presented master classes internationally and is a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, Pi Kappa Lambda, the College Music Society, NATS and Sigma Alpha Iota.

Born in Kunming, Yunnan, China, Junyu Ge has worked with Kunming Symphony Orchestra  as a principal trumpet tutti Since 2012. And worked with Kunming symphony orchestra as soloist for the opening ceremony of Kunming Nie’er music center.  Junyu got his Bachelor of music degree in 2012 at Sichuan Conservatory of music. During the undergraduate period, He won the first place of 5th china international trumpet week in Shenyang at 2012. And performs a lot with Sichuan Conservatory philharmonic orchestra as soloist and played as guest musician in the ceremony of  Sichuan musician association 2012.  2013-2015 Junyu went to Longy School of Music as a student of Mr, Steven Emery and earned his graduate performance diploma in 2015. And he is currently pursuing his master of music degree at Longy school of music.

Currently a junior at Boston Latin School, Jeffrey Zhou is a rising star in the Boston traditional Chinese music scene.  Taking lessons since he was 7 with Chinese flute and Xiao soloist Teacher Zhang Zhengshan, he has systematically studied the performing arts of Hulusi, Bawu, Chinese bamboo flute, Xiao and Kou-di. . He has won Bawu and Dizi solo Gold Prizes in New England Traditional Chinese Instrument Competitions. From 2013 to 2015, he won Dizi solo gold prizes in both the American Chinese Youth Talent Contest at New York and the International Chinese Instrument Competition in Princeton. He also won grand prize at Fidelity Young Artists Competition, which earned him the honor to perform at  Boston’s  Symphony Hall. As a member of the Boston Chinese Musician Association and Chinese flutist in Boston Chinese Chamber Music Orchestra, Jeffrey has performed  at many different venues in Boston and beyond. In April, Jeffrey will be playing Chinese flute at the grand concert featuring theme songs from “Dream of the Red Chamber”, the movie production of a masterpiece in Chinese literature bearing the same title.

Wei Zhao has performed since the age of 13 as principal flute with orchestras around China, most recently  with Tan Dun, the National Center for the Performing Arts Orchestra, the Bolshoi Ballet tour in Beijing, and a collaborative orchestra between the Juilliard School of Music and the Central Conservatory of Music Youth Orchestra. She has played in masterclasses for Emmanuel Pahud, Philip Bernold, Maxence Larrieu, Shigenori Kudo, William Bennett, and Laura McGee, to name a few. She is the first prize winner of many national competitions in China, and a finalist in the 64th Prague Spring International Competition. She is currently finishing her masters degree Longy School of Music of Bard College under the tutelage of Marcos Granados.

Ammi Lopez graduated from the Pennsylvania State University where she studied with Dr. Seidman. She was a winner of Symphonic Wind Ensemble Concerto Competition and an alternate at the MTNA Young Artist Woodwind competition. Ms. Lopez received the Carmen C. Fenza Memorial scholarship and the Brewster scholarship. She is currently pursuing an MM at Longy with Professor Marco Granados. She serves as a teaching assistant at Codman Academy.

Te Hu, Contralto, born in Beijing of China. She is a graduate of the Capital Normal University and Longy School of Music of Bard College, where she received her Masters of Music degree in Opera Performance.She is currently pursuing a Performance Diploma in Vocal Performance at Boston University. During the 2014, she received an honorable mention in the NATS competition. She was accepted in the  Salzburg Festival program with the  University of Miami, and participated in master class given by American soprano Helen Donath. In the summer of 2015, she performed ‘Madam Butterfly’ and ‘My fair Lady’ with Ash Lawn opera company. Recent roles include Servant in ‘Così Fan Tutte,’ and Hippolyta in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ with Boston University Opera Institute. She  will cover Cecilia March in ‘Little women’ with Metrowest Opera in March of this year.This summer, she will participate in the  young artist program  I sing—International Young Artist Festival in China.

Whether swearing revenge as Don Ottavio, or engaging in comic moments as Torquamada, Singaporean tenor Gabriel Pang, loves singing opera onstage! Having moved to Boston in 2011 to pursue a Graduate Performance Diploma in Vocal Performance and Opera at Longy School of Music of Bard College, he has sung the role of Chaplitsky (Tchaikovsky’s Queen of Spade), Bill (A Hand of Bridge), Quantum Mechanic (Quantum Mechanic), Parpignol, Monostatos, Torquamada (Ravel’s L’heure Espagnole), and partial roles like Don Ottavio, Slender (Merry Wives of Windsor), Roldofo (La Bohème), Fritz (L’amico Fritz), Prunier (La Rondine), and Guillot (The Lantern Marriage). In the Boston area,  Gabriel Pang has  sung in concerts for Longwood Opera, and in opera choruses such as Odyssey Opera’s productions of  Le Cid( Meyerbeer) & Rienzi (Wagner), Boston Opera Collaborative’s Cenerentola and La Bohème, and North End Music and Performing Arts Center’s La Bohème & Carmen. In the summer of 2015, Gabriel co-founded Opera Espresso, and has produced, directed and sung in its debut concert season. Gabriel has also directed four new chamber operas with chamber.sounds in Singapore in 2014. Gabriel is currently studying with Donna Roll, and coaches with Thomas Enman.

Guillermo Ortiz: Composer, Performer, and Instructor. Guillermo released his latest CD “Stories From the Present” in February 2008. He has been a professional musician for over 20 years. Among his performances he has played for several TV shows, and performed at The Aztec Stadium in Mexico City. In Boston Guillermo has performed at Berklee Performance Center, The Peabody Museum of Harvard, and various clubs including: The Middle East, Massa, The Paradise, The Milky Way, and Mojitos. He received his Bachelors of Music in Jazz Composition and performance from Berklee College Of Music in 2005. He is currently a candidate for a Masters Degree in Modern American Music at Longy Music School of Bard College.

A native of Ohio, soprano Leah Fallon graduated Cum Laude with her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance in Opera and Musical Theatre at Capital Conservatory of Music in Columbus, Ohio. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Opera Performance from the Longy School of Music and is a student of Donna Roll. She has recently appeared in the role of Carmela in Menotti’s The Saint of Bleecker Street with Longy Opera and Miss Up Down in The Quantum Mechanic with Opera Espresso. Leah’s many performances with Capital Conservatory include Casilda in The Gondoliers, Susan in Sondheim’s Company,and Jenny Hildebrand in Kurt Weill’s Street Scene. In the 2012/13 season she performed one of her favorite roles- Penny Pingleton in Hairspray, with Imagine Productions of Columbus.She has also appeared as Mrs. Beauregarde in Willy Wonka with Pickerington Community Theater and as a chorus member in Mozart’s The Magic Flute with Opera Columbus and Opera Atalier.

Sirgourney Calven Fate Tanner, a native of Chicago, IL, is currently pursuing her graduate education at Longy School of Music of Bard College in Cambridge, MA where she will earn a Master of Music in Opera Performance, May 2016.  She is the voice student of Robert Honeysucker.  Sirgourney received her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance and minor in Philosophy (June 2010) from Lawrence University in Appleton, WI.  She is an alumna of Sigma Alpha Iota (Xi Chapter) International Music Fraternity. In 2009, Sirgourney was cast in Joan D’arc by the Goodman Theatre of Chicago, IL, written and directed by Aida Karic that premiered in Linz, Austria at Linz 2009 European Capital of Culture. In the years 2011-2014 Sirgourney traveled and performed as soprano background vocalist for Oscar and Grammy award winning actress and recording artist Jennifer Hudson.  She is a finalist of the 2015 Opera Ebony Ben Matthews Vocal competition.  Through performance, Sirgourney continues to use music as an avenue to inspire and educate underprivileged youth.

Todd McNeel Jr., Baritone, is a first year Master’s student at Longy School of Music, where he is a candidate for a Graduate Performance Diploma in Opera. At Longy, he studies voice with renowned baritone, Robert Honeysucker.  Before attending Longy, Mr. McNeel earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communications, with a minor in Speech Communications, as well as relevant course work in music and theatre performance from Ouachita Baptist University (Arkansas), studying voice with David Thomas Stanley. Mr.McNeel has been  praised for his musical versatility, performing in genres such as Jazz, Musical Theatre, Gospel, and American Popular music. He is also a classically trained dancer, with experience in ballet, modern, jazz, hip hop and contemporary dance forms. Witness his choreography tonight in this evening’s performance of “Seguidilla” (Gypsy Song).

Sofija Sibinovic was born in Belgrade, Serbia,  where she lived and studied music until 2013,  when she came to Boston for her undergraduate degree at Longy School of Music of Bard College. She started playing the harp when she was ten years old, and since then, has won a  number of prizes in national and international competitions all over  Europe. This  got her opportunities to perform in major halls, and  as a soloist with the Belgrade Symphony Orchestra a  couple of times. In Belgrade, she studied with Dijana Sretenovic, a major Serbian harpist and pedagog. Now she is guided by Franziska Huhn and studies at Longy.For the last five years she has given solo recitals  in different cities in Europe, as well as in States. This year she is invited to give a recital in France as part of a harp festival, with major names in the harp world, where she will also occupy one of the judges’ chairs for the youngest category of the International harp competition.

 Monica Li is an American violinist, who grew up in a professional  musician’s family.  She began a strict and rigorous musical journey at age three by taking piano lessons with professor Lillian Wang of Beijing Central Conservatory.  After moving to California, Monica began violin and later on, viola lessons with her mother, Nina Li, an alumna of the Beijing Central Conservatory. During her high school years, many of her extra curricular activities revolved around music performance. She has played for orchestras such as the PSI, PSO, and AWC Chinese orchestra. In the summer she would attend the symf competitions in various musical styles consecutively placing first, as well as starring in performances hosted by local music venues.  Ms. Li went on to pursue a degree in violin performance and piano education from  Lawrence University Conservatory of Music. Currently residing in the Greater Boston area, she is the artistic executive of NeoWave Studio, where she offers private lessons in piano, violin and viola. This spring, she will be performing The Sound of China: Music from the Dream of Red Chamber with the Boston Chinese Musicians Association orchestra as concertmaster. Tonight, Ms. Li shows her support and performs alongside her friend Ying Wu for two pieces, on a 1706 violin from northern Italy.
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Special Thanks from Ms. Ying Wu

My voice teacher: Robert Honeysucker

My coach: Thomas Enman

Opera department director: Donna Roll

My English tutor: Sloan Sarber

My French tutor: Paul Keene, Paul Bombardier

My dear friends: Te Hu, Leah Fallon, Sirgourney Tanner, Todd McNeel Jr., Gabriel Pang,

Wei Zhao, Ammi Lopez, Junyu Ge, Guillermo Ortiz, Jeffrey Zhou, Sofija Sibinovic,Monic Li

My studio students: Elaine Li, Annie Wang, Samuel Ding, Angie Zhang, Alice Ma, Michelle Su, Warren Nie, Rory Li, Sophie Zhang, Amy Li, Elaine Ran, Shirley Yang, Ariel Wu, Ethan Hong, Yinghan Liu, Hongting Liu, Hailey Duan, Jasmine Wu, Justin Wang, Jasmine Lai, Vivian Shi, Alina Shi, Shawn Yu, Sophia Hou, Alana Liu, Yoyo Wang, Coco Shen, Emma Li, Bellerina Hu, Chloe Zhong, Katherine Chen, Connie Yang, Esmerelda  Li, Jamie Li, Maria Huang, Terry Yang, Victor Feng, Jasmine Wang, Olivia Hu, Claus Wen, Sophia Li, Justin Sun, Linda Yu, Yiling Sha, Claire Niu, Angelina Che, Grace Zhuang, Rachel Lei, Hannah Hou, Richard Lindeman, Alicia Chen, Ashlin Zhu, Cynthia Wen, Alexandra Ma, Olivia Zhou, Trinity hu, Sammi Pan, Stella Pan.
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