The Atlanta Opera Studio Program
The Atlanta Opera Studio provides talented emerging artists with valuable performance experience working alongside internationally acclaimed operatic professionals. The artists will participate in masterclasses and specialized instruction, enhancing and deepening their professional education through coaching in language, stage skills, and career development. The Studio program has already helped launch the careers of 2016-17 season alums Brenna Corner and Santiago Ballerini, who will return to the Atlanta mainstage in 2017-18 as stage director for Carmen and as Tonio in The Daughter of the Regiment, respectively.
During the 17-18 season, artists in The Studio will appear in featured and supporting roles in mainstage productions at Cobb Energy Centre. Additionally, they will perform in the Student Short production of The Daughter of the Regiment, and in the Studio Tour, which reaches over 10,000 students annually and performs throughout metro-Atlanta in a variety of audience development programs and special events. The Studio Tour production this season will be Mozart’s The Magic Flute in collaboration with the Center for Puppetry Arts.
The six members of the 2017-18 Atlanta Opera Studio are stage director Brenna Corner, Alberta, Canada; baritone Christopher Dunham, Ontario, Canada; soprano Bryn Holdsworth, New York, NY; mezzo-soprano Gina Perregrino, Wilmington, DE; pianist and vocal coach Valerie Pool, Marietta, GA; and tenor Justin Stolz, Ontario, Canada.
Brenna Corner* has worked as a director, actor, singer, choreographer, and fight director across Canada, the United States and Europe. Brenna has been a member of the Yulanda M Faris Young Artist Program with Vancouver Opera and is currently working with The Atlanta Opera as the Resident Director for their Studio program. Ms. Corner is the artistic director of Fraser Lyric Opera and Manitoba Underground Opera in Winnipeg, Canada.
Ms. Corner made her directorial mainstage debut directing a new production of Hansel and Gretel designed by the Old Trout Puppet Workshop for Vancouver Opera. Ms. Corner returned for her second summer as a Young Artist at the Glimmerglass Opera Festival as the assistant director of their new production The Siege of Calais, as well as the director for Scalia/Ginsburg.
Select directing projects include: Sweeney Todd (New Orleans Opera), Hansel and Gretel (Vancouver Opera) The Four Note Opera (Yulanda M. Faris Vancouver Opera Young Artist Program), Cendrillon (Manitoba Underground Opera), Béatrice et Benedict (Fraser Lyric Opera), The Turn of the Screw (Accademia Europea dell’ Opera). Select assistant directing projects include: Turandot (The Atlanta Opera) The Siege of Calais,(Glimmerglass Opera Festival); Carmen (Canadian Opera Company); Stickboy, (Vancouver Opera), Der Fliegende Hollander (Calgary Opera).
*The Jerry & Dulcy Rosenberg Young Artist Stage Director, given in honor of Tomer Zvulun
Christopher Dunham is a native of Niagra Falls, Ontario and has captivated audiences with his lyric baritone voice across Canada and as far away as the Adriatic coast of Italy. A recent graduate from L’Atelier Lyrique de L’Opera de Monreal, his roles include: Figaro in The Barber of Seville, Mercutio in Romeo et Juliette, Escamillo in Carmen, Don Giovanni, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus, and Dandini in La Cenerentola. Christopher can be seen with Pacific Opera Victoria this season, singing Argante in Handel’s Rinaldo. He is thrilled to be joining The Atlanta Opera Studio.
Praised by the New York Times for her “limpid-toned, articulate soprano,” Bryn Holdsworth is garnering attention on stages around the country. This season Ms. Holdsworth returns to The Atlanta Opera for a second year as their resident soprano where she will sing Krysia in Out of Darkness, Marie (cover) in The Daughter of the Regiment, and Pamina in the Studio Tour of The Magic Flute. Last season, Bryn was awarded The Rebekah Clark Cooledge Encouragement Award from the Metropolitan Opera National Council. In the 2016-17 season Ms. Holdsworth made her debut with the Atlanta Opera Studio with credits including a return to the role of Norina in Don Pasquale, Madeleine in Silent Night, Clorinda in the Studio Tour of Cinderella, and First Handmaiden in Turandot. She made her Lincoln Center debut at Alice Tully Hall as the soprano soloist in Orff’s Carmina Burana with the New York City Master Chorale. She also performed as soloist for the Oratorio Society of New York’s presentation of Mahler’s 8th Symphony under the baton of Kent Tritle. Bryn was an apprentice artist with Des Moines Metro Opera this summer. In 2015, Ms. Holdsworth was seen as Norina in Don Pasquale with the Crested Butte Music Festival Opera Studio as well as Belinda in Dido and Aeneas. Other operatic credits include performances as Andromède in Persée et Andromède, Rachel Dowling in Patience and Sarah, Micaëla in La tragédie de Carmen, Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel, and the title role in La Doriclea. Ms. Holdsworth’s training includes performing with the International Vocal Arts Institute, the Institut Canadien d’Art Vocal, and Marilyn Horne’s celebrated program, “The Song Continues” at Carnegie Hall. A recent graduate of Manhattan School of Music, Ms. Holdsworth was awarded the prestigious Rodgers and Hammerstein/Richard Rodgers Scholarship as well as the ASCAP Foundation Fran Morgenstern Davis Scholarship.
Praised by Opera News as a “standout”, young mezzo soprano Gina Perregrino has already garnered attention nationwide for her colorful timbre and expressiveness. Recent operatic debuts include two productions at Minnesota Opera, singing Stéphano in Romeo et Juliette and Clizia in L’arbore di Diana. She joined Guatemala’s Lyric Opera where she sang Maddalena in Rigoletto in a production that was broadcast on Univision TeleOnce throughout parts of Central America. Most recently, she performed the title role in Carmen at Central City Opera as an apprentice artist. Ms. Perregrino was a soloist with the Cincinnati May Festival as part of their Dream Project, which included Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Vaughan Williams’ A Tribute to Music. In the 2016 summer season, Ms. Perregrino made her debut with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis singing Blindwoman in the world premiere of Shalimar the Clown.
A graduate of Manhattan School of Music, she performed the leading role (Marquise de Merteuil) in Conrad Susa’s contemporary opera Dangerous Liaisons under the baton of George Manahan and received critical acclaim. During her time at Manhattan School of Music, Ms. Perregrino was recipient of the Liberace and Marga and Arthur King scholarships. She was a past grand prize winner of the Metropolitan International Vocal Competition where she sang the Brahms’ Songs with Viola in a winner’s gala at Lincoln Center. She is a recipient of the Richard Gaddes Career Grant from Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and an Encouragement Award winner from the Metropolitan Opera National Council.
Valerie Pool begins her second season as resident pianist/coach with The Atlanta Opera in September 2017. Prior residencies include Tulsa Opera (2014-2016) where her assignments included Samson et Dalila, A Streetcar Named Desire, La bohème, Of Mice and Men, and a studio performance of Florencia en el Amazonas. During the summer months (2014-2016), she has been a pianist and member of the music staff at Cincinnati Opera.
Additionally, she has worked as pianist, coach, and répétiteur with Opera Saratoga (New York), Cincinnati Chamber Opera, Nashville Opera’s Mary Ragland Young Artist Program, and Capitol City Opera (Atlanta). She was the Studio Pianist for the Wagner Society of Cincinnati (2012-2014), with performances including a musical analysis of Parsifal, The Wesendonck Lieder, and a collaboration with Cincinnati Opera of Die Walküre.
A native of Marietta, Georgia, Valerie completed her Artist Diploma in Opera Coaching at the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. She also holds a master’s degree in Chamber Music and Accompanying from the University of Georgia and a bachelor’s degree in Piano Performance from Kennesaw State University.
Praised for his “exceptionally emotional” (Ontario Arts Review) and “effortlessly powerful” voice (The Chronicle Journal), Canadian tenor Justin Stolz is establishing himself as an exciting young performer. Following his graduate studies under the tutelage of Timothy Noble at Indiana University, he is thrilled to be joining The Atlanta Opera as a resident artist for their 2017-2018 season. Upcoming debuts with the company include Der Steuermann in Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer, the Father in Weill’s Die sieben Todsünden, Remendado in Bizet’s Carmen and Tamino in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte for the company’s touring production.
Mr. Stolz recently made his IU Opera and Ballet Theater debut as Don José in Carmen and performed the role of B.F. Pinkerton in the company’s production of Puccini’s Madama Butterfly. Highlights of past seasons include Mr. Owen in Argento’s Postcard from Morocco, Rodolfo in Puccini’s La bohème and Don Ottavio in Mozart’s Don Giovanni.
A recent recipient of the first prize in The S. Livingston Mather Competition of Cleveland, Ohio, Mr. Stolz began his vocal studies in his hometown of Thunder Bay, Ontario, under Mary McGhee and is a graduate of The Glenn Gould School (The Royal Conservatory of Music), where he studied under Monica Whicher. Earlier engagements for 2017 included Britten’s Serenade at Indiana University, the tenor soloist in Mendelssohn’s Elijah with the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic Orchestra, and a reprisal of the role of Don José in the Brott Music Festival’s production of Carmen.