July 19, 2019

Pick Up Your Q: Jonathan Bryan

Originally from Dallas, Texas, baritone Jonathan Bryan will enter his second year as a Studio artist in the 2019-20 season. We caught up with him for #StudioSaturday to find out what he’s looking forward to in 19-20, his favorite place for good eats in ATL, and his advice for Studio newbies. What have you been up to this summer? This summer, I’m returning to The Glimmerglass Festival for my second summer as a young artist with the company. I’m singing […]
April 17, 2019

Love: The Ecstasy and The Burden

by Noel Morris Last year, there were 867 performances of La traviata worldwide. It was by far the most performed opera. And with ravishing music amplifying a powerful, character-driven story, it’s no surprise. A hundred years ago, audiences most likely viewed Violetta Valéry as a disreputable woman who was curiously and uncomfortably compelling. For them, La traviata was a tale of redemption. Today, people admire Violetta. She has fortitude and an astonishingly benevolent spirit in the face of a nauseatingly […]
April 2, 2019

Chorus Spotlight: Christopher Hawkins

The Atlanta Opera: What is your vocal part, and how long have you sung with The Atlanta Opera Chorus? Chris Hawkins: I am a bass, and this year marks 30 years in The Atlanta Opera Chorus! I have participated in 85 productions with the chorus with this La traviata being the 76th mainstage production. TAO: Where did you grow up and how did you get into music? CH: I am a rare breed: I’m an Atlanta native and I’ve lived […]
March 27, 2019

A town. A slum. Fatal passion. And love.

By Noel Morris Maria de Buenos Aires is a show about a forgotten music, a forgotten dance, and a forgotten people. Cast in the gauzy hues of surrealistic poetry, the show explores the social conditions that gave rise to the tango. Not unlike hip-hop in our own country, the tango was a product of communities in distress. Initially dismissed as vulgar and immoral (dancing in an embrace was considered indecent), the tango followed an unlikely journey, traveling from the slums […]
March 4, 2019

The Sting of Regret

By Noel Morris Eugene Onegin still surprises audiences for what it’s not: there’s no melodrama; it’s not exotic. It’s not a spectacle, nor is it action-packed. “How glad I am to be free of Egyptian princesses, pharaohs, poisonings, and stilted effects of all kinds,” the composer quipped. For Tchaikovsky, this was an opportunity to “convey through music everyday, simple, universally human emotions, far removed from anything tragic or theatrical.” By 1877, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky was among the most celebrated composers […]
January 10, 2019

Chorus Spotlight: Christopher S. Connelly

The Atlanta Opera: What is your vocal part, and how long have you sung with the Atlanta Opera Chorus? Christopher S. Connelly: I am a baritone. I have sung for 22 years, this is my 47th production. AO: Where did you grow up and how did you get into music? CSC: I grew up outside of Philadelphia. Our parish priest was from Ireland, and he would give me a dime every time I sang an Irish folk song for him. […]
December 17, 2018

A walk with humanity

By Noel Morris On Nov. 5, 1977, Patrick and Eddie Sonnier shot two teenagers in the head, three times each. Eddie was sentenced to life in prison; his older brother, Patrick, died in the electric chair. In 1982, in the months leading to his execution, Patrick began exchanging letters with Sister Helen Prejean of the Sisters of St. Joseph Medaille. She became his spiritual adviser and walked with him to his execution in what proved to be a transformative experience […]
September 7, 2018

Addict. Alcoholic. Jazz genius.

May 23, 2018

Chorus Spotlight: Lynnette Anderson

  The Atlanta Opera: How long have you sung with The Atlanta Opera Chorus? Lynnette Anderson: I’ve sung in The Atlanta Opera Chorus as a mezzo-soprano/alto since 1985, been in more than 80 productions, and have been featured in small ensembles in some productions. AO: Where did you grow up and how did you get into music? Lynnette: I grew up near Wheeling, W. Va., about an hour from Pittsburgh. I can’t remember a time when I was not singing. […]
March 29, 2018

Pick Up Your Q: Tom Key

Veteran Atlanta actor Tom Key was last seen at The Atlanta Opera as Pasha Selim in The Abduction from the Seraglio. As the Artistic Director of Theatrical Outfit, he helped to pave the way for a multidisciplinary collaboration on Out of Darkness: Two Remain, which fuses opera with theatre and dance, and will be performed at the 200-seat Balzer Theater at Herren’s/Theatrical Outfit in Downtown Atlanta. In Out of Darkness: Two Remain, Tom is Gad Beck, a gay German Jew who is […]
January 3, 2018

Chorus Spotlight: Mitch Gindlesperger

For the next installment of our Spotlight series, we chatted with Georgia native Mitch Gindlesperger, who has sung with The Atlanta Opera Chorus for 19 years (with an 11 year hiatus) as a bass. He was last seen on the mainstage as a German soldier in Silent Night (2016). Roles: Antonio, Le Nozze di Figaro Wolf/Woodsman, Little Red Riding Hood Second Solider, Salome Majordomo, La Rondine Armed Man, Magic Flute Old Gypsy, Il Trovotore Herald, Otello Herald, Rigoletto (twice) Second […]
November 3, 2017

Pick Up Your Q: Olivia Vote

Mezzo-soprano Olivia Vote makes her Atlanta Opera debut as Mary in a new production of The Flying Dutchman. We chatted with her about Mary’s thoughts on Senta’s love interest, her process for each role, and what she watches during her down time.    Where did you grow up and when did you start singing? I grew up in St. Mary’s, MD where both of my parents worked at St. Mary’s College. My dad is a professor of voice and a […]