- Performance Calendar
Historical Performance: Theatre Comique and SFCM Orchestra
Masterpieces for orchestra and voice by Victor Herbert and Jerome Kern
Music from Victor Herbert's The Enchantress, Mlle. Modiste, Naughty Marietta and Jerome Kern's The Laughing Husband, Leave It to Jane, Very Good Eddie
Erica Schuller, soprano
Katherine Growdon, mezzo-soprano
Brian Thorsett, tenor
SFCM voice students and
Members of SFCM Orchestra
Corey Jamason, conductor
Corey Jamason and Eric Davis, directors
Praised for her “lively personality, abundant charm, and luscious vocalism (Chicago Tribune),” soprano Erica Schuller is a versatile performer, bringing committed artistry to a broad musical repertory. Her affinity for Baroque repertoire has brought her increasing attention from some of the country's finest Early Music ensembles. Upcoming engagements include roles and concert appearances with Apollo's Fire, The Haymarket Opera Company, Bella Voce and with San Francisco-based Theatre Comique.
This past season, Ms. Schuller sang debut performances with Apollo's Fire and Ars Lyrica Houston, both internationally recognized Baroque orchestras. Regarding her performances of W.A. Mozart's famous cantata Exsultate, Jubilate, with Ars Lyrica, American Organist Magazine reported "Soprano soloist Erica Schuller made use of a vivid dynamic palette and assured, glittering coloratura to renew this classic." Other noteworthy debut appearances include performances of Mozart and Handel with New Trinity Baroque Orchestra in Atlanta, and Whitbourne's Annelies with the Lincoln Trio. This spring she reprised the role of Livietta in Pergolesi's Livietta e Tracollo with the Boston Early Music Festival, and also performed supporting roles in their opera centerpiece, Campra's Carnaval de Venise.
Past performances include the roles of Oriana in Handel's Amadigi di Gaula, Vespetta in Telemann's Pimpinone and Lisetta in Scarlatti’s Gli equivoci nel sembiante, all with The Haymarket Opera Company in Chicago. As Livietta in Pergolesi’s Livietta e Tracollo with the Boston Early Music Festival, she was praised for her "clear and perfectly articulated execution of her arias" by the Boston Music Intelligencer. She has performed several roles with Skylight Opera Theater, including Marzelline in Beethoven’s Fidelio and Soprano 2 in Glass’s Hydrogen Jukebox with Skylight Theatre. In 2015 she created the roles of Joan Strasinsky and The Princess for the world premiere of a newly composed opera, The Snow Dragon, by award winning novelist and composer Somtow Sucharitkul, and was described as "ethereal" by Broadway World Magazine. It was presented by Skylight Opera Theater, and she was invited to reprise these roles in Thailand with Opera Siam later that year. Additional roles include Elvira in Rossini’s L’italiana in Algeri and Second Woman in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas with The Florentine Opera Company; and concert engagements with the Great Lakes Baroque, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, San Francisco Bach Choir, the San Francisco Chamber Orchestra, the Elgin Symphony Orchestra, Second City Musick and Bella Voce. Other operatic highlights include Armida in Handel’s Rinaldo, Pamina in Mozart’s Magic Flute, Belinda in Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, and Amor in Cavalli’s L’Egisto, Noémie in Massenet’s Cendrillon, Euridice in Rossi’s L’Orfeo and Lazuli in Chabrier’s L’Étoile
In addition to her work on the opera stage, Ms. Schuller can be heard as the voice of Marte in Duron’s Salir el Amor del Mundo, recorded for the Dorian Record Label with Richard Savino and El Mundo. She can also be heard on the Boston Early Music Festival's Grammy-nominated recording of Lully’s opera Psyché, which was performed in Boston in 2007.
Originally from Wisconsin, Ms. Schuller received her Master of Music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and holds degrees in Vocal Performance and Music Education from the Eastman School of Music. She currently lives and teaches voice lessons in Chicago through The Chicago School of Music.
Mezzo-soprano Katherine Growdon is a critically acclaimed singer whose voice has been described as “full of dusky colors and pathos” (Boston Globe), “sweet and creamy-toned” (Boston Musical Intelligencer) and capable of “heartrending emotion” (San Francisco Classical Voice). She is known for her total commitment to music, character and text: “...she used her eyes and expressive face to heighten the meaning of all she sang; I was riveted and felt like she was singing directly to me” (Boston Musical Intelligencer). As Myrtle Wilson in the Boston premiere of Harbison’s The Great Gatsby with Emmanuel Music she “was thoroughly in character.... Everything about her physical presence and slightly quivery voice said yearning” (Boston Classical Review). Her operatic roles include Sesto (Giulio Cesare), Cherubino (Le Nozze di Figaro), Idamante (Idomeneo), Hansel (Hansel und Gretel), Nicklausse (Les contes d’Hoffmann), Charlotte (Werther), and Mercédes (Carmen). In concert, she has performed with renowned ensembles including the Handel & Haydn Society, Boston Baroque, Emmanuel Music, Boston Pops, American Bach Soloists, Atlanta Baroque Orchestra, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, and the Albany Symphony, performing a wide range of repertoire from early renaissance to contemporary works. As a vocal fellow at Tanglewood she sang with the Mark Morris Dance Group, and was subsequently featured in numerous productions including Dido and Aeneas, in which the New York Times called her performance as Dido/Sorceress “incisively authoritative.” Recent appearances include Zephyrus in Mozart’s Apollo and Hyacinthus with Emmanuel Music, alto solos in Bach’s Magnificat with the Handel & Haydn Society at Symphony Hall, Peter Lieberson's Rilke Songs with LiederAlive!, and a performance of Ligeti's Clocks and Clouds with the Lorelei Ensemble at Tanglewood. Katherine received her Master's in Voice from SFCM, studying with Jane Randolph, and has a BA in Comparative Literature from Oberlin College. She currently lives in Jamaica Plain, MA.
Hailed as “a strikingly gifted tenor, with a deeply moving, unblemished voice” (sfmusicjournal.com), tenor Brian Thorsett excels in opera, oratorio and recital across the world. Since taking to the stage, Brian has been seen and heard in over 100 diverse operatic roles, ranging from Monteverdi to Britten, back to Rameau and ahead again to works composed specifically for his talents. Upcoming projects include his role debut as Captain Vere in a concert version of Britten’s Billy Budd and the world premiere of Abraham in Flames, a collaboration between composer Aleksandra Vrebalov, Nobel-prize nominee poet Niloufar Talebi, The Living Earth Show and the San Francisco International Arts Festival. As a concert singer Brian fosters a stylistically diversified repertoire of over 250 works, which has taken him to concert halls across the US and Europe. Future highlights include Evangelist and soloist in both Bach’s St. Matthew Passionand Magnificat, Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610, Berlioz Requiem, Bruckner’s Mass in F minor, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony and Mendelssohn’s Elijah.
An avid recitalist, Brian is closely associated with expanding the vocal-chamber genre, and has been involved in premieres and commissions of Ian Venables, David Conte, Scott Gendel, Michael Scherperel, Peter Josheff, Shinji Eshima, Gordon Getty, Michel Bosc, Eric Choate and Noah Luna among many others. Upcoming projects include the premiere of Ian Venables Through These Pale, Cold Days, Eric Choate’s two poems of carl sundberg and a World War One themed project with the Ives Collective. He will be featured on recitals in San Francisco, Sausalito, Berkeley, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington DC, Atlanta, London and Paris in the coming seasons.
Brian has also been heard in recordings, commercials and movies as the voice for SoundIron’s library Voice of Rapture: Tenor. His CD releases include song cycles of David Conte, Scott Gendel’s Barbara Allen and Voice of Firestone - an album of 1900’s drawing room ballads with salon orchestra. He is a graduate of San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program, Glimmerglass Opera’s Young American Artist program, American Bach Soloists’ Academy, the Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme at Aldeburgh, England and spent two summers at the Music Academy of the West. Brian is currently Assistant Professor of Voice at Virginia Tech’s School of Performing Arts and served on the faculties of UC Berkeley and Santa Clara University. www.brianthorsett.com