Juilliard Opera Presents Handel’s “Agrippina” in February 2017 Featuring Juilliard Singers and Juilliard415

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Juilliard Opera Presents Handel’s “Agrippina” in February 2017 Featuring Juilliard Singers and Juilliard415
Concert Version on February 11, 2017, at 7:30pm in Alice Tully Hall; Fully Staged Production on February 18, at 2pm and February 20, and 22, 2017, at 7:30pm in Juilliard’s Willson Theater
Monday, January 16, 2017

Laurence Cummings (photo by Robert Workman)

NEW YORK –– The Juilliard Opera season continues with a concert version and a fully staged production of G.F. Handel’s Agrippina, presented by Juilliard as part of Carnegie Hall’s La Serenissima: Music and Arts From the Venetian Republic festival. The opera features Juilliard Singers and period-instrument ensemble Juilliard415, conducted by Laurence Cummings in a concert version on Saturday, February 11, 2017, at 7:30pm in Alice Tully Hall. A fully staged production of the opera follows a week later in Juilliard’s Willson Theater on Saturday, February 18, 2017, at 2pm; and Monday, February 20 and Wednesday, February 22, 2017, at 7:30pm, with Juilliard415 and Juilliard singers, conducted by Juilliard Historical Performance alumnus Jeffrey Grossman and directed by Louisa Proske. Scenic design is by Kate Noll, costume design is by Beth Goldenberg, lighting design is by Oliver Wason, and the movement director is Emma Jaster.

The cast, in order of vocal appearance, features Samantha Hankey (Agrippina); Angela Vallone (Nerone); Jacob Scharfman (Pallante); Avery Amereau (Narciso); Andrew Munn (Lesbo); Jakub Jozef Orlinski (Ottone); Onadek Winan (Poppea); Cody Quattlebaum (Claudio); and Amanda Lynn Bottoms (Giunone). In the staged production, Avery Amereau will sing the roles of Narciso and Giunone.

Handel’s three-year visit to Italy culminated in the first performances of his opera Agrippina in Venice’s theater of San Giovanni Grisostomo during the winter carnival season of 1709-10. The libretto by Cardinal Vincenzo Grimani – whose family owned the theater – was written for Handel, and the characters in the opera are all historical, although Grimani made some changes in his chronology.

Tickets for the Alice Tully Hall concert are $20 and will be available at events.juilliard.edu, through CenterCharge at (212) 721-6500, or at the Alice Tully Hall Box Office. Tickets are free for Juilliard students; non-Juilliard students with valid ID may purchase tickets for $10, only at the Alice Tully Hall Box Office. Tickets for Juilliard Opera productions are $30 and available at events.juilliard.edu or at the Juilliard Box Office. Free tickets are available for Juilliard students; non-Juilliard students with valid ID may purchase tickets for $15, only at the Juilliard Box Office.

This performance is part of Juilliard Opera, a program dedicated to the education and training of future generations of singers at Juilliard. Juilliard Opera is supported by the vision and generous lead funding of the International Foundation for Arts and Culture and its chairman, Dr. Haruhisa Handa.

Juilliard’s full-scholarship Historical Performance program was established and endowed in 2009 by the generous support of Bruce and Suzie Kovner.

Meet the Artists

Laurence Cummings (Conductor for Feb. 11)

Laurence Cummings is an internationally acclaimed conductor and harpsichordist, and an exciting and versatile exponent of historical performance. 2016 marks his fifth season as artistic director of the International Händel-Festpiele Göttingen, and since 1999, he has served as music director of the London Handel Festival. At the Royal Academy of Music, he serves as the William Crotch Professor of Historical Performance. He was also musical director of the Tilford Bach Society, is a trustee of Handel House London, and is a regular guest at Casa da Musica in Porto, Portugal where he conducts Orquestra Barroca Casa da Música. His discography includes the first recording of Handel’s newly discovered Gloria and recital discs of solo harpsichord music for Naxos. (schwalbeandpartners.com/laurence-cummings-conductor/)

Jeffrey Grossman (Conductor for Feb. 18, 20, and 22)

Conductor and keyboardist Jeffrey Grossman specializes in vital, engaging performances of music of the past, through processes that are intensely collaborative and historically informed. This season, Mr. Grossman conducts Bach’s St. John Passion from the organ with the Sebastians and performs as featured harpsichord soloist in Bach’s Brandenburg Concerti with St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. In addition to serving as artistic director of the acclaimed Baroque ensemble the Sebastians, Mr. Grossman also performs this year with the Green Mountain Project, Spire Chamber Ensemble, Quodlibet, Music in the Somerset Hills, and the Bach Players of Holy Trinity. Mr. Grossman can be heard on the Avie, Gothic, Naxos, Albany, Soundspells, Métier, and MSR Classics record labels. A native of Detroit, he holds degrees from Harvard College, Juilliard, and Carnegie Mellon University. (jeffreygrossman.com)

Louisa Proske (Director)

Louisa Proske directs opera, classical theater, and new plays with equal passion. She is co-artistic director of Heartbeat Opera. Opera productions: Così fan tutte (LoftOpera); Lucia di Lammermoor; Daphnis et Chloé (Heartbeat Opera); Falstaff (Dell’Arte Opera); Gianni Schicchi, Riders to the Sea, La Voix Humaine (Yale Opera); and Invisible Cities (world premiere, Italian Academy). Theater productions: peerless (nominated for Berkshire Theatre Award/Outstanding Direction) and Engagements (Barrington Stage), One Day When We Were Young (Assembly, Edinburgh), ‘Tis Pity She’s A Whore (Tank), Cymbeline (Yale Drama), and Macbeth (European tour).
Ms. Proske has assisted Willy Decker, Harry Kupfer, and Robert Woodruff. She holds an MFA in directing from Yale School of Drama and is a Drama League Director’s Project alumna. (louisaproske.com and heartbeatopera.org)

Avery Amereau (Narciso and Guinone in the Willson Theater production)

Mezzo-soprano Avery Amereau, a native of Florida, studied at Mannes College and at Juilliard, where she is pursuing her Artist Diploma in Opera Studies and studying with Edith Wiens. She made her operatic debut at Juilliard as Olga in Eugene Onegin followed by the title role of The Rape of Lucretia and the Third Lady in Die Zauberflöte. Ms. Amereau also fosters a love for historical performance, having performed with distinguished early music conductors Helmuth Rilling, William Christie, Masaaki Suzuki, and Jordi Savall. She has performed numerous recitals in New York, Florida, and Germany, the last of which were broadcast on Bavarian Radio. This season includes debuts at the Metropolitan Opera and the Glyndebourne Festival. Ms. Amereau is a proud recipient of the Kovner Fellowship.

Amanda Lynn Bottoms (Giunone in the Feb. 11 concert)

Awarded by the Opera Index and Gerda Lissner Lieder/Song competitions, mezzo-soprano Amanda Lynn Bottoms is pursuing her master’s degree at Juilliard studying with Marlena Malas. She has appeared with the Juilliard Orchestra, Detroit Symphony, Chautauqua Symphony, NYFOS, and Cecilia Chorus of NYC. At Juilliard, she has sung in Flight, Der Kaiser von Atlantis, and The Rape of Lucretia. As a member of the Chautauqua voice program she has sung the title role in Ariodante, Maddalena in Rigoletto, and the Third Lady in Die Zauberflöte. Ms. Bottoms recently joined the Western New York Chamber Orchestra as Dinah in Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti and the Detroit Symphony as the Page in Strauss’s Salome. She has sung in master classes led by Patricia Racette, Dawn Upshaw, and John Fisher. This summer she will join Wolf Trap Opera as a Studio Artist. Ms. Bottoms is a proud recipient of the Kovner Fellowship.

Samantha Hankey (Agrippina)

Mezzo-soprano Samantha Hankey from Marshfield, Mass., is pursuing her master of music degree at Juilliard, where she studies with Edith Wiens. She has most recently appeared at Juilliard as Diana and Diana in Giove in La Calisto, Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro, Miss Todd in The Old Maid and the Thief, and at the Aspen Music Festival as Dorabella in Così fan tutte and Mercédès in Carmen. Ms. Hankey’s most recent awards and honors include a 2016 Sara Tucker Study Grant from the Richard Tucker Foundation, prizes from the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation, the Gerda Lissner Foundation, Opera Index, and from Juilliard a Lucrezia Bori Prize and the Peter Mennin Prize for Outstanding Achievement and Leadership in Music. Ms. Hankey is a proud recipient of the Kovner Fellowship.

Andrew Munn (Lesbo)

Bass Andrew Munn, hailing from State College, Pa., is a graduate diploma candidate in Vocal Arts at Juilliard and studies with Sanford Sylvan. He is a 2016 graduate of Bard Conservatory’s Graduate Vocal Arts Program, directed by Dawn Upshaw. Recent performances include Sarastro in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte; bass solos in Haydn’s Creation, and Mozart’s Requiem; Jesus in Bach’s St. John Passion; Schubert’s Winterreise and Stockhausen’s Tierkreis. In 2016, he was a Caramoor Festival Young Artist, covering Rocco in Beethoven’s Fidelio. Mr. Munn also collaborates with composers to create works that explore the relationship between human and natural systems. This passion grows from his time as a community organizer in the Appalachian coalfields from 2008 to 2014. Mr. Munn studied voice and environmental sciences at the University of Michigan. He holds the Robert and Marion Merrill Voice Scholarship, Michael L. Brunetti Memorial Scholarship in Voice, and Max Dreyfus Memorial Scholarship in Voice.

Jakub Jozef Orlinski (Ottone)

Polish born countertenor Jakub Jozef Orlinski is enrolled in Juilliard’s graduate diploma program studying with Edith Wiens. He has a master’s degree in vocal performance from Poland’s Fryderyk Chopin University of Music (2014) and has been a member of the Opera Academy at Warsaw’s National Opera since 2012. Mr. Orlinski has sung Cupid in Blow’s Venus and Adonis, Narciso in Handel’s Agrippina, and Ruggiero in Handel’s Alcina at opera houses in Poland and Germany. He has also performed Purcell’s songs from Othello at the Leipzig Opera and Telemann’s Philippus in Der Misslungene Braut-Wechsel oder Richardus I. Mr. Orlinski was a 2016 winner of the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Auditions and a Fulbright Scholar. He is a proud recipient of the Kovner Fellowship.

Cody Quattlebaum (Claudio)

Bass-baritone Cody Quattlebaum, from Ellicott City, Md., is currently earning his master’s at Juilliard where he studies with Marlena Malas. He received his bachelor’s degree from the CCM – University of Cincinnati. He has performed Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro, Der Lautsprecher in Der Kaiser von Atlantis, Der Fischer in Matsukaze, Melsso in Alcina, and the Colonel in the first workshop of Daniel Catán’s Meet John Doe. He recently sang Guglielmo in Così fan tutte with the San Francisco Opera’s Merola program and made his Carnegie Hall debut with conductor Mark Shapiro, a member of the Juilliard Evening Division faculty. He has been awarded prizes in the Corbett Opera, James Toland, Gerda Lissner Liederkranz, CAM Heida Hermanns, and Opera Index competitions, and has advanced in the 2016-17 N.Y.C. District of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. This March, he will be a featured artist in Juilliard’s Vocal Arts Honors Recital and San Francisco Opera’s Schwabacher Debut Recital. Mr. Quattlebaum holds the Irene Diamond Graduate Fellowship and Risë Stevens Scholarship.

Jacob Scharfman (Pallante)

Baritone Jacob Scharfman is currently in his first year in Juilliard’s master of music degree program, studying with Dr. Robert C. White. Recent roles for the Boston native include Rugby in Vaughan Williams’ Sir John in Love (Odyssey Opera); Mr. Webb in Rorem’s Our Town (Boston Opera Collaborative); and Prince Yeletsky in Tchaikovsky’s The Queen of Spades (Harvard’s Lowell House). This winter, he will sing Charlie in Jake Heggie’s Three Decembers with Opera Fayetteville (Ark.). Last season, Mr. Scharfman took prizes at competitions held by the Arlington Philharmonic Society, MetroWest Opera, and Piccola Opera New Hampshire. Past solo engagements include the Boston Camerata, Harvard-Radcliffe Chorus, Boston University’s Marsh Chapel, Henry Purcell Society, Trinity Church Boston, Community Music Works, and Brown University, his alma mater. Mr. Scharfman can be heard weekly at St. Ignatius of Antioch Episcopal. He holds the Philo Higley Scholarship, Ben Holt Memorial Scholarship for Vocal, and Risë Stevens Scholarship. (jacobscharfman.com)

Angela Vallone (Nerone)

Soprano Angela Vallone is pursuing her master of music degree at Juilliard, studying with Edith Wiens.  Ms. Vallone has participated in master classes with Marilyn Horne (The Song Continues), Brigitte Fassbaender, and Patricia Racette, among others. Previous performance highlights include Oliver Knussen’s Requiem: Songs for Sue with Juilliard’s new music ensemble AXIOM, Servilia in La clemenza di Tito at the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall with the Moscow Philharmonic Society, and the title role in Cavalli’s La Calisto. Last summer she attended the Mozart Residency in Aix-en-Provence. Ms. Vallone’s upcoming engagements include Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro at Teatro Municipal de Santiago, and joining the Ensemble at Oper Frankfurt. She holds the Bertha Melnik Scholarship, R. Maurice Boyd Scholarship for Vocal Studies, and Risë Stevens Scholarship.

Onadek Winan (Poppea)

Parisian soprano, Onadek Winan is a master’s candidate at Juilliard, where she studies with Edith Bers. She made her opera debut with the Radio France Philharmonic Orchestra at age 15. Recently she has performed in Charpentier’s Actéon with William Christie, as Bastienne in Mozart’s Bastien und Bastienne with the Massy Opera house, and made her Alice Tully Hall and Carnegie Hall debuts. She was Clara in Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess with the Baltimore Symphonic Orchestra and conductor and Juilliard alumna Marin Alsop. She won the Jury’s Prize in the International Singing Competition of Marmande, first prize in Les Maîtres du chant Français, and Most Promising Singer Prize in the Canari Vocal Competition. Ms. Winan is a graduate of École Normale de Musique and the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique. She will join Wolf Trap Opera this coming summer. Ms. Winan is a proud recipient of the Kovner Fellowship.

Beth Goldenberg (Costume Designer)

Beth Goldenberg’s costume design credits include: Stabat Mater, Macbeth directed by Anne Bogart and co-designed with James Schuette, and the world premiere of a new adaptation of David Lang’s the little match girl passion, directed by Francesca Zambello (Glimmerglass); Lucia di Lammermoor, Kafka’s Fragments, Daphnis et Chloe (Heartbeat Opera); Misalliance, God of Carnage, By the Way Meet Vera Stark (Juilliard Drama); Blueprints To Freedom (La Jolla Playhouse, Kansas City Rep); Queens For A Year (Hartford Stage); Disgraced (Asolo Rep); Engagements, The Other Thing (Second Stage Uptown); The Sensuality Party (New Group); Engagements (Barrington Stage), and The Changeling (Red Bull). She holds an MFA from New York University.

Emma Jaster (Movement Director)

Emma Jaster is an internationally-trained choreographer, teacher, and generative artist based in New York City. She performed from childhood with her father, acclaimed mime Mark Jaster, a student of Decroux and Marceau. Ms. Jaster has worked with Robert Wilson’s Watermill Center, the Natanakairali Institute for Sanskrit Theater in India; LaMama’s International Director’s Symposium; U-Theatre, a Zen-drumming troupe in Taiwan; and the Grotowski-based Teatr Zar in Poland; among others. She attended the Lecoq School for physical theatre in Paris. Ms. Jaster is the recipient of multiple fellowships and residencies in the U.S. and abroad, including a HARP artist residency at HERE Arts Center in 2010. She works regularly with Heartbeat Opera in New York City. (emmajaster.com)

Kate Noll (Scenic Designer)

Kate Noll is a New York-based set and costume designer. Recent credits include Così fan tutte (Loft Opera), Xerse (Yale Baroque Opera), Stones in His Pockets (Shanghai Dramatic Arts Center), Peerless (Marin Theater Company), Orange Julius (Rattlestick Theater), I and You (Theater Squared), Utility (Rattlestick Theater, nominated for an Innovative Theater Award), Accidental Death of an Anarchist (Yale Rep, Berkeley Rep, nominated for a Connecticut Critics Circle Award), In A Tilted Place (IRT), Gordy Crashes (Ricochet Collective), Kristina (August Strindberg Rep), This Lingering Life (HERE Arts), The Fatal Eggs (Fractured Atlas), Ermyntrude and Esmeralda (Ars Nova), Gloria, a Pig Tail (New York Philharmonic), Cloud 9 (Yale School of Drama), and over 14 credits at the Yale Cabaret. Ms. Noll also designs and styles for film, television, concerts and performance art.

Oliver Wason (Lighting Designer)

Oliver designs lighting for theater, opera, dance, music, and anything in between. Recent designs include Peer Gynt and the Norwegian Happa Band, Among the Dead, House Rules (Ma-Yi); Sagittarius Ponderosa (NAATCO); Cosí Fan Tutte (Loft Opera); Little Shop of Horrors, Bells Are Ringing, A Little Night Music (Berkshire Theater Festival); peerless (Yale Rep, Barrington Stage, Cherry Lane); Stones in his Pockets (Shanghai Dramatic Arts Center); Accidental Death of an Anarchist (Berkeley Rep, Yale Rep); Lucia di Lammermoor, Dido and Aeneas, Kafka Fragments, Daphnis et Chloé (Heartbeat Opera); Empty the House (Curtis Opera); Erismena (Yale Baroque Opera); The Pen, The Booty Call, The Other Room, Grace (Inner Voices). Upcoming designs include Madama Butterfly and Carmen (Heartbeat Opera). Mr. Wason holds an MFA from Yale. (oliverwason.com)

About the Ellen and James S. Marcus Institute for Vocal Arts at Juilliard

Brian Zeger, Artistic Director

One of America’s most prestigious programs for educating singers, Juilliard’s Ellen and James S. Marcus Institute for Vocal Arts offers young artists programs tailored to their talents and needs. From bachelor and master of music degrees to an advanced Artist Diploma in Opera Studies program, Juilliard provides frequent performance opportunities, featuring singers in its own recital halls, on Lincoln Center’s stages, and around New York City. Juilliard Opera has presented numerous premieres of new operas as well as works from the standard repertoire.

Juilliard graduates may be heard in opera houses and concert halls throughout the world; diverse alumni artists include well-known performers such as Simon Estes, Renée Fleming, Leontyne Price, Risë Stevens, Tatiana Troyanos, and Shirley Verrett. Recent alumni include Paul Appleby, Sasha Cooke, Isabel Leonard, Erin Morley, Susanna Phillips, and Julia Bullock.

Widely recognized as one of today’s leading collaborative pianists, Juilliard alumnus Brian Zeger has performed with many of the world’s greatest singers including Marilyn Horne, Deborah Voigt, Anna Netrebko, Susan Graham, René Pape, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Frederica von Stade, Piotr Beczala, Bryn Terfel, Joyce DiDonato, Denyce Graves, and Adrianne Pieczonka in an extensive concert career that has taken him to the premier concert halls throughout the world. He is the artistic director of the Ellen and James S. Marcus Institute for Vocal Arts at Juilliard, and formerly the executive director of the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program. (brianzeger.com)

About Juilliard415

Since its founding in 2009, Juilliard415, the school’s principal period-instrument ensemble, has made significant contributions to musical life in New York and beyond, bringing major figures in the field of early music to lead performances of both rare and canonical works of the 17th and 18th centuries. Among the distinguished guests who have led Juilliard415 are Harry Bicket, William Christie, the late Christopher Hogwood, Monica Huggett, Ton Koopman, Nicholas McGegan, Jordi Savall, and Lars Ulrik Mortensen. Juilliard415 tours extensively in the U.S. and abroad, with notable appearances at the Boston Early Music Festival, Leipzig Bachfest, and Utrecht Early Music Festival (where Juilliard was the first-ever conservatory-in-residence). With its frequent musical collaborator the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, the ensemble has performed throughout Italy, Japan, Southeast Asia, and the U.K. Recent milestones include fully staged productions of Cavalli’s La Calisto and Handel’s Radamisto, a tour of Charpentier’s Actéon, and concerts in New York and Miami of incidental music to Shakespeare plays in collaboration with the Juilliard Drama Division. It has also offered the rare opportunity to hear both Bach Passions in successive months.

This season’s highlights include tours to Holland for Bach’s Mass in B Minor conducted by Ton Koopman (a collaboration with the Royal Conservatoire of The Hague), India with the Yale Schola Cantorum under the direction of David Hill, and New Zealand with Bach specialist Masaaki Suzuki. The season also sees a celebration of the Italian concerto led by Rachel Podger as part of the Music Before 1800 series, symphonies by Haydn with Huggett, fortepianist Kristian Bezuidenhout leading symphonies and concertos by Mozart.

# # #


February 11, 2017, 7:30pm, Alice Tully Hall

G.F. Handel’s Agrippina

Laurence Cummings, conductor


Juilliard Singers


Saturday, February 18, 2017, 2pm

Monday, February 20 and Wednesday, February 22, 2017, 7:30pm, Rosemary and Meredith Willson Theater

G.F. Handel’s Agrippina

Jeffrey Grossman, conductor

Louisa Proske, director


Juilliard Singers


Scenic Designer: Kate Noll

Costume Designer: Beth Goldenberg

Lighting Designer: Oliver Wason

Movement Director: Emma Jaster


The Cast (in order of vocal appearance):


Agrippina: Samantha Hankey (mezzo-soprano)

Nerone: Angela Vallone (soprano)

Pallante: Jacob Scharfman (baritone)

Narciso: Avery Amereau (mezzo-soprano)

Lesbo: Andrew Munn (bass)

Ottone: Jakub Jozef Orlinski (countertenor)

Poppea: Onadek Winan (soprano)

Claudio: Cody Quattlebaum (bass-baritone)

Giunone: Amanda Lynn Bottoms (mezzo-soprano) (Avery Amereau on 2/18, 2/20, and 2/22)

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