Richard Tucker Music Foundation’s Annual Gala, Returns to Avery Fisher Hall this Sunday, Oct 12

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Although The Dallas Opera is intently focused on preparations for the first two productions of the 2014-2015 Season, some opportunities are too good to pass up.  Dallas Opera Music Director Emmanuel Villaume is taking a brief hiatus from his responsibilities as conductor of the company’s season opener, Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, to lend his artistry to one of the opera world’s most exciting celebrations.


Writes Dallas Opera General Director and CEO Keith Cerny:


“Emmanuel was engaged to conduct Le nozze more than two years ago, but when the chance arose for him to take the podium at the prestigious Richard Tucker Music Foundation’s once-a-year gala in New York, we bent over backwards to make that possible.  Rehearsals here in Dallas are currently in the capable hands of our Assistant Conductor Keith Chambers, along with Dallas Theater Center Artistic Director Kevin Moriarty, who is already stirring things up with his lively staging of this delightful period piece.


“We are thrilled that Emmanuel Villaume will be able to enjoy this moment in the spotlight, and The Dallas Opera also celebrates his remarkable achievements.  Bravo, Maestro!”



Richard Tucker Music Foundation’s Annual Gala 

Returns to Avery Fisher Hall this Sunday, Oct 12


The Richard Tucker Music Foundation holds its 2014 gala, one of the most highly anticipated events of the opera season, this Sunday, October 12 at Avery Fisher Hall in New York’s Lincoln Center. Tenor Michael Fabiano, winner of the 2014 Richard Tucker Award, joins a lineup of opera’s greatest stars, including Anna Netrebko, Joseph Calleja, Marcello Giordani, Zeljko Lucić,Ildar Abdrazakov, and previous Tucker Award laureates Angela Meade, Isabel Leonard, and Stephen Costello. Led by Emmanuel Villaume, Music Director of the Dallas Opera, they will present a program of arias and ensembles by Puccini, Mozart, Bellini, Massenet, Donizetti, Verdi, Bernstein and Rossini. Like last year’s gala, which celebrated the centennial of legendary tenor Richard Tucker, the concert offers a unique opportunity to hear what the New York Times styled “a dream team of opera singers,” and will be recorded for later broadcast on Live From Lincoln Center on PBS.


Founded in 1975, the Richard Tucker Music Foundation is a non-profit cultural organization dedicated to perpetuating the artistic legacy of the great Brooklyn-born tenor by nurturing the careers of talented young American opera singers. Through awards, grants for study, performance opportunities, and other activities, the Foundation provides professional development for singers at various stages of their careers. It also offers free performances in the New York metropolitan area and supports music education enrichment programs. Each year, the Foundation confers its most prestigious prize, the Richard Tucker Award, on an artist poised at the edge of a major international career. Often referred to as the “Heisman Trophy of Opera,” the award comes with a $50,000 cash prize as well as the ongoing support of the Tucker family and Foundation.


The 2014 award-winner is Michael Fabiano, hailed as “the tenor that we have all been waiting for” (San Francisco Classical Voice). At just 30, the native of Montclair, NJ, has already appeared at the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Teatro Real, Opéra National de Paris, Teatro alla Scala, Dresden Semperoper, Deutsche Oper Berlin, English National Opera, Glyndebourne, and the Teatro San Carlo. This season he sings the title role in Faust with the Australian Opera and returns to the San Francisco Opera as Rodolfo in La bohème. A graduate of the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia and the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, his previous honors include the 2014 Beverly Sills Award, a 2007 Sara Tucker Study Grant, and a Grand Prize in the 2007 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.


Barry Tucker, President of the Richard Tucker Music Foundation and eldest son of the celebrated American tenor for whom it is named, stated:


“We are thrilled to have such an incredible lineup of singers with us this year and to introduce Michael Fabiano—a great American tenor like my father—as the 2014 Richard Tucker Award-winner. We are also very pleased to continue our partnership with Emmy Award-winning PBS series Live From Lincoln Center for a third consecutive year; because of this special relationship, we are able to bring opera into households across the country.”


The full list of singers featured on the gala program is provided below. Tickets for this year’s event range from $40 to $600 and are on sale to the public through the Richard Tucker Music Foundation’s website,, as well as, by calling CenterCharge (212) 721-6500, or at the Avery Fisher Hall box office. Reservations for the gala dinner on the Grand Promenade that follows the concert can be arranged by contacting the Tucker Foundation offices at (212) 757-2218.


Further information about the 2014 gala and the work of the Richard Tucker Music Foundation is available at


Richard Tucker Music Foundation presents:


October 12 at 6:30pm

Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center, New York City


2014 Richard Tucker Award winner Michael Fabiano


Winners of Richard Tucker Music Foundation grants and honored guests:


Ildar Abdrazakov, bass

Elena Bocharova, mezzo-soprano

Joseph Calleja, tenor

Joyce El-Khoury, soprano

Jennifer Johnson Cano, mezzo-soprano

Marcello Giordani, tenor

Isabel Leonard, mezzo-soprano (2013 Richard Tucker Award winner)

Zeljko Lucić, baritone

Angela Meade, soprano (2011 Richard Tucker Award winner)

Anna Netrebko, soprano

Nicholas Pallesen, baritone

Andrew Stenson, tenor

Pretty Yende, soprano


New York Choral Society

Maestro Emmanuel Villaume, conductor


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