This summer, Chautauqua Opera has engaged nine Guest Artists who will join the company over the course of th nine-week season. Each Guest Artist will be in virtual residence with the company for one week of the season, and will engage with the Young Artists in conversation, a master class, and mentoring sessions. They will conclude their week in conversation with Steven Osgood during our Cocktails, Concerts, & Conversations events on Mondays at 5pm to reflect on their time with the company.

Week One: Caitlin Lynch

Caitlin Lynch

Declared “luminous” by the New York Times and “eloquent” by the Wall Street Journal, soprano Caitlin Lynch is captivating audiences with her portrayals of iconic leading ladies. With a repertoire that encompasses Mozart to Verdi and Handel to Heggie, Ms. Lynch brings her dynamic portrayals of both classic and contemporary operas to stages around the world. The soprano’s original engagements during the COVID-19 shortened 2019-2020 season include the soprano II soloist in Mozart’s Mass in C Minor with Handel and Haydn Society, the soprano soloist in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with Kansas City Symphony and Mahler’s Resurrection Symphony with the South Bend Symphony. Later in the season, she continues her interpretation of works by composer Jake Heggie, appearing with Portland Opera as Bea in Three Decembers. Last season, the soprano returned to the Metropolitan Opera to sing the Countess in Le nozze di Figaro, a role she also performed with Palm Beach Opera. Other assignments during the season at the Metropolitan Opera included covers of the First Lady in Die Zauberflöte. She also appeared with the Mostly Modern Festival as the soprano soloist in Robert Paterson’s Walt’s America.

Additional recent engagements include: the role of Yadwiga in the world première of Ben Moore’s Enemies, a Love Story at Palm Beach Opera, Marguerite in Faust at Michigan Opera Theatre, Violetta in La Traviata with Arizona Opera and Des Moines Metro Opera; and a return to the Spoleto Festival USA as the Soprano Soloist in John Adams’ El Niño. Concert engagements include Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with Seattle Symphony, Orff’s dramatic cantata Carmina Burana with Seattle Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony, and Alabama Symphony, Ein Deutsches Requiem with the Grant Park Music Festival, and Händel’s Messiah at Pacific Symphony and Milwaukee Symphony. Ms. Lynch was last seen at Chautauqua as a Guest Artist, performing the roles of Violetta in La Traviata (2016) and Marie Antoinette in The Ghosts of Versailles (2019). CaitlinLynchSoprano.com


Week Two: Raehann Bryce-Davis

Raehan

Hailed by The New York Times as a "striking mezzo soprano" and by the San Francisco Chronicle for her "electrifying sense of fearlessness," Raehann Bryce-Davis opened the 2019/20 season singing Verdi’s Requiem with conductor Kent Nagano and the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal at the Olympic Stadium. She then returned to Opera Vlaanderen for her role debut as Eboli in Verdi’s Don Carlos and made her LA Opera debut in the World Premiere of Aucoin and Ruhl’s Eurydice, a coproduction with The Metropolitan Opera, followed by the role of Sara in Roberto Devereux opposite Angela Meade and Ramon Vargas. Further performances of the season include: Unknown, I Live With You at the Kurt Weill Festival Dessau, A Nation of Others at Carnegie Hall with the Oratorio Society New York, Nathaniel Dett’s The Ordering of Moses with the Harlem Chamber Players, Mendelssohn's Elijah with St. George’s Choral Society, and a recital series for the Art Song Preservation Society in New York with pianist Mark Markham. Last season she made her role debuts as Leonor in Donizetti’s La Favorite at the Teatro Massimo di Palermo, Marguerite in Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust conducted by Maestro John Nelson with the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Costa Rica, Ms. Alexander in Satyagraha at Opera Vlaanderen, Kristina in The Makropulos Affair at the Janáček Brno Festival, Verdi's Requiem with the Oratorio Society of New York at Carnegie Hall, Martinů’s Julietta with the American Symphony Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, and Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 with the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra.

Ms. Bryce-Davis is a 2018 recipient of the prestigious George London Award, the 2017 1st Place and Audience Prize-winner of the Concorso Lirico Internazionale di Portofino competition, chaired by Dominique Meyer, Winner of the 2016 Richard F. Gold Career Grant, Winner of the 2015 9th International Hilde Zadek Competition at the Musikverein in Vienna, the 2015 Metropolitan Opera National Council Pittsburgh District, and the 2015 Sedat Gürel - Güzin Gürel International Voice Competition in Istanbul. She holds a Master of Music and Professional Studies certificate from the Manhattan School of Music and a Bachelor of Music from the University of Texas at Arlington. Ms. Bryce-Davis was last seen at Chautauqua as a Young Artist, performing the role of Mama McCourt in The Ballad of Baby Doe (2014). Raehann.com


Week Three: Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek

Jacqueline Horner Kwiatek

Dr. Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, mezzo-soprano, is a singer, conductor, educator, and composer. She was a member of the world-renowned vocal quartet Anonymous 4 from 2000-2016 and recorded twelve award-winning CD’s with the group. Anonymous 4′s performance of the Irish lament “Caoineadh” on Christopher Tin’s album Calling All Dawns, with Jacqueline as featured soloist, led to a Grammy for Best Classical Music Crossover Album. She is currently Artistic Director of ModernMedieval Voices, a women’s ensemble dedicated to creating programs that combine early music with new commissions. The ensemble has performed and given residencies all over the U.S. As a composer, Dr. Horner-Kwiatek has written pieces for MMV and the Folger Consort, amongst others, and her music has been described by The Washington Post as “beguiling and succinct.”

As a soloist she has been a guest with many renowned ensembles and opera companies, including English National Opera, Washington Bach Consort, Royal Opera Covent Garden, The Folger Consort, DCINY, Ensemble Modern Frankfurt and Ensemble InterContemporain Paris, performing at many of the world’s leading venues, including The Pompidou Center, Queen Elizabeth Hall, The Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, Disney Concert Hall, and Lincoln Center. Dr. Horner-Kwiatek has a D.M.A. from The Juilliard School and is on the performance faculty at Princeton, where she teaches voice and is conductor of the Early Music Princeton vocal ensemble. She is also on the faculty of NYU and Juilliard. She is in demand as a clinician and gives masterclasses, ensemble technique workshops, and vocal pedagogy for composers seminars all over the US. For more information please visit ModernMedieval.org.


Week Four: Alan Held

Alan Held

Recognized as one of the leading singing actors today, American bass-baritone Alan Held has appeared in major roles in the world's finest opera houses, including the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Washington National Opera, Canadian Opera Company, the Royal Opera House, Paris Opera, Teatro alla Scala, Vienna State Opera, and the Munich State Opera. His many roles include Wotan in Wagner's The Ring Cycle, the title roles in Wozzeck and Der fliegende Holländer, Kurwenal in Tristan und Isolde, Hans Sachs in Die Meistersinger von Nürnburg, Scarpia in Tosca, Leporello in Don Giovanni, the Four Villains in Les Contes d'Hoffman,  Jochanaan in Salome, Don Pizzaro in Fidelio, Orestes in Elektra, and Balstrode in Peter Grimes.

Equally at home on the concert stage, Mr. Held has performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra, Met Opera Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, and Berliner Philharmoniker. He has also appeared at the Salzburg, Tanglewood, and Saito Kinen festivals and at the BBC Proms.

A native of Washburn, Illinois, Mr. Held received his vocal training at Millikin University and at Wichita State University where he was most recently named Associate Professor, The Ann and Dennis Ross Faculty of Distinction. He is a recipient of numerous honors and awards including the Birgit Nilsson Prize and the 2014 Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding Male Performance in an Opera, and is also a noted clinician who regularly gives master classes at Yale University. Alanheld.com


Week Five: Wendy Bryn Harmer

Wendy Bryn Harmer credit Jeff Singer

An alumna of the Metropolitan Opera’s prestigious Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, soprano Wendy Bryn Harmer continues to maintain a strong relationship with the company having appeared in their productions of Le nozze di Figaro, War and Peace, Khovanshchina, Parsifal, Die Agyptische Helena, Jenufa, and the complete Ring Cycle.  She also appeared in the Met’s HD broadcasts of the Ring Cycle and The Magic Flute, which have subsequently been released on DVD (Deutsche Gramophone).  Other opera engagements have included the title role in Ariadne auf Naxos and Adalgisa in Norma at the Palm Beach Opera, Leonora in Fidelio at Opera Omaha and with Boston Baroque, Senta in Die fliegende Holländer at the Seattle Opera, Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus at the Houston Grand Opera, Eglantine in Euryanthe at the Bard Music Festival, Die Walküre at the San Francisco Opera, Vitellia in La Clemenza di Tito at Opera Boston, and Mimi in La Bohéme at the Utah Opera Festival.

In concert, Ms. Harmer has appeared with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, Montreal Symphony Orchestra, and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and at the Tanglewood Festival and Lincoln Center. In 2005, she made her New York recital debut under the auspices of The Marilyn Horne Foundation, and was presented by the George London Foundation in a recital with Ben Heppner at the Morgan Library.

Born in Roseville, California, Ms. Harmer graduated with a Bachelor's degree from The Boston Conservatory and attended the Music of Academy of the West. She was also a member of the Merola Opera Program at San Francisco Opera. Her many awards include a 2010 Richard Tucker Grant, the 2007 Jensen Award, the 2005 winner of the George London/Leonie Rysanek Award, and an award from The Marilyn Horne Foundation.


Week Six: Chauncey Packer

Chauncey Packer

Chauncey Packer is an exciting American tenor who hails from southern Alabama. His 2019-2020 engagements include his Metropolitan Opera debut in the roles of Robbins and Crabman and cover of Sportin’ Life in Porgy and Bess, soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Colour of Music Festival, concerts with the Saint-George International Music Festival and the Harrisburg Symphony, Sportin’ Life with New York Harlem’s Porgy and Bess at Teatro Regio in Torino, Italy, Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly at Soo Theatre Project in Michigan, and Cavaradossi in Tosca and Jo the Loiterer in Virgil Thomson's The Mother Of Us All,  both with Chautauqua Opera. In May 2021, he will join Maestro Alan Gilbert and NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra (Hamburg, GE) for a concert of Porgy and Bess

Mr. Packer has performed with Nashville Opera, Mobile Opera, Pensacola Opera, Utah Festival Opera, Opera Grand Rapids, Des Moines Metro Opera, Opera Pacific, and New Orleans Opera. He has sung the roles of Rodolfo (La bohème), Alfredo (La Traviata), Pong (Turandot),Werther, Pinkerton (Madama Butterfly), Sam (Susannah), Ruggero (La rondine), Dr. Blind (Die Fledermaus), Tamino (The Magic Flute), Arturo (Lucia di Lammermoor), Amon (Akhnaten), and Sportin’ Life, Mingo, and Robbins (Porgy and Bess). Of his Sportin’ Life the Atlanta Journal proclaimed “Here Chauncey Packer was the complete entertainer...” He has performed the role in his 2008 debut with Paris’ Opera Comique, his 2016 debut at Teatro alla Scala, as well as with Tulsa Opera, Atlanta Opera, Opera Birmingham, San Francisco Opera, and a tour throughout Europe with New York Harlem Theatre.


Week Seven: Daniel Belcher

danny belcher GRAMMY® Award-winning baritone Daniel Belcher has performed in many of the world’s music capitals, including Paris, London, New York, San Francisco, Berlin, Stuttgart, Amsterdam, Geneva, Toronto, Montreal, Tokyo, Seoul, and Houston. With a repertoire of more than 70 roles, Belcher has championed roles from the Baroque to those composed expressly for him. He came to international attention in 2004 creating the role of Prior Walter in Peter Eötvös’ Angels in America for the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris for which he was hailed by London’s The Guardian as “possessing the kind of powerhouse stuff that indicates a star in the making.”

In the 2019-2020 Season, Belcher joined The Metropolitan Opera for Philip Glass' Akhnaten. He debuted at Minnesota Opera in the world premiere of Edward Tulane by Paola Prestini and Mark Campbell, and returned to Utah Opera for his role debut as Ponchel in Kevin Puts' and Mark Campbell's Silent Night. In addition, he remounted Melchior in Amahl and the Night Visitors with OnSite Opera.

In recent seasons, Belcher created the roles of James "Dad" Addison Mills III in Ricky Ian Gordon and Royce Vavrek's The House Without a Christmas Tree at Houston Grand Opera, Inspector Kildare in Kevin Puts and Mark Campell's Elizabeth Cree at Opera Philadelphia, Lord Bellingham in Lori Laitman's The Scarlet Letter at Opera Colorado (recorded for an August 2017 release by Naxos), Brian Castner in Jeremy Howard Beck's The Long Walk with Opera Saratoga and Robert Kennedy in Robin de Raaff’s Waiting for Miss Monroe for his debut at The Netherlands Opera and Holland Festival. Other world premiere roles include John Brooke in Mark Adamo’s Little Women (released on the Ondine label and recorded by PBS’ Great Performances), Andy Warhol in Michael Daugherty’s Jackie O (released by Decca on the Argo label) and multiple roles in Tod Machover’s Resurrection (released on the Ondine label), all with Houston Grand Opera. Belcher’s past credits with Chautauqua Opera Company include the roles of Pooh-Bah in The Mikado (2016), Orfeo in L’Orfeo (2017), Figaro in Il Barbiere di Siviglia (2019) and Beaumarchais in The Ghosts of Versailles (2019). DanielBelcherBaritone.com.


Week Eight: Elaine Alvarez

Elaine Alvarez

Cuban-American soprano Elaine Alvarez burst onto the international opera scene in 2007, making a break-out company debut with her soulful portrayal of Mimi in Puccini’s La bohème at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Conducted by Sir Andrew Davis and directed by Renata Scotto, critics were unanimous with praise: “Conveying lyric pathos seems to come as naturally to Alvarez as breathing” (Chicago Tribune).

Characterized by a distinct “buffed bronze soprano” (Opera News), Alvarez has blossomed into a true spinto d’agilita, delivering performances rich with “melting, voluminous sound” (Frankfurter Allgemeine), “spectacular agility” (Opera World Magazine), and “a profoundly genuine sentimentality” (Miami Herald).

Recent engagements have featured Alvarez in numerous role and house debuts of iconic leading ladies including Tosca on tour with Choregies d’Orange, Kat’a Kabanova with Boston Lyric Opera, a return to Mimi for Opera National de Bordeaux, major Verdi debuts as Elvira in Ernani and Hélène in the rarely produced Jerusalem for Opera Royal de Wallonie, and a much anticipated role and house debut for San Diego Opera as Florencia en el Amazonas: “Elaine Alvarez made a stunning impression [as Florencia]. Her pliable spinto soprano easily encompassed every demand of three wide-ranging arias. The rich, pulsing tone was absolutely even throughout the wide-ranging part, and her alluring vocal presence anchored the performance with a poised, polished musical presence.” (Opera Today). Elainealvarez.com


Week Nine: Todd Thomas

Todd Thomas

Recognized by opera companies and critics alike as one of the true Verdi baritones gracing stages today, Todd Thomas continues his tenure as one of America’s most sought-after artists. In the title role of Macbeth, Opera News depicted his performance as “warm and centered in his tone with subtle phrasing that emphasized the introspective, almost poetic quality of the tormented king.” At Lyric Opera of Chicago’s season opening performance of Verdi’s Otello, Mr. Thomas heroically stepped in for an indisposed colleague at the top of the second act. The thrilling performance at The Lyric “earned him deservedly the largest ovation at the end of the night from the glittery opening night audience.” (The Chicago Classical)

This season, Mr. Thomas performs the role of Michele/Schicchi in Il Trittico with Pacific Opera Victoria, the title role in Rigoletto with Florida Grand Opera, and returns to Theater Erfurt as the title role in Nabucco. He will also perform in recital with Sarasota’s SILL concert series. Last season, he made his Opera Shanghai début as the title role in Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer, returned to Opera Omaha as Tonio/Alvio in I Pagliacci/Cavalleria Rusticana, performed as Scarpia in Tosca with New Jersey Festival Orchestra, Melchoir in Amahl and the Night Visitors with Steamboat Springs Symphony, the title role in Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer with Baltimore Concert Opera, performed in Opera Santa Barbara’s Gala Concert, performed as a soloist in “Verdi in the Valley” with Maryland Opera and as a soloist in Ocean City Pop’s "Star Spangle Spectacular" concert. He also performed at Theater Erfurt in a ground-breaking production of Der fliegende Holländer and sang the title role of Falstaff with the Crested Butte Festival, in addition to his role there as Artist-in-Residence. Mr. Thomas' past credits with Chautauqua Opera include the roles of Lazar Wolf in The Fiddler on the Roof (2004), Sharpless in Madam Butterfly (2005), Giorgio Germont in La Traviata (2008 & 2016), Scarpia in Tosca (2009), Count Di Luna in Il Trovatore (2009), Miller in Luisa Miller (2011). Mr. Thomas was a member of the Chautauqua Opera Young Artist program in 1986 & 1987.  ToddThomasBaritone.com