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Information about the 2018/19 Ensemble


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The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center prepares emerging singers and apprentice coaches for careers in opera by providing unique, comprehensive training.


Established in 1974 as the professional artist-development program for Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Ryan Opera Center has been recognized as one of the  premier programs of its kind in the world for more than four decades. That standing is maintained by providing the finest up-and-coming singers and pianists with unparalleled training and experience.

The program is administered by Director Dan Novak, Music Director Craig Terry, Director of Vocal Studies Julia Faulkner, and Advisor Renée Fleming.
See below for our full history and meet the people who make it all happen.

Please direct all inquiries to Manager Jimmy Byrne at 312.827.3510 or jbyrne@lyricopera.org




The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center is supported by:
american-airlines-logo    Illinois Arts Council     National Endowment for the Arts

   


Selected from some 400 singers who audition annually, the Ryan Opera Center Ensemble members are in residence for nearly twelve months. Over the course of the year they receive advanced instruction in numerous aspects of operatic performance, including voice lessons and coachings, language and acting training, and master classes with some of opera’s most renowned artists.

During Lyric Opera’s mainstage season, Ryan Opera Center members perform and understudy a significant number of principal and supporting roles. This presents an extraordinary opportunity to work with the world’s greatest opera singers, conductors, directors, orchestra, and chorus. They also gain valuable performing experience by participating in recitals and concerts at many Chicago-area venues. The Ryan Opera Center Ensemble was recently expanded to include a pianist, who likewise receives advanced training and performance opportunities throughout the year.

A testament to the Ryan Opera Center’s caliber and success is the roster of distinguished alumni who perform regularly on the stages of leading international opera houses. It includes René Barbera, Harolyn Blackwell, Nicole Cabell, Elizabeth DeShong, Mark S. Doss, Christopher Feigum, Elizabeth Futral, Roger Honeywell, Joseph Kaiser, Maria Kanyova, Quinn Kelsey, Gregory Kunde, Dina Kuznetsova, Emily Magee, Amanda Majeski, Susanna Phillips, Matthew Polenzani, Christian Van Horn, Amber Wagner, and Erin Wall.

Rising Stars in Concert, a yearly showcase performance starring Ensemble members of the Ryan Opera Center, will be held on April 7, 2018.

Lyric donors of $75 and above are eligible for two complimentary tickets for Rising Stars in Concert. Click here to learn about more ways you can support the opera stars of tomorrow.


Rising Stars in Concert 2017 was generously sponsored by:

Lead Sponsor:

Donna Van Eekeren Foundation

Sponsors:

Dentons US LLP, Ann M. Drake, Don and Abby Funk, Sue and Melvin Gray, Howard Family Foundation, Patricia A. Kenney and Gregory J. O’Leary, Lauter McDougal Family Foundation, Chauncey and Marion D. McCormick Family Foundation, Frank B. Modruson and Lynne C. Shigley, and OptumRx, with additional support from Mr. and Mrs. Allan Drebin.

Discover More About the Ryan Opera Center

Alumni Spotlight

will-liverman-bariton-lyric

Photo by Larrynx Photography

Will LivermanBaritone

Praised by The New York Times as “mellow-voiced and charismatic” and identified as a baritone to watch by Opera News, Will Liverman is quickly gaining a reputation for his compelling performances, while making significant debuts at opera houses across the country.

Future engagements include his reprisal of the role of Dizzy Gillespie in Charlie Parker’s Yardbird with English National Opera as part of ENO’s new partnership with the Hackney Empire, with Lyric Opera of Chicago for its Lyric Unlimited initiative, and with Madison Opera, after originating the role at Opera Philadelphia in 2015, and performing the role on tour at the Apollo Theater. Will also makes debuts with Seattle Opera as Raimbaud in Le Comte Ory, in his home state with Virginia Opera as Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, and with the Las Vegas Philharmonic as the baritone soloist in Brahms’ German Requiem, and with Dallas Opera.

Recent performance highlights have included the roles of Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia at Madison Opera and Utah Opera, Tarquinius in The Rape of Lucretia and Beaumarchais in The Ghosts of Versailles at Wolf Trap Opera, Andrew Hanley in the world premiere of Kevin Puts’ The Manchurian Candidate at Minnesota Opera, Sam in The Pirates of Penzance at Atlanta Opera, the Husband in Les mamelles de Tirésias with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, the Protestant Minister in Menotti’s The Last Savage with Santa Fe Opera, and Mr. Noye in Noye’s Fludde as a guest artist at his alma mater, Wheaton College.

Expanding into the concert repertoire, he recently performed with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago in Mozart’s Mass in C Minor, in Orff’s Carmina Burana and Handel’s Messiah as a guest artist at the University of Chicago, and in Beethoven’s Missa solemnis with the South Dakota Symphony. Mr. Liverman made his Alice Tully Hall debut with the New York Festival of Song, collaborating with Steven Blier on a program entitled “Road Trip.”

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