Past Giargiari Winners: Where are they now?

Not too long now until AVA’s annual Giargiari Bel Canto Competition! Today, we’re taking a look back at the most recent winners, who have gone on to do incredible things in the opera world. Here is what the four most recent Giargiari winners are doing now:


Giargari’s 2013 winner, tenor Diego Silva, has kept busy since graduating AVA. His recent engagements include singing the roles of the Duke in Rigoletto with the Luzerner Theater and debuting with the Vilnius City Opera in Faust (Faust), the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra, and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. At AVA, Diego sang the role of Nemorino in L’elisir d’amore, as well as the title role in Faust.

This season, Silva returns to the Luzerner Theater for productions of La traviata (Alfredo), Falstaff (Fenton), Die Zauberflöte (Tamino), and a new production of Jules Massenet’s Manon (Des Grieux). He will additionally return to Vilnius City Opera as the title role in Faust and make his debut with Opéra-Théâtre de Metz Métropole as Rodolfo in La bohème. Opera News claims, “this is a career to follow.”


André Courville, bass-baritone, was Giargiari’s 2014 winner! This summer, André sang in many engagements including in Placido Domingo’s Operalia, the world opera competition, the role of Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro and was a Bass soloist in the Great Mass. 

At AVA, André’s roles have included Monterone in Rigoletto, Archibaldo in L’amore dei tre re, Leporello in Don Giovanni, and Méphistophélés in Faust, among others. Keep an eye on André, he is sure to do extraordinary things in the future!


In 2015, fourth-year Resident Artist, Vanessa Vasquez, soprano, took home the coveted James Parkinson Opera Foundation First Prize, as well as the Audience Favorite Prize. Vanessa’s recent achievements include being the National Winner in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions in 2017 and Top Prize in the Gerda Lissner Foundation Competition, also in 2017.

At AVA, Vanessa sang the roles of Gilda in Rigoletto, Giorgetta in  Il tabarro, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni, and Mimì in La bohème. Previous roles include La Contessa in Le nozze di Figaro with Oberlin in Italy, Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni with Opera UCLA and Desdemona in Otello (in concert) with the Astoria Music Festival. Vanessa will be performing throughout AVA’s 2017-2018 season, you don’t want to miss her!


Last year’s winner, Alasdair Kent, has been hard at work since graduating. His recent performances include singing the roles of Giocondo in Rossini’s La pietra del paragone at Wolf Trap Opera, Il cavaliere Belfiore in Rossini’s Il viaggio a Reims in Pesaro, Italy, and Don Ramiro in Rossini’s La Cenerentola in Portland, Oregon. At AVA, Alasdair performed the roles of Page is Rigoletto, Lindoro in L’italiana in Algeri, Ferrando in Cosi fan tutte, Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni and Rinuccio in Gianni Schicchi.

Upcoming roles of his include Lindoro in Rossini’s L’italiana in Algeri in both Toulon and Montpellier, France and Budapest, Hungry, and Third Angel/John in Benjamin’s Written on Skin with Opera Philadelphia. We are very excited to see what else Alasdair has in store!

We hope to see you at the Kimmel Center’s Perelman Theater for this years Giargiari Bel Canto Competition on Saturday, October 7 at 7:30 pm. Hear and vote for this year’s winner before they take the opera world by storm!

Tickets are still available! They can be purchased via the Kimmel Center website or by calling their box office at 215-893-1999.

We look forward to seeing you!


Written by AVA Marketing Intern Madison Miner









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