AVA Alumni Around the World, October 2017 Edition

The distinguished alumni of the Academy of Vocal Arts have taken the world by storm! Let’s take a look at the many concerts, festivals, and opera debuts our alumni have coming up around the world. Check below for recent and upcoming engagements:

Tenor Bryan Hymel is singing in Les Vêpres sicilennes at the Royal Opera House this fall. Bryan also recently joined the Board of the Academy of Vocal Arts – welcome Bryan!

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Baritone Michael Adams will continue his role as Marcello in La bohème at the Utah Opera until October 15, 2017. This was his debut with Utah Opera.


Soprano Angela Meade and AVA Resident Artist tenor John Matthew Myers performed with the Allentown Symphony Orchestra this past weekend. Click here to read their wonderful reviews!

Angela also sings the title role in Alcina with the Washington National Opera through November. Additionally, she will be singing the title role in Norma at the Metropolitan Opera for the first half of December.

Soprano Angela Meade and tenor John Matthew Myers

(Photo Credit: Allentown Symphony Association) The Morning Call

Tenor Michael Fabiano  will be singing the role of Chevalier des Grieux in Manon at the San Francisco Opera starting November 4. He also will be starring in Rigoletto as the Duke of Mantua at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.

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You might recognize that familiar face, who graced the September cover of Opera News -soprano Ailyn Pèrez! Her upcoming performances include singing the title role in Thaïs and Countless Almaviva in Le nozze di Fiagro, both at the Metropolitan Opera.

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(Photo Credit: Opera News)

Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato will sing the role of Adalgisa in Norma at the Metropolitan Opera through October 20. She also will be singing the title role in Semiramide at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in November and early December.

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Soprano Marina Costa-Jackson will be singing the role of Violetta in La traviata at the Oper Köln through December 3.

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Three AVA alumni star together in the English National Opera’s production of Aida: soprano Latonia Moore, mezzo-soprano Dana Beth Miller and baritone Musa Ngqungwana.

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(Photo Credit: © Tristram Kenton)

Mezzo-Soprano Allegra De Vita will be seen at Washington National Opera’s production of Handel’s Alcina as Ruggiero on November 18 and as The Fox in The Little Prince in December.


Tenor Stephen Costello will be singing the role of Rodolfo in La bohème starting in late October to early November at Semperoper Dresden in Germany. He also will be singing the role of Camille in The Merry Widow at Opéra National de Paris through October 21.

Another cover star! Soprano Joyce El-Khoury was on the October cover of Classical Singer Magazine (below). She recently sang the role of Musetta in La bohème at Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and will perform in Il Pirata as Imogene with Opéra National de Bordeaux this November.

Joyce El-Khoury Cover

Baritone John Viscardi will be singing the role in Cyrano at Opera Carolina in November.


Bass Scott Connor will continue his run at the Dutch National Opera singing the roles of Nerbulone and Tigerne in Egliogabalo through October 26.

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It is never our intention to omit any AVA alumni. If you notice any discrepancies, please contact info@avaopera.org.

Madison Miner is a senior Communications major at West Chester University, and an intern in AVA’s Marketing Department.


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









Meet AVA Marketing Intern Madison!

Madison Miner is a senior studying Communications at West Chester University, hoping to pursue Public Relations after graduation. She is interning this fall for AVA as the Marketing and Public Relations Intern. Madison is not only looking forward to the experience she will gain, but the excellent vocal performances she is sure to hear. She is very excited to join our team!

2017 Giargiari Bel Canto Competition


We are so excited for the 2017 Giargiari Competition! AVA’s Resident Artists will perform on Saturday, October 7 at 7:30 pm at the Kimmel Center’s Perelman Theater. AVA faculty member Richard A. Raub will join the Resident Artists on stage, as both the pianist and music director. They have been working tirelessly and have selected some incredible pieces for the show. Here is a sneak peek of what’s in store:


             Si può? Si può? | Pagliacci

              Ruggero Leoncavallo (1857-1919)



                Mercé, dilette amiche | I vespri siciliani

                Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901)



                È la solita storia del pastore… Anch’io vorrei dormir così | L’arlesiana

                Francesco Ciléa (1866-1950)


PASCALE SPINNEY, mezzo-soprano

                È sgombro il loco… Ah! Parea che per incanto | Anna Bolena

                Gaetano Donizetti (1797-1848)



                Alzati!… Eri tu che macchiavi quell’anima | Un ballo in maschera

                Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901)



                Robert, toi que j’aime | Robert le diable

                Giacomo Meyerbeer (1791-1864)


ROY HAGE, tenor

               Il était une fois à la cour d’Eisenach! | Les contes d’Hoffmann

                Jacques Offenbach (1819-1880)



               Glück, das mir verblieb | Die tote Stadt

                Erich Wolfgang Korngold (1897-1957)



                I know that you all hate me | The Saint of Bleecker Street

                Gian Carlo Menotti (1911-2007)



               Parigi! È la città dei desideri | La rondine

                Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924)



               Oui, pour ce soir… Je suis Titania! | Mignon

                Ambroise Thomas (1811- 1896)



               Addio fiorito asil | Madama Butterfly

                Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924)



                Come un’ape ne’ giorni d’aprile | La cenerentola             

                Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868)



               De cet affreux combat… Pleurez mes yeux | Le Cid

                Jules Massenet (1842-1912)



                Cielo e mar! | La gioconda

                Amilcare Ponchielli (1834-1886)


HANNAH LUDWIG, mezzo-soprano

               Où suis-je?… O ma lyre immortelle | Sapho

                Charles Gounod (1818-1893)


DANIEL NOYOLA, bass-baritone

               Ça, vous commettez tous… Riez, allez! | Don Quichotte

                Jules Massenet (1842-1912)



               En proie à la tristesse… O bon hermite | Le Comte Ory    

                Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868)


Tickets to the event are still available but selling quickly! Tickets may be purchased via the Kimmel Center website or by calling their box office at 215-893-1999. Don’t miss your chance to vote for your favorite! We look forward to seeing you there!