Artistic Staff 2011
Linda Ade Brand
Stage Director — Die Fledermaus, Little Women
Linda Ade Brand is delighted to return to Opera in the Ozarks for her third season as stage director for Die Fledermaus and Little Women. Previous productions at Opera in the Ozarks are Carmen and Don Giovanni.
Linda is a director whose varied repertoire includes over a hundred plays, musicals and operas. She studied music (voice and trumpet) and theatre at Bethany College, in Lindsborg, Kan., and then received her M.F.A. in directing at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, with Will Graham and Francis Culinan as her primary directing mentors. After graduating, she studied with the innovative director Wesley Balk at his Music Theatre Institute in St. Paul.
A lover of contemporary opera, she was delighted to help introduce Mark Adamo’s Little Women and Conrad Susa’s The Wise Women to Kansas City while resident stage director of the Civic Opera Theatre of Kansas City. Both Adamo and Susa were in residence for these productions. When Carlisle Floyd directed his Susannah for the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Linda was his assistant director. Last summer she directed his Sojourner and Mollie Sinclair for the Des Moines Metro Opera with Floyd in residence. She looks forward to directing the Lyric Opera of Kansas City’s production of The Giver by Susan Kander, based on the award-winning book by Lois Lowry. It will be premiered in January.
An active director in Kansas City, her Lyric Opera of Kansas City credits include The Elixir of Love, H.M.S. Pinafore, Hansel and Gretel, Amahl and the Night Visitors, Don Giovanni, Don Pasquale, plus many productions with the Lyric’s education department. Kansas City Rep credits include Master Class and All I Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten, along with nine seasons leading the talented casts of A Christmas Carol. Most recently she directed Enchanted April for the Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre, and Transformations for Civic Opera of KC. She has also directed for the Coterie Theatre, the American Heartland Theatre, Theatre League’s New Music Theatre Festival and the Quality Hill Playhouse, where she will direct Noël and Gertie this fall.
She has had the pleasure of directing in many other regional theatre and opera companies including the Nashville Opera, Voices of Change in Dallas, Sante Fe Concert Artists, Stephens College, Okoboji Summer Theatre, Springfield Regional Opera, the Light Opera of Oklahoma and 13 seasons with the Des Moines Metro Opera. She taught for five years in the Theatre Department at Avila University and for 10 years in the Conservatory at the University of Missouri – Kansas City.
Stage Director — Le Nozze di Figaro, The Pirates of Penzance
Laura Johnson freelances as a director and educator, enjoying a career that has taken her across the U.S. and to Italy, Canada and Korea. She delves with equal gusto into opera and theatre, ranging from contemporary to classical. Her work has been praised as “magical,” “captivating,” “pure delight,” dazzling,” “lively,” and “original.”
Ms. Johnson has directed at the Teatro del Giglio in Lucca, Italy, the Great Mountain Music Festival in South Korea, the Williamstown Theatre Festival, the Pennsylvania Opera Theatre, Bloomsburg Theater Ensemble (PA), Music/Theater Performance Group (MA), Buckingham Opera (NY), and Pittsburgh Opera Theatre, among others. Her highly acclaimed staging of The Barber of Seville for Whitewater Opera (Richmond, IN) was produced for broadcast by Indiana Public Television.
Most recently she directed premieres of two one-act operas by composer Paul Salerni (to whom she is married): Tony Caruso’s Final Broadcast (released in 2010 by Naxos) was hailed by its librettist, the poet Dana Gioia, as “our signature staging.” Its companion piece, The Life and Love of Joe Coogan, is based on an episode of television’s The Dick Van Dyke Show, created by comic icon Carl Reiner. Mr. Reiner threw his enthusiastic support behind the idea of giving his memorable TV characters an operatic incarnation.
Ms. Johnson maintains an avid interest in working with and training students, directing for the University of Cincinnati’s College Conservatory of Music, Temple University, Harvard University, Lafayette College and Lehigh University. Her production of L’amico Fritz for Temple Opera Theatre received the National Opera Association’s top award in 2004, leading to an invitation to direct at Temple on a regular basis. As guest artist for the University of Cincinnati’s opera division, she staged works by Mozart, Wolf-Ferrari, and the award-winning world premiere of Earl Kim’s Footfalls. She was the first director to do Kim’s Beckett-based works not only in the U.S. but also in the composer’s ancestral homeland of Korea.
Ms. Johnson began her theatre training as a child apprenticed to a puppet theatre. A pre-college drama student at Carnegie-Mellon University, she later assisted Italo Tajo at Opera Barga (Tuscany) and the Lyric Opera of Chicago. She also assisted Lou Galterio at the Manhattan School of Music, and Nikos Psacharopoulos at the Williamstown Theatre Festival. She stage-managed Sarah Caldwell’s Opera Company of Boston, both in Boston and at Wolf Trap. She holds the M.F.A. degree in directing from Boston University’s School of Theatre.
Adam Kerry Boyles
Conductor/Music Director — Die Fledermaus & Music Director — The Pirates of Penzance
Adam is thrilled to be returning to Opera in the Ozarks after conducting performances during the 2004 and 2005 seasons. Adam is currently Director of Orchestras at MIT, Music Director of MetroWest Opera (Weston, MA), Staff Conductor with the Boston Opera Collaborative, and Music Director of the Brookline Symphony Orchestra. He recently completed a three-year tenure as Music Director of the Southern Arizona Symphony Orchestra and the University of Texas-Austin University Orchestra. Other guest conducting engagements include performances with the Muncie Symphony Orchestra, Austin Chamber Ensemble, Audio Inversions, Tanglewood Festival Chorus, University of Arizona Opera Theater, and the Manhattan School of Music Orchestra. Adam has worked with such conductors as Gustavo Dudamel, Kurt Masur, Sir Roger Norrington, Gunther Schuller, and Helmuth Rilling. Adam has held Instructor/Guest Lecturer positions at the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Arizona. An experienced singer, Adam performed in numerous operas with the Indiana University Opera Theater, and as a chorister in Arizona Opera’s first complete presentation of Der Ring des Nibelungen. He has performed with professional choral ensembles across the country such as Conspirare, Tanglewood Festival Chorus, Apollo’s Voice, Mon Choeur, Cantique, and Tucson Chamber Artists.
Senior Vocal Coach
Michael Dauphinais has been hailed in the press as “a marvelous collaborative pianist” (ITEA Journal), and has garnered praise for his “superbly realized continuo” (Arizona Republic) as well as his live renditions of orchestral reductions: “pianist Michael Dauphinais enables one to forget the lack of an orchestra almost immediately” (Newark Star-Ledger). His versatility has led to collaborations with several opera companies in the U.S. including Arizona Opera, Sarasota Opera, Kentucky Opera and New Jersey Opera Theatre, and he has served as the music director for the Young Artists’ Ensemble at San Diego Opera. He has also performed duo, chamber, choral and vocal repertoire throughout the U.S., Mexico, Ireland and Austria. Dauphinais has also served as a staff pianist for both regional and international conferences held by ITEA (International Tuba Euphonium Association) as well as the American Institute for Musical Studies (AIMS) in Graz, Austria.
An advocate of contemporary music and multidisciplinary collaboration, Mr. Dauphinais has played music by John Cage with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, and has also collaborated with choreographer Yanira Castro, Art.If.Act Dance Project and ACME (Arizona Contemporary Music Ensemble). He has performed recent premieres of works for piano and live electronics by Stephan Moore and John King, and he recently played an evening of Moore’s works at Brown University. He has also been featured in symposiums at The
University of Arizona celebrating the music of Charles Ives, Aaron Copland, Olivier Messiaen and George Crumb. Mr. Dauphinais’s most recent collaborative project, the site-specific dance and sound installation Wilderness with sound artist/composer Stephan Moore and choreographer Yanira Castro and company, premiered at the 2010 Filament Festival at EMPAC (Troy, NY). Further performances have taken place at Vanderbilt University, Franklin and Marshall College (PA), The Invisible Dog Art Center (Brooklyn, NY), and at Brooklyn Botanic Garden.
Michael Dauphinais holds degrees in music from Western Michigan University and Arizona State University, and will complete his Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Arizona State University in 2011. His teachers have included Andrew Campbell, Eckart Sellheim, Sylvia Roederer and Phyllis Rappeport. He currently serves on the music faculty at The University of Arizona where he teaches solo and collaborative piano, and is the vocal coach for UA Opera Theater. Mr. Dauphinais can be heard on the Mark Records Classical label with tubist Kelly Thomas.
Senior Vocal Coach
Coach/accompanist/composer John Mueter holds degrees in piano from the Hartt School of Music and in composition from Washington State University. He continued his studies in Germany at the Nürnberg Conservatory with Kurt Bauer and Willi Domgraf-Fassbaender, and at the Munich Academy with Hermann Reutter. He has since taught at Kodaikanal International School in South India, the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, Theatre Internationale in Leysin, Switzerland, the Seagle Music Colony in Schroon Lake, New York, and at the AIMS Program in Graz, Austria. Since 1986 he has been on the faculty of the University of Missouri – Kansas City Conservatory. His compositions have been performed widely in the U.S. and Europe, at Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, and at La Foundation Hindemith in Blonay, Switzerland. His most recent opera, Everlasting Universe, was premiered by the Kansas City Civic Opera in 2007 and will have its Canadian premier in 2012.
Scenic Designer, Technical Director
William Spencer Musser is pleased to join Opera in the Ozarks. He is a graduate of the Kansas City Art Institute where he received his B.F.A. in sculpture in 2000. He received his M.F.A. in theatre scene design from the University of Missouri – Kansas City in 2003. While a student at UMKC, he was awarded the Honorary Dr. Patricia McIllrath Scholarship. He also received a travel grant to attend and present work at the Prague Theatre Design Quadrennial in 2003. After graduating he continued his career as an instructor with the graduate program at UMKC and as a scene designer and technical director with Rockhurst University as well as other local theaters in Kansas City. At Rockhurst University he worked on productions including Spring Awakening, The Crucible, Working, Urinetown, The Threepenny Opera, The Madwoman of Chaillot, and Dr. Faustus. Other past professional design credits include The Cripple of Inishmaan and Absurd Person Singular for the inaugural season of The Kansas City Actor’s Theatre, Crowns and The Exonerated for the Unicorn Theatre, The Diary of Anne Frank at the Olathe Community Theatre, and The Promise at the Germantown Performing Arts Center in Memphis. He has also taught special workshops on theatre and design for the Kansas City Art Institute. He worked with the Artsounds program, a collaborative event between visual artists affiliated with the Kansas City Art Institute and musicians in the Conservatory at the University of Missouriin Kansas City, to produce a theatrical adaptation of a traditional Japanese folktale collected by Lafcadio Hearn that was followed by works of his original animation. Spencer has been awarded a year-long artist studio residency by the Urban Culture Project in Kansas City, and he continues to work as a fine artist as well as designer. He has shown his work in Pennsylvania, New York and California, as well as in venues around Kansas City. In addition to this year’s season at Opera in the Ozarks he is currently working on several projects including writing and illustrating for children’s books.
David Carr is excited to make his professional design debut with Opera in the Ozarks. David hails from Liberty, Mo., where he fell in love with theatre in high school. He originally pursued acting at Northwest Missouri State University, but soon found his true passion with the lighting department. He went on to obtain his Bachelor of Science degree in theatre with an emphasis in lighting. David was involved in numerous shows at Northwest including: The Voice of the Prairie, Buried Child, The Laramie Project, Ash Girl, and The Blue Room. Between undergraduate and graduate school, David worked for the Shawnee Mission Theatre in the Park’s summer season, where he served as master electrician for Beauty in the Beast, Titanic, Oklahoma, and 42nd Street, as well as lightboard operator for two of the four shows. He also had an amazing time working as a spotlight operator for The Kansas City Repertory Theatre Company’s production of Marvelous Party!.
David continued his education at the University of Arizona, where he recently earned his M.F.A. in lighting design. His credits at UA include: assistant lighting designer for Leading Ladies and Company, master electrician for Anne Frank, and lighting designer for Stop Kiss, Violet, What I Did Last Summer, and As You Like It. David has had the opportunity to work as an intern at various theatres including Glimmerglass Opera, Pacific Coast Performing Arts (CA), and Theatreworks (AZ). He spent the summer of 2010 on sandy beaches while working as an electrician, spotlight operator and stagehand for Moonlight Stage Productions. When David has time off, he loves to return to Missouri to spend time down in the Ozarks, where his family has been camping at for more than 20 years. David would like to thank his family and his soon-to-be wife Meena, for all their love and support.
Costume Designer, Head Costumer
Miriam Patterson-Smith holds a Master of Fine Arts in theatre and a Bachelor of Arts in art history from the University of Memphis, where she studied costume and lighting design, dramaturgy, and theatre history. Her designs were seen in the plays Sueño and the Ostrander Award-nominated Twelfth Night during the course of her graduate studies. During the academic year, she is employed by Rhodes College in Memphis, where she teaches humanities to first and second year students and serves as the costume shop supervisor. In addition to instructing students on design and costume construction techniques, she designs costumes for many of the season productions on the McCoy Theatre stage, including Seven, Taming of the Shrew, Lysistrata, Reckless, and Skin of our Teeth, for which she was honored with an Ostrander Award nomination. Most recently she had the privilege of designing costumes for Rhodes College’s Edwardian-themed production of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. Miriam has designed costumes for more than 30 Memphis area productions. Her costumes have been featured in Germantown Community Theatre’s The Mystery of Irma Vep, Harvey, Smoke on the Mountain, and The Complete Works of Shakespeare, Abridged, as well as Theatre Memphis’s Hamlet and Cloud Nine. She also has designed costumes for a number of opera productions in Memphis at the Rudi Scheidt School of Music, including Albert Herring, La Bohème, Christopher Sly, Don Giovanni, and Suor Angelica.
This summer marks another return for Miriam to Opera in the Ozarks, where she enjoys the challenge of coordinating costumes for the repertory opera season. In past seasons, she has worked on costumes for Tosca, Don Giovanni, Die Fledermaus, Postcard from Morocco, and Hansel and Gretel at Inspiration Point. She is excited to once again be working with a talented cast and crew on the 2011 season’s productions.
Production Stage Manager
Brandon Ehrenreich is a Phoenix native and a recent theatre design and production graduate from Arizona State University. Brandon spent his first year out of school working as an assistant stage manager for Utah Festival Opera (Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Guys and Dolls), and as the first assistant stage manager for Arizona Opera’s 2010-11 season (The Pirates of Penzance, Carmen, Turandot, Otello, Die Entführung aus dem Serail). While in school, Brandon worked frequently with ASU’s Lyric Opera Theatre as a production stage manager (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Turn of the Screw, Suor Angelica), assistant stage manager (La Cenerentola, Gianni Schicchi, Urinetown, Candide), and lighting designer for The Rocky Horror Show, which won the 2009-10 ariZoni Award for Best Lighting Design in Non-Contracted Theatre. During his “free time” Brandon enjoys working as a freelance lighting designer in the Phoenix area (Winnie-the-Pooh, Hamletmachine, James and the Giant Peach, among others). In the fall, Brandon will return to Arizona Opera for its 2011-12 season.
Stephen Variames is a graduate vocal coaching student at Oklahoma City University, currently studying with Brian Osborne. This past year he music directed The Medium and Dido and Aeneas for the school’s student-run program, Operations. He received his B.M. in composition from Baylor University and is still an avid composer. There, he also served as assistant vocal coach, and directed A Little Night Music. He was a finalist for the New York City Opera Competition for New American Opera for his one-woman opera, The Face in the Wall. While at Baylor, he also served as adjunct faculty at McLennan Community College. He is currently composing an opera for Oklahoma City University. Stephen is very excited to be a part of Opera in the Ozarks and work with such incredible talent.
Ms. Miaomiao Wang, one of the apprentice coaches in the 2009 Merola Opera Program, is a highly sought after vocal coach and accompanist on the East Coast. She has served as assistant music director, accompanist and vocal coach for the Peabody Conservatory Opera Department, and currently serves as an accompanist for Boston Lyric Opera.
Ms. Wang has collaborated with artists such as Warren Jones, Phyllis Bryn-Julson, William Sharp, Karen Holvik, Patricia Craig and Vinson Cole. She has played in master classes for artists such as Sherrill Milnes, Jane Eaglen, Steven Blier, Eric Halfvarson and Roger Vignoles. She has also worked under the direction of Gian Paolo Sanzogno of La Scala Opera. Ms. Wang won the Gan su Province Piano Competition in China at age 7. She holds music degrees from Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, China (B.A.), Peabody Conservatory (M.M.), and New England Conservatory (GPD). She will be a doctoral candidate at Boston University in the fall of 2011 and will serve as accompanist and assistant coach for the BU Opera Institute.
Corie Catherine Melaugh has a double B.M. in piano performance and violin performance from Oklahoma City University, and is currently pursing a M.M. in vocal coaching there.
In 2006 and 2007 Corie was a featured performer at the International Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival. In 2006, she received the National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts Award for Popular Piano, presented a ragtime program at the OK Mozart Festival, and released a CD, entitled Ragtime. According to The Mississippi Rag [June 2007], Corie is “…a savvy young woman who’s part of the new ragtime generation.” She has participated in master classes with pianists Morten Gunnar Larsen, Jeff Barnhart, Brian Holland, Glen Jenks, Donald Ryan, Sylvia Wang, Robert Weirich and Sergio Monteiro.
Past production credits include The Music Man (répétiteur), A Little Night Music (2nd Keyboard), Lee Hoiby’s The Scarf (music director), Vaughan Williams’ Riders to the Sea (music director), Gianni Schicchi (assistant music director/conductor, répétiteur), and The Wedding Singer (répétiteur/keyboards).
For the past several summers, Corie has played violin in the Opera in the Ozarks orchestra, and is pleased to be returning as an accompanist.
Ace Edewards, character tenor and conductor, resides in Denver, Colo. After graduating Summa Cum Lauda with a B.M. degree from California State University at Sacramento, Ace went to France (where he grew up) to study voice at Le Centre d’Etudes Supèrieures de Musique et Dance in Toulouse. He then went on to Glasgow, Scotland and graduated with a Master of Opera from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. Ace then pursued a dual emphasis master’s in both voice and choral conducting and an Artist Diploma in orchestral conducting at University of Denver’s Lamont School of Music. There he was stage manager for Così fan tutte, assistant conductor for Carmen, stage director for Rossini’s Il Signor Bruschino and conducted Die Zauberflöte, while being double cast as Monostatos. After graduating, Ace participated as assistant conductor in the Tuscia Opera Festival in Viterbo, Italy, conducting concert performances of Così fan tutte, La Bohème and La Traviata. He then extended his stay to study with tenor Gian Luca Pasolini. Upon his return to the States, Ace has kept busy working for Google, teaching voice, substitute conducting for the Denver Philharmonic, singing in the Opera Colorado Chorus, and collaborating with Italian guitarist Carlo Fierens performing works by Britten and Dowland.
Assistant Technical Director
Meena Ramakesavan is from Phoenix, Ariz., and is happy to be working for Opera in the Ozarks. Meena graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in technical theatre with an emphasis in technical direction from the University of Arizona in May 2010. Most recently she was the assistant technical director for Don Giovanni and Albert Herring at The University of Arizona School of Music. In 2010 she was a stage crew apprentice at The Sante Fe Opera, working on Albert Herring, Madame Butterfly, Magic Flute, and the world premiere of Life is a Dream. Meena also worked as a carpenter at Moonlight Stage Productions in Vista, Calif.; credits there include Guys and Dolls and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. At UA’s Arizona Repertory Theatre she worked as technical director for What I Did Last Summer and the Educational Theatre Company’s Story Theatre, and as assistant technical director for Rum and Coke and The
Best Little Whorehouse In Texas, among others.
Assistant Head Costumer
College in Memphis, Tenn. She has trained for years as a dancer, singer and actress, and has appeared in the Memphis community in productions such as the award-winning Pride and Prejudice (Kitty), Fiddler on the Roof (Tzeitel), Sweeney Todd, West Side Story, and others. Since then, she has trained with the Tennessee Shakespeare Company and appeared in the Love Letters and Love Songs Gala, reading the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet. Most recently, she appeared at Rhodes as the Lady Olivia in Twelfth Night, under the direction of guest artist Nick Hutchison – an instructor at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, and formerly a performer with the Royal Shakespeare Company. She also trains privately with vocal instructor Julie Freeman, concentrating on lyrical and operatic techniques. While completing her undergraduate studies at Rhodes, she began working as a costume shop assistant under Miriam Patterson-Smith. There, exploring a field that had formerly been a casual hobby, she fell in love with her work, and now plans to pursue costume design as well as construction.
Meghan Miller is a graduate student of the University of Memphis where she is pursuing an M.F.A. in costume design/technology. She received her B.F.A. in theatre at the University of West Florida (Pensacola) where she specialized in costume design/technology. Some of her previous credits are Goblin Market, Learned Ladies, As You Like It, Magic Flute, and Così fan Tutte. She was nominated for the Barbizon Award for Excellence in Costume Design for both Goblin Market and Learned Ladies. She also won the KCACTF craft/tech award for a dress from a production of A Christmas Carol.
Production Assistant, Assistant Stage Manager
Alexandra Cockrell is currently a high school senior at the Interlochen Arts Academy where she studies theatre. In May 2011 she was awarded the Upstart Crow Award for her distinguished leadership in performance and production throughout the Academy year. At Interlochen she has been seen in The Comedy of Errors (Dromio of Syracuse), Romeo and Juliet (ensemble, Benvolio understudy), Beauty and the Beast (ensemble), and Parallel Lives (Tina). Alexandra was also assistant stage manager for Cyrano de Bergerac. At the University of Arizona’s Arizona Repertory Theatre she was featured in The Miracle Worker (Helen Keller), Tommy (Tommy age 10) and Carousel (snow child).