Opera Ensemble to perform Oct. 15 in Carnegie Hall concert
WCSU Professor Margaret Astrup to direct 40-member ensemble in 'The Tsar's Bride'

DANBURY, CONN. — The Opera Ensemble of Western Connecticut State University will take the stage on Wednesday, Oct. 15, at New York’s legendary Carnegie Hall as featured choral singers in the Opera Orchestra of New York performance of “The Tsar’s Bride” by Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov.

Forty WestConn students participating in the Opera Ensemble, directed by Professor of Music Dr. Margaret Astrup, will perform in a chorus that also will include the West Point Cadet Glee Club of the U.S. Military Academy and the Alumni Russian Chorus of Yale University. Music Director Eve Queler will conduct the Opera Orchestra of New York in a concert-format performance of the Rimsky-Korsakov work that will feature internationally acclaimed soprano Olga Borodina, tenor Alexey Markov and soprano Olga Makarina in principal roles.

The Carnegie Hall appearance reflects the widespread recognition of the WCSU Opera Ensemble for its superior performance of a diverse repertoire of American and international operas. The ensemble presents two to three operas at WestConn during each academic year, complemented by an extensive outreach program that offers one-act opera performances both on and off campus targeted especially for community and student audiences.

Astrup expressed pride in the student performers of the Opera Ensemble for earning the rare opportunity to perform in Carnegie Hall. “It makes the experience even more special to know that we have the support and backing of the university community,” she observed.

Oksana Protenic has been rehearsal pianist and diction coach for the WestConn ensemble. Students participating in the Oct. 15 performance are:

Sopranos: Lauren Brown, Samantha Chiapallone and Victoria Chiera, all of Danbury; Jennifer Caraluzzi, of Bethel; Ashleigh D’Addio, of Westbrook; Katelyn Gavagan, of Torrington; Daria Grisel, of Norwich; Victoria Holden, of Shelton; Kate Hunt, of Branford; Emily Hurlock, of Griswold; Kathryn Kupchik, of Cromwell; Jennifer and Melissa Labbe, both of Burlington; Samantha Mingione, of New Fairfield; Hannah Roemhild, of Deep River; and Sarah Skrip, of Prospect.

Altos: Annie Bryson, of Shelton; Noelle Chave, of Danbury; Amanda Forker, of Wethersfield; Meagan Johnson, of Trumbull; Caitlin Keeler, of Ridgefield; Danielle King, of Stamford; Lauren Smith, of Ansonia; and Karolina Wojteczko, of Derby.

Tenors: Brendan Fox, of Bethel; Oren Givoni, of Bethany; Michael Martone, of Guilford; Matthew O’Rear, of Danbury; Isaac Smith, of Jewett City; and Scott Towers, of Branford.

Basses: Kyle Attanasio, of Shelton; Hernan Berisso, of Riverside; Joshua Lara, of Hartford; Daniel Lovallo, of Milford; Alexander Petri and Gregory Sullivan, both of Danbury; Matthew Popp, of Orange; Zachary Ross, of Branford; Brendan Stone, of Wolcott; and Benjamin Townsend, of Clinton.

The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall, 57th Street and Seventh Avenue in Manhattan. Tickets for the performance may be purchased through the Carnegie Hall ticket office at (212) 247-7800 or online at www.carnegiehall.org.

Western Connecticut State University offers outstanding faculty in a range of quality academic programs. Our diverse university community provides students an enriching and supportive environment that takes advantage of the unique cultural offerings of Western Connecticut and New York. Our vision: To be an affordable public university with the characteristics of New England’s best small private universities.


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