Judas MaccabŠus - G. F. Handel
Spring 2003 Concert Soloists
Emily Martin- Soprano
Andrew Childs - Tenor
Brendan Cooke - Bass-Baritone
Young American lyric soprano Emily Martin whose face and voice smolder with a passionate intensity that are electrifying continues to realize critical and audience acclaim. Highlights of the current (2002-2003) Season include returns to Opera Grand Rapids opening their season in Viva 35! - A 35th Anniversary Concert, to Skylight Opera Theatre for Madama Butterfly and to the Connecticut Master Chorale for Judas Maccabaeus.
Recent concert appearances include Messiah with the Hartford Symphony, Bach’s Mass in B Minor with the Syracuse Symphony, Rutter’s Requiem with the Connecticut Master Chorale and evenings of operatic arias with the Charlotte and Whatcom Symphonies. She was soloist at the Anchorage Festival of Music singing Brahms’ Requiem, Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915 and Copland’s As It Fell Upon A Day. Operatic engagements include Opera Grand Rapids (Micala in Carmen), Skylight Opera Theatre (Don Giovanni) and Titus’ Rosina, Chautauqua Opera (Gretel in Hansel und Gretel) and the inaugural production (Gianni Schicchi) of the Sylvan Opera Festival in the Philadelphia area. As one of five finalists in the Llangollen International Singer Eisteddfod, she appeared with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic conducted by Yves Abel in a concert telecast live on Welsh National Television.
Miss Martin has presented recitals on the Isabella Stewart Gardener Museum Concert Series in Boston, at The Chautauqua Institution and at The Tanglewood Music Center. She starred in numerous productions with Ohio Light Opera and during her student days at The Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia and has been a SPECtrum Residence Artist with Virginia Opera performing in a variety of productions and special concerts. Winner of the Viva Voce Award from Opera Index Awards, she also won the Mario Lanza Competition, received the Outstanding Young Artist Award from Chautauqua Opera in 1997 and has been recognized by the Metropolitan Opera with a Development Award at the Metropolitan Opera Regionals. A native of Connecticut, Miss Martin received her degree in Vocal Performance from Boston University before continuing her education at AVA. Her principal teachers have been Joanna Levy, Phyllis Curtin and Joan Heller.
Tenor Andrew Childs has been praised for the clarity and beauty of his tenor voice, and as a versatile and empathetic performer. As a concert artist, he has been a featured soloist with many prestigious organizations in performances ranging from Chant to New Music and Broadway. Guest appearances include those with Seattle Symphony, Seattle Symphony Chorale, Society of Composers International (SCI), American Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Northwest, Yale Camerata, Santa Barbara Quire of Voyces, Connecticut Master Chorale, Orchestra Seattle, Connecticut Chamber Players, and the American Guild of Organists.
His varied operatic repertoire encompasses the entire genre, including roles of Monteverdi as well as three world premieres. Andrew has sung over one hundred performances of operatic roles for Seattle Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Harrisburg Opera, The Center for Contemporary Opera, Amato Opera and others.
A dedicated art-song recitalist, he has studied the song repertoire with such noted artists as Gwendolyn Koldovsky, Martin Katz, Elly Ameling, Dawn Upshaw, Ned Rorem, Graham Johnson, and Hakan Hagegard. Andrew has become a frequent and sought-after collaborator by composers of new works. Among his numerous premieres are works by Yehudi Wyner, Victoria Bond, Timothy Melbinger, Brian Field, and Richard Wilson.
Andrew was raised in northern New Hampshire, and earned his Bachelor of Music Degree from the University of California, Irvine. He was a member of the Dean’s Council while at UCI, and was awarded an academic fellowship for graduate study. He completed his Doctoral studies at the University.
A Connecticut native, Brendan Cooke has sung with opera companies all over the United States including the Portland Opera Repertory Theater, Baltimore Opera, Maryland Lyric Opera, Chautauqua Opera, Opera Vivente, New Orleans Opera and the Ohio Light Opera. His repertoire ranges from Mozart bass and baritone roles (Guglielmo, Don Alfonso, and Il Commendatore) to twentieth century repertoire (Bottom in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Postman in Lee Hoiby’s The Scarf, Mr. Gobineau in Menotti’s The Medium, and Gino Carella in the world premiere of Mark Lanz Weiser’s Where Angels Fear to Tread).
An active recitalist, Brendan has given concerts in New Orleans, Baltimore and Connecticut, and recently at the Academy of the Arts in Easton, MD, in conjunction with their exhibit of N.C. Wyeth and Howard Pyle portraits. On the concert stage, Brendan has appeared with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra and Symphony Chorus of New Orleans as a soloist in Handel’s Israel in Egypt, Bach’s St. John Passion and Kodaly’s Te Deum, with Baltimore’s Ridgely Consort in FaurÚ’s Requiem. He has been the baritone soloist in Vaughan Williams’ A Pilgrims Journey, DuruflÚ’s Messe cum Jubilo and Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, and Robert Sirota’s Iscariot.
Brendan holds a Bachelor of Music Education from Loyola University of New Orleans and a Master of Music from the Peabody Conservatory, where he was a student of John Shirley-Quirk. Brendan returned to Peabody Conservatory as a guest artist appearing as Don Alfonso in Cosi fan Tutte last March, under the baton of Martin Isepp. Currently living in Baltimore, Brendan sings regularly with the Baltimore Opera, having performed roles in La Traviata, Elektra, Tosca, Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Rigoletto and most recently Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk.