The Met Competition

Winners of the 2016 National Council Auditions Sol Jin, Yelena Dyachek, Jakub Józef Orliński, Emily D’Angelo and Sean Michael Plumb. (Photo by Peter J. Smith/Wall Street Journal)

Winners of the 2016 National Council Auditions Sol Jin, Yelena Dyachek, Jakub Józef Orliński, Emily D’Angelo and Sean Michael Plumb. (Photo by Peter J. Smith/Wall Street Journal)

Will the next American star of opera emerge from the Metropolitan Opera National Council Central Region? It’s hard to say this early in the process, but it sure is fun to be in the audience – jotting down notes in one’s program, wondering what repertoire will be selected, arguing with your friends about who **should** win, and ultimately being delighted or dismayed by the results.  When polished artistry is passed over for raw talent (read LOUD), the judges’ decisions can be infuriating. And yet, some truly special musicians have come out on top in the end, such as Janai Brugger, or more recently Emily D’Angelo and Aryeh Nussbaum Cohen.

Vocal Arts Chicago is excited to share this list of Sunday’s finalists from the four districts which comprise the Central Region. Join the Central-Region’s-Got-Talent excitement at DePaul University’s glamorous new Holtschneider Performance Center to support all of these singers (unless they beat my favorite). NB: soprano Jane Eaglen is on thejudging panel!

Indiana District
Avery Boettcher, soprano
Bradley Bickhardt, tenor
Hayley Lipke, soprano
Elena Villalón, soprano 

Illinois District
Rachel Blaustein, soprano
Maria Consamus, mezzo-soprano
Emily Margevich, soprano

Kentucky District
Taylor Comstock, tenor

Ohio District
Yuji Bae, soprano
Sara Schabas, soprano
Karis Tucker, mezzo-soprano

Fourth Coast Ensemble: Bridget Skaggs, Sarah van der Ploeg, Zachary Vanderburg, and David Govertsen. Photo by Elliot Mandel.

Fourth Coast Ensemble: Bridget Skaggs, Sarah van der Ploeg, Zachary Vanderburg, and David Govertsen. Photo by Elliot Mandel.

Fourth Coast Ensemble explores a very specific segment of the art song repertoire – vocal chamber music. Through performing in a range of venues, to being on the forefront of commissioning new work, to being visible in support of other song-centric activity in the city, Fourth Coast is doing everything an organization can to sustain the viability of art song in Chicago. In their fifth season, the quality of Fourth Coast’s work and the prominence of their artists and collaborators in the song-maker’s community are a given. Tickets for the limited capacity Oak Park house concert on Friday, January 18, are still available. The program includes Britten’s Abraham and Isaac canticle and a selection from Chicago-based composer/singer Patrice Michaels’s A Portrait of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

 

At 12:30 p.m. on Monday, the Chicago Chamber Choir pays tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr. in a free performance at the Chicago History Museum.  Under the leadership of Artistic Director Christopher Windle, Chicago Chamber Choir has become an ensemble to seek out in a crowded field.