The Vermont Philharmonic’s annual Opera Gala, conducted by Lou Kosma, will take place at Fuller Hall of St. Johnsbury Academy on Saturday, October 12 at 7:30 pm, and at the Barre Opera House on Sunday, October 13, at 2:00 pm. Audiences will enjoy Italian opera masterpieces and arias in the Bel Canto style. The concert features two talented young singers, winners of the prestigious performance awards from the 2019 Bel Canto Institute in Florence, Italy. Tickets are $20 adults, $15 seniors, $5 students, and are available online at www.vermontphilharmonic.com or at the door.
The program will include works by Verdi, Puccini and Bellini. Soloists include mezzo soprano Hyunji Kim and tenor Yang Xu. The concert will finish in grand style with the iconic Symphony No. 4, nicknamed the Italian Symphony by Mendelssohn.
Mezzo-soprano Hyunji Kim received her undergraduate degree from the Yon Sai University in Korea, after which she received a Master’s Degree from Manhattan School of Music in New York City. Currently she is in the Professional Study program at Manhattan School of Music. Ms. Kim has performed solo and in ensembles at Carnegie Hall and Merkin Hall in New York City, as well as with the University of Korea. Hyunji Kim is a recipient of the 2019 Bel Canto Institute Performance Award and the 2019 Bel Canto Institute Orchestral Performance Award.
Chinese tenor Yang Xu was selected to attend the Central Conservatory of Music’s Top Innovative Talent Development Program. Between 2013 and 2018 he opened ten solo concerts in China. In 2014 Mr. Xu was accepted as an exchange student with the Royal Danish Academy of Music. That year he won first prize in the “Unge stemmer” competition in Denmark. He returned to China in 2015 and won a special award as the youngest winner of the competition “The Chinese Golden Bell Award for Music”. Several opera performances followed this award. He graduated from The Conservatory of Music in Beijing in 2018 and is currently a graduate student at the Royal Danish Conservatory in Denmark. Mr. Xu is a recipient of the 2019 Bel Canto Institute Orchestral Performance Award.
Conductor Lou Kosma has been the acclaimed music director of the Vermont Philharmonic since 1999. As a member of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra for many years, he knows his way around the world of grand opera. The Vermont Philharmonic has been making beautiful music in central Vermont since 1959 making it Vermont’s oldest community orchestra.
More information is available at vermontphilharmonic.com.