Vera Causa Opera is excited to announce the cast members for the Canadian Opera Fest's June Premiere of The Covenant by Dylann Miller.
Allison Walmsley as Cate
Allison Walmsley is a Toronto-based soprano acclaimed for her “extensive upper register and resonate bottom” and is known to be a “natural and alluring actress” -Ludwig van Toronto. Hailing from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Allison is thrilled to be joining VCO in their production The Covenant in the role of Cate. She completed her Bachelor’s degree in voice performance at the U of S with Dr. Garry Gable and Kathleen Lohrenz Gable. Allison received her Master’s Degree in Voice Performance at Western University, under soprano Jackalyn Short, with whom she continues to study. Allison is a frequent participator in competitions and festivals including Gordon Wallis Opera competition (First Place), the CFMTA Young Artist competition (First Place), Saskatoon Music Festival (Kinsmen Award) and the Toronto Mozart Competition (Finalist). Allison is now a Toronto-based singer and she takes great joy in pursuing opportunities in opera, oratorio, choral, recital and contemporary music. Recent operatic roles include Mozart’s Queen of the Night (The Magic Flute), Morgana in (Alcina), Nanetta (Falstaff), Cat in Saskatoon Opera’s (The Bremen Town Musicians) and Emily in (Our Town).
Chad Quigley as Father Andrew
Chad Quigley is a native of Waterloo, ON and holds an Honours Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Wilfrid Laurier University under the direction of Kimberly Barber. Mr. Quigley’s voice has been described as a baritone that displays great lyrical qualities with dark, emotional depth. His passion for a deep understanding of text and a profound, emotional connection with music is what he values most as an artist. Recently finishing performances in Richard Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos as The Music Master and Offenbach’s Les contes d’Hoffmann as The Four Villains, both productions by Opera Laurier, he is looking forward to Vera Causa Opera’s production of The Covenant.
Kimberely Rose-Pefhany as Keira
Soprano Kimberley-Rose is delighted to be joining VCO this summer for a world premiere as Keira in Dylann Miller’s The Covenant, after making her VCO debut as Elvira in L’italiana in Algeri this past April. She most recently made her Toronto Operetta Theatre debut as Paquette in Candide, joining TOT again later in the season as Jocanthus & Leona in La Belle Helene. Other recent accomplishments include performing First Lady in the world premiere of Michael Rose’s A Northern Lights Dream, and Barbara in John Beckwith’s A Night Blooming Cereus. Kimberley-Rose is an active member of the Toronto Music Community, performing as a soloist with Opera in Concert. Kimberley-Rose has performed Pamina (Die Zauberflote) with both Lyric Opera Studio Weimar and Summer Opera Lyric Theatre. Also with LOSW Kimberley-Rose has performed Susanna and Barbarina (Le Nozze di Figaro). She continued her European tour as Adina (L’Elisir d’Amore) and Papagena (Die Zauberflote) with the Greek Opera Studio. Kimberley-Rose has been an active musician from a young age performing with the Canadian Children’s Opera Chorus, Mirvish Productions, the Canadian Opera Company and many more. Kimberley-Rose holds a performance diploma from the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music. This summer she will be performing the title role in Manon with Summer Opera Lyric Theatre.
Autumn Wascher as Delaney
Autumn Wascher is currently in her fifth year at Wilfrid Laurier University. She is studying voice with Marianne Bindig as well as with Dr. Michael Warren who is based in New York. Last year with Opera Laurier, she performed the roles of Senta in Der Fliegende Hollӓnder, Prima Donna in Ariadne auf naxos, Kitty Hart in Dead Man Walking, as well as Antonia and Giulietta in The Tales of Hoffmann. In January 2019, Autumn will perform the role of Micaela in Bizet’s Carmen with the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony.
Stephanie O’Leary as Lilith
Ms. O’Leary completed her Master’s degree in Performance and Literature at Western University under the instruction of Jackalyn Short. Most recently, Stephanie was engaged with Little London Community Opera where she sang the role of Dido in Dido and Aeneas. During the past year, Stephanie worked with Abridged Opera singing the roles of Mercedes in Bizet’s Carmen, and Madame Flora Menotti’s The Medium. Stephanie’s UWOpera credits include the Gingerbread Witch in Hansel and Gretel, Chinese Cup, Dragonfly and Squirrel in their production of Ravel’s L’Enfant et les Sortilèges, and Mrs. Demers in the Canadian opera City Workers in Love. In summer 2015 she participated in the Halifax Summer Opera Festival where she sang the role of Madame de la Haltière in their production of Cendrillon. In 2014, she had the privilege of taking part in Opera NUOVA’s voice intensive workshop in Edmonton Alberta. Stephanie has also had the pleasure of working with Musical Theatre Productions in London Ontario, appearing as the Ghost in Sondheim’s Follies, and Vittoria in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Gondoliers.
Sam Rowlandson-O’Hara as Cate's Mother
Sam Rowlandson-O’Hara is originally from Salt Spring Island, BC. Originally studying at the Victoria Conservatory of Music with Nancy Argenta, she moved to Waterloo to complete her Bachelors of Voice Performance Wilfrid Laurier University with Leslie Fagan. Her most recent performances include Nicklausse in Les Contes d’Hoffmann with Opera Laurier, alto soloist for the St Matthew Passion with the Georgetown Bach Chorale and Ma Moss in The Tender Land with Opera Laurier.
Melina Garcia Zambrano as Lucinda
Colombian-born soprano Melina García Zambrano (M.Mus 18’) is passionate about celebrating multiculturalism through Canadian art song and opera. Raised in Toronto, she now makes London, Ontario her home. Melina’s love for live opera inspired her to co-found the Little London Community Opera in 2017. She is also an active performer and has been seen as Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), Elvira (Don Giovanni), and has covered Elvira (L’italiana in Algieri) with MYOpera, and Micaela (Carmen) with BrottOpera. She is thrilled to be part of Vera Causa Opera’s Canadian OperaFest 2018.
Edward Larocque as the Mailman
Edward Larocque is a young tenor pursuing a career in opera and voice performance. Praised for his beautiful tone quality and animated stage presence, he has played a wide range of characters in both opera and musical theatre. Performance credits include Ralph Rackstraw in HMS Pinafore (Tryptych Opera), the title role in Cavalli’s L’Egisto (Halifax Summer Opera Festival), Samuel in The Pirates of Penzance (Toronto Operetta Theatre), Hubert in The Student Prince (Toronto Operetta Theatre), Monostatos in The Magic Flute (Opera York), Daniel Buchanan in Street Scene (Opera in Concert), Goro in Madama Butterly (Summer Opera Lyric Theatre), Oronte in Alcina (Accedemia Europa dell’Opera), and the title role in Bernstein’s Candide (Queen’s Drama Department). As a chorus member he has sung in Candide and The Mikado with Toronto Operetta Theatre, Handel’s Messiah with Against the Grain Theatre, and the VOICEBOX: Opera in Concert Chorus for four seasons directed by Guillermo Silva-Marin and Robert Cooper. He holds his Bachelor of Music (with Distinction) from Queen’s University where he majored in voice and piano.
Mike Fan as the Baker
Mike Fan is an award-winning Chinese-Canadian operatic lyric baritone, actor, pianist, and educator of music, math, science, and languages. Mike's exceptionally wide-ranging career has ranged from opera to film, Shakespeare, jazz, world premieres, and other diverse collaborations. As a singer, Mike has performed across Canada and Australia in 8 languages spanning over 400 years of repertoire from Monteverdi to Heggie with a special interest in Slavic repertoire. Mike holds degrees in Voice, Piano, and Biomedical Science and speaks French, Italian, and German in addition to his native English and Mandarin Chinese. Awards include the Royal Conservatory Gold Medal, 1st place at the NATS Auditions in the Mature Beginners category, and the William Thompson Scholarship. Mike has been engaged by the Halifax Summer Opera Festival, Opera NUOVA, and Opera for All Studio, and has participated in masterclasses with Russell Braun, Sondra Radvanovsky, and Tharanga Goonetilleke, among others. Recent operatic roles include Moralès and Dancaïro in Bizet's Carmen and Top in Copland's The Tender Land. Visit Mike Fan’s official website for photos, videos, and to sign up for his email newsletter: www.MikeZFan.com!
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