Vera Causa Opera is proud to announce the cast for Donizetti's The Elixir of Love (L'elisir d'amore), running April 5th, 6th, and 7th, in Cambridge, Waterloo, and Guelph.
Wesley Harrison- Nemorino (Cover)
Wesley grew up in Windsor, ON, always enjoying what music had to offer since his first piano lesson at the age of 5. As he matured he sang in children choirs followed by church choirs and high school ensembles. Wesley is now in his third year at Wilfrid Laurier University studying voice performance and enjoys performing with the school as well as in community ensembles. This has given him the opportunity to be a part of many operas and musicals such as The Tales of Hoffmann, Tender Land, Don Pasquale, Footloose, and Bye Bye Birdie. As Wesley further grows and matures in his singing he hopes to continue further studies with a masters in voice performance at McGill or U of T.
Allison Walmsley- Adina
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. Allison is very excited to be joining VCO as Adina in their spring production of L’Elisir d’amore, which marks her 5th show with the company. Hailing from Saskatoon, SK, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in voice performance from the U of S and a Master’s Degree from Western University. She currently studies with soprano Jackalyn Short. Allison has participated in the Gordon Wallis Opera competition (first place), the CFMTA Young Artist competition (first place), the Toronto Mozart Competition (finalist), MYOpera intensive/concert and the Ukrainian Art Song Summer Institute. Allison is an active performer on the oratorio and opera scene, and some recent opera roles include Monica (The Medium), Adina (L’Elisir d’amore), Queen of the Night (The Magic Flute) with Opera Kelowna, Morgana (Alcina), Nanetta (Falstaff), Cat (The Bremen Town Musicians) with Saskatoon Opera, Anna (Le Villi), and Emily (Our Town). She also had the pleasure of premiering the role of Mina in VCO’s (Dracula). Upcoming, Allison looks forward to performing with Toronto Operetta Theatre as Clo Clo/Sylvian in The Merry Widow.
Camilo Rodriguez-Cuadrado- "The Doctor" Dulcamara
Colombian baritone Camilo Rodriguez-Cuadrado obtained a Masters degree in voice performance from The University of Western Ontario in 2018. Camilo will join Vera Causa Opera’s 2018 – 2019 season, singing the role of Dr. Seward in the opera Dracula by Canadian composer Dylan Langan and the role of Dr. Dulcamara in the opera Elixir of Love (L’elisir d’amore) by Gaetano Donizetti. He has performed with The University of Western Ontario Opera Workshop, Accademia Europea dell’Opera, Fundación Jaime Manzur, Canadian Operatic Arts Academy, Little London Community Opera, Caldas Symphony Orchestra, Universidad Nacional de Colombia Symphony Orchestra, and Universidad Nacional de Colombia Opera Workshop, among others.
Jorge Trabanco- Belcore
Brazilian lyric baritone, winner of the 12th Maria Callas (2014) and the 7th Carlos Gomes (2015) International Singing competitions, Jorge Trabanco stands out for his scenic and vocal performances, having already performed main roles in many operas, oratorios and masses in Canada, United States, Italy and Brazil, including Don Giovanni (Don Giovanni), Count (Le Nozze di Figaro) and Papageno (Die Zauberflöte) by Mozart, Gianni Schicchi (Gianni Schicchi) and Sharpless (Madama Butterfly) by Puccini, Danilo (The Merry Widow) by Lehar, Dandini (Cenerentola) by Rossini, Carmina Burana by Carl Orff, The Messiah by G. F. Handel, The Creation by Haydn, Elijah by Mendelssohn, Mozart’s Coronation Mass and Mass in C Major, and Schubert’s Mass in B-flat Major.
Currently studying with the Canadian baritone Theodore Baerg as a Doctoral candidate at Western University of Ontario, Jorge earned his Master's degree from Georgia State University (Atlanta, US) and worked as a Voice and Vocal Pedagogy Teacher while conducting and directing the University’s Choir at the Nazarene University of Brazil for the past 6 years.
Alexandra Delle Donne- Adina (Cover)
This season, soprano Alexandra Delle Donne has completed her Bachelor's degree in classical Voice Performance from the University of Toronto. Alexandra had the pleasure of singing with Vera Cause Opera in Puccini’s Le Villi. She will be performing in the Guelph Festival Concert as a featured soloist. She recently performed in Handel's Solomon as Woman One with the Victoria Conservatory of Music. Alexandra was also sponsored by the Faculty of Music Undergraduate Association from the University of Toronto to perform a summer recital at Heliconian Hall.
Michaela Chiste- Giannetta
Michaela Chiste is a young soprano hailing from Okotoks, Alberta. She originally trained as a stage actor before crossing over to the world of classical singing in 2013, and received her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance under the tutelage of John Tessier at the University of Alberta in 2017. She has performed as a recitalist both internationally and across Canada, and has served as soloist in choral works such as Benjamin Britten's Rejoice in the Lamb and A Ceremony of Carols, and Bernstein's Chichester Psalms. In 2016, she premiered The Dream, a cantata for soprano and pianoforte by Anders Muskins at the Alberta Mozart Festival. Michaela recently received praise for her debut portrayal of Mimì in Puccini's La Bohème with Mercury Opera. Opera Canada described her performance as "a fine balance of fragility and hopefulness". She was also described as "effective... a great actress" (I Don't Get It), and that she "[rose] to the occasion" (Daze Magazine) and "more than [held] her own among the seasoned cast" (Edmonton Journal). Other recent roles include Frasquita (Carmen), Emmie (Albert Herring), Mimi (City Workers in Love), The Dormouse (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland), Jennie Hildebrand (Street Scene), Gustave (Pomme d’Api), and The Boy (Der Jasager). Michaela is currently a member of Arcady's Emerging Artist Program and a roster singer for Cowtown Opera.
James Smith- Nemorino
James Smith is an American tenor from Des Moines, Iowa. He received his Bachelor of Music degree from Drake University in 2014, and his Master of Music degree from University of Western Ontario in 2018 under the direction of acclaimed baritone Ted Baerg. He has performed with La Musica Lirica and Accademia Europea Dell’Opera in Italy, FIO Americas in Brazil, Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre in U.S.A, Summer Opera Lyric Theatre and BROTT Opera in Canada, and various choral performances throughout England, Ireland, Wales, and New York City. In 2013 he was a finalist of the Midwest Regional NATS competition, and in 2015 he was awarded the London Opera Guild Scholarship. James has been noted for being able to sing with “an easy tone that showed some great growth potential” (Schmopera). Major roles include “Sam” in Susannah (Floyd), “Nemorino” in L’Elisir d’Amore (Donizetti), “Don José” in Carmen (Bizet), “Rinuccio” in Gianni Schicchi (Puccini), “Ferrando” in Cosi Fan Tutte (Mozart), “Fenton” in Falstaff (Verdi), “George Gibbs” in Our Town (Rorem), “Nerone” in L’incoronazione di Poppea (Monteverdi), “Sancho Panza” in Man of La Mancha (Mitch Leigh), “Raoul de St. Brioche” in The Merry Widow (Lehar), “Nathanaël” in Les Contes d’Hoffmann (Offenbach), and “Borsa” in Rigoletto (Verdi).
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