[ Faculty Students & Alumni ]

Yale alumnae take part in Opera Boston’s Cardillac

February 24, 2011

Opera Boston is presenting the long-delayed New England premiere of Hindemith’s opera Cardillac on February 25 and 27, and March 1. Making their Opera Boston debuts in mainstage roles are Sol Kim-Bentley, a graduate of Yale College, and Janna Baty, a YSM alumna who is now on the faculty of the School of Music.

Paul Hindemith, whose first opera is rarely performed, taught at Yale for many years. Academically, many of his contributions were to early music, particularly in founding the university’s collegium musicum. He modeled much of Cardillac on the structure of Handelian opera.

Opera News and the Boston Globe have both written preview articles about the production.

Soprano Sol Kim-Bentley, a longtime featured member of Opera Boston’s ensemble, was most recently a memorable Roll Seller in 2009’s The Nose. Cardillac marks her principal role debut as Cardillac’s Daughter, who cannot compete with her father’s golden creations for his love. Kim-Bentley, a two-time Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions regional finalist, most recently understudied the title role in their world premiere of Zhou Long’s Madame White Snake (performing the role for an  invited  dress rehearsal),  sang the role of Tosca with Longwood Opera, and was the Roll Seller in Opera Boston’s New England premiere of Shostakovich’s The Nose. In May of 2011 she will understudy the title role in Opera Boston’s production of Donizetti’s Maria Padilla in addition to appearing as Bianca di Francia. Also with Opera Boston she has understudied Elvira (Ernani) and Agathe (Der Freischütz). She has sung with Commonwealth Opera as the soprano soloist for their annual Messiah sing, in The Threepenny Opera (Polly) and Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well and Living in Paris. Other performances include Rosalinda in Die Fledermaus (Connecticut Lyric Opera), Mimi in La Bohème (Riverside Theatre Works), and Barbarina in Le nozze di Figaro (Granite State Opera). A former apprentice with Virginia Opera and Central City Opera, she currently performs the role of Lucy in The Telephone and the title role in Little Red Riding Hood, both for Opera Boston’s outreach program.

Hailed by The London Financial Times for her “eloquent dignity and vibrant tone” and by The Boston Globe for her “sumptuous tone and vivid theatrical presence,” soprano Janna Baty enjoys an exceptionally versatile career. Recent engagements include appearances with the Hamburgische Staatsoper, Orchestre National du Capitole Toulouse, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Yale Symphony, Tallahassee Symphony, Hartford Symphony, Orquesta Filarmónica de Bogatá (Columbia), Eugene Opera, Opera North, and Boston Lyric Opera. She has sung under Seiji Ozawa, Robert Spano, and Paul Moravec, among others, and has appeared at the Aldeburgh, Britten, Tanglewood, and Norfolk Festivals, and the Semanas Musicales de Frutillar Festival. Her most notable opera roles include the Duchess (Powder Her Face), Alice Ford (Falstaff), Donna Anna and Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), the Countess (Le nozze di Figaro), Vittelia (La Clemenza di Tito), Madame Lidoine (Dialogues of the Carmélites), Lady Billows (Albert Herring), Musetta (La Bohème), La Ciesca (Gianni Schicchi), Mrs. Grose (The Turn of the Screw), among many others. Equally at home in both standard and contemporary repertoire, she appears regularly with such contemporary ensembles as Collage New Music, Auros Group for New Music, and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, and has worked alongside composers including Bernard Rands, Peter Child, Fred Lerdahl, Yehudi Wyner, and John Harbison. Winner of several international competitions, she has given concerts across Europe, the U.S. and South America, in the company of such distinguished musicians as violist Nobuko Imai, pianists Claude Frank, Peter Frankl, and Christopher Lyndon Gee, and guitarist Stephen Marchionda. She can be heard on the critically-acclaimed recording of Lukas Foss’s opera Griffelkin (Chandos, 2003); and on Vali: Flute Concerto/Deylaman/Folk Songs No. 10 (Naxos, 2004). A graduate of Oberlin Conservatory and the Yale School of Music, she makes her Opera Boston mainstage debut as The Lady.