Opera Exposures Presents Ensemble of Operatic Talent at Historic St. Marks Church in the Bowery

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Opera Exposures, will present an ensemble of seasoned operatic professionals and bright, upcoming talents for an afternoon recital at Historic St. Marks Church in the Bowery. The performance will be held on June 25, 2006 at 3:00 pm.

Opera Exposures, a 501C3 organization, with a stated goal - to present seasoned operatic professionals and bright, upcoming talents in diverse venues at accessible ticket prices - will bring together some of the tri-state area's finest and compelling artists for an afternoon recital. The performance will be held on June 25, 2006 at 3:00 pm at historic Saint Marks Church in the Bowery, 131 East 10th Street, New York City, (2nd Avenue). Tickets are $20.00 for general admission and reserved seats are $50.00. A reception follows the concert.

Artists in recital:

Roxanne Rowedder, mezzo-soprano - a gifted young artist who recently performed with the New Jersey State Opera, the New York Oratorio Society at Carnegie Hall, and the Wagner Society. She received the George London / Kirsten Flagstad Award in 2003 and in 2004 performed in a gala concert in New York’s Weill Recital Hall. She has performed in Cavalleria Rusticana, Ariadne auf Naxos, and Un Ballo in Maschera and recipient of grants from the Licia Albanese / Puccini Foundation, an Opera Index Award, and several others. She is a graduate of the University of Northern Iowa. She has studied with Simon Estes, George Shirley, Jane Klaviter, and the Bel Canto Institute.

John Bernard, tenor - trained at the Boston Conservatory and in young artist programs at the Glimmerglass Opera, the Sarasota Opera and others. He has sung as a concert soloist with the New York Choral Society, New Haven Symphony, Utah Symphony,and the Central Synagogue in New York City, and with conductors Anton Coppola, George Manahan, Gerald Steichen and Keith Lockhart. He has performed in roles with Dicapo Opera Theatre, Utah Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Sarasota Opera, El Paso Opera, and the Boston Lyric Opera. He is proud to have recently become a member of the Metropolitan Opera Chorus.

Dwight Owsley, narrator - born in Texas and has lived in New York City for more than twenty-five years. An enthusiastic performer since infancy, he has appeared on stage in operas, musicals, and in night clubs internationally. Currently he presides over the concierge desk at a prestigious Manhattan hotel advising the rich and powerful on how to allocate their opera ticket budget. He is also an exceptionally entertaining raconteur, knowledgeable on many subjects, especially music. Just ask him.

Kenneth Overton, baritone - a native of Philadelphia has studied at the North Carolina School of the Arts and the Hartt School of Music. In 2003 he made his Broadway debut in Baz Luhrman’s critically acclaimed production of La Boheme. He has performed many leading roles with Connecticut Opera’s productions of Die Zauberflöte, La Boheme, Don Giovanni, Carmen, Porgy & Bess, and Turandot. He sung with many other regional Opera and concert organizations. Kenneth debuted at Carnegie Hall in Jackson Berkey’s Come Follow Me. In 1998 he made his European Debut at the Bregenz Festival production of Porgy & Bess and toured in the U.K. with the same opera. Kenneth is also a winner of the Leontyne Price Vocal Competition and the Liederkranz Foundation Competition.

Lana Sagnini, soprano - was born in Trieste, Italy, of Bulgarian, Serbian and Italian extraction, and moved with her family to Dearborn, Michigan. She attended Eastern Michigan University where she studied with Maestra Alberta Masiello. She has been a finalist for the Gerda Lissner Prize and the McAllister Awards as well as a semi-finalist inthe Met Opera auditions. Ms. Sagnini has sung the title roles in Aida and Ariadne with the New Jersey Verismo Opera and Liederkranz Opera respectively. Other operatic roles include Tatiana in Eugene Onegin, Santuzza, Manon, and Mimi. Lana has sung concert roles in Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, and Mendelssohn’s

Elijah. She was invited by EMI Classics to sing at the opening night gala for Terrance McNally’s award winning Broadway play Master Class.

“Opera Exposures is honored to be able to make available to the public, this lineup of gifted lyrical talent”, commented Edna Greenwich, Opera Exposures’ President and brainchild. “We remain committed to making this important art form accessible”, she concluded.

Opera Exposures launched its premier performance in 2004 at historic Saint Marks Church to resounding success. Since its inception novices and experienced opera aficionados alike have been afforded exceptional performances by acclaimed artists as well as new and emerging talent. The recitals are followed by a reception with opportunities to mingle with the artists.

““I am delighted to be part of this collaboration to bring about an afternoon of cultural emersion” commented Jeanine Otis, musical director at St. Marks Church. “With its history and architectural character, Saint Marks is a perfect venue to host Opera Exposures and this impressive line-up of gifted operatic performers”, she concluded.

Saint Mark’s church is one of the oldest churches in New York City. The original structure was built on the farm of Governor Peter Stuyvesant in 1660 and later destroyed. This replacement was erected in 1799. In 1828 its steeple was added and the cast-iron portico added around 1858. Still an active parish, the elegant wood and stone building is also used as a cultural center and performance space that includes the New York Poetry Project, the Danspace Project and the Ontological Theatre (venue of the famous avant-garde writer/director, Richard Foreman).

Opera Exposures is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization dedicated to presenting both seasoned professional operatic musicians and fresh young artists to a wide and diverse public at affordable ticket prices.

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Edna Greenwich
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