Chicago Premiere

As One

A chamber opera for two voices and String Quartet

November 16, 17, 18 & 19, 2017 @ 7 pm

Music & Concept by Laura Kaminsky
Libretto by Mark Campbell & Kimberly Reed
By arrangement with Bill Holab Music
Film by Kimberly Reed

In this chamber opera for two singers and string quartet, a mezzo-soprano and a baritone depict the experiences of its sole transgender protagonist, Hannah, as she endeavors to resolve the discord between her own self and the outside world.

Digital Program 

Cast

Samantha Attaguile

Hannah After

Samantha Attaguile

Praised for an exciting sound, Mezzo-Soprano Samantha Attaguile is quickly establishing herself as a spirited young talent in the modern artistic world. A New Jersey native, Samantha earned her Bachelor of Music in Voice Performance from The Boston Conservatory and her Master of Music in Voice from the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University. Samantha has had the pleasure to work with many of Chicagoland’s musical organizations including Main Street Opera, Third Eye Theatre Ensemble, The Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company of Hyde Park, Thompson Street Opera, and Petite Opera. Samantha is also a managing div@ of Opera on Tap Chicago and helped kickstart New Brew Chicago, an offshoot of Opera on Tap dedicated to performing new vocal music.

Role highlights include Flora (The Enchanted Pig by Jonathan Dove), Lola (Cavalleria rusticana), Dido (Dido and Aeneas),Barbara Ansley (Roman Fever), Dorabella (Così fan tutte), Cherubino (Le nozze di Figaro), Phoebe Meryll (The Yeomen of the Guard), Maddalena (Il viaggio a Reims), Vèronique (Doctor Miracle), Nurse (Strawberry Fields by Micael Torke), and The Abbess (Sister Angelica).

A performer in every sense of the word, Samantha’s experience is not limited to the traditional operatic realm and she enjoys taking part in a wide array of musical and theatrical projects. She performs in semi-annual concerts with the Colombian folk group, The Mulati Ensemble, and appeared as the mezzo-soprano soloist in Duruflé’s Requiem with the DuPage Chorale, as well as with the Southwest Symphony Orchestra singing a concert of Rodgers & Hammerstein classics. For fun and fundraising, Samantha has participated in Compass Creative Dramatics’ adaptations of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Peter Pan to raise money for children’s theatre programs and appeared as a Puppeteer in Quest Theatre Ensemble’s Blue Nativity.

Samantha currently works, lives, and performs in Chicago with her outrageously supportive husband, Antoni, and feline fur babies, Desdemona and Ophelia.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Hannah After 2017

Jonathan Wilson

Hannah Before

Jonathan Wilson

A native of Austin, Texas, Jonathan Wilson has been performing in the Chicago area since 2015, working with many local opera and theater companies. An enthusiast of contemporary opera, Jonathan recently performed the role of John Brooke in Adamo’s Little Women with Chicago Vocal Arts Consortium. He was also excited to perform in the mid-western premieres of Richard Wargo’s opera, The Seduction of a Lady (Peter Semyonych), with Transgressive Theatre-Opera and Hilliard’s and Boresi’s charming comedic opera, The Filthy Habit (Gil), with Third Eye Theatre Ensemble. In 2017, Jonathan also had the opportunity to be part of the world premiere of the full-length work Cosmic Ray and the Amazing Chris (Quintar, Nerd 2), with Thompson Street Opera Company.

At home in many different musical styles, Jonathan recently appeared in Theo Ubique’s 2017 Jeff Award-winning production of the musical The Most Happy Fella (Ciccio, Jake) in Chicago. Other musical theatre and operetta performances include Assassins (Zangara) with Petite Opera Company, several productions with The Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company of Chicago, and multiple productions of Monty Python’s Spamalot.

Passionate about bringing music and opera to new audiences and across cultural barriers, Jonathan was excited to take part in a production of Donizetti’s Rita (Gasparo) in 2016, sung in Italian, to introduce children to opera and foreign language. Additionally, he toured with Chicago Opera Playhouse’s new opera, Once Upon a Windy City (Al Capone), composed entirely of the ideas and stories of Chicago Public School students. Jonathan also made his Symphony Center solo debut in 2015, performing in Mandarin with the Dong Fang Chinese Performing Arts Association, in Xian Xinghai’s The Yellow River Cantata in celebration of the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.

Outside of performing, Jonathan is passionate about math and science, and he greatly admires the creative overlap between the scientific and musical arts to explore the intricacy, complexity, and beauty of the world. He holds a BS degree with highest honors from the University of Illinois in Engineering Physics with a minor in Mathematics and a MS degree from the University of Michigan in Applied Electromagnetics and RF Circuits. He has worked as a radio frequency electrical engineer and a lecturer in physics, astronomy, and Earth science.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Hannah Before 2017

Alexandra Enyart

Conductor

Alexandra Enyart

Alex Enyart is an orchestra and opera conductor with a focus on new music. She had her international premiere with the Tomsk Philharmonic Orchestra in Russia in 2016, and has worked as an apprentice with the Louisville Orchestra and Kentucky Opera. She began focusing on contemporary opera with Thompson Street Opera Company in Louisville, KY where she also received her Masters in Orchestral Conducting. When the company moved to Chicago, she came with them and took the position of Music Director starting in the 2017-2018 season. Alex has also won the CODA conducting competition and as a result was invited to work with Anthony Maeillo. She has also had the privilege to work and study with Kimcherie Lloyd, Joe Mechavich, Harold Farberman, Teddy Abrams, and Donald Portnoy among many others.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Conductor 2017

Amy Hutchison

Stage Director

Amy Hutchison

Amy Hutchison has championed American opera throughout her career. Her production of Missy Mazzoli’s Song from the Uproar: The Lives and Deaths of Isabelle Eberhardt for Chicago Fringe Opera was hailed as “imaginative” and “striking… contemporary music theater.” She has directed William Bolcom’s A View from the Bridge for Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Washington National Opera and Portland Opera. Her collaboration with Ricky Ian Gordon and Stacey Tappan, Once I Was: Songs by Ricky Ian Gordon, was staged at the Chicago Cultural Center and recorded on the Blue Griffin label. Hutchison’s production of William Grant Still’s epic masterwork Troubled Island for South Shore Opera Company was named the number one classical music event of 2013 by Andrew Patner in the Chicago Sun-Times. Hutchison has also directed: Joelle Lamarre’s The Violet Hour: the Life of Leontyne Price; Jonathan Stinson’s The March: A Civil Rights Opera Project and Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s Dream Lovers and African Romances for South Shore Opera Company. Other local productions include Leo Fall’s Madame Pompadour (Chicago Folks Operetta), Dido and Aeneas and The Telephone (Elgin Opera), Brigadoon (Music By the Lake), Faust (DuPage Opera), and Ned Rorem’s Our Town (DePaul Opera Theatre). Productions nationwide include Carmen (Kansas City, Milwaukee, Columbus), Turandot (Orlando), Don Pasquale (Indianapolis), La Traviata (Costa Mesa), Il Matrimonio Segreto (Boston), and Help, Help, the Globolinks! (Madison).

Ms. Hutchison has served on the directing staffs of Lyric Opera of Chicago and Houston Grand Opera. She has staged the Maurice Sendak production of Hänsel und Gretel for Opernhaus Zürich, The Juilliard School (televised for PBS: Live from Lincoln Center) and for the Canadian, San Diego, Indianapolis, and Baltimore opera companies. As Associate Director, Hutchison has staged Porgy and Bess throughout the United States and globally, including Milan’s Teatro alla Scala, L’Opéra National de Paris, Teatro La Fenice, and opera houses in Düsseldorf, Lucca and Tokyo.

Ms. Hutchison is a member of the faculty of The Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University, where she teaches Opera Workshop to Voice Performance majors.

Upcoming projects include: AS ONE for Chicago Fringe Opera, THE POET for South Shore Opera Company of Chicago, and A Donizetti double bill of IL PIGMALIONE and RITA for Chicago Opera Theatre.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Director 2017
Song from the Uproar Director 2016

The Zafa Collective

String Quartet

The Zafa Collective

The Zafa Collective was formed in 2016 by co-founders Hannah Christiansen (violin) and Casey Karr (double bass). The Chicago-based new music ensemble follows in the footsteps of Ensemble Dal Niente and ICE with its flexible instrumentation, allowing Zafa to choose its repertoire with no limitations. Formed upon the idea that classical music should be inclusive and accessible both in terms of programming and performance, the Zafa Collective actively seeks music from outside the canon of Western art music. Zafa presents programs with diverse aesthetics, seeking to make contemporary music accessible and appealing to as wide of an audience as possible. In their opening season, The Zafa Collective premiered works by Michal Massoud, Theo Chandler, Connor Singh Vanderbeek, and Derek Tywoniuk, and worked with composers including Ellen Ruth Harrison, Eliza Brown, and Sato Matsui. Zafa has performed in a wide range of venues, from Constellation to Ganz Hall to private homes.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One String Quartet 2017

Hannah Christiansen

Violinist

Hannah Christiansen

Artistic Director of The Zafa Collective, Hannah Christiansen is a Chicago-based violinist. She holds degrees from Oberlin College, Oberlin Conservatory, and Northwestern University, where she studied with Milan Vitek and Gerardo Ribeiro, respectively. A member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, Ms. Christiansen has been featured as a soloist with the Northwestern University Baroque Music Ensemble and Contemporary Music Ensemble. In the summers, Ms. Christiansen has been a chamber music fellow at the Manchester Music Festival and at le Domaine Forget, and has been heard in halls including Carnegie Hall (NYC), Ozawa Hall (Tanglewood), the Mozarteum (Salzburg), and Dvorak Hall (Prague). A sports enthusiast, Ms. Christiansen is a writer for Inside Lacrosse in her spare time.

 

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Violinist 2017

Emelinda Escobar

Violinist

Emelinda Escobar

Emelinda Escobar is a Chicago-based professional violinist who plays with Quad City Symphony, Heartland Festival Orchestra, and The Zafa Collective. She is on the faculty of Glenbrook North High School in Northbrook and maintains a private studio in both Evanston and Lincoln Park. She graduated from Northwestern University with her MM having studied under Gerardo Ribeiro and was concertmaster of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago 2014-2016 and has played with professional orchestras including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. She has been a soloist with the South Loop Orchestra and has performed with Yo-Yo Ma on Chicago’s WFMT broadcast. Her festival credits include attending Meadowmount as a teaching assistant in addition to the Green Mountain Music Festival, Aria Music Festival, Triada, and Okemo Mountain Music Festival.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Violinist 2017

Audrey Q Snyder

Cellist

Audrey Q Snyder

Audrey Q. Snyder is a cellist in Chicago, Illinois.  An advocate of contemporary music, she currently plays as part of the Chicago-based Zafa Collective, a new music group founded with the idea of inclusivity (both in programming and performance) at its core.  Audrey is also a member of the Houndstooth String Quartet, which focuses on contemporary music in its programming. Miss Snyder also regularly plays popular music, having performed several times with folk artist Emily Mure at venues including Club Passim, Rockwood Music Hall, and The Living Room, and can be heard on Emily’s upcoming 2017 album. In 2016, she played with the national tour of The Bridges of Madison County.  Most recently, Audrey has subbed on Hamilton: An American Musical in Chicago. Audrey holds a B.M. and M.M. (with an Arts Leadership Certificate) from the Eastman School, where she studied with Alan Harris.Audrey Q. Snyder is a cellist in Chicago, Illinois.  An advocate of contemporary music, she currently plays as part of the Chicago-based Zafa Collective, a new music group founded with the idea of inclusivity (both in programming and performance) at its core.  Audrey is also a member of the Houndstooth String Quartet, which focuses on contemporary music in its programming. Miss Snyder also regularly plays popular music, having performed several times with folk artist Emily Mure at venues including Club Passim, Rockwood Music Hall, and The Living Room, and can be heard on Emily’s upcoming 2017 album. In 2016, she played with the national tour of The Bridges of Madison County.  Most recently, Audrey has subbed on Hamilton: An American Musical in Chicago. Audrey holds a B.M. and M.M. (with an Arts Leadership Certificate) from the Eastman School, where she studied with Alan Harris.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Cellist 2017

Danielle Taylor

Violist

Danielle Taylor

Danielle Taylor is a violinist and violist in the Chicago area. She holds degrees from Oberlin College and Oberlin Conservatory, where she studied with Gregory Fulkerson and is completing her Masters at Northwestern University where she works with her mentors, Blair Milton and Victor Yampolsky. A passionate advocate for arts education and inclusion, Danielle has been a member of Chicago Sinfonietta and the Grant Park Music Festival’s Project Inclusion program and maintains a busy teaching schedule in addition to performing with groups including The Zafa Collective and Chicago Solisti.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Violist 2017

Karla Wong

Visual Artist

Karla Wong

Karla Wong was born in Minatitlan, Veracruz, Mexico in 1974. Her father is originally from Ixtetec, Oaxaca and her mother from Santiago La Ollaga, Oaxaca. This is the reason why Karla’s heart very much belongs to the Mexican state of Oaxaca. Karla grew up in Istmo a region of Oaxaca. The region’s tradition of celebrating art and colors are evident throughout her work. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Law and Social Sciences from the University of Oaxaca (U.A.B.J.O.).
After graduating, Karla began her career as composite artist for the general prosecution and justice department for the state of Oaxaca, which she continues into the present day. She considers herself a “self-taught” artist. Karla started out with pencils then gradually experimented with oil paints. She eventually took private lessons from a renowned master artist in Oaxaca. In every brush stroke, Karla plasters the splendors of her culture, a culture her parents instilled in her. She pushes the limits and steers away from more traditional elements to give it a magical touch of surrealism. Karla paints magical characters using emblematic symbols of Istmena culture. Such imagery as the hair pieces, papel picado (paper banner), the Tehuano hat, and embroidery among others. She brings such characters to life with brightly-colored detail. She has exhibited in the state of Oaxaca, the state of Puebla, multiple museums in Mexico City, numerous cultural houses, and in the National Palace and other prestigious government buildings.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

The Great God Pan Visual Artist 2017

Jacquelyn Kress

Hannah After (cover)

Jacquelyn Kress

Jacquelyn Kress, mezzo-soprano, is a recent graduate of the Opera Institute at Boston University. With the OI, Ms. Kress was seen as Annio (La Clemenza di Tito), Kate (Owen Wingrave), Jean (Le Portrait de Manon), Mother Marie (Dialogues of the Carmelites), and Fidalma (Il Matrimonio Segreto). She has also performed with the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s outreach program as Tisbe in La Cenerentola. Other performances include Hansel and Gretel (Hansel), La vie parisienne (Métella), The Pirates of Penzance (Ruth),Trouble in Tahiti (Dinah), L’enfant et les sortileges (L’écureuil/La chatte), The Mikado (Katisha), Roméo et Juliette (Stephano), Cosi fan tutte (Dorabella). She has also been on the international stage: Salzburg, Austria as Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro, and Périgueux, France as the title role in Offenbach’s La Périchole. Ms. Kress has a BM from the University of Illinois, and a MM from Roosevelt University.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Hannah Before (cover) 2017
Fringe’s Holiday House Party Soloist 2015
Chicago Fringe Opera’s Lakeside Soiree Soloist 2015
2014 Christmas Celebration Soloist 2014

Maxwell Seifert

Hannah Before (cover)

Maxwell Seifert

Praised for his handsome tone and immaculate diction, operatic baritone Maxwell Seifert recently made his professional Chicago debut as Captain Valentine with the Chicago Folks Operetta in Kurt Weill’s rarely heard Johnny Johnson. A Pacific Northwest Native, he began his stage career as a boy soprano in the Seattle Opera’s 2006 production of Macbeth. Today, Maxwell maintains a wide variety of repertoire ranging from baroque to contemporary opera to golden age musical theater. This spring he will play the leading role of Griffith in the world premiere of For Those in Peril by Francis Lynch with the Evanston Chamber Opera Company. Maxwell was recently awarded the grand prize at the Bel Canto Competition in Chicago and was a national semifinalist in the Classical Singer Competition. He has performed in numerous master classes, most notably with Jake Heggie and Isabel Leonard. He was a young artist at the Aspen Summer Music Festival performing in scenes from Ariadne auf Naxos and Die Fledermaus.
His operatic credits include the baritone in the jazz trio in Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti and L’horloge in L’enfant et les sortileges at the Franco American Vocal Academy. In 2015, he graduated with a B.A. in music performance from Pepperdine University where he performed as Danilo in The Merry Widow, Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, Belcore in L’elisir d’more, and Dr. Falke in Die Fledermaus as well as some musical theatre roles such as Enjolras in Les Misérables and the dancing chorus in Oklahoma. Maxwell is currently based in Chicago, where he earned his Master of Music degree from Northwestern University studying with W. Stephen Smith.

Productions with Chicago Fringe Opera

As One Hannah Before (cover) 2017

Critical Acclaim

Chicago Fringe Opera has emerged as the most consistently impressive of the city’s storefront opera companies. The upstart troupe discerningly chooses edgy, contemporary works and pulls them off successfully with thoughtful casting and modest but effective stagings.

Chicago Classical Review | Read the Review

Chicago Fringe Opera should be commended for choosing to perform this Chicago premiere at the Center on Halstead, the midwest's largest LGBTQ community center. The 161-seat theater was a perfect fit for this intimate chamber opera, and should help give the company, work, and art form of opera itself a deserved wider audience.

Schmopera | Read the Review

Venue

Center on Halsted (Hoover-Leppen Theater, 3rd floor)

3656 N Halsted St, Chicago, IL 60613


As One
A chamber opera for two voices and String Quartet
Music & Concept by Laura Kaminsky
Libretto by Mark Campbell & Kimberly Reed
By arrangement with Bill Holab Music
As One was commissioned and developed by American Opera Projects (AOP)
As One film direction and film by Kimberly Reed, commissioned by AOP. As One premiered at Brooklyn Academy of Music, September 2014, made possible in part with funding from BAM/DeVos Institute of Arts Management at Kennedy Center Professional Development Program, OPERA America’s Opera Discovery Grants for Female Composers Program, supported by Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation, New York State Council on the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Art Works, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Bronx Council on the Arts, Purchase College Development Fund, Tanner Fund at Utah State University, Jeremy T. Smith Fund, Dr. Coco Lazaroff, Lynn Loacker, Judith O. Rubin, and many generous individuals.