Opera Cues: Special Edition 2020

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W W W.T E N E N B A U M J E W E L E R S . C O M



A MESSAGE FROM THE ARTISTIC AND MUSIC DIRECTOR & THE MANAGING DIRECTOR This time of year, the Wortham Theater Center is usually buzzing with energy and anticipation as creative teams and performers bring their vast energy to Houston Grand Opera, to rehearse, to erect grand-scale sets, to make and fit costumes and wigs, and to prepare for every contingency so that our exciting Opening Night is executed perfectly, to an appreciative audience of thousands. Alas, this is no ordinary year. It was with broken hearts that, last March, we had to cancel our highly anticipated spring repertoire performances to protect the safety of our subscribers, supporters, artists, and staff. Shortly thereafter, as the effects of COVID-19 grew and the dangers to performers became more understood, we had no choice but to also cancel the majority of HGO’s 2020-21 season, all the way through next spring. Operas we spent years planning were simply no longer safe to produce. These dismaying events brought with them a grim economic outlook. To protect the future of great opera in Houston, we were forced to make broad reductions to HGO’s budget and lay off almost a third of our staff, a painfully difficult undertaking that had never before been necessary in the company’s entire 65-year history. The losses we are mourning are many. Nevertheless, as we have continued to navigate the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve done so with the certain knowledge that no matter what the future holds, we will need opera more than ever—and that our commitment to you remains. We have spent these past months seeking new and creative ways to present soul-stirring opera to you, while heeding the precautions put in place by our local officials. The result is HGO Digital, the Sarah and Ernest Butler Performance Series, a special season of digital programming featuring a wonderful array of brand-new bi-monthly video content to sustain you at home, all of which is previewed in this special edition of Opera Cues. Audiences can look forward to high-quality digital productions of beloved annual company traditions, from the HGO Studio Showcase to the Concert of Arias, while enjoying new stagings of works including David T. Little and Royce Vavrek’s hilarious Vinkensport, a sendup of the world of competitive bird calling; Mozart’s brief and brilliant The Impresario, in an English-language retelling from playwright Jim Luigs; Lee Hoiby’s one-woman opera Bon Appétit!, based on the life of Julia Child and starring renowned mezzo-soprano and HGO Studio alumna Jamie Barton; and Engelbert Humperdinck’s darkly enchanting classic, Hansel & Gretel. We’re also planning a documentary-style video project on The Snowy Day, a world premiere originally slated for our 2020-21 season. The work, by brilliant composer Joel Thompson and librettist and bestselling author Andrea Davis Pinkney, is based on Ezra Jack Keats’s groundbreaking children’s book about a young boy out exploring on a snow day. Two more extraordinary concerts will take place on our digital stage. HGO Artistic Advisor Ana María Martínez, one of the greatest sopranos in the world, will present Suite Española, a celebration of Spanish musical theater, while renowned tenor Lawrence Brownlee will be joined by an all Black group of opera stars to present Giving Voice, a follow-up to HGO’s smash hit evening of opera, gospel, and standards from earlier this year. And so, while the Wortham is quieter than in past years—and while nothing can replace the transporting power of live, in-person performances—we do feel it, if in a slightly different way: that buzz of energy and anticipation as we head into a new season. These last months have been utterly heart-wrenching. We are still hurting. But making these exciting alternative plans has provided us with light to guide us through this dark period. We sincerely hope these artistic jewels do the same for you.

Patrick Summers

Perryn Leech

Artistic and Music Director Margaret Alkek Williams Chair

Managing Director Sarah and Ernest Butler Chair

Opera Cues is published by Houston Grand Opera As­sociation; all rights reserved. Opera Cues is produced under the direction of Dale Edwards, director of Marketing and Communications, and Natalie Barron, associate director of Marketing and Communications, by Houston Grand Opera’s Advancement Department.

Editor-in-Chief Catherine Matusow Designers Chelsea Crouse Tamila Amanzholova Contributors Carleen Graham Jeremy Johnson Perryn Leech Alisa Magallón Brian Speck Patrick Summers Emily N. Wells Advertising Matt Ross/Ventures Marketing 713-417-6857

For information on all Houston Grand Opera productions and events, or for a complimentary season brochure, please email the Customer Care Center at customercare@hgo.org or telephone 713-228-6737. Houston Grand Opera is a member of OPERA America, Inc., and the Theater District Association, Inc.

FIND HGO ONLINE HGO.org /houstongrandopera


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/HouGrandOpera /HouGrandOpera

TO TEXAS YOUTH AND EDUCATION SINCE 1932 In 2020 alone, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ has provided more than $3.7 million to 61 organizations and programs, including: AFA • Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation • Theatre Under The Stars • Glassell School of Art The Hobby Center Foundation • Houston Hispanic Forum • Houston Symphony Alley Theatre • and many others!

Visit rodeohouston.com to learn more.

HOUSTON GRAND OPERA The Show supports Houston Grand Opera’s Community and Learning initiative, HGOco, including the Student Performance Series, Opera To Go!, and Storybook Opera. HGOco serves nearly 80,000 students every season and has been a Show grant recipient for the past twenty years.



Small Steps offers a high-quality education, social and emotional support, transportation, and nutritious meals to children ages two through six living in poverty. Small Steps operates two preschools in the First and Fifth Wards of Houston at no financial cost to the families they serve. This year, Small Steps will serve approximately 180 children and will open a third campus in the Gulfton area in the fall of 2020.

Schreiner University – Western Art Academy Scholarship Program awards scholarships to 48 students who participate in the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo School Art program each year. These scholarships allow high school students to study Western art and learn traditional studio techniques from practicing professional artists.


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A message from Patrick Summers and Perryn Leech


News and Notes


HGO Studio






Impresarios Circle


Annual Support




Up Next





Art Finds a Way As we mourn what has been lost, we keep creating.


Just the Facts A guide to the HGO Digital 2020–21 season


The Artist at Home Isolation brings challenges, but also opportunities.


Safety and the Stage HGO has a not-so-secret weapon in Houston Methodist.



Board of Directors 2020-21 OFFICERS Allyn Risley,   Chairman of the Board Janet Langford Carrig,   Senior Chairman of the   Board; Houston Grand   Opera Endowment, Inc.   Senior Chairman James W. Crownover,   Chairman Emeritus of the  Board Lynn Wyatt,   Vice Chairman of the Board MEMBERS AT LARGE Richard E. Agee,   Finance Committee Vice Chair Thomas Ajamie Robin Angly John S. Arnoldy * Christopher V. Bacon,   Secretary; General Counsel

Michelle Beale,   Governance Committee Chair

Dr. Ellen R. Gritz,   Studio Committee Chair

Ward Pennebaker

Judith A. Belanger,   Finance Committee Vice Chair

Robert C. Hunter *

Gloria M. Portela

Richard Husseini José M. Ivo,   Development Committee   Vice Chair

Matthew L. Ringel,   Marketing and  Communications   Committee Vice Chair

Anna Catalano,   Marketing and  Communications  CommitteeChair

Marianne Kah

Kelly Brunetti Rose

Perryn Leech

Glen A. Rosenbaum

David LePori

Albert Chao

Claire Liu,   Finance Committee Chair

Jack A. Roth, M.D.,   Studio Committee Vice  Chair

Gabriel Loperena,   Development Committee   Chair

Tom Rushing,   Houston Grand Opera   Endowment, Inc. Chairman

Richard A. Lydecker Jr.

Manolo Sánchez

Beth Madison *

Harlan C. Stai

Sid Moorhead

Patrick Summers

Sara Morgan

John G. Turner

Terrylin G. Neale,   Houston Grand Opera   Endowment, Inc. Emeritus   Chairman

De la Rey Venter

Astley Blair,   Audit Committee Chair Zane Carruth

Donna P. Josey Chapman Louise Chapman Mathilda Cochran,   HGOco Committee Chair Albert O. Cornelison Jr. * David B. Duthu * Frederic Dyen Benjamin Fink Michaela Greenan,   Audit Committee Vice Chair

Cynthia Petrello

Alfredo Vilas Margaret Alkek Williams * Senior Director

Houston Grand Opera Association Chairs 1955–58 Elva Lobit

1974–75 Charles T. Bauer

1991–93 Constantine S. Nicandros

2009–11 Glen A. Rosenbaum

1958–60 Stanley W. Shipnes

1975–77 Maurice J. Aresty

1993–95 J. Landis Martin

2011–13 Beth Madison

1960–62 William W. Bland

1977–79 Searcy Bracewell

1995–97 Robert C. McNair

2013–16 John Mendelsohn, M.D.

1962–64 Thomas D. Anderson

1979–81 Robert Cizik

2016–18 James W. Crownover

1964–66 Marshall F. Wells

1981–83 Terrylin G. Neale

1997–99 Dennis R. Carlyle, M.D. Susan H. Carlyle, M.D.

1966–68 John H. Heinzerling

1983–84 Barry Munitz

1968–70 Lloyd P. Fadrique

1984–85 Jenard M. Gross

1970–71 Ben F. Love

1985–87 Dr. Thomas D. Barrow

1971–73 Joe H. Foy

1987–89 John M. Seidl

1973–74 Gray C. Wakefield

1989–91 James L. Ketelsen


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1999–2001 Archie W. Dunham 2001–03 Harry C. Pinson 2003–04 James T. Hackett 2004–07 John S. Arnoldy 2007–09 Robert L. Cavnar 2009 Gloria M. Portela

2018–20 Janet Langford Carrig 2020–Present Allyn Risley

Eunice Napanangka Jack, Hairstring, 18” x 65”


From the world’s oldest living culture, Australian Aboriginal art reflects ancient traditions in powerful, contemporary patterns.

Booker • Lowe Gallery

For infomation on exhibitions and events: www.bookerlowegallery.com info@bookerlowegallery.com

Aboriginal fine art of Australia

4623 Feagan Street Houston TX 77007 USA

Image © the artist and Booker-Lowe Gallery.

H G O. O R G


Impresarios Circle The Humphreys Foundation

The Powell Foundation

Donna Kaplan and Richard A.  Lydecker

Jill and Allyn Risley

Nancy and Rich Kinder


Mr. and Mrs. David B. Duthu

Claire Liu and Joseph  Greenberg

Mr. and Mrs. Harlan C. Stai

Sarah and Ernest Butler

The Elkins Foundation

Beth Madison

Texas Commission on the  Arts

Anne and Albert Chao

Drs. Liz Grimm and Jack Roth


Louise Chapman

William Randolph Hearst  Foundation

The Robert and Janice McNair  Foundation


Mr. and Mrs. James W.  Crownover

Judy and Richard Agee

The Cullen Foundation

Robin Angly and Miles Smith Janice Barrow

The Cullen Trust for the   Performing Arts

The Brown Foundation, Inc.

City of Houston through   Houston Arts Alliance The Robert and Jane Cizik  Foundation

H-E-B Houston Endowment, Inc.

The Sarofim Foundation

M.D. Anderson Foundation

Mr. John G. Turner and   Mr. Jerry G. Fischer

The Andrew W. Mellon  Foundation

Vinson & Elkins LLP

Miller Theatre Advisory Board

Mathilda Cochran

Houston Livestock Show and  RodeoTM


Houston Methodist

Sara and Bill Morgan

Sid Moorhead

Margaret Alkek Williams The Wortham Foundation, Inc. Lynn Wyatt Anonymous

To learn more about HGO’s Impresarios Circle members, please see page 51.

Doug Rotan

Mark Herrin

Trusts & Estates

Elizabeth Swift 8

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Trusts & Estates

Trusts & Estates

Premier Underwriters GRAND UNDERWRITER— $50,000 OR MORE

Glen A. Rosenbaum Marcia and Alfredo Vilas

Thomas R. Ajamie

Leonard A. Goldstein and   Helen B. Wils

Mr. and Mrs. Charles G.  Nickson

Mrs. Brenda Harvey-Traylor

Cynthia and Anthony Petrello

Michelle Beale and Dick  Anderson


Dr. and Mrs. Theodore J.  Haywood

Matthew L. Ringel

Judith and David Belanger

Dr. Saúl and Ursula Balagura

Mr. and Mrs. Richard Husseini

Mr. and Mrs. David Rowan

Ms. Janet Langford Carrig

Dr. Gudrun H. Becker

Ms. Marianne Kah

John Serpe and Tracy Maddox

Zane and Brady Carruth

Kenneth Bloom and Sheila  Swartzman

Mr. and Mrs. William H. Knull III

Hinda Simon

Carolyn J. Levy

Meg Boulware and Hartley  Hampton

Nana Booker and David Lowe/   Booker · Lowe Gallery

Mr. and Mrs. Donald G.  Sweeney

Ms. Kiana K. Caleb and   Mr. Troy L. Sullivan

Mrs. Rosemary Malbin

Mr. De la Rey Venter

Muffy and Mike McLanahan

Mr. Trey Yates

Dr. and Mrs. Miguel Miro Quesada

Rini and Edward Ziegler

Connie Dyer Benjamin and Jennifer Fink Amanda and Morris Gelb Mr. and Mrs. Fred Griffin Dr. Ellen R. Gritz and   Mr. Milton D. Rosenau Jr. Will L. McLendon Mr. and Mrs. D. Bradley  McWilliams

Anna and Joel Catalano Mr. and Mrs. David Dorenfeld Lynn and Henry Gissel Beth and Gary Glynn

Michelle and Chuck Ritter

Ignacio and Isabel Torras

Kathleen Moore and Steven  Homer

“Our Company guides families through generational transitions. Highly experienced in navigating the complexities of estate settlement and trust administration, our professional Trusts and Estates team helps them preserve and protect not only their financial assets, but their family legacy. For each other. For generations to come.”



Founders Council for Artistic Excellence Houston Grand Opera is deeply appreciative of its Founders Council donors. Their extraordinary support over a three-year period helps secure the future while ensuring the highest standard of artistic excellence. For information, please contact Greg Robertson, chief advancement officer, at 713-546-0274 or grobertson@hgo.org. Judy and Richard Agee Albert and Anne Chao / Ting   Tsung and Wei Fong Chao  Foundation

Connie Dyer

M. David Lowe and Nana   Booker / Booker · Lowe  Gallery

Frost Bank

Beth Madison


Robin Angly and Miles Smith

Amanda and Morris Gelb

Eleanor Searle Whitney   McCollum Foundation

Baker Botts LLP

Drs. Liz Grimm and Jack Roth

Ajamie LLP

Dr. Saúl and Ursula Balagura Michelle Beale and Dick  Anderson

The Cullen Trust for the   Performing Arts

Dr. Ellen R. Gritz and Mr.   Milton D. Rosenau Jr.

John P. McGovern Foundation

Mr. John G. Turner and   Mr. Jerry G. Fischer Vinson & Elkins LLP

Lynn Wyatt

Houston Methodist Ms. Marianne Kah

Zane and Brady Carruth

Sid Moorhead

Carolyn J. Levy

Mathilda Cochran

Claire Liu and   Joseph Greenberg

Kathleen Moore and Steven  Homer

Sara and Gabriel Loperena

Mr. and Mrs. Donald   G. Sweeney

Margaret Alkek Williams

Judith and David Belanger

Mr. and Mrs. James W.  Crownover

Mr. and Mrs. Harlan C. Stai

The Robert and Janice McNair  Foundation The Andrew W. Mellon  Foundation



The Wortham Foundation, Inc. Anonymous

Novum Energy Matthew L. Ringel Glen A. Rosenbaum

The Leadership Council The Leadership Council is a program designed to provide fiscal stability to Houston Grand Opera’s Annual Fund through three-year commitments, with a minimum of $10,000 pledged annually. We gratefully acknowledge these members. Mr. and Mrs. Frank N. Barnes Dr. Michael and Susan Bloome Mr. and Mrs. Richard Burleson Anna and Joel Catalano Dr. Peter Chang and Hon.   Theresa Chang Mr. William E. Colburn Mr. Efraín Z. Corzo and   Mr. Andrew Bowen

Ms. Patricia B. Freeman and   Mr. Bruce Patterson

Ms. Elizabeth Phillips

Leonard A. Goldstein and   Helen B. Wils

Kelly and David Rose

Mrs. Brenda Harvey-Traylor Dr. and Mrs. Theodore J.  Haywood Ann and Stephen Kaufman Marcheta Leighton-Beasley

Mr. and Mrs. Joshua Davidson

Jan and Nathan Meehan

Ms. Anna M. Dean

Mr. and Mrs. Mark Metts

Joanne and David Dorenfeld

Terrylin G. Neale


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Michelle and Chuck Ritter John Serpe and Tracy Maddox Mrs. Helen P. Shaffer Mr. Georgios Varsamis Alan and Frank York

The Production Funders Houston Grand Opera is internationally acclaimed for its onstage excellence. Ensuring the exceptional quality of our productions and the creativity of our artistic forces — singers, conductors, directors, designers — is our highest priority. The art we make onstage is the foundation for everything we do. For information about joining The Production Funders, please contact Greg Robertson at 713-546-0274 or grobertson@hgo.org.

Judy and Richard Agee Ajamie LLP

Claire Liu and Joseph  Greenberg

Anchorage Foundation of Texas

Will L. McLendon

Bank of America

The Robert and Janice McNair  Foundation

Robin Angly and Miles Smith Janice Barrow

The Andrew W. Mellon  Foundation


Sara and Bill Morgan

The Brown Foundation, Inc.

National Endowment for the Arts

Sarah and Ernest Butler

Novum Energy

Anne and Albert Chao

Drs. Liz Grimm and Jack Roth

Louise Chapman

Mr. and Mrs. David Rowan

The Robert and Jane Cizik  Foundation

The Sarofim Foundation

Mathilda Cochran ConocoPhillips The Cullen Trust for the   Performing Arts Mr. De la Rey Venter Connie Dyer Frost Bank Houston Grand Opera   Endowment, Inc.

Schlumberger Shell Dian and Harlan Stai Mr. John G. Turner and Mr.   Jerry G. Fischer


Finalist – Best Travel Book of 2019 Foreword Magazine Indies

Bronze Medalist – Best Travel Essay Independent Publisher Book Awards

Vinson & Elkins LLP

Honorable Mention – Best Travel Book

Margaret Alkek Williams

National Association of Travel Journalists

The Wortham Foundation, Inc. Lynn Wyatt

The Humphreys Foundation

“This book contains some of the most astonishing tales I’ve ever encountered. One after another. They make for obsessive reading.”

Donna Kaplan and Richard A.  Lydecker

—Tim Cahill, best-selling author of Jaguars Ripped My Flesh

Houston Methodist

“The entire point of travel is to encounter the unimaginable. Gina and Scott Gaille have collected some of the most remarkable tales to ever see the light of day. A hoot to read.” —J. Maarten Troost, best-selling author of Headhunters on My Doorstep



H G O. O R G



ARE YOU READY FOR SOME OPERA? Monday has turned into the best night of the week.

In the spring, Houston Grand Opera launched its Monday Night Opera series to continue to connect with our audiences during this period when we cannot gather. These fascinating Zoom-streamed conversations—led by HGO Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers, Managing Director Perryn Leech, and Dramaturg Jeremy Johnson—have proven to be very popular among the company’s supporters. The interactive discussions have ranged from the practical—How does HGO fit multiple grand-scale sets backstage at the Wortham? How is the company confronting COVID-19? What challenges do costume designers face?—to the cerebral, with sessions on the origins of opera, the history of beloved favorites, and even HGO’s own diva, Ana María Martínez, sharing the ways she applies psychology to understand her characters.

A WARM WELCOME Miah Im joins the HGO Studio as Music Director.

HGO Studio has appointed a new music director, Miah Im. Im will work closely with HGO Studio Director Brian Speck, nurturing the next generation of opera singers while curating the popular Studio Recital Series and serving on the company’s casting committee. Im, a pianist, joins the renowned young artist training program after four years with the Los Angeles Opera, where she served as head of music staff. With a repertoire of 80 operas and counting, and previous appointments at companies across the country and abroad, she has a wealth of knowledge and experience to share with the gifted singers and pianists selected to hone their artistry at the Studio each year. “I am thrilled and incredibly honored to join the HGO family, one of the finest opera companies in America,” said Im. “I will bring my passion and experience in support of this wonderful artform and help to inspire the young artists on their journey to becoming world-class singers.”


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It is a special treat to observe the palpable rapport between Summers and the artists he collaborates with—and to get an intimate view of his love for opera. As one session came to a close this summer, featuring Summers discussing the art of conducting and his priceless memories of his longtime friend and mentor, Australian conductor Sir Charles Mackerras, one attendee begged him to keep talking!

Monday Night Opera is a special benefit for HGO donors of all levels. Every week at 6:30 p.m., join us for webinars, interviews, and lectures from world-class creative team members, artists, and HGO staff members to get exclusive insights into HGO’s upcoming digital programming and much more.

HGO Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers said Im embodies all the attributes of a sensational coach. “The professional training of singers requires a daunting amount of expertise: musical brilliance, linguistic aplomb, inspiration, a balance of demanding and supportive, an ability to dream out the future of a gifted artist in a way that is unique to each,” he shared. “I’m so excited that Miah Im will carry on the amazing legacy of the Studio and step into shoes at HGO that have been occupied by some of the greatest coaches in the industry. Miah is a unique combination of everything a young singer will seek in the HGO Studio.” Im is also the new director of opera studies at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music.


SEWING FOR GOOD HGO costume shop’s masks-for-Houston effort, by the numbers


Number of masks the costume shop made for Houston area organizations


Houston-area institutions assisted: Saint Joseph Medical Center, Star of Hope, and the Houston Area Women’s Center


Yards of fabric used to make the masks

In April, as coronavirus infections spread and professionals across the country faced shortages of masks, the talented team at HGO’s costume shop— suddenly with time on their hands after the cancellation of the company’s spring performances—stepped up to fill the gap. Demand for elastic had soared, making it scarce, but the shop had plenty on hand. Instead of using it to sew exquisite costumes for HGO, the highly skilled team employed that elastic to provide Houston’s front-line workers with lifesaving protection.


HGO team members who contributed to the project


Hours the team spent sewing masks


Cost of the effort, in labor and materials, including donations from HGO, Rodeo Houston, and Dole Packaged Foods

Head of Costumes Norma Cortez and Assistant Stage Manager Meg Edwards, who spearheaded the effort, said they were happy to put their skills to good use helping the city to fight infection from COVID-19. “When we heard from Meg Edwards that one of her friends from St. Joseph’s needed masks for their staff, we didn’t hesitate to offer our skills to help them,” said Norma. “For me, it made me feel proud to be able to help protect the people that were risking their lives to help others.” It was an enormous effort, as demonstrated below, and everyone at HGO is proud of the team.


Bandanas donated by Rodeo Houston, each of which was used to make five masks


Amount donated from Dole to help the cause after Norma’s appearance on Live with Kelly and Ryan


Yards of elastic used in the effort

H G O. O R G


We await the day when we can welcome opera lovers to the Wortham once more.


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As we mourn what has been lost, we keep creating. By Patrick Summers Artistic and Music Director


here’s always a merry war within the artistic director of any organization between what one aspires to and what can actually be done. The perfect opera season, meaning the one that displays the most balanced and healthy living art, would be comprised largely of operas written in recent years, and only once or twice in each generation dip into the standard repertoire, those top titles that mean “opera” to most people, a frustratingly short list: La traviata, La bohème, Aida, Carmen, Tosca, Rigoletto, Madama Butterfly, The Marriage of Figaro, The Magic Flute, Don Giovanni. Alas, though, the financial realities of a subscription model force us to repeat the aforementioned operas much more frequently than is healthy, but there it is; it is the same in every opera company around the world, and only a vast cultural shift will alter that reality. Is the coronavirus giving us an opportunity we never had before? There are many other considerations, but chief among them are two that stand outside the “standards”: the operas of Richard Wagner are such important cultural lodestars that no opera company that considers itself major can fail to program them. And replenishing the historic repertoire is any company’s greatest responsibility. The normal cycle of planning is three to five years, as the world’s greatest singers, which are not automatically the world’s most famous singers, are in high demand. The creation of a new production takes an enormous

amount of planning and fundraising, none of which is a fast process. The 2020–21 season we announced last January was typical of this process: several of the operas within it were planned five years ago, and all of them finalized three years ago.

be fine to open the season with The Snowy Day; and our winter repertory, Parsifal and Cinderella, would surely be safe, right? Wrong. To the extent that anything felt speedy in this endless spring and summer of COVID-19, it became quickly apparent that we would need alternative programming for much of the coming season, and I began jotting down a list of small-scale operas that I loved, many of them works we would never have the chance to perform under the normal circumstances described above. Within a week, I had a list of about 100 operas. We decided we could produce one smallscale opera per month, and one live recital from the stage of the Cullen, plus a few “special events.”

I began jotting down a list of small-scale operas that I loved. It was during the second week of this past March that it became clear we couldn’t perform our Spring Season that had been planned for years, Salome and The Magic Flute. My hope had been to bookend last season with productions of Handel and Mozart by one of the great directors in the world, Barrie Kosky, whose indelible Saul production will long live in the memory as one of the greatest things we’ve ever put on. His well-traveled Magic Flute production, told in a delightful Edward Gorey style with interactive video, has thrilled audiences everywhere. Thinking back to the whirlwind of that March, we were all naïve and optimistic enough to imagine that all would be fine by the late summer, and the 2020–21 season would proceed as planned. When the slowly unfolding nightmare made it clear that we would not be performing live, we spent weeks planning the filming of our fall productions of Carmen and Werther, sure that we would

A large number of new considerations had to be factored on top of the old ones: by mid-summer, HGO had contracts with artists for seven full-scale operas that had to be canceled: Salome, The Magic Flute, Carmen, Werther, The Snowy Day, Parsifal, and Cinderella. Whatever events chosen for our alternative season had to first turn to those artists whose performances had been canceled, both as a matter of ethical responsibility and budgetary considerations. I removed operas that didn’t involve alternative activity for canceled contracts. I started striking off my list operas that felt to me too heavy for these already-heavy times, and operas that even with their small H G O. O R G


Most HGO Digital works will be filmed at the Wortham.

scales were too large to consider. I then removed from the list any operas that couldn’t be performed with social distancing as part of their narrative. Factoring in everything, the list shrank from 100 to about 15 titles. From there, I started prioritizing the operas and events, factoring in all that COVID-19 had forced upon us. We knew we wanted to keep our marvelous HGO Studio Showcase in September, so we conceived it to be filmed. The composer David T. Little, one of the great contemporary American composers, wrote a brilliant chamber opera 10 years ago with librettist Royce Vavrek called Vinkensport. This opera is an example of a work we would not have been able to program under “normal” circumstances, for it is under an hour long and its chamber structure would not fill the Brown Theater, but Vinkensport was high on every version of my lists, for its plot about a finch-calling contest in the Netherlands works perfectly under social distancing. It is a wonderful and almost completely unknown opera that will be a great discovery for people. Mourning what we’d lost in this awful summer, not only our regular performances but also the terrible reality of having to terminate the jobs of a third of our colleagues in the company, I felt we would need the comforts that only Mozart can provide. 16

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Mozart is one of the great architects of the soul. His brief opera, The Impresario, was written as lunchtime entertainment for his beloved Joseph II, Emperor of Austria. It tells the story of two rival divas whose temperaments are calmed by music. It is a trifle of sorts, but as always with Mozart, his music makes it transcendent. I wanted to bring The Impresario into our bizarre new world of Zoom and virtual programming, so I turned to playwright Jim Luigs, whose musical Das Barbecü so wonderfully retells the Wagner Ring with country music and a Texan setting. Very quickly, he has written a new script in which the Impresario is actually an Impresaria, a grand Texan woman who owns and runs an opera company in our grand state. Hilarity will ensue. Paired with The Impresario will be another marvelous bon-bon that would have been out of the realm of a regular season. Lee Hoiby’s delightful one-woman opera Bon Appétit!, written for the late Jean Stapleton (famous as the indelible Edith Bunker on All in the Family), gives us a brief time with the mellifluous chef-extraordinaire Julia Child, played in our opera by the mellifluous mezzo-extraordinaire Jamie Barton. There are plans to create an innovative visual documentary surrounding Joel

Thompson and Andrea Davis Pinkney’s new opera, The Snowy Day, as the virus that keeps on giving has forced postponement of its live premiere for another 12 months. You will see The Snowy Day live in December of 2021, but this crisis gives us an opportunity we wouldn’t have had to explore Ezra Jack Keats’s legendary story in ways we’d not thought of a few months ago. In the new year, we’ll have more treasures in store for you which you’ll hear about in more depth later, events like a virtual Hansel & Gretel, Giving Voice, Suite Española, and of course our annual Concert of Arias. And thank YOU, dear HGO patron, for staying with us through hurricanes and pandemics, “from floods to microbes,” as the title character of The Impresario says with her full Texas accent. We all need the arts right now more than ever, and thank you for knowing that all along.

A Huge Thank-You to HGO’s New Partner:

Viewers around the world will be able to transport themselves to a front-row seat for the transcendent new works, concerts, and recitals HGO Digital is offering for the 2020–21 season, thanks to a new partnership between HGO and Marquee TV. Opera fans can subscribe to the arts channel, dubbed the “Netflix of the Arts” by The Financial Times, for free! “Partnering with Marquee TV allows us to deliver the highest-quality audio and video content directly to the televisions of our patrons,” says Dale Edwards, HGO’s director of marketing and communications. “The need for crowding around a laptop or tablet to enjoy HGO content will be eliminated, and everyone in the household can enjoy the performances in comfort.” For information and instructions on how to use the Marquee TV streaming service, visit HGO.org/Digital.

H G O. O R G



A generous gift helps bring HGO Digital programming to Houston and beyond.


ouston Grand Opera—and Austin Opera—audiences have an incredibly exciting season of opera to look forward to, and that is thanks in very large part to longtime supporters of both companies, Sarah and Ernest Butler. The Butlers have made the extraordinarily generous pledge of $1 million to help underwrite the HGO Digital programming featured in the following pages. The pledge will support both HGO and Austin Opera, creating a strategic partnership between the two Texas companies. “The arts have always played a critical role in our lives, and it was important for us to support Houston Grand Opera and Austin Opera with this gift,” say the Butlers. “Collaboration between HGO and Austin Opera is a win for all with extra creativity and cost savings and support for opera, and our hope is that through this new programming and content that HGO is producing, more people will be able to access this wonderful art form that has meant so much to both of us over the years.” The Butlers’ wonderful support of HGO Digital means everything to the company. “Sarah and Ernest’s wonderful commitment is a vote of confidence in HGO and Austin Opera and their support for our exciting future artistic programming,” says HGO Managing Director Perryn Leech. “We are deeply appreciative of their continued investment in the operatic art form that they love so much. This gift allows us to share that love with so many others in both cities, Texas, and around the world.”

Photo credit: Gracie Byrd Jones


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JUST THE FACTS Your guide to HGO Digital, the Sarah and Ernest Butler Performance Series 2020–21 season Stream performances at HGO.org or through

Visit HGO.org/Digital for instructions and information.

SEPT. 25, 2020


HGO Studio

A remarkable evening with the talented artists training this year with the HGO Studio This year’s Studio Showcase takes on a new digital format, but the purpose of the production is very much the same. Studio Showcase provides a sneak peek at some of the finest artists in opera today, all of whom are members of the renowned HGO Studio, and some of whom have just moved to Houston to begin their time with our company and community. Repertoire includes both familiar favorites and new discoveries, selected for the single purpose of presenting these artists in scenes that are suited to their spectacular talents. BIZET: CARMEN Act II – “Nous avons en tête une affaire” Frasquita Carmen Mercédès Remendado Dancaïre Piano

Raven McMillon Sun-Ly Pierce Lindsay Kate Brown Ricardo Garcia Blake Denson Bin Yu Sanford

MASSENET: WERTHER Act III – “Bonjour, grande soeur… Va! laisse couler mes larmes” Sophie Charlotte Piano

Elena Villalón Lindsay Kate Brown Alex Munger

MASSENET: DON QUICHOTTE Act II – “C’est vers ton amour…” Sancho Quichotte Piano

Nicholas Newton Cory McGee Kevin Miller

DONIZETTI: L’ELISIR D’AMORE Act I – “Caro elisir!...Esulti pur la barbara” Adina Nemorino Piano

Raven McMillon Ricardo Garcia Kevin Miller

Creative Stage Director Kristine McIntyre

For more on the talented artists training with the HGO Studio this year, see page 41!

DONIZETTI: ANNA BOLENA Act I – “Oh! Qual parlar fu il suo...Tutta in voi la luce mia” Giovanna Enrico Piano

Lindsay Kate Brown William Guanbo Su Alex Munger

MOZART: DON GIOVANNI Act II Finale – “Già la mensa è preparata” Donna Elvira Lindsay Kate Brown Don Giovanni Blake Denson Leporello Nicholas Newton Commendatore William Guanbo Su Piano Bin Yu Sanford MONTEVERDI: L’INCORONAZIONE DI POPPEA Act III – “Pur ti miro” Poppea Nerone Piano

Elena Villalón Sun-Ly Pierce Kevin Miller

RAVEL: L’HEURE ESPAGNOLE Scenes 9–13 – “Évidemment, elle me congédie” Concepción Ramiro Don Iñigo Piano

Sun-Ly Pierce Blake Denson Cory McGee Bin Yu Sanford

BERG: LULU Act I – “Gnädige Frau… Machen Sie auf!... Auf einmal springt er auf…” Lulu Elena Villalón Der Maler Ricardo Garcia Der Medizinalrat Nicholas Newton Piano Alex Munger

An intimate recital series featuring some of opera’s biggest names Don’t miss HGO’s exciting new digital recital series, straight from the Wortham Theater Center’s Cullen Theater to your living room! These are primarily song recitals, so this is your opportunity to hear opera stars in repertoire you might not get to experience at Houston Grand Opera during a regular season. These are truly special events—mark your calendars! TAMARA WILSON, SOPRANO / PATRICK SUMMERS, PIANO September 18 Incredible soprano Tamara Wilson, an HGO Studio alumna, is internationally known for her interpretations of Verdi, Mozart, Strauss, and Wagner. Her appearances with HGO, her home company, include her role debut as Chrysothemis in Elektra in 2018 and the title role of Aida in 2020. In 2016 Wilson won the prestigious Richard Tucker Award, an annual prize given to a rising American opera singer on the “threshold of a major international career.” Her digital recital will feature songs by Henry Purcell, Aaron Copland, Amy Beach, Rossini, and more, with HGO Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers on piano. REGINALD SMITH JR., BARITONE / RICHARD BADO, PIANO October 9 Reginald Smith Jr. has been hailed by Opera News as having “one of the most exciting baritone sounds to come along in years.” A beloved HGO Studio alumnus and frequent company collaborator, earlier this year he played the role of Amonasro in Aida and performed in HGO’s wildly successful Giving Voice concert. Smith, a Grand Finals winner of the 2015 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, hails from Atlanta. His digital recital will feature selections by Johann Sebastian Bach, Robert Owens, Camille Nickerson, H. Leslie Adams, and more, with HGO Director of Artistic Operations and Chorus Master Richard Bado on piano. ARTURO CHACÓN-CRUZ, TENOR November 13 Sought-after tenor and HGO Studio alumnus Arturo Chacón-Cruz has given private recitals for Queen Sofia and King Juan Carlos of Spain, among many other storied performances, including playing the Duke in Verdi’s Rigoletto with HGO last season. Originally from

Sonora, Mexico and currently residing in Miami, Chacón-Cruz was named the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Emerging Star of 2017 by the San Francisco Opera. His digital recital will feature songs by Leonard Cohen, Consuelo Velázquez, María Grever, Giacomo Puccini, and more. SASHA COOKE, MEZZO-SOPRANO January 8 Two-time Grammy Award–winning artist Sasha Cooke has been called a “luminous standout” by the New York Times. Her appearances with HGO include an acclaimed performance of Verdi’s Requiem in 2017. Cooke is an experienced recitalist who has performed at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center, among many others, and will draw from her extensive repertoire for her digital recital. A graduate of Rice University and The Juilliard School, she lives in Houston. JACK SWANSON, TENOR March 12 Young sensation Jack Swanson is best known for his interpretations of Rossini and Donizetti. Originally from Stillwater, Minnesota, he received his Master of Music in Vocal Performance at Rice University. A finalist in HGO’s 2016 Concert of Arias, Swanson performed in HGO’s 60th anniversary gala in 2015 and had been set to appear in HGO’s now-canceled La Cenerentola in January 2021; instead he will be the star of this digital recital of works that are sure to showcase his incredible range.

Recital Artists

September 18 Tamara Wilson, soprano

Grand Underwriter (Tamara Wilson)

October 9 Reginald Smith Jr., baritone

November 13 Arturo Chacón-Cruz, tenor

January 8 Sasha Cooke, mezzo-soprano

March 12 Jack Swanson, tenor

Guarantor (Reginald Smith, Jr.) Vinson & Elkins H G O. O R G


OCT. 23, 2020

Vinkenspor or The Finch Opera


Vinkensport, or The Finch Opera is a bitter-sweet comedy in one act, which explores obsession, desire, and the need to win, through the frame of an obscure Flemish folk sport, ‘finch-sitting.’” —Composer David T. Little

BACKGROUND Vinkensport, or The Finch Opera, a one-act comic opera by David T. Little and Royce Vavrek, premiered in 2010 at the Bard College Conservatory of Music. Vinkensport, or “finch-sitting,” pits contestants—called “chaffinches”—against one another to see who has the most melodious bird. When a bird makes a proper call (a “susk-e-wiet”), its owner receives a tally mark. The competitor with the most points wins. The sport can be traced back to as early as the 1500s.

she is married to a man named Wulf who unabashedly cheats on her. Atticus Finch’s Trainer is thoroughly annoyed by his neighbor, however, and can’t wait to install blinds in his windows to retain his privacy.

THE STORY Six chaffinches introduce the sport of finch-sitting. Hans Sachs’s Trainer, we learn, is high on cocaine. St. Francis’s Trainer and Atticus Finch’s Trainer live next door to one another: she (the former) is enamored with him (the latter), though

Farinelli’s Trainer reveals to the audience that Farinelli actually died years ago: she competes with a CD player in her box so that she always wins. This time, however, the win goes to Hans Sachs’s Trainer. Atticus Finch’s Trainer ends the opera with a beautifully poignant aria, promising to let

We learn that Prince Gabriel III’s Trainer died, so his son has taken over as chaffinch for the bird—even though he seems to hate both the sport and his father. Elton John’s Trainer is an alcoholic and nymphomaniac who habitually cheats on her husband.

his finch fly free—right before Elton John’s Trainer comes back on and drunkenly grabs his crotch. FUN FACT The Flemish people still compete at vinkensport, as they have done for centuries. Allegations of cheating are common and include testosterone use. There was a real-life instance of a competitor installing a CD player in his box—he aroused suspicion after his finch sang 725 susk-e-wiets in three matches in a row.

Cast and Creative

Alicia Gianni Holy St. Francis’s Trainer

Nicole Heaston Sir Elton John’s Trainer

Elena Villalón Farinelli’s Trainer

Ricardo Garcia Hans Sachs’s Trainer

Kelly Markgraf Prince Gabriel III of Belgium’s Trainer’s Son

Ryan McKinny Atticus Finch’s Trainer

Conductor Timothy Myers Co-Directors Ryan McKinny and E. Loren Meeker Houston Grand Opera Orchestra

All HGO Digital events can be viewed for free using the Marquee TV streaming service. Miss the premiere? You still have a month to see each event online. For information and instructions, visit HGO.org/Digital.

Guarantor H G O. O R G




The calming power of beautiful music helps an opera company avert a Zoom-meeting disaster. BACKGROUND Mozart wrote The Impresario in 1786 (the same year as The Marriage of Figaro) to enter into a musical competition against Antonio Salieri at the Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna. A German Singspiel containing music and spoken dialogue, the work is traditionally sung in the vernacular of the audience. Houston Grand Opera has commissioned a new story, script, and translation from playwright Jim Luigs, who also conceived and wrote the musical Das Barbecü, a hilarious take on Wagner’s Ring. THE STORY Due to a pandemic and working from home, Edna Mendenhall, the impresario of Texas Opera Grande, holds a Zoom audition for Yolanda Cantrell, a singer new to her company. Rona Richards, Texas Opera Grande’s long-time star, sits in on the call, unannounced. Yolanda is late for her audition, so Rona obliges Edna with an aria. Yolanda finally appears on camera and apologizes for her tardiness. She proceeds to sing a superb aria, which shows off her extraordinary range. Edna is delighted, but Rona feels threatened and makes her presence known. Suddenly, Rona’s agent Wiley Stonecrop speaks up. He, too, has been lurking on the Zoom meeting; it soon becomes clear that he is the agent for both women. The two sopranos and their agent sing a trio in English, during which he presses for contracts for both of his singers. Edna consents, and everyone is elated.



FUN FACT Modern audiences may be surprised to learn that Mozart lost the palace battle to Salieri, whose entry in the competition mocked Mozart and his favorite librettist, Lorenzo Da Ponte. Unbothered, Mozart declared himself the superior composer.

Cast and Creative Houston Grand Opera Orchestra

Eun Sun Kim Conductor


Director E. Loren Meeker

Nova Thomas Edna Mendenhall, Impresario

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Raven McMillon Rona Richards, Returning Diva

New Story, Script, and Translation Jim Luigs

Nicole Heaston Yolanda Cantrell, New Diva

Projection Designer S. Katy Tucker

Frederick Ballentine Wiley Stonecrop, Agent

William Guanbo Su Bowie Krebs, Edna’s Assistant

BACKGROUND Lee Hoiby’s one-woman, one-act opera Bon Appétit! premiered in 1989 at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, with Jean Stapleton performing the role of Julia Child. It was presented as a curtain raiser for Hoiby’s The Italian Lesson, also a musical monodrama.

FUN FACT Houston favorite, HGO Studio alumna, and beloved mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton portrays Child in a role she has made her own, performing in venues including New York’s Carnegie Hall.

Cast and Creative Text Julia Child, adapted by Mark Shulgasser

Jamie Barton Julia Child

Co-Directors Ryan McKinny Tonya McKinny

Piano Jonathan Easter Original Stage Direction Ned Canty

All HGO Digital events can be viewed for free using the Marquee TV streaming service. Miss the premiere? You still have a month to see each event online. For information and instructions, visit HGO.org/Digital.


THE STORY Bon Appétit is a conflation of two episodes of Julia Child’s cooking show, The French Chef, in which she narrates—with all her wit, antics, and charisma—the baking of the perfect chocolate cake, Le gâteau au chocolat l’éminence brune.

Bon Appétit!

A charming confection of an opera, best enjoyed with a slice of chocolate cake.


DEC. 10, 2020

The SnowyProject Da

Peter is a child of color, but he is really a child on an adventure. And that is why the book is so powerful.” —Librettist Andrea Davis Pinkney

JOEL THOMPSON | ANDREA DAVIS PINKNEY Based on the children’s book by Ezra Jack Keats

BACKGROUND Ezra Jack Keats wrote and illustrated The Snowy Day—the story of a little boy named Peter who ventures into the snow—in 1962. The book won the 1963 Caldecott Medal, and it broke a persistent color barrier: Peter was the first Black boy to be the main character of a mainstream children’s book.

Aspen Music Festival, Summers heard a few seconds of a new score and immediately knew this unidentified composer would be the perfect fit for an opera on The Snowy Day. Joel Thompson was that composer, and his unique and colorful musical voice has breathed new life into the story of Peter, beautifully adapted into poetic narrative by Pinkney.

In 2016, acclaimed children’s author Andrea Davis Pinkney wrote A Poem for Peter, an homage to Keats and the legacy of Peter. She would become the librettist of an opera based on The Snowy Day a few years later, when the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation auspiciously put her name forward in the early stages of the opera’s creation.

HGO had planned to debut The Snowy Day in December 2020. While the live production has been delayed to a future season, this documentary-style appetizer to the main event will introduce audiences to the making of this breathtaking new opera.

Star soprano Julia Bullock brought the idea of an opera on The Snowy Day to Patrick Summers, HGO’s Artistic and Music Director. He, too, knew the book from his childhood, and the opera started to take form. In the summer of 2017 at the

a snowball home in his pocket. He discovers it has melted and dreams that his new friends and their snowy day all melt as well, until he awakens to another layer of snow. FUN FACT The Snowy Day has a fan in former first lady Michelle Obama, who told the New York Times it was one of her favorite books growing up. It is also the most checked-out title in the history of the New York Public Library.

THE STORY Both book and opera recount the adventures of Peter after he wakes up to the first snow of winter—the first winter when his parents have promised to let him play in the snow by himself. After breakfast he sets off to explore, getting in a snowball fight and making friends before sneaking

Cast and Creative of the Upcoming HGO World-Premiere Opera, The Snowy Day

Raven McMillon Peter

Karen Slack Mama

Nicholas Newton Daddy/Tim

Elena Villalón Amy

Conductor Patrick Summers Margaret Alkek Williams Chair

Joel Thompson Composer

Andrea Davis Pinkney Librettist

Director Omer Ben Seadia

Andres Acosta Papí/Jasper

Cory McGee Billy

Dramaturg Jeremy Johnson

Lighting Designer Michael James Clark

Scenic Designer Amy Rubin

Houston Grand Opera Orchestra

Costume Designer Jessica Jahn

Supporters of HGO Digital and Mainstage Productions The Robert and Janice McNair Foundation The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation | The Cullen Foundation | Bank of America | H-E-B | The Powell Foundation H G O. O R G


LIVE! JAN. 22, 2021

Giving Voic

I feel it is important that the diversity regularly seen on HGO’s stage be reflected in the audience. I created Giving Voice to welcome Black and African American community members into a company, and an artform, that I love.” —Tenor and Co-Host Lawrence Brownlee

Nicholas Newton, Reginald Smith Jr., J’Nai Bridges, Nicole Heaston, Russell Thomas, and Lawrence Brownlee in the first Giving Voice

BACKGROUND The first Giving Voice concert from internationally renowned tenor Lawrence Brownlee and Houston Grand Opera took place in January 2020, made possible by Bank of America. Brownlee was in Houston to sing the role of Fernand in La favorite, which HGO was staging concurrently with Aida, starring Russell Thomas as Radames. To Brownlee’s knowledge, it was the first time two Black tenors, he and Thomas, were the leading roles at the same time at a major company. Before traveling to Houston for La favorite, Brownlee approached HGO Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers about

hosting a concert of Black classical singers. Soon the tenors were onstage at the Wortham with fellow artists J’Nai Bridges, Nicole Heaston, HGO Studio member Nicholas Newton, Reginald Smith, Jr., and pianist Kevin Miller, performing Giving Voice: Lawrence Brownlee and Friends Sing Opera, Gospel, and Standards. The artists dazzled the crowd—which was packed with families, students, church groups, fraternities, and sororities—singing everything from Gershwin to gospel to Verdi. The event was so impactful, HGO

invited Brownlee back for another performance of Giving Voice, once again alongside a group of celebrated Black singers. FUN FACT Brownlee is also an avid salsa dancer. Per the Chicago Tribune: “He never travels without his white, size-10 dancing shoes, so that he can unwind with another of his passions, salsa dancing, at nightspots in cities where he happens to be performing.”

Cast and Creative

Donnie Ray Albert

Frederick Ballentine

Lawrence Brownlee Co-host

Nicholas Newton

Zoie Reams

Kevin Miller, piano

Blake Denson

Nicole Heaston Co-host

Cory McGee

H G O. O R G



Suite Español

“It is important to bring more awareness to zarzuela as an art form given its rich history and sheer volume of masterful and beautiful works.” —HGO Artistic Advisor Ana María Martínez

BACKGROUND A form of Spanish musical theater that combines operatic songs with spoken dialogue and dancing, zarzuela dates to the 17th century but took on new life between 1850 and 1950. Some zarzuelas are long and grand in scope (género grande), while others are lighter and shorter (género chico). Dialogue is often adapted to reflect local current events. Zarzuela remains popular in Spain and Spanish-speaking countries throughout the world but is less often seen elsewhere—something its champions, including internationally beloved soprano and HGO Artistic Advisor Ana María Martínez, seek to change with events such as Suite Española, which will feature both zarzuela and other Spanish-language music. Martínez, the first recipient of the prestigious Pepita Embil Prize of Zarzuela, has given zarzuela concerts all over the world, from Madrid and Barcelona to Rio de Janeiro, Dubai, and Moscow. As a teenager, she sang zarzuela with her mother, Evangelina Colón, both at the Teatro de Bellas Artes in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and at the Thalia Spanish Theater in Queens, New York. “It is an experience,” she says, “I will cherish forever.” THE CONCERT For this special evening, Martínez has put together a collage of excerpts from a variety of zarzuelas that showcase “the flavor of Spain and the distinct rhythms, passion, and beauty of the repertoire,” in addition to a selection of beautiful music from other Spanish-speaking countries. This event will feature songs in Spanish with English narration. Martínez will be joined by a pianist, a guitarist, and two HGO Studio artists, tenor Ricardo Garcia and baritone Blake Denson. FUN FACT In the mid 19th-century, parody zarzuelas, which lampooned Italian operas, had a brief heyday. Victims included Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor.

Grand Underwriter Frost Bank

Hansel & Gretel

HUMPERDINCK “ Hansel and Gretel has a musical score that is, without hyperbole, one of the two or three most ravishingly beautiful in the history of music. One never tires of hearing it or performing it; I could happily conduct it every day.” — HGO Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers BACKGROUND Hansel and Gretel is an opera in the late German Romantic tradition, premiering in Weimar in December 1893. The composer is Engelbert Humperdinck with a libretto by Adelheid Wette, his sister. She originally asked him to set to music some poems she had written based on the Grimm Brothers’ fairy tale of the same name, but the poems and songs were eventually turned into an opera. THE STORY Hansel and Gretel, the children of a poor broom-maker, are sent into the forest to pick strawberries by their mother, Gertrude. Their father, Peter, comes home with a feast for the family. When he learns the children are in the forest, he worriedly tells Gertrude about the evil Witch who lures children with sweets and bakes them into gingerbread. They leave to find the children. Hansel and Gretel play in the forest as they look for strawberries. They get hungry and eat them, and the sun begins to go down. As it gets darker, the scared children hear a chorus of echoes before the Sandman walks out of the forest. He puts them to sleep as they sing their evening prayers. The Dew Fairy wakes up the children with sprinkles of dew. Hansel and Gretel notice a gingerbread house surrounded by a fence of gingerbread children. As they take bites of frosting and candy, the Witch freezes them with a magic wand. But the children manage to escape and push the Witch into the oven. The gingerbread figures around them turn back into real kids as Peter and Gertrude arrive and embrace their children. They all see that the Witch has been baked into gingerbread in her own oven.

All HGO Digital events can be viewed for free using the Marquee TV streaming service. Miss the premiere? You still have a month to see each event online. For information and instructions, visit HGO.org/Digital.


FUN FACT Because Hansel and Gretel premiered in Weimar shortly before Christmas, it most often is performed around the holiday season, which is an interesting bit of history considering that it tells the story, as Maestro Summers notes, of “a cannibalistic witch who is outsmarted and killed by two children she is trying to cook.”

H G O. O R G


We See You.

We see you working through your exhaustion to fight a global pandemic. We see you working with other professionals at the Texas Medical Center and throughout the region to coordinate your attack against a disease that has threatened our very way of life. We see you missing time with your own families so that you can help sick Houstonians get home to theirs. We see you, healthcare providers, all of you. And we want to say:



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Isolation brings challenges, but also opportunities. By Catherine Matusow


ast spring, as the coronavirus pandemic ground American life to a halt, HGO artists and staff retreated to life in quarantine with the rest of the country. Everywhere, people felt fear, worry, and disappointment, and it was no different for the company, which saw its spring performances canceled after countless hours of planning and preparation by hundreds of professionals. Suddenly, traditional means of artistic collaboration were impossible. But artists are nothing if not creative, and it wasn’t long before they were devising ways to take advantage of their confinement, inventing new methods for staying engaged and reaching out to opera lovers through the digital space. Bass-baritone Ryan McKinny, an HGO Studio alumnus, enlisted a group of creatives for a video collaboration of the song “No One Is Alone” from Into the Woods, a moving tribute to those who have been lost. Soprano Elena Villalón and bass-baritone Nicholas Newton, both current HGO Studio artists, developed a hilariously charming—and informative—web series, The Real Housewives of Classical Music. And renowned soprano and HGO Artistic Advisor Ana María Martínez hosted entertaining Facebook videos in English and Spanish, in which she chatted with fans about life in quarantine and shared the gift of her incredible voice.

McKinny has spent hours editing video at home.

We caught up with these artists to ask about their videos and how they’ve spent their time at home. Follow HGO on social media to enjoy their contributions, as well as those of many other HGO artists connecting with opera lovers by sharing beautiful music online.

Cues: How have you learned to adapt to life in quarantine?


How have you used this time to develop your artistry?

Dozens of singers from across the country joined McKinny—an HGO Studio alumnus that opera lovers may recognize as Don Giovanni from last year’s HGO production of the Mozart masterpiece—to create a video of the melancholy yet hope-inspiring “No One Is Alone” from Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods, with Doug Peck on piano. Each held a photo of a lost loved one as they explored grief through song. Just try to watch it without crying.

RM: It’s been quite a rollercoaster. Having projects has really saved my sanity. I am definitely not a person who does well just sitting around watching Netflix!

RM: I started keepthemusicgoing.com as a place to share content and encourage people to donate to organizations that help artists in need. I’ve made a ton of videos now, all of which have stretched me as an artist—sometimes as a director and editor, but also as a singer and actor. I think I’ll carry a lot of what I’m learning now forward in my life once this mess is over.

H G O. O R G


What do you miss most about in-person collaboration? RM: We can make a lot of amazing things remotely, but there is just a different feeling being in the room with other people that you don’t get via video. Also, that element of just sharing space with others is very much something I miss. How have you used video to reach out from isolation? RM: Gosh, it’s been my whole life for the last several months. I’ve gone from FaceTime and Zoom for business meetings and catching up with friends, to making movies with iPhones—now with a professional camera setup. I’ve spent hours and hours editing video. It’s really become my new job. Melody Moore and I were thinking about what we might collaborate on, and I remembered how supportive she was of me when my father passed away during our run of The Flying Dutchman at the Glimmerglass Festival. I thought about how hard it must be for everyone who is mourning in isolation right now. Then I thought about how universal grief is, and that even though it feels like you are alone, you really aren’t. So, then it felt clear that we should do “No One Is Alone” from Into the Woods. I knew that I wanted to start with just one person and build from there, and that I needed a clear way to show that everyone in the video has lost someone. Holding a photo seemed like a simple way to show that. Doug Peck connected me with Britney Coleman and Sean Alan Krill, and I thought it would be nice to get a big group for the end. I asked around and got a lot of responses from singers and non-singers. I felt really honored that everyone trusted me with such a delicate and intimate theme. I tried hard to honor each of their contributions, and I’m really proud of the result. What’s your secret weapon for getting through this time? RM: Hope. It helps me to imagine the future I want for myself, my family, our art form, 34

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Villalón has been working on staple soprano roles.

There is freedom in being unrestricted by a deadline. and our world—and to take steps now to give that hope a chance to materialize.

Clara Schumann, Maria Grever, and more. Each episode features Elena or Nicholas performing one of their songs.

What are you listening to? RM: Outside of my own projects, not much opera at the moment! My most recent playlist features Lizzo, Django Reinhardt, The Heartless Bastards, and The Carolina Chocolate Drops. ELENA VILLALÓN and NICHOLAS NEWTON The two HGO Studio artists created The Real Housewives of Classical Music, an irreverent recounting of the lives of female composers including Fanny Mendelssohn,

Cues: How have you learned to adapt to life in quarantine? EV: The answer for me has been to have a regimented—and also flexible—routine. I’ll create a to-do list for the day or week, and try to complete that list in a period dedicated to work. Since my days are filled with more individual work than meetings and coachings, there is also flexibility if I need to take my dog to the vet, or schedule a video chat with family in a different time zone.

NN: I’ve learned to adapt by just taking it one day at a time, remaining grateful for the resources I have, and making sure I take a daily walk outdoors. How have you used this time? EV: Though I wish I could be involved in the rest of the regular season, and summer season in Santa Fe, this time has allowed me to develop my artistry in a way that was largely prevented by the constant work on current and future projects that I am contracted to do. This time in quarantine has enabled me to learn staple roles for soprano, that aren’t roles I have to learn for contracts in the next few years. There is freedom in being unrestricted by a deadline.

NN: I’ve been working on a bunch of monologues with Philip Lehl and having movement sessions with Adam Noble. I now have a greater understanding of how to communicate on stage and physically embody a character.

texts, often through a misogynistic lens— and forget that they are people who led meaningful and exciting lives. My goal was for the project to be educational, inspiring, and relevant, and make you smile or laugh along the way.

What do you miss most about inperson collaboration?

NN: The project was a great chance for us to collaborate and work on subject matter we are both passionate about. The most fun part has been learning about how these women broke barriers in a male-dominated and -controlled industry that often didn’t want them to succeed.

EV: The beauty of live art is that the collaboration is really a reaction to the actions of your partners, and that the audience is a live participant in those reactions. Dynamics, word stress, breath, even silence are not predetermined. Online, you lose the connection with your audience, looking them in the eyes, even waking them up with a high note if needed. NN: I miss feeling the energy of having other people in the room and performing together live. Singing with prerecorded tracks is less satisfying, and more difficult, than it seems. How have you used video to reach out from isolation?

Newton has been working on monologues and meditating.

EV: The Real Housewives of Classical Music idea was originated by Nicholas last fall, with the intention of doing a recital together. I thought that this topic would transfer to an online element very easily: this was an excellent opportunity to spotlight female composers in an episodic format and discuss their history in a very candid and engaging manner. It is common to read about people in history—especially when their stories are told in dull, unexciting

What’s your secret weapon for getting through this time? EV: Besides work, working out, eating healthy, focusing on hobbies outside of music (sailing, sewing, house projects), reading, limiting screen time, and keeping my dogs alive (I do this one every day). Also, Blue Bell. NN: Meditation and baking to pass the time. What are you listening to? EV: This time can be disorienting and wearisome for artists who are used to great collaboration, and I’ve been listening to artists who stir my soul: recordings of pianists Horowitz and Argerich; early albums of a young Aretha Franklin; Bach; and Connie Converse, whose album with acoustic guitar, recorded before her disappearance in 1974, is fully of haunting, beautiful songs that are especially poignant in this time of isolation and reflection. NN: I’m listening to a lot of songs and operatic ensembles. Looking forward to collaborating with more Studio members this summer! ANA MARÍA MARTÍNEZ In her Facebook videos, alternately presented in English and Spanish, the exalted soprano let fans peek at her private world as she enjoyed a morning coffee and shared her prized possession— a glass butterfly from HGO Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers—before H G O. O R G


Since early childhood I learned a beautiful expression in Spanish, which translates as: dress yourself in patience.

Martínez has been using time at home to study upcoming roles.

singing Puerto Rican song “Amanecer” and Cio-Cio-San’s Entrance Aria from Madame Butterfly as only she can.

and to interact virtually with the young artists at HGO and also at Rice University, where I am an Artist-in-Residence.

Cues: How have you learned to adapt to life in quarantine?

What do you miss most about in-person collaboration?

AMM: Since early childhood I learned a beautiful expression in Spanish, which translates as: dress yourself in patience. This is the most challenging adaptation many of us throughout the world have had to learn to endure in unison. I do my best to take things one day at a time, and on difficult days, one hour at a time, hoping with an open heart and mind that we will all get through this. Exercising, and specifically jogging, has also helped me cope with the pandemic.

AMM: Everything!

How have you used this time to develop your artistry? AMM: I am blessed to wear many hats in addition to being a performer. This extra time at home has allowed me to not just practice and study for upcoming roles, but to also delve deep into ways I can contribute to HGO as Artistic Advisor, 36

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How have you used video to reach out from isolation? AMM: I have used video to do some a capella performances to connect with the HGO audience in both English and Spanish, and to connect with the New York Times audience. I have also joined with local colleagues in Houston to offer a mini-concert on social media, and I am using Zoom and FaceTime to connect with young artists, to connect with my colleagues at HGO and Rice University, to speak with my colleagues all over the world to make sure that they are safe and healthy, and, of course, to stay in touch with family and friends.

What’s your secret weapon for getting through this time? AMM: My secret weapon, like many women, is that I am a mother. I know that it is important to set an example of optimism, strength, and resilience during this time because I am not just responsible for my own health and safety, but for that of my son. Having that be my paramount focus provides sustenance to my entire being and helps me get through this time. What are you listening to? AMM: I am listening to Chopin, Antônio Carlos Jobim, Jorge Drexler, and Basia. There is no way you can feel sadness listening to this varied and inspiring music.

SAFETY AND THE STAGE HGO has a not-so-secret weapon in Houston Methodist. By Catherine Matusow


eing a major opera company located in Houston, Texas has its challenges. Exhibit A: Hurricane Harvey, which in 2017 arrived and stayed over the city, depositing so much water that it flooded Houston Grand Opera out of its home at the Wortham Theater Center, eventually costing the company $15 million. “Harvey,” HGO Managing Director Perryn Leech says, heaviness in his voice. “We talked then about the worst thing that could possibly ever happen in an opera house—how naive and cute that seems now.” Harvey’s financial damage to HGO will be dwarfed by that of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has caused devastating performance cancellations and layoffs for the first time in company history— “unquestionably the very hardest day of my life as a leader,” says Leech—and is currently estimated to have at least a $20 million impact on the company. Of course, being a major opera company located in Houston, Texas also has its advantages. Chief among them is that just down Main Street from the Wortham lies the Texas Medical Center, home to Houston Methodist. A CRUCIAL RELATIONSHIP “We have a wonderful relationship with Houston Methodist, and we are proud that they are our official healthcare provider,” says Leech. That partnership has proven more important than ever at this moment, as specialists from the hospital are serving on the HGO Health Advisory Committee, providing crucial advice and oversight on how to protect the company’s audiences, staff, and artists while helping it devise a way to continue to bring great art to opera lovers, as safely as possible, when they need it most.

Photo courtesy of Houston Methodist

Dr. Apurva Thekdi—deputy chair of the Ear, Nose & Throat department at Houston Methodist and director of the Texas H G O. O R G


colleagues at Houston Methodist— including Brett Brosseau, Dr. Ashley Drews, Dr. Warren Ellsworth, J. Todd Frazier, Dr. Robert Jackson, and Dr. Robert Phillips—are the perfect advisors for HGO as the company negotiates a safe return to work in the age of COVID-19. A MOVING TARGET

Dr. Apurva Thekdi’s practice focuses on the larynx and the voice box. (Photo courtesy of Dr. Thekdi and Houston Methodist.)

Voice Center—is heavily involved with the Houston Methodist Center for Performing Arts Medicine, an organization within the hospital that, he explains, “is at the intersection of the arts and medicine,” adding: “we are really the first hospital system in the world to do something that takes this approach and supports the performing arts in this way.” “My practice focuses on the larynx and the voice box,” he explains, “and in doing so I take care of many performers—especially opera singers.” HGO artists visit Dr. Thekdi for both “the 10,000mile oil change and checkup” and emergency care.

We are really the first hospital system in the world to do something that takes this approach and supports the performing arts in this way.”

“The classic is, the morning of the show, they wake up, and—my voice just doesn’t sound right. And a lot of it is being able to look and examine them, and show them that everything looks okay, hold their hand, and really just give them the confidence to go on. As you know, so much of singing and performing is confidence.” Leech calls Dr. Thekdi “absolutely brilliant,” adding, “as an opera company that doesn’t engage artist covers we really couldn’t do what we do without him.” That’s even truer now. The doctor and his


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Back in March, HGO started two groups: a board task force to oversee the revised planning needed as the company prepared for the future and, shortly thereafter, the HGO Health Advisory Committee, comprised of HGO leadership, board members, union representatives, and healthcare professionals from Houston Methodist, to negotiate and advise on a safe return to work. There is now also an internal company Return to Work task force that has nine members from across HGO who are putting together protocols—based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Harris County officials, plus examples from other organizations across the country—for company staff and artists returning to the Wortham’s offices and rehearsal rooms, as well as HGO’s Leeland Shop and Warehouse facilities. Extensive protocols include recommendations on everything from making a touch-free entrance to the building, to elevator and kitchen use, to practicing social distancing in an office environment. The group is also studying how HGO can safely perform this season’s wonderful slate of alternative digital programming for audiences to enjoy virtually. Most of these works will be filmed at the Wortham’s Cullen Theater, which has been converted into a production studio during this period when performing to a live audience isn’t possible. The situation is in constant flux, of course, with the release of new research, spikes in cases, and ever-changing official directives. Return to Work task force head Kristen Burke, HGO’s production manager, also serves on the Health Advisory Committee and, luckily, has plenty of experience in nimbly adapting to change.

“It’s a moving target,” she says. “Being a stage manager trained me a lot for that.” Crucially, before implementing its recommendations, the task force submits them to the HGO Health Advisory Committee, and that is where the healthcare professionals at Houston Methodist really earn their corn, weighing in with professional advice. “Thankfully,” says Burke, “we have this amazing Health Advisory Committee.” “The feedback from these professionals is critical, and they are very receptive to finding safe ways to work, but clearly if they say something is too much of a risk, we will listen to that advice and adapt,” adds Leech. “There is no point in having specialists’ advice if you’re going to ignore it.” As of this writing, with Houston a hot spot, HGO is taking the simplest, most effective course for the vast majority of its employees, which is having them work from home, while focusing its energies on how to safely produce special socially distanced performances for digital audiences. THE PATH AHEAD One of the ways both advisory groups are forging a path forward for HGO is by looking at what other performers have done—and have not done. A tragic event many have studied closely is Washington’s Skagit County Chorale outbreak, a rehearsal at which some 50 people were infected with COVID-19. Two passed away. “This was a super-spreader event,” explains Dr. Thekdi. Scientists subsequently have been able to quantify the probability of infection for the singers present—a number that is as high as 83 percent—by taking into account variables such as the number of people singing (60), the duration of the event (150 minutes), and mask use (none), while considering other factors such as the size of the room and turnover of air. While it’s not an apples-to-apples comparison, there are a number of lessons HGO and other opera companies can learn from what happened that disastrous day. As an artform, opera faces immense hurdles.

Grand-scale performances feature a large number of singers together on stage, musicians in close quarters blowing on instruments, and audiences of thousands. No solution is 100 percent foolproof, but there are effective ways to mitigate the risk, which HGO is working to do, reiterates Leech, “with very, very serious input and advice from our medical professionals.” Most of HGO’s upcoming season, of course, will be virtual; the hope is to resume live performance at the Wortham in the spring. Upcoming digital works were selected not only for their artistic variety, but also for whether they lend themselves to socially distanced performances. Each will feature a small number of singers, accompanied by perhaps a single pianist, or by pre-recorded music played by a limited number of musicians from the Houston Grand Opera Orchestra. Performances will take place inside the large Cullen Theater, outside, or in artists’ homes. Everyone present will wear masks when not performing, and artists and staff will be scrupulously tested for COVID-19 on a weekly basis—once again thanks to HGO’s partners at Houston Methodist. Plans, of course, could change at any moment. As for longer-term, bigger-picture scenarios, nothing is certain. But it is clear that going forward, it will be essential that all Houstonians do their part to combat the virus, and that our heroic medical professionals—including Dr. Thekdi’s colleagues at Houston Methodist—continue to make advances in testing, treatment, and ultimately, finding a vaccine for COVID-19. “A lot of what’s happening is going to depend on how prevalent the virus is in the community,” says Dr. Thekdi, “and also whether we have a vaccine or not. What’s really going to be the end game for us, is having some kind of vaccine.” Until that wonderful moment—and afterward—it is a huge comfort for HGO to have such an amazing and respected partner in Houston Methodist.

A Special Thank-You to the HGO Health Advisory Committee: Board of Directors Perryn Leech, Chair Christopher V. Bacon Gloria Portela Allyn Risley Jack A. Roth, M.D. Patrick Summers Representatives from Houston Methodist: Brett Brosseau, Director of Employee Health Solutions Ashley Drews, M.D., Infectious Diseases Warren A. Ellsworth IV, M.D., Plastic Surgery J. Todd Frazier, Director, Houston Methodist’s Center for Performing Arts Medicine (CPAM) Robert E. Jackson, M.D., Primary Care, Internal Medicine, C. Richard Stasney, MD Distinguished Chair in Performing Arts Medicine Robert A. Phillips, M.D., Ph.D., FACC, Executive Vice President, Chief Physician Executive & Specialty Physician Group CEO Apurva A. Thekdi, M.D., Laryngology, ENT, and Otolaryngology Company representatives: Michael Bradley, IATSE 51 representative Kristen Burke, Administrative representative Helen Gonzalez, IATSE B-184 representative Larissa Lindsay, IATSE 896 representative Tony Martinez, AGMA representative Linda Sanders, AFM representative Melissa Williford, Director of Human Resources




This six-year multidisciplinary initiative is designed to highlight the universal spiritual themes raised in opera and to enable a wider segment of the Houston community to engage in programming that illuminates opera’s beauty, emotional power, and potential to heal. This season, inspired by mainstage production Breaking the Waves, we will offer programming that explores and celebrates through the lens of the theme faith. For our Music & Healing series, Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers will speak with leaders who incorporate music into healing practices that impact physical, emotional and mental wellness. We continue our valued partnership with the Institute for Spirituality & Health at Texas Medical Center as part of their Regilare series in early 2021. We also are adapting our ongoing, successful programs with The Women’s Home, Houston Methodist Center for Performing Arts Medicine, and Buffalo Bayou Partnership to hybrid and online formats. Stay tuned for specific program dates! LEAD FUNDERS

Harlan and Dian Stai Lynn Wyatt The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

The Brown Foundation, Inc.

The Wortham Foundation, Inc.

Mr. and Mrs. Byron Dyer

Albert and Anne Chao/Ting Tsung and Wei Fong Chao Foundation Mr. John G. Turner and Mr. Jerry G. Fischer Louisa Stude Sarofim Foundation

Mathilda Cochran Claire Liu and Joseph Greenberg Elizabeth Phillips Mr. and Mrs. Donald G. Sweeney

For information on providing leadership support for Seeking the Human Spirit, please contact Greg Robertson at 713-546-0274.


THE 2020–21 HGO STUDIO ARTISTS Join us in welcoming—and welcoming back—the talented artists in our prestigious training program.

Raven McMillon Soprano—Baltimore, MD

Elena Villalón Soprano—Austin, TX

Lindsay Kate Brown Mezzo-soprano—Waterloo, NY

HGO appearances: Rona Richards in The Impresario (digital); Peter in The Snowy Day Project (digital); Gretel in Hansel and Gretel (digital); Sister Margaretta in The Sound of Music. Firstyear HGO Studio artist.

HGO appearances: Farinelli’s Trainer in Vinkensport (digital); Amy in The Snowy Day Project (digital); Dew Fairy and Sandman in Hansel and Gretel (digital). Second-year HGO Studio artist.

HGO appearances: Gertrud in Hansel and Gretel (digital); Sister Berthe in The Sound of Music. Third-year HGO Studio artist.

Underwriter: Brenda Harvey-Traylor Raven McMillon received her bachelor of fine arts in vocal performance at Carnegie Mellon University and completed her graduate degree at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM). Her opera credits include Adele in Die Fledermaus; the title role in Goldie B. Locks and the Three Singing Bears; Linfea in La Calisto; and Barbarina in Le nozze di Figaro. In addition to her opera credits, McMillon has also workshopped new roles such as Mary in Chiao’s The Secret Codes of Mary Bowser and Lucy in Picker’s Awakenings. Her recent roles included La Princesse in L’enfant et les sortilèges with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Papagena in Die Zauberflöte at CCM in the summer of 2020, which were canceled due to COVID-19.

Previously at HGO: Page in Rigoletto; Woman in selected performances of the world premiere of El Milagro del Recuerdo/The Miracle of Remembering; Inez in La favorite. Audience Choice Award winner in HGO’s 2019 Eleanor McCollum Competition Concert of Arias. Alumna of HGO’s Young Artists Vocal Academy (2018). Underwriters: Dian and Harlan Stai Elena Villalón was a Grand Finals winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. She is a recent graduate of the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM), has been a vocal fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center, and is an alumna of HGO’s 2018 Young Artist Vocal Academy. In summer 2019 she performed Barbarina in The Marriage of Figaro at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis as a Gerdine Young Artist and returned to the Tanglewood Music Center as a soprano fellow. In summer 2020 she was set to make her Santa Fe Opera debut as First Wood Sprite in Rusalka, but this was canceled due to COVID-19.

Previously at HGO: Giovanna in Rigoletto; Second Lady in The Magic Flute (COVID-19 cancellation). Third prize winner in HGO’s 2018 Eleanor McCollum Competition Concert of Arias. Underwriters: Mr. and Mrs. James W. Crownover / Lynn and Henry Gissel This year Lindsay Kate Brown won first place in the Upper Midwest Region of The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and competed in the national Grand Finals. She earned an artist diploma at Rice University and made her professional debut with Tri-Cities Opera in 2014. In summer 2018 she was a young artist at Des Moines Metro Opera, where she reprised the role of Ma Moss in Copland’s The Tender Land and covered the role of Ježibaba in Dvořák’s Rusalka. In 2019 she sang the role of the Composer in Ariadne auf Naxos with Wolf Trap Opera. She was set to join The Santa Fe Opera as an Apprentice Artist in summer 2020, but that was canceled due to COVID-19.

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HGO STUDIO Underwriters: Michelle Beale and Dick Anderson/ Dr. Ellen R. Gritz and Mr. Milton D. Rosenau Jr.

Sun-Ly Pierce Mezzo-soprano—Clinton, NY HGO appearances: Hansel in Hansel and Gretel (digital); Sister Sophia in The Sound of Music. First-year HGO Studio artist. Previously at HGO: First prize winner in HGO’s 2020 Eleanor McCollum Competition Concert of Arias. Underwriters: Charlene and Chuck Nickson/Tracy Maddox and John Serpe Originally from Clinton, Chinese American mezzo-soprano Sun-Ly Pierce completed the graduate vocal arts program at the Bard College Conservatory of Music and holds a bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from the Eastman School of Music. As a winner of the Marilyn Horne Song Competition, Pierce will perform on an international recital tour with pianist Chien-Lin Lu featuring the premiere of a new song cycle by two-time Grammy Award winning composer, Jennifer Higdon. Last fall, Pierce joined the Broad Street Orchestra as Dorinda in Handel’s Acis and Galatea. She was set to return to the Music Academy of the West this summer as a 2020 Vocal Fellow, but this was canceled due to COVID-19.

Ricardo Garcia recently completed his master’s degree in voice at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM) and holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of the Pacific. He was a studio artist at Wolf Trap Opera, where he covered Roméo in Roméo et Juliette and Giocondo in La pietra del paragone, and a voice fellow with Music Academy of the West, where he sang Jenik in The Bartered Bride. Recent roles include Lamplighter/Drunkard in The Little Prince and Fenton in Falstaff. As a first-year apprentice at Santa Fe Opera, he covered Parpignol in La bohème and sang Fenton/ Normanno in the Apprentice Scenes Night. Recently, Garcia won the San Francisco District of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and advanced to the region finals in Los Angeles.

Blake Denson Baritone—Paducah, KY HGO appearances: Giving Voice (digital); Suite Española (digital); Peter in Hansel and Gretel (digital); Church Councilman in Breaking the Waves. First-year HGO Studio artist.

Underwriters: Elizabeth Grimm and Jack Roth/Carolyn Levy/Gloria Portela and Dick Evans

HGO appearances: Hans Sachs’s Trainer in Vinkensport (digital); The Snowy Day Project (digital); Suite Española (digital). First-year HGO Studio artist.


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Nicholas Newton Bass-baritone—San Diego, CA HGO appearances: Daddy/Tim in The Snowy Day Project (digital); Giving Voice (digital); Terry in Breaking the Waves. Second-year HGO Studio artist. Previously at HGO: Monterone in Rigoletto; Second Soldier in Salome (COVID-19 cancellation). Third prize winner in HGO’s 2019 Eleanor McCollum Competition Concert of Arias. Alumnus of Young Artists Vocal Academy (2016).

Previously at HGO: 2018 Alumnus of HGO’s Young Artists Vocal Academy

Ricardo Garcia Tenor—Castro Valley, CA

University’s Shepherd School of Music. Denson was a Studio Artist at Wolf Trap Opera in 2018 and was set to return to Wolf Trap Opera for a second season in the summer of 2020 to perform the Commander and cover the title role in Eugene Onegin, as well as cover the role of Marcello in La bohème, but those productions were canceled due to COVID-19.

Blake Denson was a Grand Finals winner in the 2020 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and is a 2018 alumnus of HGO’s Young Artists Vocal Academy (YAVA). He obtained his bachelor of music in voice degree from the University of Kentucky School of Music and recently completed his master’s degree at Rice

Underwriters: Nancy and Ted Haywood/ Kathy Moore and Steve Homer/Jill and Allyn Risley Nicholas Newton’s notable performances include the roles of Count Ceprano in Rigoletto and Capulet (cover) in Roméo et Juliette with Wolf Trap Opera, Achilla in Julius Caesar at Rice University, and L’arbre and Le fauteuil in L’enfant et les sortilèges at the Aspen Music Festival. Newton was a 2019 national semifinalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and the first-place winner in the 2018 Virginia & Susan Hawk Competition. In summer 2019 he sang Monterone in Rigoletto with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. In summer 2020 he had been set to return to Wolf Trap Opera as Colline in La bohème, but that production was canceled due to COVID-19.

HGO STUDIO cancellation); Second Armored Man in The Magic Flute (COVID-19 cancellation). Second place winner in HGO’s 2019 Eleanor McCollum Competition Concert of Arias. Underwriters: Anne and Albert Chao Cory McGee Bass—Stafford, VA HGO appearances: Billy in The Snowy Day Project (digital); Giving Voice (digital). First-year HGO Studio artist. Previously at HGO: Second prize winner in HGO’s 2020 Eleanor McCollum Competition Concert of Arias. Underwriter: Beth Madison Cory McGee recently completed his master of music degree at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music. In summer 2019 he joined Santa Fe Opera as an apprentice artist, portraying the role of the Gardener in Ruder’s The Thirteenth Child. In 2018 he was a studio artist with Wolf Trap Opera, where he played La Voce in Mozart’s Idomeneo and Ranger Nat in David Hanlon’s children’s opera, Listen, Wilhelmina!, and was a soloist in “Bernstein at 100 – A Celebration.” Recent engagements include the title role in Le nozze di Figaro and Pandolfe in Massenet’s Cendrillon (Oberlin Opera Theater) and Leporello in Don Giovanni (Oberlin in Italy).

William Guanbo Su Bass—Beijing, China HGO appearances: Bowie Krebs in The Impresario (digital); Sadistic Sailor in Breaking the Waves. Second-year HGO Studio artist. Previously at HGO: Usher in Rigoletto; Fifth Jew in Salome (COVID-19

William Guanbo Su is a Grand Finals Winner of the 2019 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. He has been a Gerdine Young Artist at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and a voice fellow at the Aspen Music Festival. He has studied German lieder at the Franz Schubert Institute in Vienna, and in 2017 won first prize in the Gerda Lissner Lieder Competition. During summer 2019 he sang Count Ceprano in Verdi’s Rigoletto with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis as a Gerdine Young Artist. He was scheduled to return to Aspen in summer 2020 to perform the role of Sarastro in The Magic Flute until it was canceled due to COVID-19.

Center, where he worked on Il barbiere di Siviglia; he returned to Aspen in the summer of 2019. He received his master of music degree in vocal coaching and accompanying from the University of Illinois. Previous engagements include the Bay View Music Festival (Carmen), where he returned in 2019 as a faculty pianist for its two-week opera and art song program. He appeared with tenor Richard Trey Smagur in a recital of Schumann’s Dichterliebe at Houston’s Jones Hall in a program presented by the Houston Symphony. In summer 2020 he served as a coaching fellow at Wolf Trap Opera.

Bin Yu Sanford Pianist/coach—Seoul, Korea HGO appearances: Coach for The Impresario (digital); The Snowy Day Project (digital); Breaking the Waves. She will also appear with HGO Studio singers in recital and other performances. Firstyear HGO Studio artist. Alex Munger Pianist/coach—New Berlin, Wisconsin HGO appearances: Coach for Vinkensport (digital); Hansel and Gretel (digital); The Sound of Music. He will also appear with HGO Studio singers in recital and other performances. Second-year HGO Studio artist. Previously at HGO: Coach for Rigoletto; La favorite; The Magic Flute (COVID-19 cancellation). He also appeared with HGO Studio singers in recital and other performances. Underwriters: Dr. Saúl and Ursula Balagura and Trey Yates Alex Munger previously served as a staff pianist at the University of Illinois, where he helped prepare La bohème and The Rape of Lucretia. In 2018 Munger was a fellowship pianist with the Aspen Opera

Underwriters: Stephanie Larsen and Lynn Des Prez/Valerie and Miguel Miro-Quesada Bin Yu Sanford has established herself as a solo pianist, vocal coach, and chamber musician. Yu Sanford earned her master of music in solo piano performance and an artist diploma in opera coaching at the University of Cincinnati CollegeConservatory of Music (CCM). Recently, she was selected as one of the vocal piano fellows at Music Academy of the West, where she worked on Jennifer Higdon’s Cold Mountain. Since 2017 Yu Sanford has served as a graduate assistant in the opera department at CCM. She was the first prize winner of the Pennsylvania MTNA Young Artist Piano Competition. In summer 2020 she was scheduled to join the Glimmerglass Festival as an apprentice pianist; however, the festival was canceled due to COVID-19. H G O. O R G



HGO Studio Supporters The HGO Studio receives generous support from Sylvia Barnes and Jim Trimble, Mr. Patrick Carfizzi, Marcheta Leighton-Beasley, Jerry and Sharyn Metcalf, Marsha Montemayor, Mr. and Mrs. Richard Reynolds, and Janet Sims. The HGO Studio is grateful for the in-kind support of the Texas Voice Center. The Young Artists Vocal Academy (YAVA) is generously underwritten by Mr. and Mrs. Robert N. Wakefield and the HGO Guild. Additional support for YAVA is provided by Mr. Patrick Carfizzi, Gwyneth Campbell, and Dr. David and Mrs. Norine Gill.

Additional support for the Houston Grand Opera Studio is provided by the following funds within the Houston Grand Opera Endowment, Inc.: The Gordon and Mary Cain Foundation     Endowment Fund

Erin Gregory Neale Endowment Fund Dr. Mary Joan Nish and Patricia Bratsas   Endowed Fund John M. O’Quinn Foundation Endowed   Fund Fellow

Thomas Capshaw Endowment Fund

Shell Lubricants (formerly Pennzoil–   Quaker State Company) Fund

James J. Drach Endowment Fund

Mary C. Gayler Snook Endowment Fund

The Evans Family

Tenneco, Inc., Endowment Fund

Carol Lynn Lay Fletcher Endowment Fund

Weston-Cargill Endowed Fund

William Randolph Hearst Endowed   Scholarship Fund Charlotte Howe Memorial   Scholarship Fund Elva Lobit Opera Endowment Fund

HGO thanks Magnolia Houston for outstanding support of the HGO Studio and YAVA programs.

Marian and Speros Martel Foundation   Endowment Fund

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SEEKING TO STRENGTHEN THE SPIRIT  Through a challenging period, HGOco continues to inspire Houston’s diverse and vibrant community By Carleen Graham As HGO begins year four of its six-year initiative, Seeking the Human Spirit (STHS), we understand now more than ever the role that music and the arts can play in strengthening the spirit by providing an outlet for expression and interaction with others. We will shift the focus of our STHS programming this season, concentrating on healing through music, and look forward to continued collaborations with the Houston Methodist Center for Performing Arts Medicine, The Women’s Home, SEARCH, and The Beacon, among others. Energized by the success of our virtual summer camp, Discover Opera, the HGOco team is now hard at work exploring innovative and meaningful ways to stay connected with our community throughout this period when we cannot gather in person. We are finding that our Cultivating Empathy through Music & Storytelling workshop has a vibrant new life virtually! Utilizing a combination of

STORIES OF A CITY HGOco champions two new Houston-centric operas. By Emily Wells Turn and Burn Last March, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo was underway, and HGOco’s Rodeo Songs were about to feature at the Stars Over Texas Stage. These pieces were meant to connect rodeo with opera for the listener, and get folks excited about HGO’s 70th world premiere, Turn and Burn. While that event was canceled, we’re still full of anticipation for this new work’s debut. What does country and western have to do with the operatic works we know and love? The two aren’t as far removed from

interactive features, we are able to bring people together in meaningful ways, helping those feeling isolated or anxious and working to build comradery within organizations.  While we may not be able to go into schools this fall, we are excited to film our latest Opera to Go! commission, Katie: The Strongest of the Strong, to share with HISD and other school districts. HGOco is partnering with HISD on professional development workshops for teachers on subjects including maintaining vocal health, as well as in-depth video and virtual-conferencing workshops that offer tips on teaching young voices and developing Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) skills using music and singing. Our commitment to telling stories relevant to or inspired by Houstonians continues with our Song of Houston commissions. We look forward to the premiere of Turn and Burn in February 2021, and to music

each other as they may seem. Stories of heartbreak, lost love, jealousy, and countless other common themes run between the two genres. So why not a rodeo opera? Composer Nell Shaw Cohen and librettist Megan Cohen, a sister team, interviewed athletes, volunteers, committee members, and HLSR fans to breathe life and truth into the characters in the fictional story of Turn and Burn.  Their unique, feminist take on a sport and industry historically dominated by male narratives focuses on competitive barrel racer Shayla Taylor. We look forward to sharing this genre-expanding work with our audiences in the spring of 2021.  A Space of Sky (working title) HGOco also has been collaborating with its community partners to tell the stories of a completely different and often invisible community. A Space of Sky (working

workshops for A Space of Sky (working title) in November and May. Though we never know quite what to expect with each new day, we are committed—now more than ever—to providing our diverse and vibrant community with programming that strengthens, educates, and inspires, so that we may all be ready to gather again in person to enjoy all the wonders that opera and music have to offer.

title), composed by Jeremy Howard Beck to a libretto by Stephanie Fleischmann, was inspired by two weeks of conversations and interviews with individuals experiencing homelessness, those who have been without homes in the past, and the dedicated staff and volunteers working to end homelessness in the city of Houston.  Many people are closer to homelessness than they would like to acknowledge, and the stories shared in this new innovative opera highlight that difficult truth. Development for this project, with its unique blend of the journalistic and the artistic, is ongoing; the new work will make its premiere in March of 2022. HGOco also will continue to support and provide programming for its partner organizations and their clients who exist in this space.

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ALL ABOARD! Announcing the Bauer Family High School Voice Studio class of 2021 Houston Grand Opera is pleased to welcome nine students into the prestigious Bauer Family High School Voice Studio for the 2020–21 season. These young singers will receive 24 tuition-free voice lessons with esteemed voice faculty Hector Vasquez, Alicia Gianni, and Christopher Michel. Along with significant financial assistance for college auditions, students will have the opportunity to work with HGO mainstage artists in monthly masterclasses and build college-readiness skills with HGO staff throughout the 2020–21 season.

Victoria Cerda, soprano, junior at Eisenhower High School, Aldine ISD

Sam Dill,  countertenor, senior at Kinder High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, HISD

Nate Edwards, baritone, senior at Tomball Memorial High School, Tomball ISD

Brianna Escamilla,  mezzo, senior at Angleton High School, Angleton ISD

Nicholas Mathew, tenor, junior at Shadow Creek High School, Alvin ISD

Jackie Hickman, mezzo, junior at Kinder High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, HISD

Benjamin Mera,  tenor, senior at Cypress Falls HS, CFISD

Samantha Pape, mezzo, junior at Kinder High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, HISD

Jude Watt,  tenor, senior at Kingwood High School, Humble ISD

Find more information at hgo.org/hsvs.

The Bauer Family High School Voice Studio is generously sponsored by: Ruth and Ted Bauer Family Foundation C. T. Bauer Foundation Houston Grand Opera Guild Endowment Fund in memory of Ann Craft

DISCOVER OPERA CAMP HGOco’s popular summer camp series, scheduled to be held at the Wortham this past June, had to be canceled due to COVID-19. The team at HGOco quickly reimagined a virtual opera camp for teenagers ages 13 to 18, Discover Opera.

The online camp, which ran three days per week from June 16 through July 2, was designed for serious singers, opera geeks, and students who wish to pursue music in college. Forty-three campers from all four mainland time zones participated.

“We had a choice in front of us: cancel camp completely or create something new with the limited resources available and see what happens,” recalls Alisa Magallón, HGOco’s senior education manager. “In the end, what we created was an insight into our profession most students don’t see until their final years of college. We created a camp that gave scope to the world of a professional singer that goes beyond the voice, and the students responded in the best way possible: they want more.”

Campers fell into two categories. Explorers enjoyed pop-in visits from luminaries including Jamie Barton, Daniel Belcher, Arturo Chacón-Cruz, Anthony Roth Costanzo, Eun Sun Kim, Ana María Martínez, Marietta Simpson, Reginald Smith, Jr., and Patrick Summers, along with classes taught by HGOco staff and other professionals on singing, acting, stage combat, opera history and literature, and diction. Navigators partook in those activities while enjoying additional


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sessions on subjects including auditioning, resume building, selecting the right college, and both traditional and nontraditional career pathways. For the first time, eight other opera companies partnered with HGOco for Discover Opera by sending campers, promoting the opportunity, or observing activities: Arizona Opera, Atlanta Opera, Austin Opera, Central City Opera, Cincinnati Opera, Minnesota Opera, Opera Philadelphia, and Palm Beach Opera. I am so proud of how the HGOco team rallied to create Discover Opera in such a short period of time. We really had a lot of fun. A special thank-you to Shell for making our camp possible! —Carleen Graham

HGOCO Three years ago, at the outset of a new project to turn the historic life and times of iconic strongwoman and suffragette Katie Sandwina into a new children’s opera, Katie: The Strongest of the Strong, no one knew how timely this piece would be in 2020. What began as a lovely homage to the 100-year anniversary of the ratification of 19th Amendment has turned into a poignant reflection of social unrest in our country in the wake of the Me Too and Black Lives Matter movements. The opera’s themes of creating meaningful change, reframing the public’s view of marginalized peoples, and seeking a reckoning for injustice are more relevant than ever today.

A STORY OF STRENGTH Opera to Go! takes social justice on the road with a new children’s opera. By Alisa Magallón

The brilliant creative team, composer Faye Chiao and librettist Anton Dudley, connect past to present in Katie, and in doing so remind us of what truly matters: the ability to define yourself by your strengths, persevere over the judgment of others, overcome inequality, believe in yourself, and stand up for others.

their movement—follow Katie across the U.S. as she learns that strength is about lifting not only heavy objects, but also voices that need to be heard. Written for an all-female cast, the 45-minute performance subtly reminds audiences how uncommon it is for women to dominate the operatic stage. For children watching Katie, we are creating a new definition of opera that erases the misogyny ingrained in the artform for hundreds of years. Don’t miss the opportunity to see this production—and learn Katie’s story—during this time when we most need its transformative power. The world premiere of Katie: The Strongest of the Strong by Faye Chiao and Anton Dudley is set to launch a digital “tour” in October, with live performances planned starting in the spring of 2021. hgo.org/operatogo

Full of joyful moments depicting Katie Sandwina’s life on the road performing wild feats of physical strength with P.T. Barnum and his circus, the opera has a vaudevillian feel but also a modern voice. Suffragettes—and the protestors against

Lead Supporters The Elkins Foundation The William Randolph Hearst Foundation The Powell Foundation ConocoPhillips H-E-B The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™

HGOco Funders Grand Guarantor

Grand Underwriter

The Elkins Foundation

The Powell Foundation



The Brown Foundation, Inc.

Judy and Richard Agee

City of Houston through the   Miller Advisory Board

Ruth and Ted Bauer   Family Foundation


Rosemary Malbin

William Randolph Hearst  Foundation

Wells Fargo

H-E-B Houston Livestock Show   and Rodeo™ Kinder Foundation The Andrew W. Mellon  Foundation Bill and Sara Morgan OPERA America

Supporters Adrienne Bond Nana Booker and David Lowe/   Booker · Lowe Gallery Lawrence E. Carlton, M.D.,   Endowment Fund

George and Mary Josephine   Hamman Foundation Houston Grand Opera Guild Kinder Morgan Foundation William E. and Natoma Pyle   Harvey Charitable Trust Glen Rosenbaum The activities of Houston Grand Opera are supported in part by funds provided by the City of Houston and by a grant from the Texas Commission on the Arts.

The Nexus Initiative HGOco programs, including Student Performances and HGO’s performances at Miller Outdoor Theatre, are supported through the NEXUS Initiative, which is made possible by: Anchorage Foundation   of Texas BBVA The Brown Foundation, Inc. The Wortham Foundation, Inc. Shell

The Cockrell Family Fund James J. Drach   Endowment Fund

Shell H G O. O R G


Houston Grand Opera Guild welcomes the artists joining the HGO Studio for the 2020–21 season. We look forward to streaming the annual Studio Showcase on September 25, and to enjoying all the HGO Digital works on offer this fall and winter. Houston Grand Opera Guild welcomes the 2020-21 season’s Studio Artists. HGO Guild membership provides volunteer opportunities that increase your enjoyment of opera. Meet new friends in the Buddies program, join artist hospitality events, learn about opera, and more. Join the HGO Guild — call 713-546-0269, or visit www.hgoguild.org/membership for more information.

Photos provided by Houston Grand Opera

2020-21 HGO Studio Artists

BLACK LIVES MATTER. Houston Grand Opera is committed to showcasing and welcoming the incredible talents of BIPOC voices in opera, concerts, on our staff, on our board, and in our audience.


The Impresarios Circle is Houston Grand Opera’s premier donor recognition society. These vanguard supporters who provide annual support of at least $100,000 are instrumental to HGO’s success. For information, please contact Greg Robertson, chief advancement officer, at 713-546-0274 or grobertson@hgo.org. Robin Angly, Chairman

JUDY AND RICHARD AGEE HGO subscribers since 2000–01, Judy and Dick are ardent believers in the power of storytelling through words and music. They partnered with the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston Inner-City Catholic Schools to bring HGOco programs to economically disadvantaged students. Judy and Dick, the founder and chairman of Wapiti Energy LLC and Bayou Well Holdings Company LLC, are members of HGO’s Founders Council. Additionally, Judy is the chair of the HGOco Committee and Dick serves as vice chair of the HGO Finance Committee. Beyond their generous support of general operations and HGOco, they also support Concert of Arias and HGO’s mainstage productions.

JANICE BARROW Jan’s relationship with HGO extends back to the early 1980s, when she and her late husband, Dr. Thomas Barrow, first became subscribers. Jan is a member of HGO’s Laureate Society and the Founders Council, contributing to HGO’s main stage and special events. She also supports the HGO Studio, having underwritten several rising opera stars over the past 20 years. Jan’s late husband, Tom, former chairman of the HGO Board of Directors, was instrumental in the concept and construction of the Wortham Center. A lifelong lover of music, Jan is past president of the Houston Symphony and has a special affinity for Puccini and Wagner.

ANCHORAGE FOUNDATION OF TEXAS Many Houstonians of all ages and backgrounds experience opera for the first time during HGO’s free public performances at Miller Outdoor Theatre, an annual tradition made possible by the longstanding generosity of Anchorage Foundation of Texas. The Foundation has been improving the quality of life in Houston for four decades, and made a generous contribution to HGO’s Hurricane Harvey recovery fund. Marc Melcher is president of Anchorage Foundation of Texas, and his family has been involved with HGO for over 25 years.

THE BROWN FOUNDATION, INC. The Brown Foundation, Inc., established in 1951 by Herman and Margarett Root Brown and George R. and Alice Pratt Brown, has been a treasured partner of HGO since 1984. Based in Houston, the Foundation distributes funds principally for education, community service, and the arts, especially the visual and performing arts. HGO is tremendously grateful for The Brown Foundation’s leadership support, which has been critical to the company’s unprecedented growth and success in recent years. The Brown Foundation was among the lead contributors to HGO’s Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts.

ROBIN ANGLY AND MILES SMITH HGO subscribers Robin and Miles joined the Founders Council in 2010. The company is honored to have Robin on the HGO Board of Directors and as a member of HGO’s Laureate Society. The couple is very familiar with the view from the HGO stage as well—both are former singers in the HGO Chorus. Robin and Miles have been donors to HGO special events, the Young Artists Vocal Academy, and HGO’s Ring cycle. They are charter members of the Impresarios Circle and generously underwrite a mainstage production each season.

SARAH AND ERNEST BUTLER HGO subscribers for over 20 years, Ernest and Sarah are the lead underwriters for the company’s digital artistic programming for the 2020-21 season. They also have generously endowed three chairs at HGO: those of Managing Director Perryn Leech, Chorus Master Richard Bado, and HGO Chorus Concertmaster Denise Tarrant. Because supporting young artists is a particular passion for both, HGO’s Concert of Arias is one of their favorite annual events. Ernest and Sarah reside in Austin and are longtime supporters of Ballet Austin, Austin Opera, Austin Symphony Orchestra, the Texas Cultural Trust, and the University of Texas Butler School of Music, which has carried their name since 2008. Ernest and Sarah are world travelers, and they never miss an opportunity to see opera in the cities they visit.

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IMPRESARIOS CIRCLE ZANE AND BRADY CARRUTH Brady is the chief executive officer and president of Saratoga Financial Group and is a trustee of The Wortham Foundation, Inc. Zane is the President of Carson Marketing, LLC, with over 25 years of marketing experience. HGO subscribers since the 2012–13 season, Zane and Brady are members of the Founders Council for Artistic Excellence and served as the chairmen of the 2017 Opera Ball. HGO is proud to have Zane on the HGO Board of Directors. She also serves on the Marketing and Communications Committee. In 2016, HGOco presented a world premiere Storybook Opera program based on Zane’s children’s book, The World’s First Tooth Fairy...Ever. ANNE AND ALBERT CHAO Anne and Albert have been subscribers and supporters of HGO for the past two decades. While serving as president and CEO of Westlake Chemical Corporation, Albert finds time for numerous cultural causes. He is a member of the HGO Board of Directors and was the co-chair of Inspiring Performance—The Campaign for Houston Grand Opera. Over the years, the Chaos have sponsored HGO special events, the HGO Studio, HGOco’s Song of Houston, and mainstage productions. The couple has also supported the HGO Endowment through their family foundation, the Ting Tsung and Wei Fong Chao Foundation. LOUISE CHAPMAN Louise Chapman of Corpus Christi, Texas, a longtime supporter of HGO, recently joined the HGO Board of Directors. Louise’s late husband, John O. Chapman, was a south Texas agricultural businessman and philanthropist. In addition to HGO, the Chapmans have supported numerous organizations in health, education, and the arts, including Texas A & M University, the Corpus Christi Symphony, and the Art Museum of South Texas. Louise and HGO Trustee Connie Dyer have known each other since they were college roommates at The University of Texas. MATHILDA COCHRAN Mathilda is a native of New Orleans and a long-time resident of Houston. She is a retired museum educator, having served for many years as Manager of the Docent and Tour Program at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, as well as a volunteer with Taping for the Blind, Inc. She and her late husband, Mike, created the Cochran Family Professorship in Earth and Environmental Sciences to support Tulane University’s School of Science and Engineering. Mathilda currently serves as a member of the HGO Board of Directors and is chair of the HGOco Committee. She has been an HGO subscriber since the 1986-87 season.


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CONOCOPHILLIPS For over 40 years, ConocoPhillips has supported various programs at HGO, from special events to mainstage productions, including a long-standing tradition of supporting HGO’s season-opening operas. In 2009, the company gave a major multi-year grant to establish ConocoPhillips New Initiatives, a far-reaching program that allows HGOco to develop new and innovative education and community collaboration programs. Kelly Rose, general counsel and SVP, serves on the HGO Board of Directors. JIM AND MOLLY CROWNOVER Jim Crownover was the chairman of the HGO Board of Directors 2016–18. He has been a member of the board since 1987 and has served on the Executive, Governance, Development, and Finance Committees. He and his wife, Molly, have been HGO subscribers for 30 years and are members of HGO’s Laureate Society and Impresarios Circle. In 1998, Jim retired from a 30-year career with McKinsey & Company, Inc., and currently serves on the boards of Chemtura Corporation, Weingarten Realty, Republic Services, Inc., and FTI Consulting. Jim also serves and supports the Houston Ballet, Rice University, the Houston Zoo, United Way Houston, Project Grad Houston, and a number of other organizations. THE CULLEN FOUNDATION For more than three decades, The Cullen Foundation has been a vital member of the HGO family. Established in 1947, the Foundation has more than a half-century history of giving generously to education, health care, and the arts in Texas, primarily in the Greater Houston area. The Opera is very grateful for the Foundation’s longstanding leadership support of HGO’s Family and Holiday Opera Series. THE CULLEN TRUST FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS The Cullen Trust for the Performing Arts has been a lead underwriter of HGO’s mainstage season for nearly 30 years. The Trust was established from assets of The Cullen Foundation to specifically benefit Texas performing arts institutions, particularly those within the Greater Houston area. In recent years, The Cullen Trust has provided lead support for memorable productions including HGO’s Family and Holiday Opera Series, and made a leadership contribution to HGO’s Hurricane Harvey recovery fund, as well as a generous gift to HGO’s COVID-19 recovery efforts.

THE ELKINS FOUNDATION Established by Margaret Weiss Elkins and James A. Elkins Jr. in 1956, The Elkins Foundation enriches our community by supporting a wide variety of educational, healthcare, cultural, community, and religious organizations. We are honored that Jenny Elkins and her family have been part of the HGO family for more than 15 years. The Elkins Foundation allows tens of thousands of students to experience opera each season through Opera to Go! and HGOco’s other learning programs. DRS. LIZ GRIMM AND JACK ROTH HGO subscribers since the 2013–14 season, Liz and Jack have both committed themselves to cancer research and patient care through their work at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Jack is a member of the HGO Board of Directors and serves on the HGO Studio Committee. Liz and Jack were generous underwriters of HGO’s historic, first-ever Ring cycle and lead supporters of HGO’s German repertoire, including Elektra. Additionally, Liz and Jack chaired the 2018 Opera Ball on April 14, 2018. HOUSTON GRAND OPERA ENDOWMENT, INC. Established and incorporated in 1982, the Houston Grand Opera Endowment (HGOE) is a vital financial management tool that ensures HGO has a reliable, regular source of income. Today, the Endowment contains over 50 named funds, both unrestricted and restricted, and annually distributes 5 percent of the Endowment’s average market value to HGO, making it the largest single annual funder of the Opera. HGOE leadership includes Chairman Thomas Rushing, Senior Chairman Janet Langford Carrig, and several members of the HGO Board of Directors. HOUSTON LIVESTOCK SHOW AND RODEOTM For more than 15 years, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ has supported HGOco’s arts education programs, helping more than one million Houston area students experience the magic of live opera through Opera to Go!, the Student Performance Series, and Storybook Opera. A 501(c)(3) charity, the Show has committed more than $475 million to the youth of Texas since 1932. The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo is the world’s largest livestock show and rodeo, with more than 2.4 million attendees in 2019.

HOUSTON METHODIST For over ten years, Houston Grand Opera has partnered with Houston Methodist, the official health care provider for HGO. Houston Methodist’s Center for Performing Arts Medicine (CPAM) is the only center of its kind in the country, comprising a specialized group of more than 100 physicians working collaboratively to address the specific demands placed upon performing artists. In addition to the first-rate medical care CPAM provides HGO artists, Houston Methodist also generously supports HGO’s special events and mainstage productions, is a major community partner on Seeking the Human Spirit, and is the presenter of HGO’s young professional programs. HGO is fortunate to have Dr. Warren Ellsworth and Dr. Apurva Thekdi serve as Houston Methodist’s corporate trustees. THE HUMPHREYS FOUNDATION Based in Liberty, Texas, the Humphreys Foundation has been a major underwriter of HGO’s mainstage season since 1980. Geraldine Davis Humphreys (d. 1961), a member of the pioneer Hardin family of Liberty, Texas, bequeathed her estate to the Humphreys Foundation, which was formally established in 1959. The Foundation provides support for performing arts in Texas and college scholarship funding for students in the arts. Linda Bertman, Louis Paine, and Robert Wall serve as trustees of the Humphreys Foundation. In recent years, the Foundation’s generous support has helped make possible unforgettable productions, like 2019’s holiday mariachi opera, El Milagro del Recuerdo. DONNA KAPLAN AND RICHARD LYDECKER Richard Lydecker has been an HGO subscriber and supporter for more than three decades. He is a member of the HGO Board of Directors and Impresarios Circle. Richard has great passion for opera, especially Wagner, and he and Donna were underwriters for HGO’s Ring cycle. They are also special events sponsors, supporting Opera Ball and Concert of Arias. NANCY AND RICHARD KINDER Nancy and Rich became HGO subscribers during the 2000–01 season. Rich is cofounder, chairman, and CEO of Kinder Morgan, and Nancy is a focused philanthropist whose work has positively impacted communities throughout Houston and beyond. Rich and Nancy established the Kinder Foundation in 1997 to provide impactful gifts to projects dedicated to urban green space, education, and quality-of-life issues in the Greater Houston area. HGO is indebted to the Kinders for their visionary support in areas including general operations, mainstage productions, special events, and especially HGOco, the Opera’s innovative education and community collaboration initiative.

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CLAIRE LIU AND JOSEPH GREENBERG Claire and Joe have subscribed to HGO for many seasons and are members of HGO’s Founders Council for Artistic Excellence. Claire serves on the HGO Board of Directors and is chair of the Finance Committee. She is newly retired from LyondellBassell Industries where she led the corporate finance team and was formerly a managing director with Bank of America. Joe is founder, president, and CEO of Alta Resources, L.L.C., a private company involved in the development of shale oil and gas resources in North America. Claire and Joe support many organizations, with particular emphasis on educational organizations including YES Prep and Teach for America. An avid runner, Claire has completed a marathon in all 50 states. BETH MADISON This season marks Beth’s 23rd as an HGO subscriber. HGO has had the honor of her support since 2004. Past chair of the HGO Board of Directors, she currently serves on the HGO Studio Committee, and is an active member of HGO’s Founders Council. She was the honoree at the 2017 Concert of Arias. Beth generously supports the HGO Studio, special events, and mainstage operas. Beth has been inducted into the Greater Houston Women’s Hall of Fame and serves on the University of Houston System Board of Regents. THE ROBERT AND JANICE MCNAIR FOUNDATION Janice and the late Bob McNair, longtime HGO subscribers, are well known for their incredible philanthropy and for bringing the NFL back to Houston. Bob was senior chairman of McNair Interests, a financial and real estate firm, and owner of the Houston Texans. The Robert and Janice McNair Foundation provides leadership support to Houston-area organizations supporting educational opportunities for youth. The McNair Foundation is the lead supporter of HGO’s Family and Holiday Opera Series. Bob was a former chair of the HGO Board of Directors (1995–97). M.D. ANDERSON FOUNDATION The M.D. Anderson Foundation has provided general operating support to HGO for more than 30 years. The Foundation was established in 1936 by Monroe Dunaway Anderson, whose company, Anderson, Clayton and Co., was the world’s largest cotton merchant. While the Foundation started the Texas Medical Center and was instrumental in bringing to it one of the premier cancer centers in the world, the Foundation’s trustees also looked to improve the wellness of communities through the arts. HGO is privileged to have such a longstanding and committed partner in enhancing the quality of life for all Houstonians.


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THE MELLON FOUNDATION Established in 1969, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation supports a wide range of FOUNDATION initiatives to strengthen the humanities, arts, higher education, and cultural heritage. The driving force behind so many of HGO’s new commissions, The Mellon Foundation’s longstanding support of HGO helps us tell relevant new stories and add to the operatic repertoire by developing new works, like Joel Thompson and Andrea Davis Pinkney’s The Snowy Day. THE ANDREW W.


MILLER THEATRE ADVISORY BOARD The Miller Theatre Advisory Board (MTAB), appointed by Houston’s mayor and confirmed by the City Council, acts as a steward of public and private funds to provide professional-caliber performances free to the public at the Miller Outdoor Theatre for the cultural enrichment of Houston’s diverse communities and visitors to the city. HGO’s partnership with MTAB extends over six decades, making great opera accessible to thousands of Houstonians each year through live mainstage and Opera to Go! performances at Miller Theatre. June Deadrick is an HGO trustee representing the Miller Theatre Advisory Board. SID MOORHEAD Sid Moorhead is the owner of Moorhead’s Blueberry Farm in Conroe, Texas, a family business that started as his father’s hobby over 40 years ago. After working for several years as a computer analyst, Sid left the corporate world to run the farm. He’s been an opera lover since he was in college, and he joined the Opera as an HGO Trustee in 2014. Now a member of the HGO Board of Directors, Sid enjoys traveling to experience opera around the world on our HGO Patron trips. We’re thrilled to have Sid as a valued member of our HGO family. SARA AND BILL MORGAN Sara and Bill have been supporting HGO since 2002. Sara is a co-founder of the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, where she currently serves on the board. Bill is a co-founder of the Kinder Morgan companies and the retired vice chairman and president of Kinder Morgan, Inc., and Kinder Morgan Energy Partners, LP. The Morgans support HGOco, HGO’s special events, and mainstage productions, including the Holiday Opera Series. HGO is thrilled to have Sara serve on the HGO Board of Directors and as a member and past chair of the HGOco Committee.

NOVUM ENERGY Founded in 2011 in Panama, Novum Energy is an international physical oil supply and trading company committed to industry excellence in delivery standards and customer service. Founder and President Alfredo Vilas serves on the HGO Board of Directors and has over 20 years of experience and a passion for service to the community through cultural, recreational, and philanthropic work. Novum Energy is supporting HGO’s new production of The Sound of Music next spring.

The Powell Foundation

DIAN AND HARLAN STAI Harlan, a member of the HGO Board of Directors, and Dian are charter members of HGO’s Founders Council for Artistic Excellence, and their leadership support includes mainstage productions, the HGO Studio, the HGO Endowment, and special events. The Stais have also sponsored HGO Studio artists and they host annual recitals featuring HGO Studio artists at Mansefeldt, their renowned Fredericksburg ranch. HGO was privileged to recognize Dian and Harlan as the honorees of Opening Night 2008 and the 2014 Concert of Arias.

THE POWELL FOUNDATION Founded in 1967 by Houston-based attorney Ben H. Powell and his wife, Kitty King Powell, The Powell Foundation improves the lives of residents of Harris, Travis, and Walker counties through charitable work in the fields of education, conservation, human services, and the arts. In addition to its longstanding support of HGOco’s impactful student programs, The Powell Foundation was among the lead contributors to HGO’s Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts and has made a generous contribution toward HGO’s COVID-19 recovery.

TENENBAUM JEWELERS HGO is thrilled to count Tenenbaum Jewelers as the preferred jeweler of Houston Grand Opera. For 40 years, Tenenbaum has been Houston’s premier destination for unique, rare, and collectible estate jewelry with styles ranging from antique to vintage to contemporary. Owners Tony Bradfield and Kevin Black are familiar faces at HGO performances, recitals, and events. From donating fabulous one-of-a-kind auction items to generously supporting our mainstage opera season and special events, the Tenenbaum team helps HGO sparkle and shine.

SCHLUMBERGER Schlumberger is a leading corporate contributor to HGO, supporting the main stage and a wide range of special projects over nearly 20 years. Schlumberger’s leadership gift was integral to launching HGO’s ongoing affordability program, the NEXUS Initiative, in 2007—since then, NEXUS has made great opera accessible to more than 275,000 people. HGO is honored to count Schlumberger among its most dedicated corporate supporters. Fred Dyen, Cameron Group HR director, serves on the HGO Board of Directors.

JOHN G. TURNER & JERRY G. FISCHER John and Jerry, based in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, travel around the world to experience the best that opera has to offer. HGO subscribers and donors for over a decade, the couple’s leadership support of Wagner’s Ring cycle (2014–17) was the largest gift ever made to HGO for a single production. John, a shareholder at Turner Industries Group, is a member of the HGO Board of Directors and past chair of the HGO Studio Committee. Jerry is a board member of Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra. In recent years, John and Jerry have supported HGO mainstage productions, the HGO Studio, and special events. They are members of the Founders Council for Artistic Excellence, and John is a member of HGO’s Laureate Society.

SHELL Shell is a leader in the Houston arts community, supporting HGO for over 40 years. Shell’s leadership support makes opera more accessible to everyone through the NEXUS Initiative for Affordability and inspires young minds with STEM-aligned arts education opportunities like our annual Opera Camps. Shell was also a major supporter of HGO’s Hurricane Harvey recovery. HGO is honored to have De la Rey Venter, executive vice president of integrated gas ventures, represent Shell on our board of directors, as well as HGO Trustee Christos Angelides, external relations general manager of integrated gas ventures.

VINSON & ELKINS LLP HGO has been privileged to have the support of international law firm Vinson & Elkins LLP for nearly three decades. For more than 100 years, Vinson & Elkins LLP has been deeply committed to empowering the communities in which it serves. It has enriched the cultural vibrancy of Houston by supporting HGO through in-kind legal services and contributions to special events and mainstage productions, including this season’s Live from The Cullen recital featuring Reginald Smith Jr. The Opera is honored to have two Vinson & Elkins LLP partners serve on its board of directors: from left, Chris Bacon and Glen A. Rosenbaum. H G O. O R G



MARGARET ALKEK WILLIAMS Margaret, a longtime singer, possesses a deep affinity for all music, and especially opera, supporting HGO for over 30 years. Currently, Margaret continues her parents’ legacy as chairman of their foundation, where her son Charles A. Williams serves as president. HGO is humbled by Margaret’s incredible generosity and dedication to the company, both as an individual donor and through her family’s foundation. She has endowed the Margaret Alkek Williams Chair, held by HGO Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers, and is a member of HGO’s Laureate Society. A valued member of the HGO Board of Directors, Margaret was the honoree of the 2009 Opera Ball and chairman of the 2014 Ball, and she generously chaired the 2018 Hurricane Harvey benefit Concert HGO and Plácido: Coming Home! THE WORTHAM FOUNDATION, INC. In the 1980s, the Wortham Foundation contributed $20 million to lead the capital campaign for the Wortham Theater Center, guided by businessman Gus S. Wortham’s early recognition of the vital role of the arts in making Houston an appealing place to live and work. During their lifetimes, Gus and his wife, Lyndall, were dedicated to improving the lives of Houstonians. The Foundation continues to support the Opera through the Wortham Foundation Permanent Endowment and generous annual operating support. This leadership support has been vital to HGO’s growth and commitment to excellence. The Wortham Foundation’s support of HGO’s Hurricane Harvey recovery helped to bring the company back home, and we are deeply grateful. LYNN WYATT Lynn’s generosity touches every aspect of HGO. She is a Lifetime Trustee of HGO and serves as the vice chairman of the HGO Board of Directors. She serves as vice-chair of HGO’s Governance Committee and chaired HGO’s Golden Jubilee Gala in 2005. Oscar Wyatt endowed The Lynn Wyatt Great Artist Fund in 2010, honoring Lynn’s service to the company and dedication to bringing the world’s best operatic artists to HGO, and she was the honoree at the 2010 Opera Ball. Lynn and Oscar have been lead supporters of a number of HGO productions and programs, including the multiyear company-wide initiative Seeking the Human Spirit.


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Your one-stop destination for great opera, recitals, and concerts at home. Stream the entire HGO Digital season through the HGO website, or watch it on your TV through Marquee TV! Find instructions for downloading Marquee TV and detailed information about each program in the 2020–21 HGO Digital season. From the Wortham, straight to your living room!

Don’t Miss

Concert of Arias 2021

Concert d of Arias The live finals of the 33rd annual Eleanor McCollum Competition for Young Singers Stream It Live!

7 p.m. February 5, 2021 Sid Moorhead, event chairman HGO.org/COA

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5020 Kelvin Dr. | Houston, TX 77005 www.villagesouthampton.com H G O. O R G



Members of Houston Grand Opera’s Patrons Circle support the ­opera at a level of $5,000 or more, thereby making possible the incredible work of HGO. Members of the Society are entitled to many benefits at the Opera, including complimentary valet parking, Masterson Green Room privileges during performance intermissions, personalized ticket service, two tickets to all open dress rehearsals, Opera Guild membership, a discount on Opera Guild ­Boutique purchases, and more. HGO gratefully recognizes Patrons. For information on joining the Patrons Circle, please contact Kelly Nicholls at 713-980-8698 or knicholls@hgo.org. David Gill, Chairman


Mrs. Geraldine C. Gill

Mary Roediger and Ralph Herbert

Mr. and Mrs. Philip A. Bahr

Mr. Wesley Goble

Mrs. Henry K. Roos

Mr. and Mrs. Frank N. Barnes

Sandy and Lee Godfrey

Kelly and David Rose

Blanche S. and Robert C. Bast Jr., MD

Adelma S. Graham

Mr. and Mrs. Tom Rushing

Mr. and Mrs. Martin D. Beirne

Mr. and Mrs. Melvyn Hetzel

Mr. and Ms. Manolo Sanchez

Philip and Larissa Bither

Mr. and Ms. Nicholas Greenan

Judy Sauer

Dr. Michael and Susan Bloome

Lee M. Huber

Ms. Sue Schwartz

Dr. Janet Bruner

Mr. Mark F. Jacobs and Ms. Shae Keefe

Mrs. Helen P. Shaffer

Mollie and Wayne Brunetti

Mr. A. V. Jones Jr.

Ms. Janet Sims

Bill and Melinda Brunger

Mr. Jon Rex Jones

Mr. Jeffrey Stocks

Mr. Tom Burley and Mr. Michael Arellano

Ann and Stephen Kaufman

Mr. and Mrs. Richard Burleson

Ann and Sam Koster

Dr. Laura E. Sulak and   Dr. Richard W. Brown

Ms. Gwyneth Campbell and   Mr. Joseph L. Campbell

Elizabeth and Bill Kroger

Mr. Minas and Dr. Jennifer Tektiridis

Mr. and Mrs. Richard J. Langenstein

Dr. Barbara Tilley

Jess and Patricia Carnes

Stephanie Larsen

Dr. Peter Chang and Hon. Theresa Chang

Marcheta Leighton-Beasley

Mr. Scott B. Ulrich and   Mr. Ernest A. Trevino

Ms. Patsy Chappelear

Dr. and Mrs. Ernst Leiss

Mr. William E. Colburn

Rochelle and Max Levit

Dr. Jessica Suarez-Colen and   Dr. John Colen

Mrs. Marilyn Lummis

Julie and Bert Cornelison Mr. Robert L. Cook and   Mrs. Giovanna Imperia

Ms. Laura Marsh Mr. and Mrs. D. Patrick McCelvey Jan and Nathan Meehan

Mr. Efraín Z. Corzo and Mr. Andrew Bowen

Amy and Mark Melton

Mr. and Mrs. Claude J. Davenport III

Ginger and Hugh Menown

Mr. and Mrs. Joshua Davidson

Mr. and Mrs. Mark Metts

Ms. Anna M. Dean

Dr. and Mrs. William E. Mitch

Dr. Elaine Decanio

Marsha L. Montemayor

Anna and Brad Eastman

Erik B. Nelson and Terry R. Brandhorst

C.C. and Duke Ensell

Beverly and Staman Ogilvie

Mr. Perry Ewing

Ms. Jeanne M. Perdue

Carol Lay Fletcher

Gloria M. Portela and Richard E. Evans

Ms. Patricia B. Freeman and   Mr. Bruce Patterson

Ms. Lynn Des Prez

S. Scott and Gina Gaille

Ms. Katherine Reynolds

Dr. and Mrs. Ronald Galfione

Mr. Serge G. Ribot

Gerard and Christine Gaynor

Mr. and Ms. Walter Ritchie

Dr. and Mrs. David P. Gill

Ed and Janet Rinehart


SPECI AL E D I T ION 2 0 2 0

Dr. Angela Rechichi-Apollo

James M. Trimble and Sylvia Barnes Mr. and Mrs. Jess B. Tutor John C. Tweed Mr. Georgios Varsamis Mr. and Mrs. James M. Vaughn Jr. Marietta Voglis Mr. and Mrs. K.C. Weiner Ms. Debra Witges Mr. and Mrs. C. Clifford Wright, Jr. Alan and Frank York Mr. and Mrs. David P. Young Mr. Hugh Zhang and Ms. Lulu Tan Nina and Michael Zilkha YOUNG TRUSTEE—$5,000 OR MORE Mr. and Mrs. Bryan W. Bagley Emily Bivona and Ryan Manser Mr. Wirt Blaffer and Ms. Nina Delano Mr. Ryan Boehner Carrie and Sverre Brandsberg-Dahl Ms. Kiana K. Caleb and Mr. Troy L. Sullivan Mr. Anthony Chapman

ANNUAL SUPPORT Drs. Rachel and Warren A. Ellsworth IV

Mr. and Mrs. Robert J. Ardell

Mr. and Mrs. Hiram Davis

Michelle Klinger and Ru Flanagan

Bill Arning and Mark McCray

Dr. and Mrs. Roupen Dekmezian

Mr. Claudio Gutierrez

Paul and Maida Asofsky

Mr. and Mrs. Christopher Hanno

Mr. Neely Atkinson

Dr. Thomas S. DeNapoli and   Mr. Mark Walker

Sara and Gabriel Loperena

Christopher Bacon and Craig Miller

Ms. Elisabeth DeWitts

Dr. Nico Roussel and Ms. Teresa Procter

Kate Baker

Mr. and Mrs. Tracy L. Dieterich

Drs. Vivek and Ishwaria Subbiah

Nancy and Paul Balmert

Mr. and Mrs. John DiFilippo Jr.

Ms. Katherine Thomasson and   Mr. Michael Talbot

Mr. William Bartlett

Mr. and Mrs. Larry Dooley

Mr. and Mrs. James Becker

Dr. and Mrs. Giulio Draetta

Dr. James A. Belli and Dr. Patricia Eifel

Mr. John Ellis Drewer

Drs. Robert S. and Nancy Benjamin

Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Dubrowski

Dr. and Mrs. Joel M. Berman

Dr. David Edelstein and Mrs. Julie Riggins

Drs. Henry and Louise Bethea

Kellie Elder and David Halbert

Mr. and Mrs. Stanley C. Beyer

Mrs. James A. Elkins III

Dr. Dennis Berthold and Dr. Pamela   Matthews, College Station, TX

Mr. and Mrs. Stephen D. Bickel

Parrish N. Erwin Jr.

Dr. Joan Hacken Bitar

Mr. and Mrs. J. Thomas Eubank

Mr. Richard E. Boner and   Ms. Susan Pryor, Austin, TX

Dr. Jerry L. Bohannon

Ms. Thea M. Fabio and Mr. Richard Merrill

Dr. and Mrs. Jules H. Bohnn

Mary Ann and Larry Faulkner

Ms. Adrienne Bond

Ms. Ursula Felmet

Mr. Jeffery Bosworth and   Mr. Timothy Bammel

Nanette Finger

Walt and Nancy Bratic

Kevin and Debbie Fogarty

Mr. Al Brende and Mrs. Ann Bayless

Wanda and Roger Fowler

Mr. Chester Brooke and   Dr. Nancy Poindexter

Mr. John E. Frantz

Mr. Stephen Brossart and   Mr. Gerrod George

Drs. Daniel and Jean Freeman

Mr. and Mrs. Alexander van Veldhoven NATIONAL TRUSTEE—$5,000 OR MORE Ms. Jacqueline S. Akins, San Antonio, TX Jorge Bernal and Andrea Maher,   Bogota, Colombia

Sarah and Ernest Butler, Austin, TX Dr. Thomas S. DeNapoli and   Mr. Mark Walker, San Antonio, TX Brian Hencey and   Charles Ross Jr., Austin, TX Mr. Charles Hendrix, Rancho Mirage, CA Edward and Patricia Hymson,   San Francisco, CA Mrs. Judy Kay, DeRidder, LA Mr. and Mrs. Blair Labatt, San Antonio, TX Mrs. Sharon G. Ley and   Mr. Robert F. Lietzow, Austin, TX Ms. Wanda A. Reynolds, Austin, TX

Mr. Matthew Brown Ms. Sonja Bruzauskas and   Mr. Houston Haymon

Dennis and Linda Fish

Ms. Caroline Freeman Mr. and Mrs. William B. Freeman Jr. Mr. and Mrs. Scott J. Garber Dr. Alice Gates and Dr. Wayne Wilner

Mr. and Mrs. Lester P. Burgess

Dr. Layne O. Gentry

Chuck and Michelle Ritter,   Kansas City, MO

Mrs. Carol Butler

Dr. Eugenia C. George

Dr. Sid Roberts and Mrs.Catherine   Roberts, Lufkin, TX

Drs. Ian and Patricia Butler Mr. Patrick Carfizzi

Nancy Glass, M.D., and   John Belmont, M.D.

James and Nathanael Rosenheim,   College Station, TX

Drs. Susan and Dennis Carlyle

Mr. Thomas K. Golden and   Mrs. Susan Baker Golden

Mr. and Mrs. Juan M. Carreon

Dr. and Mrs. Clark D. Terrell, Boerne, TX

Mary Frances Gonzalez

Mrs. John R. Castano

Dr. and Mrs. David Y. Graham

Ms. Nada Chandler

Mr. and Mrs. Michael Greaves

Mr. Robert N. Chanon

Joyce Z. Greenberg

Damon Chargois

Dr. and Mrs. Stephen B. Greenberg

Mr. and Mrs. Jack Christiansen

Mr. W. A. Grieves

Mr. and Mrs. Robert L. Clarke

Ms. Dianne L. Gross

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Collier

Ms. Gabriella M. Guerra

Ms. Donna Collins

William F. Guest

Dr. Nancy I. Cook

Mr. Sten L. Gustafson and   Ms. Sofia Adrogué

PATRONS CIRCLE—$5,000 OR MORE Ms. Jacquelyn M. Abbott Mr. and Mrs. W. Kendall Adam Ms. Jacqueline S. Akins Mrs. Nancy C. Allen Mr. William J. Altenloh and Dr. Susan Saurage-Altenloh Chris and Michelle Angelides

Shelly Cyprus

H G O. O R G


ANNUAL SUPPORT Ms. Zahava Haenosh

Dr. Mike Lemanski

Mrs. Gerald Rauch

Ms. Barbara D. Hagood

David and Lori LePori

Dr. and Mrs. Thomas C. Halsey

Dr. and Mrs. Olivier Lhemann

Dr. David Reininger and   Ms. Laura Lee Jones

Mrs. Mary Hankey

Mrs. Sylvia Lohkamp and   Mr. Tucker Coughlen

Carol F. Relihan

Mr. and Mrs. Paul A. Lynn

Mr. Robert Richter Jr.

Mr. and Mrs. A. John Harper III

Mr. and Mrs. Harry Mach

Mr. and Mrs. Gregory S. Robertson

Dr. Linda L. Hart

Ms. Michele Malloy

Drs. Alejandro and Lynn Rosas

Brian Hencey and Charles Ross Jr.

Ms. Diane M. Marcinek

Dr. and Mrs. Franklin Rose

Mr. and Mrs. Robert C. Hewell

Renee Margolin

Mrs. Shirley Rose

Pam Higgins and Tom Jones

Mary Marquardsen

Ms. Jill Schaar and Mr. George Caflisch

Mrs. Ann G. Hightower

Ms. Anastasia Marshall

Ms. Jo Ann W. Schaffer

Deborah and Michael Hirsch

Mrs. Richard P. Schissler Jr.

Ms. Janis Hodgson

Mr. R. Davis Maxey and   Ms. AnnMarie Johnson

Gary Hollingsworth and Ken Hyde

Dr. and Mrs. Malcolm Mazow

Dr. Holly Holmes

Mrs. Dorothy McCaine

Dr. Patricia Holmes

Wynn and Shawna McCloskey

Alan and Ellen Holzberg

Ms. Marion Andrus McCollam

Mr. and Mrs. John H. Homier

Mrs. Sarah McCollum

Dr. and Mrs. Gabriel N. Hortobagyi

Gillian and Michael McCord

Robert and Kitty Hunter

Mimi Reed McGehee

Dr. Alan J. Hurwitz

Dr. Alice R. McPherson

Edward and Patricia Hymson

Keith and Elizabeth McPherson

Mr. and Mrs. Paul Jacob

Mrs. Anne C. Mendelsohn

Mr. and Mrs. Malick Jamal

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Menzie

Ms. Joan Jeffrey

Jerry and Sharyn Metcalf

Mr. and Mrs. James K. Jennings Jr.

Mr. and Mrs. Bruce Misamore

Mr. and Mrs. Basil Joffe

Ms. Celia Morgan

Mr. Raymond Jones and Mr. Paras Trivedi

Mrs. Bobbie Newman

Sultana Kaldis

Drs. John and Karen Oldham

Ms. Linda Katz

Ms. Claire O’Malley

Mr. Frank Harmon III and   The Honorable Melinda Harmon

Mr. and Mrs. Robert J. Kauffman

Mr. Roberto Orlandi

The Honorable and Mrs. Stuart S. Kay, Jr.

Suzanne Page-Pryde and Arthur Pryde

Mr. and Mrs. Hugh Rice Kelly

Mr. and Mrs. Michael J. Pancherz

Mr. Anthony K.

Mrs. Maria Papadopoulos

Mr. and Mrs. George B. Kelly

Mr. and Ms. Carl Pascoe

Ms. Nancy J. Kerby

Susan and Ward Pennebaker

Mr. and Mrs. Albert Kidd

Mr. and Mrs. Harry C. Pinson

Mr. and Mrs. Frederick Kolb

Mr. and Mrs. Elvin B. Pippert Jr.

Dr. and Mrs. Lary R. Kupor

Mr. Robert Pitre

Mr. and Mrs. Blair Labatt

Susie and Jim Pokorski

Mr. and Mrs. Randall B. Lake

Ms. Penny Prater

Dr. Helen W. Lane

Lou and Joan Pucher

Caroline and Perryn Leech

Dr. Paul B. Radelat and Ms. Irina Grant

Mr. Richard Leibman

Ms. Judith Raines


SPECI AL E D I T ION 2 0 2 0

Ms. Wanda A. Reynolds

Mr. Vance Senter and Mrs. Jane Senter Mr. Raul Sepulveda Dr. Paul E. Setzler Mr. Paul Shaw and Mr. Roger Woest Diana Strassmann and Jeffrey Smisek Dr. and Mrs. C. Richard Stasney Mr. Per A. Staunstrup and Ms. Joan Bruun Richard P. Steele and Mary McKerall Mrs. Sue Stocks Kathy and Richard Stout Dr. and Mrs. Demetrio Tagaropulos Mr. Leon Thomsen and Mrs. Pat Thomsen Ms. Susan L. Thompson Mr. and Mrs. Charles Tobias Dr. and Mrs. Karl Tornyos Mr. and Mrs. Robert B. Trainer Jr. Mrs. Ann Gordon Trammell Dr. Elizabeth Travis and Mr. Jerry Hyde Mr. James Trippett Mr. and Mrs. John Untereker Birgitt van Wijk Ms. Barbara Van Postman Mr. Veer Vasishta Mr. and Mrs. Larry Veselka Mr. Greg Vetter and Ms. Irene Kosturakis Ms. Marie-Louise S. Viada Mr. and Mrs. Robert N. Wakefield Geoffrey Walker and Ann Kennedy Darlene Walker and Reagan Redman Dean Walker Mr. and Mrs. M. C. “Bill” Walker III Mary Lee and Jim Wallace

ANNUAL SUPPORT Mr. and Mrs. John Wallace

Ms. Joan Sanborn

Diane and Raymond Wallace

Adel and Jason Sander

Robert and Nancy Shivers,   San Antonio, TX

Mr. and Mrs. Jay Watkins

Ms. Emily Schreiber

Ms. Alice Simkins, San Antonio, TX

Ms. Pippa Wiley

Kenneth and Deborah Scianna

Ms. Jane L. Williams

Mr. Nicholas Shea

Dr. David N. Tobey and   Dr. Michelle Berger, Austin, TX

Loretta and Lawrence Williams

Mr. and Mrs. Aaron J. Stai

Mr. and Mrs. Charles A. Williams

Dr. Pavlina Suchanova

Dr. Courtney Williams

Mr. and Mrs. Hector Torres

Nancy and Sid Williams

Andrea Ward and David Trahan

Margaret and Alan Weinblatt,   San Antonio, TX

Dr. Randall Wolf


Mr. Donald Wertz, Austin, TX

Mr. and Mrs. David S. Wolff Mr. Peter Wood and Ms. Silvia Salle Mr. and Mrs. John W. Wright Ken and Carolyn Yeats Drs. Edward Yeh and Hui-Ming Chang


Mr. and Mrs. Harvey Tucker, Bryan, TX Mr. Jerre van den Bent, Dallas, TX Mrs. Rons Voogt, Huntsville, TX

Valerie and David Woodcock,   College Station, TX

Ms. Cynthia Akagi and   Mr. Tom Akagi, Madison, WI

John L. Zipprich II

Mr. and Mrs. Thomas R. Allison,   Lake Charles, LA

5 Anonymous

Tom and Kay Brahaney, Midland, TX Dr. Bernd U. Budelmann, Galveston, TX

YOUNG PATRONS—$2,500 OR MORE Chris Armstrong and Laura Schaffer Ms. Megan Brown Ms. Elise Bungo

Mr. and Mrs. F. H. Cloudman III,   Boulder, CO Mr. James M. Duerr and   Dr. Pamela Hall, San Antonio, TX

Mr. Sholto Davidson

Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Evans,   Coldspring, TX

Ms. Rebecca Ferrell

Mr. Jack Firestone, Miami, FL

Mr. Ryan Firth and Dr. Alinda Gary

Mrs. Ronald P. Fischer, Chagrin Falls, OH

Meredith and Joseph Gomez

Dr. and Mrs. Marvin A. Fishman,   Angel Fire, NM

Ms. Kathleen Henry Ms. Tami Hiraoka Lady Kimbrell and Mr. Joshua Allison Miss Ellen Liu and Miss Ilana  Walder-Biesanz Kirby and David Lodholz Rachel and Daniel MacLeod Mr. and Mrs. Spencer Mehrens Chadd Mikulin and Amanda Lenertz Ms. Constanza Montanez Adam and Tina Outland Lauren Randle Mr. Arturo Muñoz Holguin and   Ms. Jessica Roper

Michael Freeburger and   Matilda Perkins, Fair Oaks Ranch, TX Dr. Wm. David George, Austin, TX Mr. Raymond Goldstein and   Ms. Jane T. Welch, San Antonio, TX Mr. Kyle Kerr, Irving, TX Jeff and Gail Kodosky, Austin, TX Dr. and Mrs. Morton Leonard Jr.,   Galveston, TX Mr. George Loudder and   Dr. Martha Loudder, College Station, TX Cathleen C. and Jerome M. Loving,   Bryan, TX Mr. John P. Muth, Wimberley, TX

Dr. John Papadopoulos

Dr. James F. Nelson, San Antonio, TX

Adrienn L. Parsons

John and Elizabeth Nielsen-Gammon,   College Station, TX

Ms. Darlene Perales Drs. Mauricio Perillo and Lujan Stasevicius Jennifer Salcich

Mrs. Carolyn A. Seale and   Mrs. Carol Lee Klose, San Antonio, TX Mr. and Mrs. Victor E. Serrato, Pharr, TX H G O. O R G



HGO Donors Houston Grand Opera appreciates all individuals who contribute to the company’s success. Support in any amount is received most gratefully. Our donors share a dedication to supporting the arts in our community, and the generosity of these individuals makes it possible for HGO to sustain world-class opera in the Houston area. For information on becoming a Houston Grand Opera donor, please contact Kelly Nicholls at 713-980-8688 or knicholls@hgo.org. ASSOCIATE PATRONS— $2,000 OR MORE


Dr. John P. Anderson

Ms. Cecilia Aguilar

Dr. James E. Griffin III and   Dr. Margo Denke

Ms. Dorothy B. Autin

Mr. and Mrs. Neil Ken Alexander

John Hearn

Dr. Carlos Bacino

Joan and Stanford Alexander

Mr. and Mrs. David T. Hedges, Jr.

Grace and Mark Baker

Mr. and Mrs. John A. Barbe

Mr. and Mrs. Michael F. Henderek

Mr. Bob F. Boydston

Mr. and Mrs. Arturo Barragan

Dr. Ralph J. Herring

Kenneth T. Chin

Mrs. Deborah S. Bautch

Dr. Janice L. Hewitt

Vicki Clepper

Mr. and Mrs. V. G. Beghini

Mr. Bob Heyl

Mr. Jerry Conry

Alan and Sallymoon Benz

Dr. Sallie T. Hightower

Mr. and Mrs. Arthur G. Dauber

Mrs. John E. Bixby

Kay and Michael W. Hilliard

Andrew Davis and Corey Tu

Dr. Zach Blailock Jr.

Mr. Tim Hilt

June Deadrick

Drs. David H. and Joanne Boldt

Mr. and Mrs. Clay Hoster

Mr. and Mrs. Warren Dean

Mr. James L. Boockholdt

Mr. Francisco J. Izaguirre

Mr. and Mrs. Blake Eskew

Jim and Susan Boone

Lynda and Frank Kelly

Marion and Gary Glober

Ms. Zu Dell Broadwater

Mrs. Judy Koehl

Mrs. Gwynn F. Gorsuch

Mr. and Mrs. Charles Brodhead

Ms. Rachel Le and Mr. Lam Nguy

Ms. Janet Graves

Mr. and Mrs. James Brugman

Ms. Nadine Littles

Mr. and Mrs. Dewuse Guyton

Mr. Paul D. Camp

Mr. Robert Lorio

Dr. and Mrs. Carlos R. Hamilton, Jr.

Dorothy E. F. Caram, Ed.D.

Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Y. Lui

Ms. Rebecca Hansen

Mr. and Mrs. Thierry Caruso

Ms. Lynn Luster

Mr. and Mrs. Marvin Kaplan

Dr. Claude Cech

Ms. Nancy Manderson

Mr. Peter Manis and Ms. Susan Richman

Dr. Beth Chambers

Neal Manne and Nancy McGregor

Mr. James L. McNett

Ms. Mary Clark

Dr. and Mrs. Moshe H. Maor

Kay and Larry Medford

Mark and Juliet Markovich

Hal and Terry Meyer

Dr. Lorraine Cornwell and   Mr. Matthew Antonelli

Mrs. Eileen Moore

Mike and Gayle DeGeurin

Nancy Martin

John Newton and Peggy Cramer

Peggy DeMarsh

Danita Maseles

Mr. Wilton Pate

Mr. Frederick S. Dueser

Ms. Molly Mayfield

Mrs. Ulrike Peto

Mr. Harold J. Eisenman and   Ms. Jolene Friedman

Mrs. Mollie E. McBride

Ms. Elizabeth Phillips Mr. and Mrs. Irving Pozmantier Ramon and Chula Sanchez Christopher B. Schulze, M.D. Ms. Karen MacAdam Somer Nancy Thompson Mr. and Mrs. Alton L. Warren 2 Anonymous 62

SPECI AL E D I T ION 2 0 2 0

Ms. Ann L. Faget Dr. Jack M. Fletcher Monica Fulton Lucy Gebhart Mrs. Wendy Germani Susan Giannatonio and Bruce Winquist Mr. and Mrs. Kirk Girouard Rhoda Goldberg

Mr. and Mrs. Fred Gott

Mr. and Mrs. H. Woods Martin

Dr. Mary Fae McKay Ms. Maryellen McSweeney Christianne Melanson and Durwin Sharp Mrs. Theresa L. Meyer Mr. Douglas D. Miller Dr. and Mrs. Stanley Milstein Mr. and Mrs. Gerald Moynier Mr. and Mrs. Marvin H. Mueller

ANNUAL SUPPORT Mr. and Mrs. Chad Muir

Ms. Joan M. Shack

Mrs. Paloma Urbano

Mr. Dean Niemeyer and   Dr. Marlowe D. Niemeyer

Mr. and Mrs. Charles Shearouse

Dr. and Mrs. Lieven J. Van Riet

Mr. Nick Shumway and Mr. Robert Mayott

Andrea Ward and David Trahan

Mr. Eugene Nosal

Mr. Herbert Simons

Mr. Jesse Weir

Geoffry H. Oshman

Jan Simpson

J. M. Weltzien

Ms. Jo L. Papadakis

Mr. and Mrs. Louis. S. Sklar

Dr. Michael White and Dr. Claire Hoppenot

Dr. and Mrs. Richard B. Pesikoff

Len Slussler

Ms. Susan Trammell Whitfield

Mr. and Mrs. Dennis Phillips

Mrs. Roberta Smiley

LaVerne and Philip Wiles

Dr. and Mrs. Florante A. Quiocho

Mr. and Mrs. George Sneed

Mrs. Dolores Wilkenfeld

Ms. Judy Ramsey

Virginia Snider and Michael Osborne

Mr. and Mrs. Scott Wise

Mr. and Mrs. William Rawl

Ms. Linda F. Sonier

Dr. and Mrs. Thomas Woodell II

Mr. and Mrs. Richard Reynolds

Mr. Brian Speck

Ms. Pinar Oya Yilmaz

Mr. and Mrs. Gene Steve Rhea

Mr. and Mrs. George Stark

6 Anonymous

Mr. William K. Rice

Ms. Lori Summa

Mrs. Carol Ritter

Mr. and Mrs. Willie Swisher

Mr. Jorge Rodriguez and   Mrs. Beatriz Nino-Rodriguez

Mr. and Mrs. Winston Talbert

Dr. Roger D. Rossen Mansel and Brenda Rubenstein Mr. and Mrs. Eliseo Salazar Mr. Alan Schmitz

Mr. Kiyoshi Tamagawa Stefanie and Ralph Telford Ms. Jennifer Townsend Mr. and Mrs. Tim Unger

Corporate, Foundation, and Government Supporters Houston Grand Opera’s corporate, foundation, and government partners make it possible for HGO to create and share great art with our community. We are incredibly proud to work with these organizations and grateful for all they do. For information on joining HGO’s valued team of corporate and foundation supporters, please contact Kelly Finn, director of development, institutional giving, at 713-546-0265 or kfinn@hgo.org.

Michaela Greenan, Corporate Council Chair


Janet Langford Carrig, ConocoPhillips  (Retired)

Michael Heckman, Houston First  Corporation


Thierry Caruso, EY

Michael Hilliard, Winstead PC

Anna Catalano, Kraton Corporation

Gwen Hulsey, Baker McKenzie

Thomas R. Ajamie, Ajamie LLP

Albert Chao, Westlake Chemical  Corporation

Richard Husseini, Baker Botts L.L.P.

Angelo Ciardella Jr., Bank of America   Merrill Lynch

William Kopp, Scott & Stringfellow LLC

Chris Angelides, Shell J. Scott Arnoldy, Triten Corporation Chris Bacon, Vinson & Elkins LLP C. Mark Baker, Norton Rose Fulbright LLP Astley Blair, Marine Well Containment   Company (Retired)

Beth A. Colle, EY Adam Cook, Tokio Marine HCC Joshua Davidson, Baker Botts L.L.P.

Rick Jaramillo, Bank of America Michele M. LaNoue, Headworks Inc. Richard Leibman, FROSCH David LePori, Frost Bank Claire Liu, LyondellBasell (Retired)

Meg Boulware, Boulware & Valoir

Frederic Dyen, Schlumberger

Tony Bradfield, Tenenbaum Jewelers

Warren Ellsworth, MD, Houston Methodist

J. Douglas McMurrey Jr., Kinder   Morgan (Retired)

Neal Carlson, Wells Fargo

Brannon Fitch, Truist

Mark Metts, Sidley Austin LLP

H G O. O R G


ANNUAL SUPPORT Charlene Nickson, ACC Realty LLC

Norton Rose Fulbright LLP †

Jim Benton of Houston

Ward Pennebaker, Pennebaker


The Lancaster Hotel

Gloria M. Portela, Seyfarth Shaw LLP

Sidley Austin LLP

Masterson Design/Mariquita Masterson

Allyn Risley, GTT North America

Tokio Marine HCC

Shaftel Diamond Co.

Susan Rivera, Tokio Marine HCC


Rosewood Hotel Group

Kelly Rose, ConocoPhillips

Wells Fargo †

Glen Rosenbaum, Vinson & Elkins LLP

Westlake Chemical Corporation †


Manolo Sánchez, Spring Labs

Winstead PC

Brasserie du Parc

Denmon Sigler, Baker McKenzie

Chu Okoli Art

Apurva Thekdi, MD, Houston Methodist


Connie Kwan-Wong/CWK Collection Inc.

Ignacio Torras, Tricon Energy

Locke Lord LLP †

Dar Schafer Art

Tom Van Arsdel, Winstead PC

Deborah Bay & Foto Relevance Art

De la Rey Venter, Shell


Elliott Marketing Group

Alfredo Vilas, Novum Energy

Alliance Bernstein

Ellsworth Plastic Surgery

David Young, Union Pacific

CenterPoint Energy

The Four Seasons Hotel Houston


Freedom Super Cars

Patterson & Sheridan LLP

Gittings Portraiture

CORPORATE SUPPORTERS GUARANTORS—$100,000 OR MORE ConocoPhillips † H-E-B † Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ † Houston Methodist †* Novum Energy Schlumberger † Shell †

IN-KIND CONTRIBUTORS UNDERWRITERS— $25,000 OR MORE Abrahams Oriental Rugs and   Home Furnishings

Vinson & Elkins LLP †* GRAND UNDERWRITERS—$50,000 OR MORE

The Glimmerglass Festival Guard and Grace Hayden Lasher The Hotel ZaZa

City Kitchen Catering

Joan Laughlin Art

The Events Company

Kim Ritter Art

A Fare Extraordinaire/The Revaire

Las Terrazas Resort & Residences

Fort Bend Music Company

Lavandula Design

Tenenbaum Jewelers * United Airlines †*

Glade Cultural Center

Matt Ringel/Red Light Management SPONSORS—$15,000 OR MORE

Mayfield Piano Service

Sara and Gabriel Loperena

Megan Murray Photography

Magnolia Houston

Monica Fulton

Neiman Marcus Precious Jewels

Page Piland Art Rhonda Lanclos Art

Ajamie LLP Baker Botts L.L.P. †


Ristorante Cavour

Bank of America

BCN Taste and Tradition

Robin Jackson Photography


Elegant Events and Catering by Michael

Sandi Seltzer Bryant Art

Nana Booker and David Lowe/Booker · Lowe Gallery *

Kirksey Gregg Productions

Shoocha Photography

Mandarin Design Lab

Marcia and Alfredo Vilas


Medallion Global Wine Group

Frost Bank

Sakowitz Furs Schwartz, Page & Harding LLP



Baker McKenzie Boulware & Valoir



The Corinthian at Franklin Lofts

Houston First Corporation

David Peck


SPECI AL E D I T ION 2 0 2 0

FOUNDATIONS AND GOVERNMENT AGENCIES PREMIER GUARANTORS—  $1,000,000 OR MORE The Brown Foundation, Inc. † Houston Grand Opera Endowment Inc. † The Wortham Foundation, Inc. †

ANNUAL SUPPORT PRINCIPAL GUARANTORS— $500,000 OR MORE City of Houston through Houston Arts   Alliance † The Cullen Foundation † Houston Endowment, Inc. † GRAND GUARANTORS— $250,000 OR MORE Albert and Anne Chao/Ting Tsung   and Wei Fong Chao Foundation †

Cockrell Family Fund Houston Grand Opera Guild † San Diego Opera The Vaughn Foundation Vivian L. Smith Foundation William E. and Natoma Pyle Harvey   Charitable Trust † MEMBERS—$1,000 OR MORE

The Alkek and Williams Foundation †

George and Mary Josephine Hamman   Foundation †


Kinder Morgan Foundation

The Cullen Trust for the Performing Arts †

Houston Saengerbund

The Elkins Foundation

The Nathan J. Klein Fund

The Humphreys Foundation † The Powell Foundation †

* Contribution includes in- kind support

The Robert and Janice McNair Foundation †

† Ten or more years of consecutive support

Texas Commission on the Arts † GUARANTORS—$100,000 OR MORE


Anchorage Foundation of Texas

Baker Hughes Foundation

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation †

Bank of America Charitable Foundation   Matching Gifts

City of Houston through the Miller Theatre   Advisory Board †

BP Foundation, Inc.

Houston Endowment Inc.

Chevron Humankind

Kinder Foundation

ConocoPhillips Company Employee Giving

John P. McGovern Foundation †

Encana Matching Gifts

M.D. Anderson Foundation †

EOG Resources, Inc.

National Endowment for the Arts †

EQT Foundation

OPERA America

ExxonMobil Foundation

The Sarofim Foundation

Fannie Mae Matching Gift Donations

William Randolph Hearst Foundation

Hewlett-Packard Company IBM Corporation


LyondellBasell Chemical Company

Carol Franc Buck Foundation

Quantlab Financial, LLC

UNDERWRITERS— $25,000 OR MORE Eleanor Searle Whitney   McCollum Foundation

Macquarie Group Limited Shell Oil Company Foundation The Boeing Company Gift Match/BPAC  Program Williams Companies

Ruth and Ted Bauer Family Foundation † Stedman West Foundation † SPONSORS—$10,000 OR MORE Albert and Ethel Herzstein Charitable   Foundation † H G O. O R G



Laureate Society The Laureate Society comprises individuals who have helped ensure the future of Houston Grand Opera by remembering the Opera in their wills, retirement plans, trusts, or other types of estate plans. The Laureate Society does not require a minimum amount to become a member. Planned estate gifts to the Houston Grand Opera Endowment can be used to support general or specific Opera programs. Houston Grand Opera is deeply grateful to these individuals. Their generosity and foresight enable the Opera to maintain its growth and stability, thus enriching the lives of future generations. For information regarding charitable estate gift planning and how it might positively impact you, your loved ones, and ­Houston Grand Opera, please contact Richard Buffett, director of major gifts and legacy giving, at 713-546-0216 or rbuffett@hgo.org.

Helen Wils, Chairman


Nada Chandler

Dr. Layne O. Gentry

Ms. Gerry Aitken

Mr. Robert N. Chanon

Mr. Michael B. George

Mrs. Margaret Alkek Williams

Ms. Virginia Ann Clark

Dr. Wm. David George

Mrs. Judy Amonett

Mathilda Cochran

Norine Jaloway Gill and David P. Gill, M.D.

Ms. Michelle Beale and Mr. Richard H.  Anderson

Mr. William E. Colburn

Lynn Gissel

Mr. and Mrs. Paul L. Comstock

Dr. Rollin O. Glaser

Ms. Robin Angly and Mr. Miles Smith

Mr. Jim O. Connell

Wesley H. Goble

Christopher Bacon and Craig Miller

C.M. and A.A. Cooper Jr.

Mr. David Gockley

Gilbert Baker

Mr. Efrain Z. Corzo

Rhoda Goldberg

Dr. Saúl and Ursula Balagura

Mr. Alan M. Craft

Mary Francis Gonzales

Mrs. Thomas D. Barrow

James W. Crownover

Mr. Jon K. Gossett

Bill A. Bartlett

Ms. Judy Cummings

Mr. and Mrs. Fred Gott

James M. Barton

Rochelle Cyprus

Adelma Graham

Mrs. Barry Beller

Karl A. Dahm

Mr. and Mrs. Donald Graubart

Dr. Patricia Eifel and Dr. James A. Belli

Lida S. Dahm, M.D.

Dr. Nichols Grimes

Mr. and Mrs. Stanley C. Beyer

Ms. Sasha Davis

Dr. Ellen R. Gritz

Dr. Joan Hacken Bitar

Ms. Anna M. Dean

Mario Gudmunsson and Darrin Davis

Emily Bivona and Ryan Manser

Ms. Peggy DeMarsh

Mr. Jas A. Gundry

Susan Ross Black

Elisabeth Dewitts

Mr. Claudio Gutierrez

Dr. Michael and Susan Bloome

Dr. and Mrs. Russell L. Deter II

Robert W. Guynn, M.D.

Dr. and Mrs. Jules H. Bohnn

Mr. and Mrs. David B. Duthu

Bill Haase

Mr. Andrew Bowen

Connie Dyer

Linda Lloyd Hart

Lynda Bowman

Ms. Gloria M. Portela and   Mr. Richard E. Evans

Ms. Brenda Harvey-Traylor

Judith and Harry Bristol Ms. Zu Dell Broadwater

Joyce and Trey Evans

Miguel and Teresita Hernandez

Catherine Brock

Ms. Thea M. Fabio and Mr. Richard Merrill

Dr. Ralph Herring

Mrs. Ira B. Brown

Ann L. Faget

Mr. and Mrs. Robert C. Hewell

Logan D. Browning

Ms. Vicki Schmid Faulkner

Mr. Edward L. Hoffman

Richard Buffett

Mrs. Jean L. Fauntleroy

Gary Hollingsworth and Ken Hyde

Ralph C. Byle

Ms. Carol Sue Finkelstein

Alan and Ellen Holzberg

Gwyneth Campbell

Ms. Carol L. Fletcher

Mrs. Marjorie H. Capshaw

Mr. Carlisle Floyd

Ms. Kathleen Moore and Mr. Steven  Homer

Jess and Patricia Carnes

Bruce Ford

Frank Hood

Janet Langford Carrig

Dr. Donna Fox

Ms. Ami J. Hooper

Mrs. Sylvia J. Carroll

Dr. Alice Gates

Dr. Marjorie Horning


SPECI AL E D I T ION 2 0 2 0

Nancy Ferguson-Haywood

ANNUAL SUPPORT Ms. Sue A. Shirley-Howard and   Mr. Richard H. Howard

Mr. Juan R. Morales

Mr. Robert J. Smouse

Mr. and Mrs. Sidney S. Moran

Ms. Linda F. Sonier

Eileen and George Hricik

Mrs. Lucian L. Morrison

Mr. and Mrs. Harlan C. Stai

Ms. Lee M. Huber

Mr. and Mrs. Marvin H. Mueller

Catherine Stevenson

Mr. and Mrs. Robert C. Hunter

Ms. Linda C. Murray

Bruce Suter

Dr. Lamar and Mrs. Jane Jackson   Charitable Trust

Ms. Terrylin G. Neale

Rhonda J. Sweeney

Bobbie Newman

Mr. Leonard B. Tatar

Mrs. Tassie Nicandros

Mrs. John Ben Taub

Ms. B. Lynn Mathre and Mr. Stewart O’Dell

Quentin Thigpen and Amy Psaris

Mr. and Mrs. Staman Ogilvie

Mrs. Robert Toth

Mrs. James W. O’Keefe

Mr. John G. Turner Mr. Jerry G. Fischer

Geoffry H. Oshman

Mr. Paul and Dr. Rhonda Turner

Macky Osorio

Mr. and Mrs. Jess B. Tutor

Mrs. Susan Osterberg

Birgitt van Wijk

Mrs. Joan D. Osterweil

Alfredo Vilas

Thelma and Richard Percoco

Marietta Voglis

Mrs. Sara M. Peterson

Ms. Rons Voogt

Nancy Pryzant Picus

Dean B. Walker

Mr. and Mrs. Harry C. Pinson

Mr. Gordon D. Watson

Mr. and Mrs. James A. Pokorski

Rebecca Weaver

Willy and Inge Lotte Liesner

Mr. Arthur B. Pryde and Mrs. Suzanne  Page-Pryde

Dr. and Mrs. H. E. Warshaw

Heide and Karl Loos

Dr. Angela Rechichi-Apollo

Mrs. Marilyn G. Lummis

Mr. Geoffrey Westergaard

Carol F. Relihan

Dr. Jo Wilkinson Lyday

Ms. Roxanne Cargill and Peter Weston

Mr. and Mrs. Conrad Reynolds

Mr. and Mrs. Paul A. Lynn

Ms. Jane L. Williams

Wanda H. Reynolds

Ms. Sandra L. Magers

Helen Wils

Mrs. Rosemary Malbin

Mr. Bill Richmond and   Mr. Dennis Courtney

David and Mary Wolff

Ms. Michele Malloy

Ed and Janet Rinehart

Mr. and Mrs. J. Landis Martin

Mr. and Mrs. Edward N. Robinson

Nancy Wynne Mattison

Mrs. Shirley Rose

Jackie and Malcolm Mazow, M.D.

Glen A. Rosenbaum

Mrs. Dorothy McCaine

Mr. John C. Rudder Jr.

Mrs. Cynthia Tally McDonald

H. Clifford Rudisill and Ray E. Wilson

Mr. and Mrs. Alexander K. McLanahan

Mr. and Mrs. Thomas V. Rushing

Dr. Will L. McLendon

Mr. and Mrs. Terrell F. Sanders

Mr. Allen D. McReynolds

Ms. Wanda Schaffner

Maryellen McSweeney

Deborah and Kenneth Scianna


Mr. and Mrs. D. Bradley McWilliams

Charles and Gudrun Senuta

Dr. Thomas D. Barrow

Christianne Melanson

Helen and James Shaffer

Ms. Evelyn M. Bedard

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Menzie

Hinda Simon

Ronald Borschow

Miss Catherine Jane Merchant

Mr. Herbert D. Simons

Mr. Ira B. Brown

Ms. Georgette M. Michko

Ms. Susan Simpson

Mr. Thomas Capshaw

Ms. Suzanne Mimnaugh

Janet Sims

Dr. Lawrence E. Carlton

Sid Moorhead

Bruce Smith, DDS

Mr. Tony Carroll, LCSW

Mr. Brian James Mr. Spencer A. Jeffries Ms. Charlotte Jones Mr. and Mrs. Robert Kauffman Mr. and Mrs. Stephen M. Kaufman Steve Kelley and Charles Dennis A. Mark Kelly Kyle F. Kerr Ms. Virginia Kiser Ann and Sam Koster Ms. Michele LaNoue Lynn and Jon Lamkin Marcheta Leighton-Beasley Carolyn J. Levy

Mr. Jesse Weir

Dr. L. Fabian Worthing III Lynn Wyatt R. Alan York Katherine and Mark Yzaguirre Dr. and Mrs. Efrain Zavala Mr. John L. Zipprich II 24 Anonymous

H G O. O R G


ANNUAL SUPPORT Michael Cochran

Mrs. Margaret Love

John and Fanny Stone

Ms. Marilyn R. Davis

Ms. Marsha Malev

Dr. Carlos Vallbona

Frank R. Eyler

Mr. Constantine Nicandros

Daisy Wong

Linda Finger

M. Joan Nish

Miss Bonnie Sue Wooldridge

Christine E. George

Mr. James W. O’Keefe

Jack W. Harris

Barbara M. Osborne

Roberta Harris

Mrs. Mary Ann Phillips

Jackson C. Hicks

Mr. Howard Pieper

Ann Holmes

Mr. and Mrs. Craig M. Rowley

Mark Lensky

Mrs. Joseph P. Ruddell

Mary R. Lewis

Mr. Eric W. Stein Sr.

Houston Grand Opera Endowment

Tom Rushing, Chairman

The Houston Grand Opera Endowment, Inc., is a separate nonprofit organization that invests contributions to earn income for the benefit of Houston Grand Opera Association. The Endowment Board works with Paul Comstock Partners, independent investment counsel, to engage professional investment managers. An endowed fund can be permanently established within the Houston Grand Opera Endowment through a direct contribution or via a planned gift such as a bequest. The fund can be designated for general purposes or specific interests. For a discussion on endowing a fund, please contact Richard Buffett, director of major gifts and legacy giving, at 713-546-0216 or rbuffett@hgo.org. HGO acknowledges with deep gratitude the following endowed funds.


The Brown Foundation Endowment Fund

Mary Ann Phillips Endowed Fund

Tom Rushing, Chairman

C. Howard Pieper Endowment Fund

Janet Langford Carrig, Senior Chairman

The Ting Tsung and Wei Fong Chao   Foundation Endowment Fund

Terrylin G. Neale, Chairman Emeritus

Jane and Robert Cizik Endowment

Rowley Family Endowment Fund

Yolanda Knull, Vice Chairman

Michael and Mathilda Cochran   Endowment Fund

The Ruddell Endowment Fund

Richard Husseini, Secretary/Treasurer Thomas Ajamie Robert Hunter Marianne Kah Stephen M. Kaufman Perryn Leech Allyn Risley

Kitty King Powell Endowment Fund

Douglas E. Colin Endowment Fund

Shell Lubricants (formerly Pennzoil —   Quaker State Company) Fund

Mary Jane Fedder Endowed Fund

Dian and Harlan Stai Fund

Linda K. Finger Endowed Fund Robert W. George Endowment Fund

The John and Fanny Stone   Endowment Fund

Frank Greenberg, M.D. Endowment Fund

Dorothy Barton Thomas Endowment Fund

Jackson D. Hicks Endowment Fund

John G. Turner and Jerry G. Fischer   Endowed Fund

Scott Wise

General and Mrs. Maurice Hirsch   Memorial Opera Fund Elizabeth Rieke and Wayne V. Jones   Endowment Fund

Marietta Voglis Endowed Fund


Lensky Family Endowed Fund

Bauer Family Fund

Mary R. Lewis Endowed Fund

The Wortham Foundation Permanent   Endowment Fund

Charles T. (Ted) Bauer Memorial Fund

Beth Madison Endowed Fund

Sandra Bernhard Endowed Fund

Franci Neely Endowed Fund


The Stanley and Shirley Beyer   Endowed Fund

Constantine S. Nicandros   Endowment Fund

Edward and Frances Bing Fund

Mary Frances Newton Bowers   Endowment Fund

Barbara M. Osborne Charitable Trust

The Wagner Fund

Pat and Daniel A. Breen Endowment Fund 68

SPECI AL E D I T ION 2 0 2 0

Cynthia and Anthony Petrello   Endowed Fund

John and Sheila Tweed Endowed Fund Bonnie Sue Wooldridge Endowment Fund

Tracey D. Conwell Endowment Fund

ANNUAL SUPPORT PRINCIPAL ARTISTS FUNDS Jesse Weir and Roberto Ayala Artist Fund The Lynn Wyatt Great Artist Fund ENDOWED CHAIRS Margaret Alkek Williams Chair:   Patrick Summers, Artistic and   Music Director

The Gordon and Mary Cain Foundation   Endowment Fund Thomas Capshaw Endowment Fund Houston Grand Opera Guild   Endowment Fund James J. Drach Endowment Fund Evans Family Endowed Chair

EDUCATION FUNDS Bauer Family Fund Lawrence E. Carlton, M.D.,   Endowment Fund Beth Crispin Endowment Fund James J. Drach Endowment Fund

Carol Lynn Lay Fletcher Endowment Fund

Fondren Foundation Fund for   Educational Programs

Sarah and Ernest Butler Chair:   Perryn Leech, Managing Director

William Randolph Hearst Endowed   Scholarship Fund

David Clark Grant Endowment Fund

Sarah and Ernest Butler   Chorus Master Chair: Richard Bado

Charlotte Howe Memorial Scholarship  Fund

Sarah and Ernest Butler   Concertmaster Chair: Denise Tarrant

Elva Lobit Opera Endowment Fund

Mr. and Mrs. James A. Elkins Jr.   Endowed Chair: Peter Pasztor

Marian and Speros Martel Foundation   Endowment Fund Erin Gregory Neale Endowment Fund

Mr. and Mrs. Albert B. Alkek Chair

Dr. Mary Joan Nish and Patricia Bratsas   Endowed Fund


John M. O’Quinn Foundation Endowed   Fellowship Fund

The Ford Foundation Endowment Fund HOUSTON GRAND OPERA STUDIO FUNDS Audrey Jones Beck Endowed Fellowship   Fund/Houston Endowment, Inc.

Shell Lubricants (formerly Pennzoil —   Quaker State Company) Fund

The Schissler Family Foundation Endowed   Fund for Educational Programs OUTREACH FUNDS Guyla Pircher Harris Project Spring Opera Festival Fund (Shell   Lubricants, formerly Pennzoil—   Quaker State Company) CONCERT OF ARIAS Eleanor Searle McCollum   Endowment Fund

Mary C. Gayler Snook Endowment Fund Tenneco, Inc. Endowment Fund Weston-Cargill Endowed Fund 11666 Katy Freeway westpointlincoln.com 866.869.3390

The 2020 Lincoln Black Label Navigator in Pristine White

The 2020 Lincoln Navigator Black Label Our Ultimate Expression of Design and Personal Service Lincoln Black Label ownership includes Exclusive Member Privileges, including Lincoln Service Pick Up and Delivery, annual vehicle detailing, and a 4 year/50,000 mile Premium Maintenance Plan. To take a test drive today at America’s #1 Navigator Dealer*, contact Ryan O’Cain at 866.869.3390 *Based on the 2019 Lincoln Dealer Ranking Report for New Car Sales

H G O. O R G







Monday Night Opera, Opera Unwrapped: David T. Little’s Vinkensport, or The Finch Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.

Live from The Cullen: Arturo ChacónCruz. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event.



Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.

Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.

Live from The Cullen: Tamara Wilson with Patrick Summers on piano. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event. With Zoom event: New Patrons Reception. SEPTEMBER 21

Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.


Double Bill: Mozart’s The Impresario/Lee Hoiby’s Bon Appétit! 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event. With Zoom event: Wine and Cheese Social watch party for HGO Young Patrons and Opening Night for Young Professionals members.


HGO Studio Showcase. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event. With Zoom event: “They’re Just Like Us!” for HGO Underwriters and Impresarios Circle members. SEPTEMBER 29

“Monday” Night Opera, on a special Tuesday time slot due to Yom Kippur. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.


David T. Little’s Vinkensport, or The Finch Opera. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event.


School release of filmed production: Faye Chiao and Anton Dudley’s Katie: The Strongest of the Strong.


Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.


Monday Night Opera, Opera Unwrapped: Joel Thompson and Andrea Davis Pinkney’s The Snowy Day. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.


Live from The Cullen: Sasha Cooke. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event. JANUARY 11

Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.







Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.


Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.

Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.

Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.



Live from The Cullen: Reginald Smith Jr. with Richard Bado on piano. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event.


Monday Night Opera, Opera Unwrapped: Mozart’s The Impresario/Lee Hoiby’s Bon Appétit! 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.

SPECI AL E D I T ION 2 0 2 0

The Snowy Day documentary. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event. DECEMBER 18

Live from the Cullen: Holiday Celebration with the HGO Studio. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital Event.

Note: Events featured in this calendar are subject to change as COVID-19 continues to evolve in Houston. For additional events and the latest information, please visit HGO.org.

2020-21 CALENDAR

All HGO Digital events can be viewed for free using the Marquee TV streaming service. Miss the premiere? You still have a month to see each event online. For information and instructions, visit HGO.org/Digital.



Giving Voice. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event.

Live from The Cullen: Jack Swanson. 7:30 p.m. HGO Digital event.


Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.



Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.



Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.

Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.



Concert of Arias, the 33rd Annual Eleanor McCollum Competition for Young Singers. Live. 7 p.m. HGO Digital event.


Opera Ball 2021: Une Nuit à Marrakech. For information, contact Brooke Rogers at 713546-0271 or brogers@hgo.org.


Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event. FEBRUARY 15

Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event. FEBRUARY 22

Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event. FEBRUARY 26, 27, 28

Nell Shaw Cohen and Megan Cohen’s Turn and Burn. Socially distanced performances at downtown venue Warehouse Live.


Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event. MARCH 8

Monday Night Opera. 6:30 p.m. Zoom event.

See Breaking the Waves at the Wortham next spring.

APRIL 16, 18M, 24, 29

Live performances of Missy Mazzoli and Royce Vavrek’s Breaking the Waves. Wortham Theater Center’s Brown Theater. APRIL 30, MAY 2M, 4, 7, 8, 9M, 14, 15

Live performances of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s The Sound of Music. Wortham Theater Center’s Brown Theater.


HGOco presents the Bauer Family High School Voice Studio Graduation Recital. Duncan Recital Hall, Rice University. 6–9 p.m. Free.

MAY 6, 9

HGO Studio Recital Series: Artists of the HGO Studio perform at Rienzi, the decorative arts wing of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, at 1406 Kirby Drive. 7:30 p.m. May 6; 5 p.m. May 9. MAY 11, 12

Student Matinees: Rodgers & Hammerstein’s The Sound of Music. 10 a.m. Wortham Theater Center’s Cullen Theater.

experiences, including Create an Opera (grades 3–8), Sing! Move! Play! (pre-K–grade 2), and Art of Opera (grades 9–12), which will feature the premiere of The Impresario of Oz (Buller/Silvestri). Registration information will be available in January 2021 at houstongrandopera.org/ community-and-learning.


Opera Camp: One of Houston’s most in-demand summer camp series will return in June 2021! HGOco will offer three unique H G O. O R G



HGO plans to return to the Wortham stage for our Spring Repertory performances—make plans to see them now!





April 16–29

Suggested by “The Trapp Family Singers” by Maria Augusta Trapp

Missy Mazzoli and Royce Vavrek’s Breaking the Waves, based on the 1996 Lars von Trier award-winning film of the same name, is a co-production with Opera Ventures, Scottish Opera, Adelaide Festival, and Théâtre national de l’Opéra Comique. Premiering at the Edinburgh Festival in 2019, the production tells the story of a religious young woman whose husband is seriously injured soon after their wedding.

April 30–May 15 HGO’s staging of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II’s The Sound of Music represents the perfect opportunity for the whole family to experience the musical like they’ve never heard it before, in an authentic production elevated by gorgeous, unamplified operatic singing.

Leading the HGO cast is HGO Studio alumna Lauren Snouffer in the role of tragic heroine, Bess. She is joined by Alexander Birch Elliott as her husband Jan, Michelle Bradley as her mother, and Zoie Reams as her sister-in-law Dodo. The production is led by director Tom Morris, whose acclaimed production of War Horse had long runs at the National Theatre in London and on Broadway. Nicole Paiement conducts the HGO premiere in her company debut.

In her HGO debut, acclaimed Trinidadian soprano Jeanine De Bique performs the iconic role of Maria, joined by Michael Mayes as Captain von Trapp and Katie Van Kooten as the Mother Abbess. Frequent HGO collaborator Francesca Zambello directs; HGO Chorus Master Richard Bado conducts the cast, HGO Orchestra, and Chorus; and Eric Sean Fogel choreographs and serves as associate director for this classic piece of musical theater.

By arrangement with G. Schirmer, Inc., publisher and copyright owner.

By arrangement with Concord Theatricals on behalf of The Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization. www.concordtheatricals.com

Production Sponsors Robin Angly and Miles Smith Drs. Liz Grimm and Jack Roth Sara and Gabriel Loperena

Grand Guarantor Texas Commission on the Arts Guarantors The Robert & Jane Cizik Foundation Houston Methodist Grand Underwriters Margaret Alkek Williams Novum Energy Underwriters Tokio Marine HCC Norton Rose Fulbright LLP




Our mission is to enrich the lives of our clients, colleagues, and communities through sound financial advice, integrity, and a commitment to service beyond expectation.

A year ago, South Texas Money Management became part of CAPTRUST. CAPTRUST was recently named the largest wealth management firm in the Houston area by the Houston Business Journal.* Founded in 1997, we are an independent registered investment advisor with clients and offices around the country. Based in Raleigh, North Carolina, we provide investment advisory, asset management, and planning services to affluent private clients and institutional investors, such as retirement plan fiduciaries, endowments, foundations, and religious entities. *with investment minimums of less than $1 million


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