Taos Opera Institute Festival Returns To Northern New Mexico This June
The Taos Opera Institute (TOI) will host the eleventh Taos Opera Institute Festival this year, June 7 - 30. The festival will feature two performance groups, the TOI Singers and the Cantos de Taos Quartet performing 19 free classical music performances in Taos County, Los Alamos and Santa Fe. These events are free and open to the public.
Cantos de Taos will open the festival in Taos on June 7 at Medley with an outdoor patio performance. Following performances will be held at various times and places throughout northern New Mexico, including Taos Ski Valley, Taos Plaza and the Taos Inn in Taos, the Fuller Lodge in Los Alamos and the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi in Santa Fe. New to the festival this year, a Broadway Night concert at KTAOS Solar Center will feature four vocal artists performing classic Broadway cross-over hits on Tuesday, June 12 at 7:00 pm.
The festival concludes with the Eleventh Annual TOI Gala Saturday, June 30 at 7:00 pm at the Taos Community Auditorium. Both the Cantos de Taos Quartet and TOI Singers will be featured in this presentation, which is the only fundraising event during the festival. Tickets for the gala are $25 and may be purchased by calling the TCA office at 575-758-2052, online at www.tcataos.org or on the night of the performance.
The TOI Singers are comprised of the 28 Taos Opera Institute participants from across the country that are chosen through a rigorous audition process. They come as undergraduate or graduate students in voice and the performing arts. In the two-hour concerts the individual participants perform one aria in one of four languages (English, French, Italian or German). At the end of their eight performances, each participant will have sung an aria in each language and will have an audition package ready for their next career move.
Members of the Cantos de Taos Quartet are graduates of the program or established artists who serve as ambassadors for the Institute. This year the quartet consists of tenor Darius Thomas, a graduate student at the University of Tennessee; bass Simon Dyer, who has been a young artist with The Santa Fe Opera and Glimmerglass Festival and is currently in the studio of Florida Grand Opera; soprano Abigail Krawson, first prize winner of The Peter Elvins Vocal Competition and the Philharmonic Society of Arlington Young Artist Competition; and mezzo-soprano Britt Brown, who is the recipient of the first place prize at the NATSAA recital competition for the New England Region and the Lee Cass Award at the national competition in Chicago. Complete bios and headshots are available at www.TaosOi.org/cantos-de-taos.
Cantos de Taos one-hour concerts include individual and ensemble arias as well as Broadway favorites.
Thank you to the additional 2018 Taos Opera Institute Festival venue partners hosting TOI concerts: Medley Restaurant, Edelweiss Lodge, David Anthony Fine Art Gallery, St. James Episcopal Church, Taos Art Museum at Fechin House, Sabroso Restaurant, Children's Center at Taos Ski Valley, Taos Retirement Village, La Santisima Trinidad Church, and Bella's Mexican Grill.
Photos of the Cantos de Taos quartet can be downloaded here.
About Taos Opera Institute (TOI*)
TOI was established by Mary Jane Johnson and Linda Poetschke in 2007 as a four-week comprehensive program designed to bridge the gap between academia and apprenticeships for emerging vocal artists. Johnson's international performing career included a longtime relationship with the Santa Fe Opera. She and Poetschke, a recognized college vocal educator and performer, created TOI's philosophy that focuses on integrating and improving technique, physical well-being, and artistry. Twenty-eight outstanding opera singers from across the country are chosen each year to participate in the Institute, which is housed in the Taos Ski Valley. In addition to technical training, students receive physical conditioning, individual coaching and numerous opportunities for performance.
*In addition to the acronym for Taos Opera Institute (TOI), the expression "toi, toi, toi" is the operatic equivalent of theater's "break a leg" and is derived from the German language.