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Houston Grand Opera Announces New Launch Date and Cast Substitution for HGO Digital

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HGO Digital will now launch on Friday, September 18.

Houston Grand Opera Announces New Launch Date and Cast Substitution for HGO Digital

Houston Grand Opera is announcing updates to the upcoming HGO Digital season.

HGO Digital will now launch on Friday, September 18 with the debut of the Live from The Cullen series, a recital featuring soprano Tamara Wilson and Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers on piano. Due to the possibility of Hurricane Laura impacting Houston, filming for her performance was postponed as Wilson and her family evacuated Houston. Her digital recital will be available to audiences for one month following its release on September 18.

"It was important to us that we kick off this new digital season with Tamara on the Cullen stage," said HGO Managing Director Perryn Leech. "We are fortunate that our digital season allows us flexibility in scheduling as we could not think of a better voice to sing us into this new venture."

Joining the HGO Digital lineup as conductor of Vinkensport this season is Austin Opera Artistic Advisor Timothy Myers. Myers conducted HGO's West Side Story in 2018, HGOco world premiere O Columbia in 2015, and HGO world premiere A Coffin in Egypt in 2014. He also served as music director for two HGOco world premieres, The Memory Stone and New Arrivals, both during the 2012-13 season.

In addition, soprano and first year HGO Studio Artist Raven McMillon will step into the role of Peter for the future world premiere of The Snowy Day and the HGO Digital documentary about the new work, to be released this December. Soprano Julia Bullock made the difficult decision to withdrawal from the role of Peter due to international travel restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I'm very sad to announce my withdrawal from Houston Grand Opera's upcoming world premiere of The Snowy Day," said Julia Bullock. "While travel restrictions and precautions prevent me from traveling internationally for its workshop this fall, I am sustained by being able to provide an opportunity to another young, Black-identifying artist. I wish the cast and creative team all the best as they bring this new musical theater work into existence, and I hope to perform for Houston audiences again soon."

"The Snowy Day was initially conceived in collaboration with Julia and her contributions to the production have been immense. While it is disappointing that she won't be able to join us for the future world premiere, we know that Raven will bring Peter's childhood wonder and adventure to life on stage," said Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers.

A Baltimore native, 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. She will make her in-person debut on the Wortham Stage in April 2021 as Sister Margaretta in The Sound of Music.

To learn more about HGO Digital and upcoming programs, visit HGO.org.



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