Monday, July 2, 2018
The Foothills Opera Experience, an opera camp for graduate, undergraduate, and some gifted high school students going into opera performance, will return to Hartwick College for the second straight year. Taking place July 5 – 15 in Anderson Center for the Arts, 20 singers will go “from page to stage” via an intensive, personal curriculum that focuses on the creative process, diction, opera coaching, voice coaching, and movement/dance.
Like last summer, participants will train daily in various aspects of the craft, then have the opportunity to participate in evening master classes. The camp concludes with students performing in a fully staged opera scenes program, where students will have the opportunity to perform in an aria and/or art song recital.
The camp has grown in both attendance and curriculum this season. Along with doubled attendance – which allows the camp to present a wider variety of musical styles to teach – the master classes will be held nearly every night, each focusing on a specific topic, skill, or musical specialty.
Camp auditions were held in March and April in New York City, Binghamton, and Oneonta, though this year most students auditioned online. This summer, students are attending from all over the country, including three from California, and others from Florida, Texas, Minnesota, Illinois, Washington, D.C., as well as the northeast.
Foothills Opera Experience faculty include some of the top professionals and instructors in the field, including:
Nanni is one of the program’s principal organizers.
“While an undergrad, I attended an opera program that changed and influenced my life so much that now I am committed to forming a program that will do the same for the next generation of students of opera,” Nanni said.
The master classes, which are also free and open to the public, will be held in Anderson Center for the Arts Theatre on the College campus, at 7:30 p.m. on the following evenings:
Along with the master classes, “An Evening of Aria and Song” – a free concert open to the public – will be held on July 13 at 7:30 p.m.
The camp culminates on July 15 with the fully staged Opera Scenes Program at 3 p.m. in Anderson Theatre. This final performance is also free and open to the public and donations are welcome.
Last year’s small group was packed with talent, Nanni said, and several are returning. These include tenor/pianist Roubiung Zhang, a senior at Julliard School of Music in New York City, and Catherine Kondi ’18, who used last year’s experience as a springboard to a full scholarship for a master’s program at Ithaca College.
“One of the most important parts of being a musician is finding your artist,” Kondi said. “The Foothills Opera Experience program not only helped me to find my artist, but showed me how to embrace and love myself as both a musician and individual in society. The coaches and other performers helped to show me that the path I have always wanted to take and was accessible to me. Without this program, I would not be pursuing a master’s degree at Ithaca College in the fall for Vocal Performance. This program is one of the best decisions I have made in my career thus far.”
One of last summer’s attendees, Stephanie Shelburne of Peoria, IL was hired for a position abroad while at the camp; this summer she will be a resident artist performing in Mozart’s “The Magic Flute” at a prestigious program in Berlin, Germany.
Buoyed by the level of interest and talent the program is attracting, Nanni is already looking to the future and hoping to create a separate program for high school students next summer.
For additional information on the Foothills Opera Experience, visit www.FoothillsOpera.com or contact Nanni at (607) 725-9231.
Hartwick College is a private liberal arts and sciences college of 1,200 students, located in Oneonta, NY, in the northern foothills of the Catskill Mountains. Hartwick’s expansive curriculum emphasizes an experiential approach to the liberal arts. Through personalized teaching, collaborative research, a distinctive January Term, a wide range of internships, and vast study-abroad opportunities, Hartwick ensures that students are prepared for not just their first jobs, but for the world ahead. A Three-Year Bachelor’s Degree Program and strong financial aid and scholarship offerings keep a Hartwick education affordable.
Contact: David Lubell