Cabaret Bel Canto
Orchestre de l'Agora presents

Cabaret Bel Canto

February 13th 2020
7:30 pm – 9:30 pm / Doors: 6:45 pm

5723, avenue du Parc, Montréal, QC, Canada
For more information about this event, please contact Orchestre de l'Agora at jean-frederic@orchestreagora.com.

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Cabaret Bel Canto: a festive concert of the Orchestre de l'Agora in collaboraton with the Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal, that will take place on Thursday, February 13, 2020 at 7:30 pm at the Rialto Theater. This concert will be an opportunity to hear the best young Canadian singers in a casual "cabaret" atmosphere. On the program: famous airs and ensembles of Bellini's and Donizetti's in bel canto style, and many others! This concert will be with an orchestra of 37 musicians and the 10 wonderful soloists of the Atelier.

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Cabaret Bel Canto: a festive concert of the Orchestre de l'Agora in collaboraton with the Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal, that will take place on Thursday, February 13, 2020 at 7:30 pm at the Rialto Theater. This concert will be an opportunity to hear the best young Canadian singers in a casual "cabaret" atmosphere. On the program: famous airs and ensembles of Bellini's and Donizetti's in bel canto style, and many others! This concert will be with an orchestra of 37 musicians and the 10 wonderful soloists of the Atelier.

Address: 5723 Av du Parc, Montreal, QC H2V 4H2

In the heart of the Mile End, the Rialto Theater is located near the Outremont metro station and is also served by bus lines, including 80 Avenue du Parc.

On the evening of the concert, many parking spaces will be available directly on the Avenue du Parc (parking meters of the City of Montreal).

Orchestre de l'Agora

The Orchestre de l’Agora, under the direction of Nicolas Ellis, is a multifaceted musical collective that is reinventing the role that classical musicians play in their community by focusing on their talent and commitment. Our musicians, who are young professionals from the Montreal area, are among the finest of their generation. Through their music, they actively take part in our bold concerts and outreach efforts. Together, we are out to change the world, one note at a time. Since it was founded in 2013, the Orchestre has had a twofold purpose: to showcase art and classical music, and to contribute to society. Much like its founder, Nicolas Ellis, the Orchestre is focused on the core values of initiative, collaboration, commitment, impact, and boldness. These values have been reflected in the Orchestre’s many undertakings over the years. Artistic projects have given the Orchestre the opportunity to join forces with such writer-composer-performers as Philippe Brach, as well as with established classical musicians like Andrew Wan (concertmaster, OSM) and Martin Chalifour (concertmaster, Los Angeles Philharmonic). Some of Canada’s greatest soloists—including violinist Kerson Leong, pianist Charles Richard-Hamelin, and harpist Valérie Milot—have performed with the Orchestre. The Orchestre has also had the opportunity to work with talented stage directors like Maxime Genois and Isabeau Proulx-Lemire for innovative opera projects—notably the horror opera The Turn of the Screw by Britten in 2018-2019, recorded by ICI Musique. More and more producers are calling on the Orchestre to take part in their events, including the Bach Festival, the OSM Classical Spree, Spectra, the Atelier lyrique de l’Opéra de Montréal, Orford Musique, Festival Lachine and Concerts populaires de Montréal. The Orchestre recorded the soundtrack for the film Brad’s Status with Ben Stiller (2017) and also performed on the CD Le silence des troupeaux by Philippe Brach. From season to season, the Orchestre has continued to evolve in a most astonishing way. While its very first concerts came together through the efforts of a handful of musicians convinced of the power of music as a tool for social change, the Orchestre has since been able to shine a spotlight on their talent and award them with over $100,000 in bursaries. Since 2013, the Orchestre’s musicians have given music lessons and free performances for hundreds of underprivileged children, through a partnership with the music program of the Share the Warmth Foundation and Les Porteurs de musique. The Orchestre has also contributed tens of thousands of dollars to local community organizations, by giving concerts to raise funds for them.

Nicolas Ellis, chef / conductor

Nicolas Ellis is the Artistic Director and Founder of the Orchestre de l’Agora and currently serves as Artistic Partner to the Orchestre Métropolitain and Yannick Nézet-Séguin. Mr. Ellis has been invited as guest conductor with Les Violons du Roy, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, the Orchestre symphonique de Longueuil, the Orchestre symphonique de Québec, the Orchestre Métropolitain, Symphony Nova Scotia, the McGill Chamber orchestra, the Ottawa Symphony and the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. He completed his Master’s Degree at McGill University in conducting with Alexis Hauser and was a conducting fellow at the Aspen Music Festival where he studied with Robert Spano. For summer 2019, he was part of the Verbier Festival Academy where he acted as assistant conductor to Music Director Valery Gergiev. In 2013, he founded the Orchestre de l’Agora, an orchestra whose mission is to position the classical musician as an agent of social change within the community. The ensemble has built collaborations with the music program of the Share the Warmth Foundation and Les Porteurs de musique, giving workshops to kids coming from underprivileged neighbourhoods and to people who don’t have access to music such as psychiatric centres, prisons and shelters for battered women. Their recent production of Britten’s The Turn of the Screw in collaboration with the Atelier lyrique de l’Opéra de Montréal was recorded by ICI Musique and CBC Music and has been broadcasted nationally. He is the recipient of the 2017 Bourse de carrière Fernand-Lindsay and the Heinz Unger Award 2015 delivered by the Ontario Arts Council and was recently named Revelation of the year (2018-2019) by Radio-Canada.

Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal

An artists’ residence for Canadian opera singers and collaborative pianists, l’Atelier lyrique is a stepping stone for professional development within l’Opéra de Montréal. Featuring personalized training that covers the vast spectrum of an lyrical artist’s professional development, l’Atelier fosters each participant’s autonomy and leadership and favours their professional insertion so that they reach their full potential.

Florence Bourget, mezzo-soprano / mezzo-soprano

Mezzo-soprano Florence Bourget holds a master’s degree with honours from the Université de Montréal. She debuted at l’Opéra de Montréal as Wellgunde in Das Rheingold. During her first year at l’Atelier lyrique, she played Mrs. Grose in The Turn of the Screw (Orchestre de l’Agora), Lucilla in La scala di seta (Orchestre symphonique de la Vallée-du-Haut-Saint-Laurent), and was a soloist in Soirée à l’opérette (Orchestre symphonique de Longueuil). In 2019-2020, her roles include Alice in Lucia di Lammermoor, Second Angel in Written on Skin and Dritte Dame in The Magic Flute. She is also a participant in the creation L’hiver attend beaucoup de moi (Espace Go Theatre) and in a concert featuring opera excerpts directed by Alain Trudel (Orchestre symphonique de Laval) in December 2019. Member of the Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal. Florence Bourget is generously sponsored by Jacques Marchand.

Spencer Britten, ténor / tenor

Canadian tenor Spencer Britten received his master’s degree in opera from the University of British Columbia. In 2018-2019, his activities include the roles of Doughboy, Basket the dog and the Model in Twenty-Seven (Atelier lyrique); Gee-tar and the Featured Dancer in West Side Story (The Atlanta Opera); Peter Quint in The Turn of the Screw (Orchestre de l’Agora), and Dorvil in La scala di seta (Orchestre symphonique de la Vallée-du-Haut-Saint-Laurent), in addition to a soloist part in Dvořák’s Mass in D Major and Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb (Chœur Métropolitain). Among the roles in his 2019-2020 season are Léon in The Ghosts of Versailles (Spectacles du Château de Versailles and The Glimmerglass Festival), Triquet in Eugene Onegin (Opéra de Montréal), Carmina Burana (Les Grands Ballets), and Peppe in Rita (Sinfonia de Lanaudière). He has been awarded grants from the Jacqueline Desmarais Foundation (2019) and the Vancouver Opera Guild Career Development Grant (2018). Spencer has been selected to compete in the final rounds at the 2019 Neue Stimmen International Singing Competition in Gütersloh, Germany. Member of the Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal. Spencer Britten is generously sponsored by Sigrid Chatel.

Vanessa Croome, soprano / soprano

Vanessa Croome holds a master’s degree in music (voice and opera) from McGill University’s Schulich School of Music and is also an alumna of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. The winner of the 2018 Opéra de Montréal Stringray Rising Star prize, she made her professional operatic debut as a Gerdine Young Artist with the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis in the summer of 2018. Recent credits include Miles in The Turn of the Screw (Orchestre de l’Agora) and, for Opera McGill, Pamina in The Magic Flute, Miss Wordsworth in Albert Herring, and Cunegonde in Candide. In 2019-2020, Vanessa debuts at l’Opéra de Montréal playing the role of Lea in the world premiere of L’hiver attend beaucoup de moi. Member of the Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal Vanessa Croome is generously sponsored by Joan Vogelesang & Fred Heese.

Matthew Dalen, ténor / tenor

Matthew Dalen is a graduate of Vancouver Opera’s Yalunda M. Faris young artist program and has been selected as a Jeune ambassadeur lyrique. Matthew has performed numerous roles as a young artist with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, and University of Toronto Opera. His performance in the title role in the North American premiere of Schubert’s Fierabras (Toronto Operetta Theatre) garnered critical acclaim. In 2019-2020, Matthew’s slate includes the part of Borsa in Verdi’s Rigoletto (Edmonton Opera), as well as studying the roles of Lensky in Eugene Onegin, Eduardo in Lucia di Lammermoor, and Tamino in The Magic Flute (all three with l’Opéra de Montréal). He also makes his Opéra de Montréal debut as First Soldier in The Magic Flute. Member of the Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal Matthew Dalen is generously sponsored by the Andrea Alacchi Family.

Brenden Friesen, basse / bass

Brenden Friesen holds a master’s degree of music in opera performance from the University of Toronto. Opera Canada said of Brenden that he “captured audiences with his powerful resonance, exceptional diction, enormous comedic presence, and incredible interpretation of text”. Brenden’s most recent performances include his Opéra de Montréal debut as Count Ceprano in Verdi’s Rigoletto, and as Ernest Hemingway in Ricky Ian Gordon’s Canadian debut of Twenty-Seven (Atelier lyrique). His roles for the 2019-2020 year include Truffaldin in Ariadne auf Naxos (Highlands Opera Studio) and Zaretsky in Eugene Onegin (Opéra de Montréal). Member of the Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal. Brenden Friesen is generously sponsored by Colleen and Mirko Wicha.

Kirsten LeBlanc, soprano / soprano

Kirsten LeBlanc is a doctoral candidate in performance at l’Université de Montréal, having already received a master’s degree in music from McGill University’s Schulich School of Music. She has performed roles such as Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, Helena in A Midsummer Night's Dream, Nella in Gianni Schicchi, Hanna Glawari in The Merry Widow and the title role in Cendrillon. In 2019-2020, Kirsten makes her Opéra de Montréal debut as Zweite Dame in The Magic Flute, as well as performing in concert for the Société d’art vocal de Montréal. Member of the Atelier lyrique Kirsten LeBlanc is generously sponsored by John Farrell and François Leclair.

Jean-Philippe Mc Clish, baryton-basse / bass-baritone

Jean-Philippe Mc Clish holds a master’s degree in music from McGill University’s Schulich School of Music. Previous roles include Don Alfonso in Così fan tutte (Opéra de l’Université de Montréal) and, at the Schulich School of Music, Raimondo in Lucia di Lammermoor, Il Re in Ariodante and Készakállú in Bluebeard’s Castle. As a soloist, he has performed in Handel’s Messiah (Ensemble Sinfonia), Rossini’s Petite messes solennelle (Chœur polyphonique de Rimouski), Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana (Kingston Symphony), along with the Requiems of Brahms (Orchestre symphonique de Lévis) and Mozart (Orchestre symphonique de Trois-Rivières). With l’Opéra de Montréal, his 2019-2020 slate includes the part of the Captain in Eugene Onegin, the Second Prisoner in Fidelio, and the Armed Guard in The Magic Flute. He is a grant recipient from the Jacqueline Desmarais Foundation (2019). Member of the Atelier lyrique Jean-Philippe Mc Clish is generously sponsored by Dr. François Loubert.

Rose Naggar-Tremblay, mezzo-soprano / mezzo-soprano

Rose Naggar-Tremblay holds a bachelor’s degree from McGill University’s Schulich School of Music. A 2019-2020 Jeune ambassadrice lyrique, she made her Opéra de Montréal debut in the roles of Tisbe in La Cenerentola and Zora in Svadba and, in 2018-2019, played Giovanna in Rigoletto and Gertrude Stein in Twenty-Seven (Atelier lyrique). She was a soloist in A Broadway Evening (Aramusique), On the Path of Love (Pro Musica), Soirée à l’opérette (Orchestre symphonique de Longueuil) and in YO’péra! (creation, Opéra de Montréal). [Ancre] [Ancre] In 2019-2020, Rose’s slate includes the role of Anita in a concert version of West Side Story (Orchestre de la Francophonie), concerts with the Lachine and Saint-Eustache Music Festivals, and the Eternal Light concert (I Musici), She is also Duchess Della Volta in La fille du tambour-major (Opéra bouffe du Québec) and teams with composer Mathilde Côté and librettist Ivy to create the role of Gabrielle in La nuit est ma femme. Member of l'Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal. Rose Naggar-Tremblay is generously sponsored by Elizabeth Wirth and Lucien Fauteux.

Andrea Núñez, soprano / soprano

Andrea Núñez holds a master’s degree of music in opera performance from the University of Toronto. She was also part of the Young Artist Program at the Santa Fe Opera and at the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. In 2018-2019, she made her Opéra de Montréal debut in the roles of The Page in Rigoletto, Woglinde in Das Rheingold, and Alice B. Toklas in Twenty-Seven (Atelier lyrique). She also portrayed the Governess in The Turn of the Screw (Orchestre de l’Agora) and Giulia in La scala di seta (Orchestre symphonique de la Vallée-du-Haut-Saint-Laurent). In 2019-2020, she studies the role of Lucia in Lucia di Lammermoor and plays the role of Erste Dame in The Magic Flute (both with l’Opéra de Montréal). Member of the Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal. Andrea Núñez is generously sponsored by Emmelle and Alvin Segal.

Elizabeth Polese, soprano / soprano

A soprano fellow at the prestigious Tanglewood Music Festival in 2019, Elizabeth Polese holds a master’s degree in voice performance from the University of Toronto. During the 2018-2019 season, she played Countess Ceprano in Rigoletto (Opéra de Montréal) and Alice B. Toklas in Twenty-Seven (Atelier lyrique), as well as Miss Jessel in The Turn of the Screw (Orchestre de l’Agora). Her work as a soloist included A Broadway Evening (Aramusique), Dvořák’s Mass in D Major, Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb (both with the Chœur Métropolitain), Soirée à l’opérette (Orchestre symphonique de Longueuil) and Opéras! (Orchestre symphonique de la Vallée-du-Haut-Saint-Laurent). In 2019-2020, Elizabeth’s slate at l’Opéra de Montréal includes the part of Papagena in The Magic Flute along with studying the roles of Marzelline in Fidelio, Agnès in Written on Skin and Pamina in The Magic Flute. She also assumes the title role in Rita (Sinfonia de Lanaudière). Member of the Atelier lyrique de l'Opéra de Montréal. Elizabeth Polese is generously sponsored by Sue Wehner.