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2024 La bohème

Biographies

Fredrick Newhouse

Rodolfo

Bio

Emily Nesbitt

Mimì

Bio

Alan Chavez

Marcello

Alan is a Richmond native and has been consistently performing since his debut at VCU in 2011, becoming a familiar face in opera around the Richmond area ever since. Alan is very excited to finally begin his career as a Tenor, where he has already performed tenor roles such as Arnalta in Capitol Opera of Richmond’s 2022 production of L’incoronatione di Poppea as well as Manrico in Commonwealth Concert Opera’s January 2023 production of Verdi's Il Trovatore. He has also appeared in the RVA Art Song Series presentations of Brahms' "Die schöne Magelone", CCO Unleashed's "Spooktacular!", and Commonwealth Concert Opera's "Scenes and Arias from Operas by Richard Wagner."

Mara Barrett

Musetta

Mara Barrett is a proud graduate of the Theatre Program at The College of William and Mary.


Some of her performance credits include The Rocky Horror Show (Richmond Triangle Players), The Addams Family (Dogwood Dell), The Great Gatsby (Quill Theatre), Times Square Angel (Richmond Triangle Players), A Chorus Line (Richmond Triangle Players), Free Man of Color (The Heritage Ensemble Theatre Company), Something’s Afoot (Swift Creek Mill), and Virginia Rep on Tour.

Kirkland Fenerty

Schaunard

Bio

Cannon West

Colline

Cannon West is a software engineer and VCU Computer Science alum that spends his free time pursuing his passion for singing anyway he can. Growing up in Northern Virginia, he began classical vocal training in high school, pursuing interests in small group singing and musicals, before moving to Richmond to attend Virginia Commonwealth University. Today, studying under James Taylor, he relishes any opportunity to sing locally. As a member of the Richmond Symphony Chorus, he has sung on the Carpenter Theatre stage on a wide range of projects. Cannon enjoys living in downtown Richmond and raising two wonderful cats with his partner Julia in their apartment.

James Taylor

Artistic Director

Conductor

Benoît

James Taylor, M.M. (Yale University), is an internationally celebrated performer. At home in opera, concert, recital, and musical theatre, he has appeared with numerous opera companies, symphonies, and theatres, including the New York City Opera, San Francisco Opera, Opera Carolina, Göttigen Handel Festspiele, Theatre Augsburg, and the Nederlandse Reisopera. In his earlier roles as a baritone, Mr. Taylor performed the title roles in Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Le Nozze di Figaro, Marcello in La Boheme, as well as thirty-three others. As a tenor, his performances have included Siegmund in Die Walküre, the title roles in Lohengrin and Parsifal, Don Jose in Carmen, Manrico in Il Trovatore, Cavaradossi in Tosca, and Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly. His many concert performances include Handel's "Messiah", Bach's "Magnificat", Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, and Mozart's "Requiem". An avid recitalist, Mr. Taylor has presented programs in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht, Breda, and Groningen in the Netherlands, Munich, Augsburg, and Dusseldorf in Germany, Klagenfurt, Linz, and Vienna in Austria, and Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, as well as several universities and colleges across the United States.  He has sung Schubert's "Winterreise", "Die schöne Müllerin", and "Schwanengesang", Schumann's "Dichterliebe", "Liederkreise" Op. 24 & Op. 39, Brahms' "Vier ernste Gesange", "Ziguenerlieder" and "Die schöne Magelone", and Wagner's "Wesendonk Lieder".

Charles Lindsey

Pianist

Primarily an organist and sacred music choral director, Charles Lindsey Jr. is also involved in the community and secular music as a pianist for vocal and string students at Virginia Commonwealth University and a harpsichordist for VCU Opera and RVA Baroque.  He is a vocal coach, piano teacher, and organ teacher.  Charles is currently finishing his longtime position as organist and choirmaster at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Petersburg, and in August will become associate organist at St. James's Episcopal Church, Richmond.


After receiving a Bachelor of Music degree in organ performance from the University of Richmond, Charles has pursued further studies in early music, choral conducting, vocal coaching, and organ improvisation with various teachers around the country, including some affiliated with the Juilliard Institute, Manhattan School of Music, and Westminster Choir College.  He credits the most advancement of his post-undergraduate musical skill and knowledge to incredible local talents who have served as coaches and mentors, in particular Melanie Kohn Day of VCU and the late great James Erb of University of Richmond,.


He has a particular affinity for early music, which he credits to Suzanne Bunting, his organ professor at UR, who specialized in teaching how to shape and phrase Baroque music and express it on a mechanical instrument.  Evidence of his musical talent and desire to pursue a career in church music, particularly to be an organist, began in preschool thanks to genetics and family influence:  his mother, Bettie Lindsey, is a longtime organist and church music director in the Richmond area, and his aunt (her sister), Jane Reeves, was an organist from her early years almost up to the time of her recent passing.

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