Coming to America: Songs of American Immigrants

Vocalists from Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute


Kevin Murphy
, piano and program director
Christine Lyons
, soprano (2019)
Siena Licht Miller, mezzo-soprano (2019)
John Matthew Myers
, tenor (2019)
Nicholas Newton
, bass-baritone (2019)

Bennett Gordon Hall
Saturday, January 25, 2020
7:30 PM
Gates Open
8:00 PM
Concert Starts

Tickets: $12
No lawn sales

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Program

Celebrating the American Voice

Mohammed Fairouz:   Refugee Blues
 
Hindemith:   Selections from Nine English Songs
On Hearing ‘The Last Rose of Summer’
Sing On there in the Swamp
 
Weill:   Four Walt Whitman Songs
 
Berger:   Selections from Four Songs (of Langston Hughes)
Heart
Lonely People
 
Zemlinsky:   Selections from 12 Songs, op. 27
Elend (Misery)
Harlem Tänzerin
Afrikanischer Tanz
 
Ricky Ian Gordon:   Litany from Only Heaven
Stars from Only Heaven
Joy from Genius Child
 
Still:   Plain Chant for America
 

About The Artist

Kevin Murphy, Program Director and piano

The MacLean Chair in honor of Christa Ludwig

Pianist Kevin Murphy serves on the faculty of the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University. Prior to returning to his alma mater, he was director of music administration at New York City Opera and served as the director of musical studiesat the Paris Opera. In 1992 he was the first pianist to participate in the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program. He has played continuo harpsichord with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in several productions as well as traveled with the company on tour in Japan. In addition to his on- and off-stage partnership with his wife, soprano Heidi Grant Murphy, he has collaborated in concert and recital with many of today’s leading artists. A native of Syracuse, New York, Kevin received his bachelor’s degree in piano performance from Indiana University and master’s in piano accompaniment from the Curtis Institute of Music.

Christine Lyons, soprano

Christine Lyons, soprano, has been praised as “especially moving” by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, called a “revelation” by Gay City News, and hailed a “true virtuosa” by Broadway World. This season, she sings the title role in Norma with Winter Opera Saint Louis, joins the Kennedy Center for The Me I Want to Sing with selections from Il Trovatore and Tosca, sings Mozart’s Exsultate, jubilate with the Queens Symphony Orchestra and with the Spectrum Symphony of NY, and is presented in recital with Thomas Muraco by the Art Song Preservation Society of New York. In the summer, she sings title role in Bellini’s La Straniera with Teatro Nuovo at Lincoln Center. Recent roles include Amenaide, Fiordiligi, Donna Anna, Micaëla, Adina and Giulietta. Ms. Lyons earned a Master of Music from Peabody Institute, a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Carnegie Mellon University, and completed further studies at the Mozarteum in Salzburg.

Siena Licht Miller, mezzo-soprano

German American mezzo-soprano, Siena Licht Miller, is quickly making a name for herself in both the opera and concert worlds. As an Emerging Artist with Opera Philadelphia, Siena made her professional debut as Second Lady in Die Zauberflöte and returned this season in two recitals as a part of their O18 Festival. Most recently with the company, her performance as Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream garnered critical acclaim.

This past summer, Siena was a member of Santa Fe Opera’s Apprentice Program, covering Suzuki in Madame Butterfly and Kitty in Doctor Atomic, as well as singing scenes from Berlioz’s Les Troyens. Highlights for the 2018⁄2019 season included the title role in Dido and Aeneas, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Oregon Symphony, and a recital with the Carnegie Hall Citywide Concert Series.  She has worked with master artists such as Renée Fleming, Robert Spano, Placido Domingo and Graham Johnson. Recent appearances with the New York City Ballet and the avant-garde Del Sol String Quartet have fostered her love of cross-discipline collaboration. Ms. Miller is an alumna of the Curtis Institute of Music, the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Gerdine Young Artist Program at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, the Chautauqua Institute, and the Aspen Music Festival. In September 2019, she will co-star in a world premiere by Philip Venables, Denis and Katya, at Opera Philadelphia. Siena began her musical career at a young age as a violinist, while being raised in Portland, Oregon.

John Matthew Myers, tenor

Tenor John Matthew Myers, declared an “artist to watch” by Opera News, has rapidly established himself among the ranks of today's exceptional young voices. He has collaborated with companies such as the Verbier Festival, Santa Fe Opera and LA Opera, and made his surprise Los Angeles Philharmonic debut in 2017 as Mao in John Adams’s Nixon in China conducted by the composer. His breakout performance was hailed by the Los Angeles Times as “brightly lighted to match his declaiming voice.

Concert highlights of the 2018-19 season include Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde with the Colorado Springs Philharmonic and conductor Josep Caballé-Domenech; a new production of John Cage’s Europeras 1 & 2 with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under the direction of Yuval Sharon; Mozart’s Mass in C Minor with the Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra and Marcelo Lehninger; and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra and José-Luis Novo.

Nicholas Newton, bass-baritone

A San Diego native, Nicholas Newton is garnering due attention as an up-and-coming bass-baritone in the opera world. Growing up in a musical household, Mr. Newton has pursued his passion for singing through gospel, jazz, musical theater, and now classical music. Notable operatic roles include Monterone in "Rigoletto" with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Olin Blitch in "Susannah" and Achilla in "Giulio Cesare" at Rice University, and Un Arbre/La Fauteuil in "L'enfant et les sortilèges" at Aspen Music Festival. Notable concert performances include solos in Mozart Requiem, Haydn's Lord Nelson Mass, Fauré Requiem, Stephen Paulus' "To Be Certain of the Dawn", "Catfish Row" with San Diego Winds, and "Duruflé Requiem" with San Diego Master Chorale. Mr. Newton recently completed his last year in the Master's program at Rice University and he joins the Houston Grand Opera Studio in the fall for the 2019-2020 season.