Metropolitan Opera Star Gives Real Master Class!
By Shari Alexander
“We are proud and delighted to welcome international opera star Maureen O’Flynn to San Miguel de Allende for Master Class (the Real Thing, Not the Play!)” says Opera San Miguel’s Artistic Director, John Bills, “and we’re very grateful to her for donating her wisdom and expertise for this exciting benefit evening.”
Terrance McNally’s famous Broadway play, Master Class, depicted legendary soprano Maria Callas sharing her experience with aspiring opera singers. Opera San Miguel kicks off its 2014-15 season on November 23 with the real thing, a rare opportunity to see an internationally celebrated opera star, soprano Maureen O’Flynn, conduct her own master class with some of the gifted young singers of Mexico. The evening, presented through the generous sponsorship of Rosewood San Miguel de Allende, will offer an insider’s look at the intense preparation process of young singers and a unique view into the rigors of operatic training. Ticket sales for this special event will benefit the company’s scholarship program.
Maureen O’Flynn’s 28-year career as a leading soprano brought her to virtually every major opera house in the world, including the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, London’s Covent Garden, Vienna Staatsoper, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Hamburg Staatsoper, Teatro La Fenice in Venice, and La Scala in Milan. She has performed under many of the leading conductors of her day, including the legendary Riccardo Muti, who chose her for Nanetta in Verdi’s Falstaff at La Scala and to repeat the role in his acclaimed Sony CD recording of the opera. Her televised performance of Susanna in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro received rave reviews. Ms. O’Flynn’s interpretation of Gilda in Verdi’s Rigoletto was considered definitive by audiences in London, Venice, Palermo, Naples, the Arena di Verona, and in the US at the Met, Houston, Dallas, Philadelphia and San Diego operas. Her Met roles included Violetta in La Traviata, Micaela in Carmen, the title roles in Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette and Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, and Magda in Puccini’s La Rondine. More recently she has returned to her first love, the Great American Songbook, with a thriving cabaret career including several acclaimed appearances at Feinstein’s in New York City. Ms. O’Flynn now shares her experience with aspiring opera singers at her private studio in New York City and at the Hartt School of Music.
She will be working with singers selected by Maestro Bills from the dozens of talented young artists who have been discovered through Concurso San Miguel, the company’s annual search for the most talented and promising young singers in Mexico. Bills says, “I will start out the evening with a short conversation with Maureen, focusing on her remarkable career, and then she’ll get down to work with the singers. We will see in just a short time how talented singers can grow and improve with the insight of a master teacher. I can promise an evening of wonderful singing, and a unique ‘up close and personal’ look at the creative process.”
“Master Class (the Real Thing, Not the Play!)”, Sunday, November 23, at 7pm. The Ballroom, Rosewood San Miguel. Tickets on sale now at the Rosewood Concierge Desk, 350 pesos, to benefit the Opera San Miguel Scholarship Program. Cash bar at intermission.