Meet the Choir of St. James'
Mary Abbott has been singing with Choir of St. James’ since 1983, the year her eldest daughter started Kindergarten at St. James’ School. She sang with the Adelphian Concert Choir at the University of Puget Sound under the direction of Dr. Bruce Rodgers (a UCLA classmate of Roger Wagner) and has studied voice with Margaret Myles (at UPS) and more recently with Dr. Rich Brunner. Along with her husband, Tom, Mary also currently sings with Cor Cymraeg de California (the Welsh Choir ofSouthern California), Legal Voices, the choral group affiliated with the Los Angeles Lawyers Philharmonic, and various other choral groups as invited from time to time. As a legal assistant, she works for The Wonderful Company in West L.A. She has three daughters – Melah (an 8th grade teacher at New Heights Charter School), Maya (currently working as a nanny, housesitter and dog walker), and Emily (development associate at Pasadena Playhouse) – and two grandchildren, Ani and Jaya. Her husband Tom is an electrical engineer, and is currently in much demand as a tutor. Their home is in the Westchester area of Los Angeles.
A Charleston, South Carolina native, Justin Baker followed the American dream in 2012, making the move to the West to pursue his life-long love for filmmaking after eight years of academic choral directing, high school media education, assistant to Ann Hood, Music Director at Holy Cross on Sullivan’s Island, SC, and organ student of renowned concert organist, Porter Remington.
Mr. Baker earned his Bachelor of Arts in Vocal Music Performance and Communications from Horton School of Music at Charleston Southern University touring to places such as Sofia, Bulgaria, Southern England, Edinburgh, Scotland and several choir-in-residence terms at the York Minster with the CSU Concert Singers. Justin later earned a Master of Science degree from Full Sail University in Winter Park, Florida, specializing in Education Media Design and Technology, and most recently earning a Certified Social Media Professional (CSMP) master certification credential.
Before making a home in Los Angeles, Mr. Baker was Organist/Choirmaster at St. John's Chapel in the Carmel/Monterey Bay area. A member of the Choir of St. James' since 2013, Justin continues to perform as a vocalist for several small venues in the LA area. His recent adventures have found him running his own start-up PR and consulting firm, Fuzzy Image Media.
Current projects include envisioning and directing his first feature-length documentary film, “The American Chorister” which reveals the lives and work of choral musicians in America and the church, featuring the members of the Choir of Saint James’. More can be seen at AmericanChorister.com
Baritone Michael Bannett has been singing with the Choir of St. James' since 2009. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music, where he sang with the USC Chamber Singers and USC Opera. Recent operatic roles include Silvio in Leoncavallo’s I Pagliacci with the Celestial Opera Company; Kromow in Lehár 's The Merry Widow, Dancair o in Bizet’s Carmen, and Pish in Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Mikado with the Pacific Opera Project; Guglielmo in Mozart’s Così fan Tutte with the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival; Sharpless in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly with the Los Angeles Metropolitan Opera; Betto in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi and First Priest in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with USC Opera; and Camero in Conte’s America Tropical with the Definians Project.
Bannett performs frequently with a variety of choral organizations in Southern California, including Los Angeles Master Chorale, Horizon Chamber Singers, de Angelis Vocal Ensemble, the Clarion Singers, LASchola, and the Baroque Music Festival Corona Del Mar.
Hailed as “the model of bel canto clarity and brilliance” by Cleveland Classical, mezzo-soprano Sarah Beaty has a passion for contemporary opera. She sang in the world premiere productions of “Hopscotch” and the Pulitzer Prize finalist opera “Invisible Cities” with LA’s leading avant-garde opera company The Industry, “Prometheus Bound” with the Center for New Performance, and is a founding member of the contemporary chamber ensemble, Blue Streak. She premiered the title role in Clara, a new opera by Victoria Bond about the life of Clara Schumann, on the Cutting Edge Concerts New Music Festival in NYC’s Symphony Space. Also a specialist in very early music, this season Sarah will be reprising her role as Castitas in Hildegard’s rarely performed “Ordo Virtutum” with Vocatrix, and has been seen as Diana in Cavalli’s “La Calisto.” Other opera roles include Dryad in Ariadne auf Naxos, Maddalena in Rigoletto, Mozart’s Serpetta, Dorabella, Second Lady and Cherubino, Alisa in Lucia di Lammermoor, Agnese in Beatrice di Tenda, Flora in La Traviata, Clarina in La cambiale di matrimonio, among others. Sarah has been a soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra, CityMusic Cleveland Orchestra, the Camerata of LA, National Chorale, and has performed at the Hollywood Bowl, Disney Concert Hall, Symphony Space, and Avery Fisher Hall. In 2012, she spent 6 months performing in Macao, China, as a featured opera singer at The Venetian. She is a graduate of the Manhattan School of Music and regularly sings with Pacific Opera Project, Pacific Chorale, John Alexander Singers, and the de Angelis Ensemble. When she’s not performing, Sarah teaches private voice lessons.
Praised for his "warm, rich voice and impeccable coloratura" (La Marseillaise) Countertenor Scott Belluz brings consummate musicianship and remarkable versatility to his performances of repertoire ranging from 17th century to newly composed works.
Scott has received great acclaim for his "bravura vocal performances" (Now Magazine) in the world premieres of numerous Canadian operatic works as well as his vivid characterizations of principal roles in the standard operatic repertoire of Handel, Monteverdi and Britten with companies such as Chicago Opera Theatre, Pacific Opera Victoria, Tapestry New Opera, Soundstreams and Chants Libres.
A frequent soloist on the oratorio/concert stage, Scott's repertoire runs the gamut from Bach, Handel, Pergolesi and Vivaldi, to more contemporary works by Ades, Cage, Kagel, Schoenberg and PDQ Bach — including recent appearances with the Jacaranda Music Series, the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, and the Aradia Baroque Ensemble. Scott performed in 'Salsa Baroque: Music of Latin America and Spain' with Ensemble Caprice, a program which has also been released on CD by the Analekta label.
As a professional chorister, Scott has enjoyed singing with an illustrious array of international ensembles including: La Chapelle de Quebec/Les Violons du Roy, Tafelmusik Chamber Choir, Les Musiciens du Louvre, Studio de Musique Ancienne de Montreal and is thrilled to now be part of the choir at St. James' in the City.
Please visit: www.scottbelluz.com
Originally from Texas, Anna Cave is a graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy and holds a Bachelor’s in Classical Vocal Performance from Mannes College of Music. For the last decade, she has been enjoying a variety of musical opportunities in New York and is a champion of new music, having appeared most recently as Venus in Jonathan Dawe’s Pluto and the Underworld. A longtime member of St. James Madison Avenue’s Compostela Choir, she is excited to be a part of another great choral tradition at St. James in the City Los Angeles, as well as other LA Area groups including The Clarion Singers and LA Schola. Anna lives with her husband, Ben, and their two dogs – all of whom enjoy exploring their new home in Los Angeles.
In addition to singing at St. James' Episcopal/Anglican Church (Los Angeles), Gerald W. Craft, tenor, sings regularly at St. Wilfrid of York Episcopal (Huntington Beach) and All Saints' Episcopal (Beverly Hills). He is Artistic Director of Hollywood-based LASchola and also sings with Orange County's De Angelis Vocal Ensemble. He has sung with the Donald Brinegar Singers, Jouyssance Early Music Ensemble, Chorale Bel Canto, and Cantori Sine Nomine. Gerald has been tenor soloist at the Whittier College Bach Festival, Redondo Beach Baroque Music Festival, an d the Hollywood Master Chorale. He is also a founding member of the Clarion Singers. Gerald is a technology director at Occidental College in Los Angeles, from which he earned a Bachelor’s Degree and studied voice with G. G. Prosper.
Tom Croyle was born and raised in Pennsylvania, and started singing in choirs at an early age. After graduating from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, he moved to Los Angeles. He has sung in the Los Angeles Master Chorale with Roger Wagner and Grant Gershon and the Saint Charles Borromeo choir with Paul Salamunovich. He joined the choir of Saint James' in 2010 and is very glad to be a part of the Saint James' family.
Milena Gligić is a pianist, vocalist and dancer from Belgrade, Serbia. In 2016 she moved to LA as a pianist in the LA Opera's Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program. Before that, Gligić was active as a recitalist, chamber musician and vocal coach in the Washington D.C. area. She holds a DMA in Collaborative Piano from the University of Maryland. Currently, Gligić is the rehearsal pianist for projects with LA Opera, LA Philharmonic and The Industry. She is studying voice with Renee Sousa. In the summer of 2018 she will join the Oregon Bach Festival professional chorus.
Since 2012, as a core member of Contemporaneous ensemble in NYC, Gligić premiered numerous works in venues such as Roulette, National Sawdust and the Fisher Center for Performing Arts. With the ensemble she did several residencies at universities and performed at the Bang On a Can Marathon.
Ms. Gligić was a Collaborative Piano Fellow at the Bard College Conservatory of Music, where she worked intensely with the Vocal Arts Program under the direction of Dawn Upshaw and Kayo Iwama. She was also a Vocal Piano Fellow at Aspen Music Festival and at Music Academy of the West.
Gligić holds a BM in Piano Performance and Specialization in Chamber Music from the University of Arts in Belgrade. She also has one year of MM in Collaborative Piano at Mannes College The New School for Music in NYC. Gligić is the recipient of several major national scholarships in Serbia as well as the winner of numerous prizes in international solo piano and piano duo competitions. Before coming to the United States in 2010, she taught piano and was an accompanist in the music school in Vršac, Serbia. From 2008-2010 she accompanied the Radio and Television of Serbia children’s choir “Kolibri”.
An accomplished singer, Gligić is performing professionally as a soloist and choir member. From 2002 until 2010, she was a member of the prestigious Academic Female Choir Collegium Musicum, led by Darinka Matić-Marović. As their piano soloist and singer she participated in over 400 performances throughout Europe, North and South America and Asia. As a vocal soloist she performed with Contemporaneous, Washington Bach Consort, UMD Wind Ensemble and with the choir of St. James in the City in LA. An experienced Balkan folk dancer, since 2014 she has been performing with the Bulgarian Dance group Zharava in Washington D.C., and now with Horotroptzi in Los Angeles.
Erik Koski, tenor, joined the choir of St. James in 2014. Erik discovered his love of church music when he joined the choir of St. Mark’s Episcopal cathedral (Seattle) in 1997. Erik holds music degrees from Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, WA and the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. After 7 years on the east coast, Erik moved to Los Angeles in 2013 to teach music at Campbell Hall Episcopal in North Hollywood. Erik is thrilled to be singing at St. James!
Sarah has been a member of the Los Angeles Master Chorale since 2011, and in the professional ensemble at St. James’ Church since 2009. In September of 2015 Sarah premiered Jason Barabba’s piece, Lettere da Triggiano, with three other soloists and instrumental ensemble, in a concert at Boston Court Theater. Earlier this year, Sarah performed the alto solo, Wo Zwei und Drei versammlet sind from J.S. Bach’s Cantata 42, in concert with St. Matthew’s Chamber Orchestra, in Pacific Palisades. Sarah also sings on film and TV sessions, most recently, Jane the Virgin, X-Men: Apocalypse and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows.
In addition to her singing, Sarah also works as an orchestrator and in music prep for film and television. She recently completed work on the HBO miniseries, The Night Of, which will air summer of 2016, as well as season 2 of the FX show, Fargo. She also worked for four seasons on the AMC show, Mad Men, as orchestrator and copyist.
A native Angeleno, Sarah lived for years in New York, where she worked as a jazz vocalist. She performed original songs and standards in restaurants and clubs in and around Manhattan. Lynch produced and released the jazz vocal album Haunted Heart (available on iTunes) on her own label in November 2006. While in New York, she was also part of a 12-voice professional ensemble at St. James’ Church on the Upper East Side, and sang with the New York Choral Artists at Avery Fisher Hall and Carnegie Hall.
Sarah holds a Master’s Degree in Piano Performance from UCLA and graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance from the Dana School of Music in Youngstown, Ohio. She has studied voice throughout her adult life, initially as part of her Bachelor’s Degree program, and privately thereafter. She currently studies with soprano, Renee Sousa, a member of the LA Opera Chorus. From 2007 to 2009, Lynch studied orchestration and composition at The Juilliard School.
A member of the Choir since 2007, Megan Malone-Franklin is proud to call St. James’ home. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music from the University of Southern California and has performed with several choral ensembles in Orange County and Los Angeles over the last 10 years, including Pacific Chorale, the John Alexander Singers, and the Clarion Singers. She has participated in three UK tours as a chorister, singing in many cathedrals and chapels across the country.
In addition to singing at St. James’, Megan works for Pacific Symphony, as well as partnering with her wife, Marlee, to provide doula services and childbirth education to growing families in Orange County (www.herobirthservices.com). Megan and Marlee live with their rescued cocker spaniel in Fullerton.
Brett McDermid holds a B.A. in Theatre Arts from Concordia College, Moorhead, MN. After graduation, Brett spent several years touring in the US and internationally with various choirs. He has performed with The Concordia Choir, Kentucky Opera, Cornerstone Chorale, the Pallas Ensemble and the Cardinal Singers.
Brett currently sings with the Clarion Singers, Los Angeles Master Chorale, LASchola, De Angelis Vocal Ensemble, Horizon Chamber Choir, Pacific Bach Ensemble and LA Chamber Singers. He is also a member of the early music ensemble Tesserae, and was recently the solo vocalist in a concert of works for period instruments and basso profundo. In addition, Brett works as a TV and internet voice-over artist.
He is an original member of the male vocal ensemble Chanson who have released four studio albums.
Susie McDermid began singing as a young chorister, taking part in residencies at several cathedrals in her native England. She moved to Los Angeles in 2001, and is currently in her eighth season singing with the Choir of St James. She has sung with several local professional groups including De Angelis Vocal Ensemble, Horizon Chamber Choir and LASchola. In 2014, Susie worked with renowned British conductor Suzi Digby to create the 16-voice professional ensemble The Golden Bridge. The group, which gives its annual concert series each September in Los Angeles, is now in its fourth season and commissions between four and six new pieces each year from Californian composers.
Susie is a founder member and Artistic Director of The Clarion Singers (www.clarionsingers.com), a Los Angeles-based chamber choir which recently completed its third UK tour and second residency at Canterbury Cathedral.
When she is not doing all of the above, Susie is part of the Production team for the Los Angeles Master Chorale.
From her earliest years, Kara Morgan has been singing and entertaining. She received her Bachelor of Music degree in vocal performance from Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois. Kara subsequently spent two years in France studying voice at the Conservatoire de Nancy where she was awarded the Médaille d'Or in 2004. In 2005 Kara was selected to join the Maryland Opera Studio where she performed the roles of Sophie in Massenet's Werther, Anne Sexton in Conrad Susa's Transformations and Rose in the World Premiere of John Musto's Later the Same Evening. Her love of both early music and new music has lead her to collaborate with such companies as Washington D.C.'s Opera Lafayette, the Great Noise Ensemble, Chantry, the Aspen Music Festival, the Alliance for New Music-Theater, Ensemble Vocatrix and the Clarion Singers. Beyond the concert hall, Kara is also an actor and comedic performer. In 2012 Kara moved to Los Angeles to perform musical comedy within the heart of the entertainment industry. She currently hosts the Kara Morgan Show and studies comedy improv at the Groundlings Theater and School.
Vickere Murphy has sung at St. James since 2003 and loves participating in the high-quality performances with world-class musicians. When she's not singing, Vickere is a district representative for a member of the California State Legislature. She previously owned a successful freelance copy-editing business that she established while she was at home with her young daughters, and in her early career was an engineer at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Vickere grew up in a choral musician family. Her father, James Blackwell, was an organist-choir director in Baltimore, Maryland, and her sister, Kathleen Bird, founded and directs the English Choir Berlin.
Baritone Joel Nesvadba (pronounced “nes-VAHD-ba”) is a passionate performer of early music, especially that of the Medieval and Renaissance eras. He has toured both nationally and internationally, singing with The Boston Camerata, The Broken Consort, Bach Collegium San Diego, and The Texas Early Music Project. Last spring he was soloist with the Boston Camerata’s “The Night’s Tale”, a show The Boston Globe praised for its “rousing theater” and exclaimed “…very few evenings are as rewarding.” He has also performed at the San Francisco Early Music Society's Berkeley Festival and Exhibition, the Amherst Early Music Festival, and the Boston Early Music Festival with Early Music America's Young Performers Festival Ensemble. In addition to early music, Joel is also active in contemporary popular music. He has worked with the electronic artist and DJ Moby as a background vocalist, guitarist and pianist. He is currently completing a Doctorate of Musical Arts in Early Music Performance at the University of Southern California's Thornton School of Music.
Adam Noel has been performing in Southern California for over ten years, and sings in various choral groups throughout Los Angeles. In addition to the choir of St. James, he is currently a member of the Los Angeles Master Chorale, the Clarion Singers, and LASchola. He has also appeared as a soloist with the Hollywood Master Chorale, The Concert Singers, and as a trombonist in Disneyland’s All American College Band. Adam received his BA in music from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa with an emphasis in voice and trombone. He currently works for MGM studios in television distribution.
John Peterson has a BA in Oboe Performance and Music Education from Bethel University in St. Paul, MN, but his lifelong fascination with the acoustics and mechanics of musical instruments has led him to a career of repairing oboes, rather than playing them.
He has worked at RDG woodwinds in Los Angeles, CA since 1989. Although he has never formally studied musical acoustics, he has actively pursued his interest in the history and physics of the oboe, clarinet, and pipe organ. He has built several instruments, including the oboe he still plays on. Besides repairing, he keeps busy building clarinet barrels and oboe bells, and maintaining his collection of historical oboes.
While John no longer performs much on the oboe, he still maintains an active and rewarding musical life as a choral singer.
Stephen Wesley Salts is an internationally distinguished Fulbright scholar of choral music. As a conductor, he has enjoyed directing choirs throughout the United States, United Kingdom, and Europe. Highlights of his early conducting career include performances at Westminster Abbey, four of the major Basilicas in Rome, and venues in New York City and Los Angeles. In addition to his conducting engagements, he is in constant demand as a versatile bass-baritone. He has been featured as both a soloist and a chorister on major studio recordings released by Hyperion Records, for whom he also co-authored liner notes for a recording of contemporary American choral music. Some of Stephen’s singing highlights include performing for Her Majesty The Queen, singing with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and holding weeklong residencies at St Paul’s Cathedral in London, Canterbury Cathedral, Wells Cathedral, and Salisbury Cathedral.
Stephen is Associate Faculty of Music at Riverside City College in California where he conducts the Concert Choir and teaches a studio of voice and conducting students. Previously, he was the conductor of the Royal Holloway Founder’s Choir, assistant conductor of the internationally acclaimed Choir of Royal Holloway, and assistant conductor of the 2016 “Choir of the World” - the Bob Cole Conservatory Chamber Choir.
Stephen earned his Bachelor of Music degree in voice performance from Florida State University, his first Master of Music degree in choral conducting from the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music at California State University, Long Beach where he graduated Summa cum laude, and another Master of Music degree with highest honors from one of the leading music departments in the United Kingdom at Royal Holloway, University of London. He attended Royal Holloway on a Fulbright Postgraduate Award for research focused on the Anglican choral tradition. An avid church musician, he serves as the Founding Director of the Song School music education program at St Wilfrid’s Episcopal Church in Huntington Beach, a staff singer and conducting scholar at St James’ in the City Episcopal Church in Los Angeles, and was the Interim Director of Music at First Congregational Church of Los Angeles in 2016. Stephen also served as the Founder & Creative Director of Howells125, a music festival in California celebrating the music of Herbert Howells.
Amelia Tobiason, soprano, grew up in Washington State and began taking piano and voice lessons at an early age. Amelia moved to Los Angeles in 2010 to attend the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music, where she graduated with her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance. She has performed with the Chamber Opera of USC, Thornton Opera, USC Recital Choir, Horizon Chamber Choir, Sweet Temperament Baroque Ensemble, and on international tours with USC Chamber Singers and the Clarion Singers
Jimmy Traum, tenor, graduated cum laude from Westminster Choir College in 2010. As a student, he performed under the batons of Michael Tilson-Thomas, Pierre Boulez, and Kurt Masur. In 2011, he won the Planet Connections Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical in the off-Broadway show “He’s Not Himself.” In 2013, he won the Stage Scene LA Award for Memorable Performance by a Lead Actor in the musical “Stay on the Line” at Theatre 68 in Los Angeles. In 2019, Jimmy will be featured in Meredith Monk’s “ATLAS” at the Walt Disney Concert Hall, directed by Yuval Sharon.
Australian composer Joe Twist is a versatile and eclectic musician based in the United States. Straddling both film music and concert music arenas, his music crosses genres ranging ancient vocal music, opera, contemporary orchestral music, jazz, musical theatre and cabaret. Twist has received wide acclaim for his music for film and television, and his concert works are performed frequently by many professional ensembles around the world, including the Melbourne, Sydney, Queensland and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras, Orchestra Victoria, Victorian Opera, Gondwana Voices, The Song Company, The Australian Voices, Adelaide Chamber Singers, the Southern Cross Soloists, JACK Quartet, Chanticleer, The Choir of Trinity College Cambridge and many others. Credits include original music, arrangements and orchestrations for The Wiggles, (The Wiggles Meet The Orchestra), New York Music Theatre Festival (Clinton: The Musical) and Twist's own album Dancing With Somebody.
Born in Brooklyn, Kristina Valcarce learned about music from her Dad, a guitar player in local rock bands. When she started learning about classical music, she realized that opera singers got the most attention – so she became determined to be one. Her first role was at the age of 21, singing Livio in Alessandro Scarlatti’s opera “Eraclea”. She has since performed with many orchestras and ensembles, including The Los Angeles Philharmonic, Pasadena Lyric Opera, Opera of the Foothills, Lyric Opera of Los Angeles, ProVoce, the New Valley Symphony, Saint Mark’s Episcopal Church of Glendale’s Cantebury Choir, the Choir of Saint James in the City, and the San Gabriel Valley Choral Company. She recently became a Mom and loves it, despite the face that her school aged daughter is her toughest critic.
Recently Ms. Valcarce sang in Disney Hall; playing the Queen of the Night in the LA Phil Educational Outreach Program’s production of “Mozart’s Birthday Party”.
Ms. Valcarce has also taught and performed with the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra’s Educational Outreach Program: TEMPO.
In 2002 Ms. Valcarce helped found Opera of the Foothills. She served on the board of directors, and sang the principal roles of Adela (Adele) in Bat Out of Hell (Die Fledermaus), and Die Königen der Nacht in Die Zauberflöte. She also sang The Queen of the Night with the New Valley Symphony in 2004. In May of 2004 she sang the role of Maguelonne in Pauline Viardot’s Cendrillon with Lyric Opera of Los Angeles.
Kristina Valcarce began singing with Pasadena Lyric Opera in 1998, first singing in the ensemble and going on to sing principal roles. Her first principal role with the company was Frasquita in Carmen. The following season she sang Die Königen der Nacht in Die Zauberflote, Olympia in The Tales of Hoffman, and the Secretary in a special presentation of Michael Canales’ new opera Color of Vengeance. She also sang Musetta and Zerlina.
Ms. Valcarce has sung in many concerts, recitals and workshops with ProVoce, the highlight being having sung the role of Le Rossignol in their production of L’Enfant et les Sortileges.
In 1997, she received the J. Arthur Myers Sr. and J. Arthur Myers Jr. Award from the Glendale Music Teachers Association. She studies with Dr. Kathleen Roland. She was the soprano section leader and soloist at Saint Mark’s Episcopal Church of Glendale for 8 years, where she has sung the soprano solos in Mozart’s Missa Brevis in C, Haydn’s Jugendmesse, Haydn’s Stabat Mater, Charpentier’s Petite Messe de Noel, and Pergolesi’s Miserere II. She is enjoying her seventh season as a staff singer at the prestigious choir of Saint James Episcopal Church on Wilshire.
Kristina received her Bachelor of Fine Arts at the Purchase College Conservatory of Music. Here, she sang the roles of Cathleen in Riders to the Sea, Clara in Signor Deluso and Livio in Eraclea. She won the Irving and Geraldine Schaeffer Award while at Purchase. Immediately afterward she attended the Mannes College of Music, where she received her Masters in Music. Here, she sang the role of Susanna in the first two acts of Le Nozze di Figaro, as well as the Novice and Lay Sister in Suor Angelica.
In past seasons, Ms. Valcarce has sung multiple roles in the Sierra Madre Playhouse’s production of A Christmas Carol Story. She’s also performed with the successful caroling group “The Voices of Christmas.”
A passionate performer and interpreter of contemporary vocal music, he specializes in creating performances that engage audiences and promote communication through the combination of words and music.
Walker holds a Masters of Music in Opera and Vocal Performance from University of California, Los Angeles, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from California Institute of the Arts, where he studied in the Performer/Composer program, an innovative and unique program that integrates performance practice with compositional craft. This summer, Walker was a Vocal Fellow at the esteemed Music Academy of the West , under master teacher Marilyn Horne.
Recently, he has performed new works by Matthew Aucoin , Anne LeBaron , Mark Menzies , Coleman Zurkowski , Christina Ward , Edward Park , and others. He has performed in collaboration with the Formalist Quartet , the California Institute of the Arts Chamber Orchestra, Nicholas Deyoe , Anthony "Chuck" Gloria, Jonathan Tull , Betsy Rettig , and others.
In the future, Walker hopes to continue to pursue expressive, word-focused music, as well as further his exploration of poetry, storytelling, acting, and movement.
Lucy Wegner is a Southern California native and grew up in Topanga Canyon. She has a Master’s degree in voice from CSUN and has sung with a variety of choirs and choruses and conducted church choirs in the Los Angeles area. In 2012, she was thrilled to be part of the choir for Mahler’s ”Symphony of a Thousand” conducted by Gustavo Dudamel with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. She joined the choir of St. James in 2013 and is very glad to be a part of the St. James family.
Andrea Zomorodian, a native Seattle soprano, has quickly garnered attention and acclaim regularly singing in Los Angeles, Seattle, Vienna, and London. In 2012, she returned from a year in Vienna, Austria on a Fulbright Fellowship studying voice at Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien. In 2011, she graduated magna cum laude from USC in vocal performance. Her work in L.A. has been focused on oratorio, early, and new music. Apart from the Choir of St. James’, she currently sings with the L.A. Master Chorale, Bach Collegium San Diego, The John Alexander Singers, Golden Bridge Consort, Pacific Chorale, De Angelis Vocal Ensemble, Ensemble Vocatrix, The Clarion Singers, and LA Schola. She has previously sung with The Pacific Bach Project and Horizon Music Group. She has worked with notable conductors in the U.S. and Europe including Sir András Schiff, Lionel Bringuier, Grant Gershon, John Alexander, Juanjo Mena, Christopher Seamen, Bramwell Tovey, Carl St. Clair, Michael Tilson Thomas, Helmuth Rilling, James Conlon, and Gustavo Dudamel.
Recent solo engagements include: Cantata for solo soprano Ich habe genug, BWV 82a with Bach Collegium San Diego, Handel Messiah at The Norris Center for the Performing Arts in Palos Verdes, Brahms Requiem at Mission Basilica San Juan Capistrano, Allegri Miserere Mei, Stanford Magnificat in G at St. Paul's Cathedral in London, Haydn Missa in Angustiis (Lord Nelson Mass), Cantata for solo soprano Weichet nur, betrübte Schatten, BWV 202 with Bach Collegium San Diego, and Bach Mass in B Minor with Musica Angelica conducted by John Alexander.
Recent highlights include: singing in a post-concert Schubert recital with Sir András Schiff following a performance of Haydn’s Paukenmesse with the LA Philharmonic, performing the lead role, Anima, in a fully staged version of Hildegard von Bingen’s transcendent Ordo Virtutum, premiering the first ever choral opera, The Radio Hour, by Jake Heggie, her soloist debut on Classical KUSC, recording an album of new music with Susan Graham, appeared as a returning soloist to Canterbury Cathedral with the Clarion Singers, and most recently was featured in an upcoming documentary film, The American Chorister, following the lives of professional vocalists and choristers in Los Angeles. Recordings include Verdi Requiem on Deutsche Grammophon as well as The Radio Hour and other Jake Heggie compositions on the Delos label.
Upcoming solo engagements include: Mozart Requiem in Bellingham, Washington in March, a staged concert of Broadway music at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts with the John Alexander Singers, and continued touring performances of Hildegard’s Ordo Virtutum.
For more information, please visit www.andreazomorodian.com