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About the Program:
This program was created by the Lied Society and is presented in partnership with Schubert Club.
Mezzo-soprano Raehann Bryce-Davis gives an emotional performance of songs in a carefully curated, studio recorded recital. 1/2 Hour With gives us an intimate look at one of the opera world’s fastest rising stars through candid footage layered throughout the performance.
About the Artists:
Hailed by the New York Times as a “striking mezzo soprano” and by the San Francisco Chronicle for her “electrifying sense of fearlessness,” Raehann Bryce-Davis has become a singer of international acclaim and is accomplished in operatic, concert, and contemporary repertoire. Ms. Bryce-Davis is a 2018 recipient of the prestigious George London Award, the 2017 1st Place and Audience Prize-winner of the Concorso Lirico Internazionale di Portofino competition, chaired by Dominique Meyer, Winner of the 2016 Richard F. Gold Career Grant, Winner of the 2015 9th International Hilde Zadek Competition at the Musikverein in Vienna, the 2015 Metropolitan Opera National Council Pittsburgh District, and the 2015 Sedat Gürel – Güzin Gürel International Voice Competition in Istanbul. She holds a Master of Music and Professional Studies certificate from the Manhattan School of Music and a Bachelor of Music from the University of Texas at Arlington.
On the concert stage, Ms. Bryce-Davis has sung Verdi’s Requiem with conductor Kent Nagano and the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal at the Olympic Stadium, Elgar’s Sea Pictures at the Musikverein in Vienna, the world premiere of Paul Moravec’s Sanctuary Road in her Carnegie Hall debut with Oratorio Society of New York, and Verdi’s Requiem with the Orquestra Sinfónica Nacional de Costa Rica, conducted by John Nelson. She has also joined the Aspen Music Festival for Corigliano’s Of Rage and Remembrance, Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with Maestro Kent Tritle at the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine, Prokofiev’s Alexander Nevsky with Maestro Philippe Entremont and the Manhattan School of Music Symphony, Durufle’s Requiem with Maestro David Thye, and Handel’s Messiah with Maestro Phillip Nuzzo and the Metro Chamber Orchestra.
Additional opera credits include Wellgunde in Wagner’s Die Ring-Trilogie at Theater an der Wien, Madeline Mitchell in Heggie’s Three Decembers at Opera Maine, and while a member of the Junges Ensemble at Opera Vlaanderen she sang: Nezhata in Rimsky-Korsakov’s Sadko, Kristina in Janáček’s The Makropulos Affair, and Mary in Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer. She was a participant in San Francisco Opera’s prestigious Merola Opera Program and while a resident artist at Michigan Opera Theatre, she sang: Third Lady in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Lady in Waiting in Verdi’s Macbeth, and Ma Moss in Copland’s The Tender Land. Other roles have incuded Mama McCourt in Moore’s The Ballad of Baby Doe with Chautauqua Opera, Albine in Massenet’s Thaïs with Florida Grand Opera, Zita in Puccini’s Gianni Schichi with Aspen Music Festival, Owl in Unsuk Chin’s Alice in Wonderland with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, and Lily in Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess at Grand Théâtre de Genève.
Sonja Thompson enjoys a varied professional life as educator, church musician, theater musician, conductor, coach and performer. In addition to maintaining an active performance schedule, she is Assistant Professor of Music and College Organist at Augsburg University, and Music Associate at Plymouth Congregational Church in Minneapolis. Sonja’s recent performing engagements include the Colonial Chamber Music Series, the Lakes Area Music Festival, Schubert Club, the Upper Midwest Flute Association, the National Flute Association, Theater Latte Da, Nautilus Music Theater and Open Eye Figure Theater. She has worked with Garrison Keillor and A Prairie Home Companion, Florida Grand Opera, the Oregon Festival of American Music, Minnesota Opera and the Minnesota Orchestra, and has enjoyed long term musical collaborations with soprano Maria Jette, tenor Vern Sutton, tenor Dennis Peterson, singer-actors Jennifer Baldwin Peden, Gary Briggle and Bradley Greenwald, organist/pianist/conductor Philip Brunelle, and pianist Karen Becker (New York). Of particular interest for Ms. Thompson is the development of new works, and in this vein notable colleagues and collaborations have included New Dramatists in New York City, stage director and pedagogue Wesley Balk, director Ben Krywosz of Nautilus Music Theater, stage director Cynthia Stokes (San Diego CITY Opera), choreographer Rosanna Gamson (Los Angeles) and composers David Evan Thomas, Edie Hill and Jocelyn Hagen. Sonja received her Master of Music in Accompanying from The Juilliard School where she studied with Margo Garrett, and her Bachelor of Music in Theory & Composition from the University of Minnesota where she studied composition with Paul Fetler and organ with Heinrich Fleischer.