HOC General Director
“I have long admired Craig Trompeter's stylish musicality and proven leadership skills. He is a valuable part of the Chicago area's growing early music scene.” John Von Rhein, Chicago Tribune
“Tasteful…impressive in his mastery…delightful” Chicago Tribune
“First-rate…stalwart support” Chicago Classical Review
“Mastery of French baroque style” CCR
“Terrific playing in the restless, running cello passages” CCR
Meriem Bahri is a self-taught costume designer and maker. After completing a PhD in biology, she turned definitively to her great passion for costumes. Her interest for this field began with the Brazilian dance group Atabak in France and she has continued to enrich her knowledge with world-renowned companies such as Boston Early Music Festival, the Joffrey Ballet, and Opéra de Nice. Currently, she collaborates regularly with two groups specialized in baroque operas: Haymarket Opera Company in USA and Académie Desprez in Europe. She has also brought her costuming skills to dance and theater through the Beethoven Festival, Balam Dance Theater, Elements Contemporary Ballet, and International Voices Project. Outside of her work as a costume designer, she is a freelance illustrator providing unique and custom-made drawings. Meriem currently lives in Chicago after spending 18 years in France and 9 years in Tunisia. For more information, please visit meriembahri.com
French soprano Nathalie Colas was hailed for her outstanding operatic debut as Despina in Cosi fan tutte by Mozart with the Theater Biel Solothurn, Switzerland. She was heard on the international operatic stage as Roggiero in Tancredi, Julia in Romeo und Julia by Boris Blacher, Serpina in Anfossi’s Il Curioso Indiscreto, First Witch and Second Lady in Dido and Aeneas, Rosina in Paisiello’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Alceste in Myslivecek’s Antigona, and Eugenia in Mayr's Der Geizhals. An active chamber musician and recitalist, Nathalie studied Lieder interpretation with German baritone Udo Reinemann and is a founding member of Chicag’so new music ensemble Fonema Consort. Also in demand as a concert soloist, Nathalie performs with the Chicago Bach Ensemble and has sung Bach’s Trauerode in Belgium, F.X. Richter’s Mass in C, Gounod’s Messe Solennelle, the Dvorak Requiem, and Schubert’s Mass in B in Switzerland and Belgium. She will be the soloist in Handel's Messiah early next spring with the St Louis Bach Society. Nathalie recently released an album of sacred music for soprano and organ, Ombre et Lumière. She holds degrees from DePaul University School of Music, the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, and the Superior School of the Arts in Bern, Switzerland.
Ryan de Ryke, baritone, is an artist whose versatility and musical presence have made him increasingly in demand on both sides of the Atlantic. He has performed at many of the leading international music festivals, including the Aldeburgh Festival in the United Kingdom and the summer festival at Aix-en-Provence in France. The Baltimore Sun hails him as “a talent that seems to defy labels, for without pretense or vocal tricks he delivers a naturally beautiful sound that penetrates to one’s inner core in every conceivable range… His is a voice I never tire of hearing.” Ryan studied at the Peabody Conservatory with John Shirley Quirk and at the Royal Academy of Music in London with Ian Partridge. He is also an alumnus of the Britten-Pears Institute in the UK and the Schubert Institute in Austria, where he worked with artists of the caliber of Elly Ameling, Wolfgang Holzmair, Julius Drake, Rudolf Jansen, and Helmut Deutsch. Ryan lives in Chicago, where he appeared last season with Haymarket Opera Company in the title role of Telemann’s Pimpinone. He also appears often with Chamber Opera Chicago, where he has premiered leading roles in new operas based on novels by Jane Austen, including Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion. Ryan is a passionate advocate for song recitals and concert repertoire as a founding member of the Baltimore Lieder Weekend and frequent performer on WFMT Chicago. He feels fortunate to collaborate regularly with artists and friends around the world, including Daniel Schlosberg, Eugenia Cheng, Eva Mengelkoch, Michael Shepard, Susan Youens, and Roger Vignoles.
Sarah Edgar is a dancer, choreographer, and researcher specializing in eighteenth century performance. She is the associate director of The New York Baroque Company and choreographer/stage director at the Haymarket Opera Company in Chicago. Her 2013 directing debut with the Haymarket Opera Company, Telemann’s Pimpinone, was hailed by Newcity as one of the five best operas in Chicago. With The New York Baroque Dance Company, she has performed at Drottningholm Theater in Sweden, the International Händelfestspiele Göttingen, Danspace at St. Mark’s Theater, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Potsdam Sanssouci Music Festival. From 2006-2012, she lived in Cologne, Germany and toured Europe as a freelance dancer, performing in Italy, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, and France.
She has taught master classes in baroque dance at numerous universities in the United States and in Germany, and has given several lectures at symposia for eighteenth century performance. She was an adjunct professor in dance at Northwestern University in winter 2014, teaching baroque dance technique. She holds a BFA summa cum laude in dance performance from The Ohio State University, and an MA in Tanzwissenschaft from the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln.
Kaitlin Foley, soprano, has been praised for her “crystalline vocals” and “beautiful singing.” She is a versatile performer with a passion for early and new music. She has performed works ranging from Bach’s Christmas Oratorio to Mozart’s Requiem to Schoenberg’s Pierrot Lunaire and has premiered many new works, including Robert Kyr’s O Word of Light and Thunder and a new setting of the St. John Passion by James Kallembach. Kaitlin has sung with the Grant Park Chorus, Bella Voce, Schola Antiqua, and Prometheus and is a founding member of the cutting-edge, Chicago-based women’s trio Artemisia.
She earned her Master’s of Music in voice performance from DePaul University, where she studied with Julia Bentley, and she completed her undergraduate work in music education at the University of Missouri under the tutelage of Ann Harrell and the baton of Paul Crabb. Kaitlin is a Vocal Artist in Residence at Rockefeller Memorial Chapel under the direction of James Kallembach, where she is a regularly featured soloist. She is also the director and founder of the Rockefeller Children’s Choir and teaches private voice and piano at Elk Grove High School and KF Music Studio.
Darrell J. Jordan, lyric baritone, has been praised for his “intimate ability to captivate the audience with his expressive vocalism.” His extensive musical repertoire spans from early Renaissance music to modern compositions. Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, he holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in both psychology and music and a Master’s of Music in voice performance from the University of Missouri. Recent vocal instruction has been with Ann Harrell and Steven Tharp. He is an active recitalist and concert soloist, with recent engagements including Vaughan Williams’ Hodie, Mozart’s Coronation Mass, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Handel’s Messiah, and Beethoven’s Fantasia in C minor, Op. 80. Darrell has also appeared with Winter Opera Saint Louis and is a frequent guest performer in the Odyssey Chamber Music Series. He was selected as a national semi-finalist in the young artist division for the 2014 Orpheus Vocal Competition. Last summer he sang the role of Giove in scenes from Cavalli’s La Calisto at the Institute for 17th Century Music in New York City. Darrell serves as an adjunct professor of music on the faculties of Central Methodist University and Columbia College. www.thedjjordan.wix.com/baritone
2014 was a year of numerous awards and company debuts for Anna Laurenzo. Performance credits included a debut with Madison Symphony and Madison Opera in their American Kaleidoscope concert. She also debuted with Metamorphosis Opera Theater in Minneapolis, in their inaugural production, as Farnace in Mozart’s Mitridate, re di Ponto. Anna was named a finalist in the 2014 Schubert Club Competition in St. Paul, MN, and received an Artist Grant from the organization. She is making her debut with Haymarket Opera Company. She also joins Madison Opera as a Studio Artist for the 2014-15 season;there she will sing in the ensemble and cover Mrs. Lovett and Beggar Woman (Sweeney Todd) and Rosina (Il Barbiere di Siviglia).
In two seasons as a Young Artist at Seagle Music Colony, Anna performed the roles of Isabella in Rossini's L'italiana in Algeri, Mrs. Jones (Street Scene), and Filipyevna (Eugene Onegin), and she also covered Olga (Eugene Onegin). A graduate of the Master's Vocal Performance program at Florida State University, She performed as Loma Williams in Carlisle Floyd's Cold Sassy Tree, where she had the privilege of coaching with the composer. Other credits at FSU included Olga (Eugene Onegin). She received her Bachelor of Music degree in vocal performance from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.
Mezzo-soprano Suzanne Lommler was recently a soloist with the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony in a Mozart Soirée and with Orchestra Iowa in Bach’s St. John Passion, both broadcast on Iowa Public Radio’s “Symphonies of Iowa” program. She also soloed with the Indianapolis Symphonic Choir and Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra in the Bach Magnificat and appeared in the film “Kharmen,” by Jay Bolotin. Suzanne sang the roles of Melide in Cavalli’s Ormindo (Pittsburgh Opera) and Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, Second Lady in Die Zauberflöte, and Dorabella in Così fan tutte (Hamburger Kammeroper in Germany). Her New York City debut was as Annio in La Clemenza di Tito, conducted by Julius Rudel. She sang in recital at the Handel House Museum in London, in Hamburg’s Opernsalon series, and on tour in Scotland with the Edinburgh Quartet. As a soloist, she has appeared with the Kansas City Symphony in the Bach Magnificat, with the Cincinnati May Festival in Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb, conducted by James Conlon, and with the Bloomington Early Music Festival. She has been a member of the Ravinia Festival’s Steans Institute and the Tanglewood Institute. Other performances were with the Spoleto Festival in Italy, Cincinnati Opera, Portland Opera Repertory Theatre, Florida Grand Opera, Utah Festival Opera, Garsington Opera, the Glyndebourne Festival Opera, and Glyndebourne on Tour. Suzanne received her Master's degree from the Manhattan School of Music and Bachelor's from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and currently studies with Marie McLaughlin.
Eric Miranda’s singing career spans two decades and has included solo appearances at Orchestra Hall, at the Ravinia Festival, and in Millennium Park with the Grant Park Symphony Chorus. Sought after for his versatility and musicianship, Eric has appeared in concert with Newberry Consort, Callipygian Players, Bella Voce, Elgin Symphony, South Bend Chamber Orchestra, DePaul Community Chorus, and Chorus Angelorum. His regional opera credits include The Elixir of Love, Le Nozze di Figaro, Amahl and the Night Visitors, The Old Maid and the Thief, The Barber of Seville, the title role in the Chicago premiere of John Eaton’s Traveling with Gulliver, and, with Haymarket Opera Company, Dido and Aeneas, Le Jugement de Pan, Actéon, and La Descente d’Orphée aux Enfers. Recent appearances include his debut as soloist with the Tower Chorale in Brahms’s Ein Deutches Requiem, a series of concerts with the Chicago Bach Ensemble under its new artistic director, baroque specialist Rubén Dubrovsky, and a return engagement with Bella Voce and Callypigian Players in performances of Messiah. In spring 2015, Eric will appear with the Newberry Consort in a concert of early Polish music.
Praised for his “clear and projected” voice (NYC Concert Review), “dramatically handsome” looks (ToledOvations), and “keen intonation [and] expressive delivery” (Dallas Morning News), tenor Shawn Mlynek has been gaining attention both nationally and internationally as an “upcoming star singer.” (Nocturnes in the City, Toronto). In 2013-2014, Shawn debuted at Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall (tenor soloist, Mozart's Coronation Mass), with the Dallas Chamber Symphony (Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings), Toronto’s ‘Nocturnes in the City’ concert series (solo recital), the Cincinnati Early Music Festival (title role, Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo), Indianapolis Opera (title role [c], Albert Herring), and the Utah Festival Opera (Courfeyrac, in Les Miserables and Lindoro, in orchestral scenes from L’Italiana in Algeri). He also performed with the Cincinnati Chamber Opera (Cecco, Il Mondo Della Luna). Upcoming engagements include debuts with the Trinity International Concert Choir, Frankfurt-am-Main, Germany (tenor soloist, The Messiah), Opera Fayetteville (Vain Man, The Little Prince), and Pittsburgh’s Undercroft Opera (Alfred, Die Fledermaus), as well as a return to the Cincinnati Chamber Opera (Harlekin, Der Kaiser von Atlantis) and the Voices of the Commonwealth (tenor soloist, Forrest’s Requiem for the Living). Shawn holds a Bachelor’s degree in fine arts from Carnegie Mellon University and a Master’s in music. from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. www.shawnmlynek.com
Brian Novatny, set designer, is based in Brooklyn, NY with an active career in the arts. Even though he is primarily a visual artist, he is no stranger to the realm of the performing arts having been introduced to dance many years ago through friends and colleagues. His admiration for dance has grown over the years and he has lent his visual expertise to a number of dance performances. His worked has been exhibited at galleries in New York City, Los Angeles, Seattle, New Orleans, St. Louis and Berlin. He has also shown in a number of contemporary art institutions which include the Knoxville Museum of Art, The Mississippi Museum of Art, and most recently at the Inside Out Art Museum in Beijing, China. He will be returning to Beijing this December participating in another group exhibition at that museum. Corporations, museums and universities, such as Microsoft, The Progressive Corporation, The Knoxville Museum of Art, The Daum Museum of Contemporary Art, the University Of Alabama and The Central Academy of Fine Arts of Beijing have his work in their collections. Novatny has received several awards including a grant from the Basil H. Alkazzi Foundation. He attended the Columbus College of Art & Design in Columbus, Ohio where he received a Bachelor of Fine Arts and continued his studies in painting and printmaking at the Yale School of Art for his Masters degree.
Originally from Stillwater, Minnesota, tenor Josh Pritchett is quickly establishing himself as a versatile performer of both opera and concert repertoire. Josh regularly collaborates with nationally acclaimed ensembles such as the Elgin Master Chorale, the Apollo Chorus, and the Chicago Choral Artists. He earned a Master’s degree in vocal performance from North Park University and has studied and performed internationally, in France at La Belle Hélène and Franco American Vocal Academy, in Italy at Liebeslieder-Walzer, and in South Korea at the World Peace Bell Ceremony. Known for his acting background and Leggiero ease, Josh has trained as operatic characters (Pedrillo in Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Monostatos in The Magic Flute, Franz in Les conte d’Hoffman, and Fe-Ni-Han in BA-TA-CLAN) and as an early music soloist (St. Matthew Passion and St. John Passion).
Samantha Umstead, wigs and makeup artist, is a graduate of the DePaul University Theater School where she studied costume design and art history. She is a licensed cosmetologist who does hair and makeup throughout Chicago for film and photography. She has worked at the Chicago Shakespeare Theater for three seasons as a wig maker. She is extremely excited to once again be working with the Haymarket Opera Company.
Hailed by the critics as possessing a “resplendent voice,” bass-baritone Peter van de Graaff has sung to great acclaim throughout the world. Peter has appeared with the symphonies of Chicago, Houston, New Orleans, San Antonio, Utah, and Colorado Springs, plus the Boulder Bach Festival. He has sung internationally with the Chicago Symphony in Berlin, Czech State Philharmonic, Budapest Concert Orchestra, Israel Chamber Orchestra, and Czech Symphony. He has appeared in festivals internationally in Tokyo, China, and Costa Rica and in the United States at the festivals of Grand Teton, San Luis Obispo, and Bloomington Early Music, among others. In Chicago, he has appeared with virtually every ensemble, including Music of the Baroque, Northbrook Symphony, North Shore Choral Society, Chicago Mastersingers, New Classic Singers, Rembrandt Chamber Players, Chicago Chamber Musicians, Oak Park/River Forest Symphony, and Apollo Chorus.Active in opera circles, Peter had performed with the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Haymarket Opera Company, Florentine Opera, Milwaukee Opera, Rochester Opera, Chicago Opera Theater, Cedar Rapids Opera, and many other companies. His recordings can be heard on the Naxos and Cedille labels. Peter has also hosted, for 26 years, numerous programs at WFMT.
Concertmaster Jeri-Lou Zike is a versatile, energetic musician who enjoys a variety of artistic activities in symphonic, baroque, and chamber music. She is principal and founding member of the Metropolis Symphony Orchestra and principal second violin of the Chicago Opera Theater. She is also a member of the Chicago Philharmonic, the Joffrey ballet orchestra and the Ravinia Festival Orchestra.
As a period instrument performer, Ms. Zike is concertmaster of the Haymarket Opera Company which she manages alongside the General director, Craig Trompeter, cellist. The opera company is taking Chicago by storm in its third year and according to all the critics, the praise for its quality is of highest caliber. Other musical credits include principal of Baroque Band, soloist with the Chicago Baroque Ensemble, Concertmaster of the University of Chicago Rockefeller Chapel Concerts, as well as performances with His Majestie’s Clerkes, Kansas City Music Consort, and Music of the Baroque’s first period instrument concert.
Ms. Zike is also a well-regarded contractor of musicians, providing orchestras for the Apollo Chorus, Chicago Chorale, the Cathedral Singers, and Rockefeller Chapel choirs among others. Jeri-Lou Zike has recorded with GIA, Centaur, and Cedille Records. To balance the intensity of music making, Jeri-Lou loves to swim, bike and run and is a three time Ironman.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Craig Trompeter, President
Jeri-Lou Zike, Vice-President
Rupert J. Ward , Treasurer
Susan Rozendaal, Secretary
ARTISTIC ADVISORY BOARD
Jerry Fuller, James S. Kemper Foundation