Merolini Spotlight


Merolini Spotlight: Meigui Zhang ('18)

Our May 2022 Merolini Spotlight features soprano Meigui Zhang (Merola ’18) who returns to San Francisco this summer playing the role of Dai Yu in Dream of the Red Chamber at San Francisco Opera. Meigui shares with us how her family upbringing got her interested in opera, a few highlights of her Merola summer and what she’s been up to since then, how she spends her free time, and much more. Watch now and stay up to date with Meigui!

Website: MeiguiZhang.com
Instagram: Facebook.com/Meiguising


Merolini Spotlight: Timothy Murray ('19)

For this month's Merolini Spotlight, we feature baritone Timothy Murray (Merola '19). Timothy tells us why he first despised opera, but also what first got him interested in opera as a career. He also shares about his experience as a winner at the George London Foundation Awards Competition, the highlight of his summer at Merola, and much more.

Catch Timothy with fellow Merola alums Elisa Sunshine ('19), Stefan Egerstrom ('19), and Andrew King ('19) for the Schwabacher Recital on Wednesday, April 27 7:30 pm at the Taube Atrium Theater in San Francisco. Details and tickets: merola.org/calendar or sfopera.com/srs.

More info on Timothy and what he has upcoming: timurraybaritone.com


Merolini Spotlight: Aria Umezawa ('16)

Watch this month's Merolini Spotlight! We speak with director, producer, and writer Aria Umezawa (Merola '16) and learn what first got her interested in opera and directing as a career, the highlight of her summer at Merola, and a little bit about why she co-founded Amplified Opera and its mission. Aria also shares how she spends her spare time and where you can catch her directing next. Check out this interview now.

Website: AriaUmezawa.com
Instagram: @umezawaria


Merolini Spotlight: Kenneth Kellogg ('07)

Our February 2022 Merolini Spotlight features bass Kenneth Kellogg (Merola '07). In this interview, Kenneth tells us about his love of music and how he was introduced to classical music and opera, advice he would give to young artists, what roles he's looking forward to performing, and what he does outside of opera. He also tells us about his experience in performing in the opera "Blue" which is making it's way to opera houses nationwide.

Website: KennethKellogg.com
Visual Arts: KKpentopaper.com


Merolini Spotlight: Felicia Moore ('17)

We kick off 2022 with a Merolini Spotlight featuring soprano Felicia Moore (Merola '17). In this spotlight video, we learn what first interested in opera and which artist she was listening to on her discman that influenced her, the highlight of her summer at Merola, and how she spends her spare time. Felicia also tells us about her recent Metropolitan Opera debut.


Merolini Spotlight: Kevin Thompson ('10)

The November 2021 Merolini Spotlight features American bass Kevin Thompson (Merola '10). In the video interview, Kevin tells us what first interested him in opera and what artists influenced him, what roles he's looking forward to singing in the future, the highlight of his Merola summer, how he spends his spare time, what he can't make it through the day without, and much more.


Merolini Spotlight: Mark Morash ('87)

For the October 2021 Merolini Spotlight we present a Merola favorite, Mark Morash (Merola '87). In this video interview, we catch up with Mark and hear what first sparked his interest in opera, what drew him to the piano and conducting, a unique highlight of his summer at Merola, some of his favorite memories while working at Merola, advice he would give to the next generation of opera artists, and much more.


Merolini Spotlight: Jennifer Williams ('12)

Our September 2021 Merolini Spotlight features stage director Jennifer Williams (Merola '12). Watch this video interview now to learn what sparked her interest in opera and why she chose to become a director, the highlight of her summer at Merola, her most memorable opera production, her approach on directing traditional versus contemporary repertory, and where you can catch her next production.


Merolini Spotlight: Alice Chung ('17/'19)

For our August 2021 Merolini Spotlight, we feature mezzo-soprano Alice Chung (Merola ‘17/’19). Alice was described by San Francisco Classical Voice as “a force of nature with a sound both powerful and appealing.” In this interview, we hear what got her interested in opera, what artists influenced her early on in her career, what role she’s looking forward to singing, the highlights of her two summers at Merola, and what she likes to do with her spare time.


Merolini Spotlight: Ronnita Miller ('05)

In this month's Merolini Spotlight, we catch up with mezzo-soprano Ronnita Miller (Merola '05). Ronnita is the co-curator, along with tenor Nicholas Phan, of Merola Opera Program's recital "What the Heart Desires." She tells us how a crush got her interested in opera, her opera influences, what role she looks forward to performing, her interests outside of opera, her advice for young opera artists, and much more including the inspiration behind choosing the pieces that were performed at "What the Heart Desires" and where you can catch her next. Watch this spotlight now!


Merolini Spotlight: Nicholas Huff ('19)

We kick off summer with this Merolini Spotlight featuring tenor Nicholas Huff (Merola '19). We catch up with Nick and he tells us how he got interested in opera, what he's been up to since his Merola summer, and more. We also get to learn about how he was part of the team that created the Kenosha Opera Festival, and their plans for this summer.


Merolini Spotlight: Markus Beam ('02)

The May 2021 Merolini Spotlight features Markus Beam (Merola '02) is the General Manager of the San Francisco Opera Center. Merola Opera Program works in close artistic collaboration with San Francisco Opera Center and San Francisco Opera. In this spotlight video, Markus shares with us what first got him interested in opera, the highlight of his summer at Merola, how he spends his spare time, and what advice he would like to pass on to the next generation of opera artists. He also dives into what Merola members and followers can expect to see and hear at the 2021 Merola Summer Festival.


Merolini Spotlight: Elena Lacheva ('12) and Ana Maria Otamendi ('11)

For our April 2021 Merolini Spotlight we feature two of our illustrious alumni, Elena Lacheva (Merola ’12) and Ana Maria Otamendi (Merola ’11). Elena and Ana Maria are the co-founders of the Collaborative Piano Institute. Lacheva serves as the Program Director and Otamendi serves as Artistic Director of the organization which spotlights the needs of the next generation of inspiring collaborative pianists. The goal of the program is to further encourage the passion for partnership by providing guidance, rare insider’s information, and the support of distinguished, as well as emerging artists in the field.

In this spotlight feature, we learn what first sparked these artists’ interest in opera, the highlight of their Merola summers, what inspired them to create the Collaborative Piano Institute, and what they can’t make it through the day without.


Merolini Spotlight: Ronny Michael Greenberg ('14)

For our March 2021 Merolini Spotlight we feature Pianist, Opera Coach, and Producer, Ronny Michael Greenberg (Merola '14). Greenberg is a leading innovator in the world of performing arts. A native of Montreal, he has toured internationally performing in opera houses and concert halls including the War Memorial Opera House in San Francisco, the Vienna Konzerthaus, Carnegie Hall, Montreal’s Place des Arts Theater, and across Italy, New Zealand, and Hawaii. In this spotlight, we hear what sparked his interest in opera, what drew him to the piano, how he partnered with fellow Merola alum Christian Pursell in creating a production company, what he can't make it through the day without, and what we can expect at Un Gala In Maschera - Merola's virtual benefit in honor of Sheri Greenawald.


Merolini Spotlight: Issachah Savage ('13)

We kick off our new Merolini Spotlight video series with dramatic tenor Issachah Savage (Merola '13). Issachah has garnered acclaim as a “heldentenor par excellence” with “trumpet-like, clear, open-throated, powerful” singing (San Francisco Examiner). Savage has been praised for his “impressive natural instrument” (Opera News) and has performed in opera houses and halls around the globe. In this feature, we hear what first interested him in opera, how Merola prepared him for a career in opera, and what roles he looks forward to singing.

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