From: Lisa Middleton, Vice President, Marketing & Communications  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ 


PHOTO: Todd Rosenberg

The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center presents

Rising Stars in Concert
Saturday, April 7, 2018 at 7:30pm
with the Lyric Opera Orchestra conducted by Edwin Outwater
CHICAGO – (3/14/2018) The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center at Lyric Opera of Chicago will present its annual Rising Stars in Concert program on Saturday, April 7, at 7:30pm at the Lyric Opera House. The concert will include the talented artists and pianist of the 2017/18 Ensemble performing with members of the acclaimed Lyric Opera Orchestra.

The program will feature an array of beloved classics and lesser-known masterpieces by a variety of composers including Tchaikovsky, Offenbach, Massenet, Mozart, Verdi, Handel, Bernstein, Puccini, Rossini, and more. Rising Stars in Concert is offered as a celebratory event to highlight another exceptionally successful year of training and performance for the Ryan Opera Center Ensemble. As in previous years, Lyric donors of $50 and above are eligible to reserve two complimentary tickets to this special performance.

"Rising Stars in Concert, an annual event, is always one of the most exciting nights of our season," says Anthony Freud, Lyric’s general director. "It gives the artists of The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center a wonderful opportunity to show that they have the voice, musicality, and stage presence to make outstanding careers. We take tremendous pride in presenting them in this concert, accompanied by the always-remarkable Lyric Opera Orchestra."

Ryan Opera Center members who will be performing are sopranos Whitney Morrison, Diana Newman and Ann Toomey; mezzo-soprano Lindsay Metzger; contralto Lauren Decker; tenors Alec Carlson, Josh Lovell, and Mario Rojas; baritones Emmett O’Hanlon and Takaoki Onishi; bass-baritone Alan Higgs; and bass Patrick Guetti. Ryan Opera Center pianist Madeline Slettedahl will also perform a selection by French composer Maurice Ravel.

Rising Stars in Concert provides a unique opportunity to hear these artists performing arias and ensembles with the Lyric Opera Orchestra. The orchestra will be conducted by Edwin Outwater, former music director of the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony (2007-2017) and creator and curator of the popular concert series The Line-up at Wrigley Field in Chicago.

Ensemble members Diana Newman, Lindsay Metzger, Alec Carlson, Emmett O’Hanlon, Takaoki Onishi, and Patrick Guetti are concluding their tenure with the Ryan Opera Center following the concert to pursue full-time careers nationally and internationally. The remaining seven Ensemble members will return to the program for 2018/19: sopranos Whitney Morrison and Ann Toomey; contralto Lauren Decker; tenors Josh Lovell and Mario Rojas; bass-baritone Alan Higgs; and pianist Madeline Slettedahl.

The concert will also be recorded for broadcast on 98.7WFMT and via the following day, Sunday, April 8, at 6pm, which is generously sponsored by the Donna Van Eekeren Foundation. WFMT’s Lisa Flynn and Lyric’s dramaturg Roger Pines will serve as host and commentator respectively.
From: Lisa Middleton, Vice President, Marketing & Communications

Holly H. Gilson
Senior Director, Communications

Magda Krance
Director of
Media Relations


Public Relations Manager


About the Ryan Opera Center

The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center is the professional artist development program for Lyric Opera of Chicago. Since its inception in 1974*, the Ryan Opera Center has been recognized as one of the premier programs of its kind in the world. That standing is maintained by providing the finest up-and-coming singers and pianists with unparalleled training and experience. The program is administered by Dan Novak, director; Craig Terry, music director; Julia Faulkner, director of vocal studies; and Renée Fleming, advisor.

*originally The Opera School of Chicago, then the Lyric Opera Center for American Artists; known as the Ryan Opera Center since September 2006.

Each year the Ryan Opera Center selects 12-15 gifted young artists to join its program from more than 400 applicants. Beginning in the spring, they arrive to join the full-year residency program, under the guidance of Novak, Terry, Faulkner, and Fleming, as well as Anthony Freud, Sir Andrew Davis and numerous other opera professionals. Ensemble members are immediately immersed into the world of opera and vocal performance. Coaching sessions and master classes are augmented by performance and understudy experience in Lyric Opera’s regular season productions as well as other Ryan Opera Center concerts and recitals.

About Lyric

Lyric Opera of Chicago’s mission is to express and promote the life-changing, transformational, revelatory power of great opera. Lyric exists to provide a broad, deep, and relevant cultural service to Chicago and the nation, and to advance the development of the art form.

Founded in 1954, Lyric is dedicated to producing and performing consistently thrilling, entertaining, and thought-provoking opera with a balanced repertoire of core classics, lesser-known masterpieces, and new works; to creating an innovative and wide-ranging program of community engagement and educational activities; and to developing exceptional emerging operatic talent.

Under the leadership of General Director, President & CEO Anthony Freud, Music Director Sir Andrew Davis, and Creative Consultant Renée Fleming, Lyricstrives to become the great North American opera company for the 21st century: a globally significant arts organization embodying the core values of excellence, relevance, and fiscal responsibility.

To learn more about Lyric’s current season, go to You can also join the conversation with @LyricOpera on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. #Lyric1718 #LongLivePassion

Rising Stars in Concert is generously sponsored by Lead Sponsor the Donna Van Eekeren Foundation and cosponsors BMO Harris Bank, Dentons US LLP, Ann M. Drake, Sue and Melvin Gray, Patricia A. Kenney and Gregory J. O’Leary, Nix Lauridsen and Virginia Croskery Lauridsen, Chauncey and Marion D. McCormick Family Foundation, Lauter McDougal Family Foundation, and Frank B. Modruson and Lynne C. Shigley, with additional support from Mr. and Mrs. Allan Drebin, and Alan Schriesheim and Kay Torshen.

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