New York Opera Studio to Present Operatic Scenes. Sunday, July 2, 2006

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY — As the culminating event of the New York Opera Studio's 10-day Vassar residency, operatic scenes in a variety of styles and languages will be staged with piano accompaniment on Sunday, July 2 at 2:00 p.m. at the college's Skinner Hall of Music. The concert will feature 36 aspiring opera singers and three young pianists from the United States and Canada, with choreography by Catherine Barnett and musical direction by Violetta Zabbi. This event is free and open to the public.

The New York Opera Studio, founded by Nico and Carol Castel, is a non-for-profit "open conservatory," providing classes and workshops taught by professionals in opera and theater, designed to help young artists bridge the gap between conventional voice education and the professional stage. Students develop musicality and language, including diction proficiency, musical accuracy and an understanding of musical styles, perform major roles in entire operas, and receive direction in character development, performance techniques, artistry and individual artistic development.

Nico Castel, a character operatic tenor with over 200 roles in his repertoire, has been with the Metropolitan Opera Company for thirty-five years, including twenty-six years as staff diction coach. He is a faculty member of the Juilliard School and is the author of the 17 volume Complete Operatic Libretti Series. Carol Castel combines her experience as stage director, vocal coach and teacher in her role at the New York Opera Studio. She has taught and directed productions at Opera NUOVA in Edmonton, Canada and was the Artistic Director of the Delaware Valley Opera Company in Narrowsburg, New York for nine years.

The air conditioned Skinner Hall of Music is wheelchair-accessible, and people with disabilities requiring accommodations should call the Office of Campus Activities (845-437-5370). Free parking is available at Skinner Hall, and the campus's adjoining south parking lot. Directions to the Town of Poughkeepsie campus are available at

Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential liberal arts college founded in 1861.

Posted by Office of Communications Thursday, June 15, 2006