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Meet the Director

 

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Adrian G. Horn, Director of the Finger Lakes Choral Festival, has had a lifetime of involvement in virtually every aspect of choral music. He sang with Robert Shaw for two years while still in high school, interrupted his musical training by serving as a paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne Division to secure the GI bill for college, received a BS in vocal performance at SUNY Fredonia (where he was Captain of the baseball team and also played semi-pro football with the Fredonia Orioles) and a Masters Degree specializing in Choral Music from Columbia University, where he concurrently was employed an Instructor in Music Education. After teaching public school music for two years, Mr. Horn entered the Navy and was appointed Director of the Naval Aviation Cadet Choir while undergoing training as a Naval Aviation Officer.

After completing his tour of duty, Mr. Horn became a professional chorister with the San Francisco Symphony and San Francisco Opera. Subsequently, he entered the doctoral program at Columbia University, but was sidetracked from completing a thesis on developing community choruses by the priority of putting his ideas into action. What followed was a remarkable adventure of choral activities, including:

  •  Founding Director, San Francisco City Chorus, for which he was awarded the Certificate of Honor of the City of San Francisco for bringing great music to the people of the city
  •  Director, Olympic Athletic Club of San Francisco Men's Chorus
  •  Founding Director, Women's Chorus of San Francisco
  •  Director, San Francisco State University Chorus, where he built the chorus from 35 to 225 members in five semesters
  •  Founding Director, San Francisco Festival of Carols
  •  Founding Director, San Francisco Choral Society, a 250 voice symphonic chorus, regularly performing before sold-out houses at Davies Symphony Hall
As a conductor, Mr. Horn has an extraordinary ability to inspire singers to bring passion and meaning to their music. Singers stay on their toes because they don't want to miss any of his colorful comments or unique musical insights. At one rehearsal, before a chorus and orchestra of nearly 500 performing the Berlioz Requiem* at the cavernous San Francisco Civic Auditorium he quipped, "All I wanted to do was get some people together to sing, and the whole thing got totally out of hand."

At the height of his success with the San Francisco Choral Society, after conducting three sold-out performances of Carmina Burana at Davies Symphony Hall in October 1992, Mr. Horn left San Francisco to pursue perhaps his most challenging career, stay-at-home-Dad. But music always seemed to follow, as did the Directorship of the Sequim Community Chorus in Washington, and after relocating to New York, the Jamestown Choral Society.  The Finger Lakes Choral Festival, now entering its fourteenth season, is the current focus of Mr. Horn's life-long obsession with bringing people together to sing great choral music.

*Berlioz Requiem Redux.  In August 2012, Mr. Horn organized and presented a performance of the Berlioz Requiem at Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco, combining 300 singers and musicians from New York and San Francisco, hailed by San Francisco Classical Voice as the "Mega-Concert of the Year -- or years, and that it "Exceeded all expectations."   The performance used a new edition of the Requiem created by Mr. Horn which added an alto part to the score.  Berlioz' original score was written for soprano, tenor and bass only.  Since that performance, Mr. Horn's new edition has been used in performances by the Oakland Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, the La Jolla Symphony and Chorus, and in 2016 by the Orfeón Donostiarra in San Sebastian, Spain.  The edition is listed on Amazon and can be partially perused using the following link:

Berlioz Requiem SATB Edition

     
     

Meet the Soloists

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Kathryn Lewek is rapidly establishing herself as one of the most promising coloratura sopranos of this generation. Ms. Lewek’s interpretation of her signature role, a quintessential Mozart villain, Queen of the Night, has garnered international critical acclaim: “Kathryn Lewek was sensational as The Queen of the Night. She produced all those acrobatic vocal runs effortlessly, without a single note out of place.” She performed the role in productions of Die Zauberflöte in débuts with Deutsche Oper Berlin, Bregenzer Festspiele, the Metropolitan Opera, Washington National Opera, Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, Opera Leipzig, Opera de Toulon, English National Opera, Nashville Opera, and the Lyric Opera of Kansas City.  Last season alone, she reprised the Queen in débuts worldwide with The Royal Danish Opera, Wiener Staatsoper, Houston Grand Opera, Welsh National Opera, and in a return to The Metropolitan Opera. This season, she appeared in the role at Teatro Real in Madrid.

Also this season, Lewek made a string of exciting role débuts: Teresa in Benvenuto Cellini at Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona; the title role in Maria Stuarda at Edmonton Opera; and Konstanze in Die Entführung aus dem Serail at Deutsche Oper Berlin. In concert, she sings Bach’s Christmas Oratorio under Maestro John Nelson with Orchestre symphonique de Montréal; Händel’s Messiah at Carnegie Hall; and Carmina Burana with the Dallas Symphony. Future seasons through 2018 include exciting role and company débuts at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Canadian Opera Company, as well as multiple returns to The Metropolitan Opera.

Recent performances also included the role of La Fée in Cendrillon with New Orleans Opera; Angelica in Händel’s Orlando with the Hobart Baroque in Tasmania in which she was nominated for a Helpmann Award; a role début in the title role of a new production of Lucia di Lammermoor at Opera Carolina and Toledo Opera; made a company début with Glimmerglass Opera as Cunegonde in Francesca Zambello’s Candide; and performed Haydn’s Creation under the baton of the illustrious John Nelson.

Previous European débuts also include Dolcina in Suor Angelica with the Deutsches Symphonie Orchester and the role of Jessica in the world première of André Tchaikowsky’s Kupiec Wenecki (The Merchant of Venice) with Bregenzer Festspiele. This production was awarded the International Opera Award 2014 in the category “Best World Première”.

Having been widely lauded for her numerous operatic and oratorio performances, Ms. Lewek is also gaining attention for her decisive interpretations of contemporary art song and vast concert repertoire. She enjoyed appearances at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center, on the Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall, with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, the Santa Barbara Symphony, Toledo Symphony, Musica Sacra, the Fairfield County Chorale, the Berkshire Choral Festival, the Great Neck Choral Society, the Greenwich Choral Society, and the Rochester Chamber Orchestra. With these and other orchestras, she performed in Händel’s Messiah, Mozart’s C Minor Mass, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Brahms’ Requiem, Haydn’s Missa in tempore belli, Mozart’s Krönungsmesse (Coronation Mass), Haydn’s Große Orgelmesse, Bach’s Magnificat, Mozart’s Requiem, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bach’s Judas Maccabeus,  Zelenka’s Te Deum, and Bach’s Mass in B Minor.

A clip of Ms. Lewek's magnificent singing can be heard using the following link.

Katherine Lewek, Soprano

 

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 Megan McFadden, Mezzo Soprano, currently resides in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  She earned her Master's of Music in Voice at the Eastman School of Music in 2014 under the instruction of Katherine Ciesinski. She earned her Bachelor's of Music degrees in Music Education and Music Therapy from Mansfield University in 2010 under the instruction of Jean-Anne Teal. Most recently, she has performed Handel's Messiah as a soloist with the Rochester Chamber Orchestra, and in the chorus of La Traviata with Opera Philadelphia. Her roles include Madame de Croissy in Dialogues of the Carmelites, Amastre in Serse, and Olga Olsen in Street Scene with Eastman Opera Theatre. She has also performed Elgar's The Music Makers as a soloist with the Eastman Rochester Chorus, Mendelssohn's Gloria with Eastman Repertory Singers, Mozart's Requiem with Hobart and William Smith Colleges Community Chorus, Habanera from Carmen with Ad Hoc Chamber Ensemble, Grieg’s Peer Gynt and Dvorak’s Stabat Mater with The Finger Lakes Choral Festival. Ms. McFadden is currently on staff with The Memorial Church of The Good Shepherd and Congregation Beth Or.
 
 

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 Matthew Valverde, Tenor,  is quoted in the New York Classical Review as having a huge, handsome tenor voice. He is a candidate for the degree of Doctor of Musical Arts in vocal performance and literature at the Eastman School of Music.

An avid concert soloist, Matthew has performed in Texas and New York in performances of Bach’s Magnificat and St. John Passion, Handel’s Messiah, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Dvořák’s Stabat Mater, Vaughn Williams’s Serenade to Music, Mozart’s Requiem, and Britten’s Serenade and War Requiem. He has been a featured soloist with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, Rochester Chamber Orchestra, Rochester Oratorio Society, and the Eastman School’s orchestras. He was the tenor soloist in the New York premiere of Vivaldi’s Dixit Dominus, RV 807 with First Inversion Vocal Ensemble last November.

Matthew has appeared with the Eastman Opera Theatre as Sam in Weill’s Street Scene, as Paolino in Cimarosa’s Il matrimonio segreto, as Vašek in Smetana’s Bartered Bride. He was a guest artist as Apollonia in Haydn’s La canterina with the Nazareth College Opera. Matthew made his Carnegie Hall debut in May 2014 with the RPO as Jonathan Banks in Howard Hanson’s Merry Mount.

He participated in the 2014 Vancouver International Song Institute’s Song Scholarship Program, the 2012 Art Song Festival at Baldwin-Wallace College, and the Marilyn Horne Foundation’s The Song Continues...2010 at Carnegie Hall.

A recipient of Eastman’s 2012-13 Teaching Assistant Prize, Matthew has a passion for vocal pedagogy and teaching voice. He serves on the voice faculties of Nazareth College and the Eastman Community Music School and has taught at the Clear Creek Music Festival in Halfway, Oregon and at Summer @ Eastman’s Music Horizons program.

 

 

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Liam Moran, Bass,  has been described as “an arresting bass” (Palm Beach Post), “impressive and authoritative” (Baltimore Sun), praised as a “sturdy bass who sings with affecting gravity” (New York Times) and noted for his “easy manner and deliciously rich instrument,” (Miami New Times) and “resonant gravitas” (Opera News).   Last season, Liam was featured with Washington Concert Opera as Lorenzo in Bellini’s I Capuletti e i Montecchi, after which he debuted with Madison Opera as Don Fernando in Fidelio and the Kansas City Symphony in The Messiah and returned to the Metropolitan Opera for Don Carlo. Future seasons will see his return to Madison Opera as Colline in La bohème and Frère Laurent in Romeo et Juliette as well as Zuniga in Carmen with Boston Lyric Opera.                                                    

Prior engagements saw Liam join the Metropolitan Opera roster for Shostakovich’s The Nose, return to Boston Lyric Opera as Monterone in Rigoletto and Gualtiero in I puritani, appear with the Madison Symphony Orchestra for Mozart’s Requiem. In the 2012-2013 season, Liam returned to Opera Omaha as Dr. Grenvil in La Traviata and to Annapolis Opera for Sparafucile in Rigoletto, reprised Il commendatore in Don Giovanni at Kentucky Opera, and joined American Opera Project’s production of The Blind, which was presented at the Lincoln Center Festival.   The 2011-2012 season included his return to Pittsburgh Opera as Dr. Grenvil, to Annapolis Opera for Frère Laurent in Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette, the Old Hebrew in Samson et Dalila with Washington Concert Opera, and Opera Omaha for Norton in Rossini’s The Marriage Contract.                                                 

Other appearances include Snug in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Boston Lyric Opera, Colline La bohème with Austin Lyric Opera and the title role in Le nozze di Figaro for Annapolis Opera. In two seasons with Wolf Trap Opera he performed roles including Zuniga, Sirocco in L’Étoile, Melisso in Alcina, Der Sprecher in Die Zauberflöte, and Truffaldino in Ariadne auf Naxos. He was featured as a guest artist performing the role of Seneca in the Juilliard Vocal Arts Program production of L’incoronazione di Poppea and performed the dual roles of Masetto and Commendatore in Don Giovanni with Ash Lawn Opera.                                          

Liam is an alumnus the Pittsburgh Opera Resident Artist Program where he sang featured roles in productions including Carmen, Le nozze di Figaro, Eugene Onegin, Madama Butterfly, The Rape of Lucretia, Aida, La bohème and Flight.  He has taken part in the Young American Artists Program at Glimmerglass Opera and in the prestigious Merola Opera program with San Francisco Opera.  His concert repertoire ranges from Monteverdi to contemporary composers, and he has performed with orchestras including the National Symphony Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Symphony, Musica Angelica, Madison Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, the Palm Beach Symphony and Washington Concert Opera. A lover of new music, he has sung under the batons of John Adams and Krzysztof Penderecki and performed in premieres of works by David Carlson, Steven Hartke, Lera Auerbach and Richard Rodney Bennett. He is a graduate of both McGill University in Montreal and the Yale School of Music and, in his biggest role yet, is the devoted father of two.

Meet the Accompanists
 

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Dr. Ines Draskovic has performed throughout Europe and United States. she is a graduate of University of Belgrade (Belgrade, Yugoslavia), Ithaca College (MM) and Eastman School of Music (DMA). Her teachers include Alexei Nasedkin, Phiroze Mehta and Rebecca Penneys. Dr. Draskovic has won several piano competitions, including the Ithaca College Concerto Competition, Republic of Serbia Piano Competition and Piano Competition in Stresa, Italy, where she was a finalist. She has participated in festivals and masterclasses in Europe and United States (Colorado). Formerly a faculty member at Ithaca College, Dr. Draskovic is currently teaching at the Finger Lakes Community College in Canandaigua, NY. In addition to her solo career, she performs regularly with the Finger Lakes Chorale and College Singers.