Songs for Better Days
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- Choral & Opera
City Opera presents songs of hope, redemption, and recovery. They implicitly address what the world has been suffering for the last year. They look forward to the reconstruction which will follow. And they illuminate all of this in multiple languages and cultures. Music is the world.
Turgut Akmete, tenor
Sergio Augusto, tenor
Melody Courage, soprano
Chloé Hurst, soprano
Michelle Koebke, soprano
Kat Norris / Watswema, mezzo-soprano
Roger Parton, pianist and arranger
Baha Poureslami, soprano
Anastasia Pyshna, soprano
Yuhui Wang, baritone
“The Sun Song” (Salish)
“Vesenniye vodï” / Spring Waters (Russian)
“Uzun İnce Bir Yoldayim” / I Walk a Narrow Road (Turkish)
“Měsíčku na nebi hlubokém” / Ode to the Moon (Czech)
“Jurame” / Swear to Me (Spanish)
“O du, mein holder Abendstern” / Song to the Evening Star (German)
“Parsi” / Farsi (Persian)
“Sure on This Shining Night” (English)
“Un bel dì, vedremo” / One Beautiful Day (Italian)
Dramatic tenor Turgut Akmete, praised for his “clear and resonant tone” by Opera Canada Magazine, has sung leading roles on 3 continents and as guest artist with UBC Opera. He’s working under the tutelage of Heidi Melton and looking forward to upcoming engagements in Germany.
Sergio Augusto has a passion for operatic music and its power to move the soul. His latest singing ventures have ranged from bel canto roles, to popular romantic leads, and quirky modern characters across Canada, Europe and the UK.
Métis soprano Melody Courage gained national attention as The Native Girl “…played with ethereal grace …” in the 2017 world premiere of Missing, co-produced by City Opera and Pacific Opera Victoria. She appeared with the NAC Orchestra in the premiere of Ian Cusson’s Dodo, mon tout petit.
Chloé Hurst is a singer and pianist hailed by Opera Canada as having “enviable clarity and precision.” Her talent has taken her around the world. Chloé teaches voice, piano and theory and is the head of early music education at the Vancouver Academy of Music.
Michelle Koebke trained at UBC and Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist program before moving to Italy for music. Back in Vancouver, she enjoys 5 daughters and singing for small events. Michelle also works as a photographer, twice holding the cover of Opera Canada Magazine.
Kat Norris is a Coast Salish mom, grandmother, community activist, & residential school survivor. Through the Langara College family studies diploma program she now works as a counselor & facilitates talks around impacts of colonization.
With a “warm-toned, confident instrument, radiant demeanor, sure footedness and a light touch” [Boston Musical Intelligencer], Iranian-Canadian soprano Bahareh Poureslami is a graduate of the Bienen School of Music, Northwestern University, and UBC’s School of Music.
Roger Parton is an arranger and pianist. Since 2015, he has worked with City Opera, where he is currently on the team preparing Alice Ho’s upcoming new opera, “Chinatown”.
Anastasia Pyshna began music studies in St Petersburg, Russia and continued her vocal training in Paris. In 2018, Anastasia moved to Vancouver where she studies with soprano Robyn Driedger-Klassen at the Vancouver Academy of Music.
Yuhui Wang is a member of the UBC Opera Ensemble, Vancouver Youth Philharmonic Orchestra, Chinese North American Artist’s Association, and is in his fourth year DMA. He studies with one of Canada’s most versatile baritones, Peter Barcza.