Graduate Student Molly Clementz named 2016-2017 Mosher Studio Artist by Opera Santa Barbara

UCSB graduate student Molly Clementz was recently selected as one of four Mosher Studio Artists for Opera Santa Barbara's 2016-2017 season. Ms. Clementz is currently in her third year of study in the D.M.A. program with Dr. Linda Di Fiore at UCSB, and this will be her second year in Opera Santa Barbara's Mosher Studio Artist Program. To learn more about Ms. Clementz and the Opera Santa Barbara Mosher Studio Artist Program, please read the Opera Santa Barbara press release announcing the 2016-2017 Mosher Studio Artists below:

 
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 18, 2016
 
Contact:
Tim Dougherty
805-284-4218
 
Opera Santa Barbara Announces 2016-17 Mosher Studio Artists
Singers will study and perform with the company through May, including free noontime concerts in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.
 
Santa Barbara, CA — Opera Santa Barbara has named four outstanding young vocalists Mosher Studio Artists for 2016-17. Under an expansion of the company’s artist residency program begun last year, the four standout singers and an apprentice vocal coach will take part in Opera Santa Barbara productions, community events throughout Santa Barbara and Ventura counties, and coachings and masterclasses with top industry directors and conductors.
 
Serving as Mosher Studio Artists this year are soprano Elizabeth Kelsay, mezzo-soprano Molly Clementz, tenor Elliott Deasy, and baritone Evan Bravos. Their residencies will extend through May. Biographies appear below.
 
“We are pleased to welcome these four exceptionally talented young artists, and look forward to introducing them to audiences all over Santa Barbara and beyond,” said Opera Santa Barbara Artistic Director Kostis Protopapas.
 
Under its original artist residency program, founded nine years ago, Opera Santa Barbara hosted four singers for about five weeks of training and rehearsals prior to each of the company’s three annual opera productions, culminating in on-stage appearances as secondary performers. The effort was originally known as the Young Artists Program and was later renamed the Studio Artist Program. The Mosher Foundation, which supports educational, healthcare, and performing arts institutions in the Santa Barbara area, funded an expansion of the program in 2014.
 
Under the new Mosher Studio Artist Program – inaugurated last season – participants tour elementary schools in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties as part of the company’s Opera Lab, which uses improvisational theatre techniques to encourage children to “create their own operas.” Mosher Studio Artists also present free noontime concerts in Santa Barbara and Ventura County libraries, and will perform secondary roles in Opera Santa Barbara’s upcoming productions of Carmen (November 4 and 6), The Cunning Little Vixen (March 3 and 5), and La Rondine (April 28 and 30). The free noontime concerts feature a variety of operatic repertoire and musical theatre selections with piano accompaniment. A performance schedule is available at www.operasb.org/outreach/free-noontime-concerts.
 
About Opera Santa Barbara
Founded in 1994 by Marilyn Gilbert and Nathan Rundlett, Opera Santa Barbara is committed to presenting productions and educational programs of the highest quality. Over more than two decades the company has staged more than 50 operas and devoted thousands of hours to community outreach. The organization remains dedicated to the core passions that animated its founding: celebrating and championing the breadth and beauty of opera, and contributing to the cultural enrichment of the Santa Barbara community. Additional information is available at www.operasb.org.
 
2016-17 Mosher Studio Artists
 
Praised by Opera News for her “warm, Italianate sound,” soprano Elizabeth Kelsay studied at Westminster Choir College and Florida State University. This season she will appear with Opera Santa Barbara as Frasquita (Carmen), the Rooster and Blue Jay (The Cunning Little Vixen), and Lisette (La Rondine). Previously a studio artist at Tulsa Opera, Ms. Kelsay performed with the Metropolitan Opera Chorus for three seasons. She made her Carnegie Hall debut in the title role of Puccini's Suor Angelica with New York Lyric Opera.
 
Born in St. Charles, Illinois, mezzo-soprano Molly Clementz is returning to Opera Santa Barbara as a Mosher Studio Artist. She made her Opera Santa Barbara debut in 2014 as Page in Rigoletto, and last season participated in the company’s productions of Don GiovanniSuor Angelica, and Gianni Schicchi. Recently a finalist in the American Institute of Musical Studies’ Meistersinger Competition in Graz, Austria, Ms. Clementz is a doctoral candidate at UC Santa Barbara.
 
Tenor Elliott Deasy earned a bachelor’s degree in music at the University of Tulsa before attending the Land of Enchantment Opera Institute in New Mexico. He has studied with Peter Strummer, Steven Crawford, Julian Reed, Alan Glassman, and Frank Lopardo, and his credits include Jóvenes Cantantes in Costa Rica and the role of Basilio in Bronx Opera’s production of The Marriage of Figaro. Mr. Deasy served as the resident tenor at Tulsa Opera last season. 
 
A native of St. Charles, Illinois, baritone Evan Bravos has been described as a “young talent to watch” (Chicago Tribune). His recent notable performances include Count Almaviva (The Marriage of Figaro) with Central City Opera, Figaro (The Barber of Seville) with Lyric Opera of Chicago, and Martin (Candide) at the Aspen Music Festival. Mr. Bravos received the 2014 Apprentice Artist Award at Central City Opera and an Encouragement Award in the 2014 Metropolitan National Council Auditions.
Molly Clementz