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Kurt Weill Foundation E-news
April 2011

Lotte Lenya Competition

Exceptional talents from the United States, England and China win top prizes in 2011 competition

Jing Lin, Jacob Lewis Smith, Caitlin Mathes, Emma SewellCaitlin Mathes, mezzo-soprano of Dayville, Connecticut, won the $15,000 First Prize in the finals of the 2011 Lotte Lenya Competition, held on April 16, 2011, at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y. Instead of awarding Second and Third Prizes, judges presented three equal prizes of $8,000 each to Jing Lin, soprano, of Putian, China; Emma Sewell, soprano, of London, England; and Jacob Lewis Smith, bass/baritone, of Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Judges for the competition were three-time Tony Award nominee Rebecca Luker, Broadway and Encores! music director Rob Berman, and the Artistic Director of the Kurt Weill Festival in Dessau, Germany, Michael Kaufmann.

The Kurt Weill Foundation for Music, which sponsors the competition, distributed a record $58,000 in prizes this year. In addition to the top prizes, judges presented three Lys Symonette Awards of $2,500 each, named in honor of Kurt Weill’s musical assistant on Broadway. Baritone Daniel Schwait of Baltimore and tenor John Viscardi of Philadelphia received awards for Outstanding Performance of an Individual Number, and baritone Jorell Williams of Brentwood, N.Y., received one for Outstanding Vocal Talent. The remaining five finalists each received a total award of $1,000: Alisa Suzanne Jordheim, soprano, of Appleton, Wisc.; Matt Leisy, tenor, of New York; Chris Pinnella, bari-tenor, of Brielle, N.J.; Peabody Southwell, mezzo-soprano, of Los Angeles; and Trevor Strader, tenor, of Queensbury, N.Y.

Learn about the competition >>

Threepenny Opera
enters repertoire of the Comédie-Française

On 2 April, L’Opéra de quat’sous (The Threepenny Opera) entered the repertoire of the renowned Comédie-Française in Paris, in a production directed by Laurent Pelly and conducted by Bruno Fontaine. Performances run in repertory through 19 July.

L'Opera de quat'sous at the Comedie-Francaise“It’s all very beguiling, but there’s nothing nice about The Threepenny Opera. A villainous work of dark, dazzling beauty, it is lit by an acerbic humor that has lost none of its corrosiveness. In his directing debut at the Salle Richelieu, Laurent Pelly has drawn out the talents and strengths of his troupe. The actors are breathtaking. They all know how to sing, and some have truly remarkable natural ability and tone. ...The sound and the sense have never seemed so closely bound together. Pelly grasps the poetics and the politics of the work, its sense of play and its intractable irony—everything that makes The Threepenny Opera a work for today.” – Armelle Heliot, Le Figaro

Visit the Threepenny Opera website >>
Visit the Threepenny Opera Facebook page >>


Upcoming Performances - Highlights

Driestuiversopera (The Threepenny Opera)
Het Nationale Toneel with Asko|Schönberg Ensemble, NETHERLANDS
Franz Marijnen, director
8 March - 19 June (59-date tour)

L’Opéra de quat’sous
Le Théâtre du Trident, Québec, CANADA
Martin Genest, dir
19 April – 14 May
Der Protagonist
Anhaltisches Theater Dessau, GERMANY
André Bücker, director; Antony Hermus, conductor
16, 24 April

Full performance calendar >>

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The Kurt Weill Foundation for Music, Inc., administers, promotes, and perpetuates the legacies of Kurt Weill and Lotte Lenya. It encourages broad dissemination and appreciation of Weill’s music through support of performances, productions, recordings, and scholarship; it fosters understanding of Weill’s and Lenya’s lives and work within diverse cultural contexts; and, building upon the legacies of both, it nurtures talent, particularly in the creation, performance, and study of musical theater in its various manifestations and media.

The Kurt Weill Foundation for Music, Inc.
7 East 20th St., New York, NY 10003 USA
Tel: (212) 505-5240
Fax: (212) 353-9663

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