The University at Albany Department of Music is pleased to present Hubbard Hall Opera Theatre in a reduced version of La Boheme on Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 7:30pm at the UAlbany Performing Arts Center on the uptown campus. This concert is the first of the 2012-13 Bel Canto Series.

The program, featuring 75 minutes of some of the most gorgeous music in the opera canon (including “Che gelida manina,” "Mi chiamano Mimi" and Musetta's aria), will be semi-staged and sung in Italian, with accompaniment by Michael Clement.   With its melodic score and poignant story of young love and true friendships, La Boheme is set in the students’ quartet of Paris circa 1830 and is one of the most frequently performed operas worldwide. This performance will feature up and coming area artists, Vedrana Kalas as Mimi and Irina Petrik as Musetta, as well as Minnesota-based Brian J. Kuhl as Rudolfo and Boston baritone Kevin Kees as Marcello.

Hubbard Hall Opera Theater is based at Hubbard Hall, an historic opera house located in Cambridge.  The organization strives to give young artists opportunities to perform key operatic roles in a nurturing environment alongside seasoned professionals through main stage productions, the conservatory student training program and outreach performances.  It also engages and builds rural audiences for opera through offering affordable, intimate high-quality musical and theatrical performances. 

American baritone Kevin Kees made his Lyric Opera of Chicago debut in Amistad. He has performed extensively in opera houses throughout the United States, including Virginia Opera, Nashville Opera, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Opera North, Ash Lawn-Highland, and Opera Illinois, among others.

Tenor Brian J. Kuhl began his musical training as a member of the Saint John’s Boys’ Choir in Collegeville, MN and subsequently completed a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Saint John’s University.  Recent engagements include Tamino in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte with Hubbard Hall Opera Theater as well as Matt/Larry in Molicone's one act opera The Face on the Barroom Floor and FRANKENBOY!: A Monsteropera with Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre.  
Irina Petrik, once a soloist with the Kiev Youth Symphony, performed throughout the former Soviet Union as a member of the popular Skazka children's theater and, later, with the National Philharmonic of Ukraine. She moved to the United States in 2000 and has performed with Opera Saratoga (formerly Lake George Opera), CR Productions at Cohoes Music Hall, Mosaic Arts Opera, the Atlanta Folk Orchestra, the Washington Balalaika Society Orchestra, Barynya Ensemble, Russian Winter Festival and the Festival of United Nations. 

Vedrana Kalas, a native of Bosnia and a resident of Delmar, graduated from the Crane School of Music. On the operatic stage, she sang the role of Euridice in Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice followed by Suor Genovieffa in Puccini’s Suor Angelica and Donna Anna in Don Giovanni with Mosaic-Arts.  Most recently, she has been seen with the Hubbard Hall Opera Theater as the “agile, dramatic and soaring" (The Daily Gazette) Norina in Don Pasquale. 

Upcoming concerts in the Bel Canto Series will feature soprano Maria Todaro and baritones Nicholas Wiggins and Louis Otey.  Wiggins will offer a program of art song, opera and popular song on November 3 while Todaro and Otey will team up for a Duo Opera Recital on April 21.

Tickets are $10 for the general public and $5 for students, seniors & UAlbany faculty/staff and may be purchased through the Performing Arts Center Box Office.  For further information, contact the Box Office at (518) 442-3997..