Daphnis & Chloé

March 19-22, 2015 at the Sheen Center Blackbox

Jacques Offenbach’s comic firestorm operetta Daphnis & Chloé is a raunchy story of two innocent country youths who are initiated into the art of love by the lecherous God Pan and a horde of rowdy Bacchantes. With a new arrangement by Daniel Schlosberg and a new English translation by Michaël Attias, Heartbeat Opera resurrects this forgotten masterpiece in a deliciously naughty production.
Louisa Proske (Direction), Louis Lohraseb (Music Direction), Jacob Ashworth (Associate Music Direction), Chloe Treat (Choreography), Michaël Attias in collaboration with Louisa Proske and Jacob Ashworth (Translation), Daniel Schlosberg (Orchestration), Reid Thompson (Set), Beth Goldenberg (Costumes), Oliver Wason (Lighting), Sonja Thorson (Stage Management), Bo Frazier (Assistant Director)

Featuring Tynan Davis (Locoë), Kristin Gornstein (Xantippe), Nicole Haslett (Chloé), Alexandra Loutsion (Calisto), Karin Mushegain (Daphnis), Molly Netter (Amalthea), and Gary Ramsey (God Pan)

Photos by Jill Steinberg, Christopher Ash, and Ethan Heard

Jacques Offenbach rose to unprecedented world fame in the middle of the 19th century. His operettas were produced in Vienna, Berlin, London, Warsaw, even in New York. All of Paris was drunk on his buoyant melodies; everyone from Emperors to common folk ran in the doors of the theatres to be electrified by Offenbach’s singular mélange of irresistible charm, musical elegance, and scandalous raunchiness. While catering to the hedonistic cravings of the French Second Empire, Offenbach managed ingeniously to hold the mirror up to its hypocrisies and fatal blind spots, even to predict its looming downfall. Next to composing, staging, and conducting his operettas, Offenbach also founded his own opera company, the Bouffes-Parisiens, and tirelessly produced, fundraised, advertised, and hustled, in order to see his works performed. This makes him the perfect patron and guiding angel of the first Heartbeat Opera season!

Tynan Davis (Locoë) is a Texan in NYC. This month marks her debuts with Heartbeat Opera and Roomful of Teeth, a Grammy award-winning vocal octet. Recently she sang Rita the Rat in Tobias Picker's Fantastic Mr. Fox with both Opera San Antonio and Boston Modern Orchestra Project/Odyssey Opera. Other favorite gigs include a month-long tour with Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and a brief moment on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon as an operatic zombie. This spring she will perform with another Grammy Award-winning group, Conspirare, in the world premiere of Nico Muhly's How Little You Are and with the San Antonio Symphony as emcee and featured singer for their Young People's Concerts. Tynan is a volunteer artist with Sing For Hope and an alumna of the Children's Chorus of San Antonio. tynandavis.com

Kristin Gornstein (Xantippe) Described as, "engaging", with an "elegant voice", by the New York Times, mezzosoprano Kristin Gornstein performs opera and concert work with equal enthusiasm. Most recently, Kristin debuted to critical acclaim the role of Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Loft Opera. Other recent performances include the North American premiere of Johan de Meij’s 4th Symphony, The Symphony of Songs, with the New York Wind Symphony, performances in Stockholm, Sweden and Rotterdam, Holland with the Opera Mecatronica ensemble, Carmen in La Tragédie de Carmen with Indianapolis Opera, and Romeo in Bellini’s I Capuleti e I Montecchi with Opera MODO in Princeton, New Jersey. Last year, Kristin was an Encouragement Award Winner in the Peter Elvins Vocal Competition in Belmont, Massachusetts, winner of the Artistic Director’s Award in Connecticut Concert Opera’s Opera Idol Competition, and sang as an Apprentice Artist with Caramoor Bel Canto under the baton of maestro Wil Crutchfield. In September, in collaboration with Opera Works (Los Angeles, CA), Kristin wrote and premiered a semi-improvised piece for mezzo-soprano, piano, violin and cello at the Boulder Fringe Festival in Boulder, Colorado. This summer she will be a Fellow in the Vocal Arts Program at Tanglewood. In search of the best cup of coffee in the world, Kristin now lives in Brooklyn. To learn more, visit her at www.kristingornstein.com.

Nicole Haslett (Chloé) Hailed as “one of the most enchanting sopranos I have heard in a while” by Opera News, soprano Nicole Haslett returns to the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis for Sophie in Picker’s Emmeline and sings her first performances of Handel’s Messiah with the New Choral Society in the 2014-15 season. She also joins the roster of the Metropolitan Opera in the 2014-15 season for its production of Iolanta, where she sang excerpts of Zerbinetta from Ariadne auf Naxos and Nannetta from Falstaff on the stage during the finals of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. She joined Chautauqua Opera this summer in The Ballad of Baby Doe, singing Sarah and covering the title role. As a Resident Artist with Portland Opera, she covered the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor and Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance.

Ms. Haslett is a former Gerdine Young Artist of the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, where she sang Echo and covered Barče in Smetana’s The Kiss. Other recent performances include Nannetta in Verdi’s Falstaff with Martina Arroyo’s Prelude to Performance, and Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro at Opera in the Ozarks. In the summer of 2012, Ms. Haslett spent six weeks in Beijing with the I SING BEIJING program, with whom also performed selections from  白毛女 (Bái Máo Nǚ, The White-Haired Girl) at Alice Tully Hall the following spring.

In addition to being a Metropolitan Opera Grand Finalist, Ms. Haslett is a 2012 Alan M. and Joan Taub Ades Vocal Competition winner and a 2012 Career Bridges Grant winner. She holds a Master’s in Vocal Performance from the Manhattan School of Music where she performed Florestine in Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles as well as Eve in Haydn’s Die Schöpfung. Her performance credits at New York University, where she earned her Bachelor of Music and won the Excellence in Vocal Performance Award, include Despina in Così fan tutte and Jennie Parsons in Weill’s Down in the Valley.

Alexandra Loutsion (Calisto) With a voice that is “beautifully colored and deeply moving” (Parterre Box), Alexandra Loutsion continues to be recognized for her passionate performances and vocal versatility as a rising star on the operatic stage. This season, she debuts with Wolf Trap Opera singing Cio-Cio San in Madama Butterfly with the National Symphony Orchestra and North Carolina Opera singing Donna Anna in Don Giovanni. She also debuts with the Santa Fe Symphony in Verdi's Requiem and joins the Lenape Center of New York City in The Purchase of Manhattan, a world premiere by Brent Michael Davis.

Past seasons include roles with Pittsburgh Opera, Dayton Opera, Central City Opera, and Opera Santa Barbara; covering Leonore in a new production of Fidelio at the Santa Fe Opera conducted by Harry Bicket; and singing the lead role of Isabella in Wagner's Das Liebesverbot as part of the Ring Festival LA. Ms. Loutsion was a winner of the Metropolitan National Council District Auditions and Long Beach Mozart Competition, as well as a finalist in the Fritz and Lavinia Jensen Foundation Competition. Among her awards are prizes from the Santa Fe Opera (the Anna Case MacKay Award and the Donald Gramm Memorial Award) and the Shoshana Foundation's Richard F. Gold Career Grant. She holds degrees in vocal performance from the University of Southern California and Ithaca College.

Karin Mushegain (Daphnis) Young American mezzo, Karin Mushegain, called “superb” (The New York Times), and possessing “a rich voice and infectious theatricality” (Colorado Gazette), is captivating audiences with her exciting, energetic portrayals, dramatic poise, and dynamic vocal sound. During the 2014-2015 season, the mezzo joins Gotham Chamber Opera as the title role in El Gato Con Botas, Austin Lyric Opera for her role debut as Zerlina in Don Giovanni, Mid Atlantic Opera as Maddalena in Rigoletto, Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Bakersfield Symphony, a role debut as Paquette in Candide with Pasadena Opera, and a recital tour with composer and Van Cliburn Award winner, Paul Romero. Future seasons include Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro with Seattle Opera, a return to the stage in her signature role of La Cenerentola, among others. Ms. Mushegain recently made her Seattle Opera debut as the title role in La Cenerentola, where she was hailed as an “excellent singing actress – sailing through the title role with an assured performance.” (Seattle Times) During the 2013 - 2014 season, she made her role debut as Carmen with Opera San Luis Obispo to great acclaim, sang the title role in La Cenerentola with Pensacola Opera, and debuted in concert with the Virginia Symphony in Rossini’s Stabat Mater. She also performed Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Lyrique-en-mer in France, joined the esteemed Festival Mozaic for Villa-Lobos’ Bachianas Brasileiras, and portrayed her first Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro with Virginia Opera, where she performed the role “as convincingly and as delightfully as any I can recall…with exquisite comedic timing,” (Washington Post) Other highlights include Flora in La Traviata with New York City Opera, Hansel in Hansel und Gretel with Virginia Opera, Dorabella in Cosí fan tutte with Opera Memphis, and Alessandro in Handel’s Tolomeo with Glimmerglass Opera.

Molly Netter (Amalthea) enlivens complex and beautiful music with a voice described as “crisp and clear, white yet warm” (Seen and Heard International). As a soprano soloist, Ms. Netter has performed with Julliard415 at Lincoln Center and toured internationally in Japan, Singapore and Burma under Masaaki Suzuki. Hailed for her “command of the stage with a full range of Baroque stage conventions” (Early Music America), Ms. Netter has performed at the Boston Early Music Festival, Trinity Wall Street, and with the Yale Schola Cantorum under Nicholas McGegan, David Hill and Simon Carrington.

Ms. Netter has premiered numerous works by David Lang, Simon Emmerson, Ran Duan, and Sven-David Sandström at The Kennedy Center, Yale School of Music, Oberlin Conservatory, and the Stuttgart Festival under Helmuth Rilling. With a wide range of repertoire, Ms. Netter has performed as soloist with Cantata Profana based in New Haven, the Clarion Music Society and Experiments in Opera in New York City, and recently toured Northern Germany as vocalist with the Department of Jazz trio.  As a guest with Yale Opera this season, Netter performed in Puccini’s Suor Angelica and the role of “Barbarina” in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro.

Ms. Netter holds an ad hoc Bachelor of Music degree in composition and contemporary voice from Oberlin Conservatory and a Master’s degree in early music voice from the Yale Institute of Sacred Music where she studied with James Taylor. Between degrees, she taught English in Kyoto, Japan.

Gary Ramsey (God Pan) most recently won the Osgood Prize for his performance in the title role of Salieri’s, Falstaff, at CSC Repertory with Dell’Arte Opera. He was described as a “tour de force” (New York Times) performing the title role in Bum Phillips: All-American Opera. He has also appeared as Don Alfonso in Cosi Fan Tutte, with Opera Breve, Ichabod Crane in Sleepy Hollow and Mr. Braxton in Thomas Pasatieri’s God Bless Us Everyone (World Premiere) with Dicapo Opera. Other credits include: Older Thompson in Tom Cipullo’s Glory Denied at Chelsea Opera (New York Premiere), to rave reviews; Germont in La Traviata, at the Tuscia Festival in Italy (a role first developed in workshop with Nico Castel, Metropolitan Opera); The Father in Hansel and Gretel, Opera Manhattan; Farmer Beanpole in Tobias Picker’s Fantastic Mr. Fox (New York Premiere); Thomas Putnam in The Crucible for the Mezzo Festival in Hungary and aired on Mezzo Television. He has studied with renowned Baritone, Sherrill Milnes, and has also performed with Mr. Milnes’ V.O.I.C. Experience at Disneyworld, Epcot performance.    

Louis Lohraseb (Music Director) As a Conducting Fellow at the Yale School of Music, Louis Lohraseb currently studies with Maestro Shinik Hahm, and serves as assistant conductor to the Yale Philharmonia. He is also artistic director of the Amadeus Orchestra, and music director of the Cheshire Symphony Orchestra. He is a student of the late Maestro Lorin Maazel, as well as Maestro James Conlon, whom he assisted at the 2014 Ravinia Festival for the productions of Don Giovanni and Le Nozze di Figaro. Mr. Lohraseb took up music at age three after discovering his love of opera. He has since studied piano with Elizabeth Parisot, Findlay Cockrell and Amy Stanley, composition with Robert Levin, musicology with Anne-Marie Reynolds, musicology and composition with William Carragan, conducting and composition with James Walker, and conducting with Gerard Floriano. 

Mr. Lohraseb performed and assisted in both operatic and symphonic literature at the Castleton Festival in Virginia. He was the assistant director of the Geneseo Symphony Orchestra and the music director of the Friends of Music Orchestra composed of Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra members. Conducting from the keyboard, Mr. Lohraseb has performed several Mozart piano concertos, as well as three Bach harpsichord concertos. Recent credits also include the Mozart two-piano concerto and the Rakhmaninov Second Concerto with the Geneseo Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Lohraseb has participated in many chamber music recitals, including those with members of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. His compositions have been performed internationally, and his recent musicological work on the sources of Anton Bruckner’s Sixth Symphony was presented at a musicological conference at Oxford University in April 2013 and was published in the November 2013 edition of The Bruckner Journal. This upcoming April, Mr. Lohraseb will present the world premiere of the 1878 version of Bruckner’s Fourth Symphony. He was graduated summa cum laude from SUNY Geneseo in 2013, where he was an Edgar Fellows Honors student, and was made a member of Phi Beta Kappa.

Chloe Treat (Choreographer) is a New York-based director and choreographer. Born and raised in Texas, she directs, choreographs and assists on a number of musicals, plays, operas, weird outdoor performance pieces and feminist westerns. Recently she's been involved in productions of Kansas City Choir Boy, two national tours of The Lightning Thief and briefly traveled back to her home state to direct and choreograph a production of Blood Wedding.