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March 20, 1987 | ALLAN JALON
Celeste Tavera, a resident of Orange, was one of 11 singers to win the National Metropolitan Opera Auditions Sunday in New York. Tavera, 28, will receive a $5,000 education grant and will join the other winners for a March 29 performance with the Metropolitan Opera orchestra, conducted by Richard Woitach. Repertory for the concert, to be broadcast on KUSC-FM on April 3 at 7 p.m., has not been set.
October 15, 1991 | CHRIS PASLES
Soprano Jennifer Smith, 27, of Tustin, came in first; Mel Whitehead, a 33-year-old bass from Anaheim, came in second, and Laura Fries, a 31-year-old soprano from Fountain Valley, came in third on Sunday among the 12 participants in the Orange County district Metropolitan Opera auditions held at Chapman University. Each winner will compete in regional finals Nov. 1 and 2 at USC.
January 26, 2005 | From Associated Press
Beverly Sills, the hometown diva who became a major fundraiser for the Metropolitan Opera, resigned Tuesday as the organization's chairwoman, citing personal reasons. "It's the right time to leave and concentrate on my family," Sills, 75, said in a statement. "I know that I have achieved what I set out to do." Sills sang for international audiences for more than three decades before retiring from the stage in 1980.
April 6, 2007 | From Bloomberg News
New York City's Metropolitan Opera received a $10-million grant Thursday from the Annenberg Foundation. About $7.4 million will underwrite productions over the next four years and $1.6 million will establish a fund to support top singers, the opera house said. The remaining $1 million will pay for the Met's 40th anniversary celebration, which was held on Tuesday.
October 5, 1992 | CHRIS PASLES
A 23-year-old Cal State Fullerton student, baritone Aram Barsamian of Pasadena, took top honors Saturday in the Orange County district Metropolitan Opera auditions. Finishing just behind Barsamian were soprano Jennifer Smith, 28, of Tustin, and soprano Megan Weston, 27, of Buena Park, who came in second and third respectively among the eight participants in the competition held at Chapman University. Each of the three winners will compete in regional finals Nov. 13 at USC.
August 8, 1986
Most of the principal casting has been announced for the Houston Grand Opera touring production of Gershwin's "Porgy and Bess," due at the Orange County Performing Arts Center Feb. 11-15 and at the Pavilion of the Music Center Feb. 22-March 1. Donnie Ray Albert, who sang in the original 1976 Houston production, will sing Porgy. Cynthia Haymon will alternate with Henrietta Davis as Bess, and Gregg Baker, who sang Crown in the recent Metropolitan Opera production, will repeat that role.
November 25, 2013 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
With its show-business staging of Mozart's "The Magic Flute" as a cheekily animated silent movie, Los Angeles Opera on Saturday night got what it very much needs. That this will be a hit goes without saying. But what this once pioneering company really needs right now is a reason to be talked about again. So let's talk about Barrie Kosky, one of the hot directors on the international scene and, like most hot directors on the international scene, ignored in America. Not too many American opera companies dare hire directors who put buckets of excrement onstage, as Kosky did in a recent German production of Janácek's "From the House of the Dead.
November 18, 1989
Baritone Kevin Bell, 28, of San Bernardino was awarded first place at the Western Regional Auditions of the Metropolitan Opera National Council, last weekend in Bovard Auditorium at USC. As the top winner, Bell will receive $3,900 and will represent the region in national semifinal auditions in New York in March. Second place and a prize of $2,800 went to soprano Michele Lyn Patzakis, 26, of San Marino; soprano Cynthia Clayton, 24, of Los Angeles, won third place and $1,700.
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