Thursday, October 1, 2009

Making the Cut: University of Ottawa

It is always a party when Ingemar Korjus from the University of Ottawa is in the room! His ultra-resonant bass-baritone voice announced that UofO was a small but MIGHTY music school (while donning the Wagner helmet with horns)! Here are the highlights of the program as presented:
  1. 1. Sandra Graham (his wife) is on faculty teaching Opera Workshop. Sandra is a mezzo that sang in Germany for years and brings a wealth of knowledge to her teaching.
  2. They encourage the onus of study to be on the student asking "what do I (the student) have to offer as a musician?"
  3. Singers outnumber the rest of the musicians at UofO. With a focus on helping students feel safe, they can take the risks necessary to learn more and get to the next level.
  4. Opera Workshop is a major part of the program involving both undergrads and graduate students. In the past they have performed the Medium, Cosi fan Tutte, Don Giovanni, Carmen and this year will do Le Nozze di Figaro with orchestra.
  5. There is a wealth of musical happenings in Ottawa and when major singers come to sing with the NAC Orchestra, UofO has them present master classes. Last year they hosted Russel Braun, Dalton Baldwin (pianist) and Edith Weins. Students also receive free tickets to many concerts.
Ingemar finished with a passionate speech encouraging young singers to "follow your heart and you will not go wrong".

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