Monday, June 13, 2011

Soprano in the Wings: Lara Michole Tillotson

"Lara Michole Tillotson made the most of her debut as Cio-Cio-San in the St. Petersburg Opera production of Madama Butterfly Friday night at the Palladium Theater. Puccini's ill-fated Japanese geisha, abandoned by the U.S. naval officer who married her as a lark, is one of opera's signature roles, and the young soprano gave the kind of confident performance that should lead to many more. Tillotson has the combination of power and expressiveness required to portray Butterfly, from the ravishing but controlled top notes of her famous aria, 'Un bel di,' to the soft, conversational singing of her letter scene with Sharpless, the American consul. Though Tillotson doesn't look like a 15-year-old, she communicated an air of vulnerable innocence that never lost its hold, right up to the agony of Butterfly's death scene." -John Fleming, St. Petersburg Times

As a member of Sarasota Opera’s Studio, she sang the role of Mary Warren in The Crucible and covered Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni in the company’s 2011 spring season. Following a triumphant turn as Floria Tosca with Opera in the Heights in 2008, Ms. Tillotson returned to Houston in January 2010 to portray Amelia in Un Ballo in Maschera. She returned again to her native Texas to sing two more doomed

heroines, Maddalena de Coigny in Andrea Chenier and the title role in Puccini’s Manon Lescaut. Other recent engagements include Nedda with Opera Fort Collins, the Countess in Le nozze di Figaro, Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, and the Mother in Hansel and Gretel all with The Living Opera, and her European debut as Suor Angelica with OperaEstate in Rome. She has also performed numerous roles and concert appearances with the Dallas Opera under the baton of Graeme Jenkins, and was a part of the grand opening of the Winspear Opera House at the new Performing Arts Center in Dallas. Ms. Tillotson’s body of work also includes Mimi, Leonora in Il Trovatore, Liu, Lady Macbeth, Fiordiligi, and Rosalinda in Die Fledermaus as well as the Soprano solos in the Verdi and Mozart Requiems, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, and world premiere compositions by Randall Lawrence Joyal.

Born August 7, soprano Lara Michole Tillotson graduated from the Edward S. Marcus High School (1992) and the University of North Texas (1999) before completing graduate studies at Southeastern Louisiana University. Since that time she has been busy singing in regional companies like Opera Fort Collins, The Dallas Opera (Plano) and Opera in the Heights. She is currently a member of the Sarasota Opera Studio. A native of Dallas, Texas, the soprano currently resides in New York City. [SourceSourceSource]

"Ecco l'orrido campo...Ma dall'arido stelo"
Un Ballo in Maschera (Verdi)
"Morrò, ma prima in grazia"
Un Ballo in Maschera (Verdi)

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