Five singers, one collaborative pianist selected for COC Summer Opera Intensive

Congratulations to all the Western Music students and recent graduates who have been accepted into the Canadian Opera Company’s (COC) Summer Opera Intensive 2023 program.

Only 10 singers and two collaborative pianists are selected to participate in this program in total, which means Western is very well represented with five singers and one pianist.

  • Alyssa Bartholomew, BMus student - student of Margie Bernal
  • Michaela Chiste, MMus’22 – former student of Jackie Short
  • Emma Pennell, BMus student - student of Torin Chiles
  • Seokho Park, Master’s student – student of Sophie Roland
  • Patricia Wrigglesworth, BMus student – student Torin Chiles
  • Gankun Zhang (collaborative pianist), DMA student – student of Kyung Kim

The one-week program runs August 8-13 and takes place within the COC’s rehearsal spaces in Toronto. This year marks the second year of the program that invites advanced singers and collaborative pianists pursuing a career in performance to experience training of the highest quality and standards, with highly individualised assessments that take into full consideration participant goals, creative interests, and musical experience.

In another connection, Western Music grad Timothy Cheung, BMus’08, MMus’11, a pianist and vocal coach based in Toronto, is on faculty as Collaborative Pianist for the program.

In last year’s inaugural session, two Western singers were selected for the program - Matthew Bermudez and Jade Watson.

Chair of Music Performance Studies, Professor Sophie Roland notes, “I am very excited to see this happen. The students and their professors are doing great work at preparing these auditions. I know it’s a competitive process, and am proud to note how many of our students will be included in this prestigious program.” 

Related links

View COC announcement (April 28, 2023) via Facebook and Instagram 

Voice Division at Western

Opera at Western