American soprano Olivia Boen had an early start on the operatic stage when at the age of six, she appeared at the Lyric Opera of Chicago as one of the gingerbread chorus children in Hänsel und Gretel. In the 2022-23 season, she came full circle when she made her debut as Gretel at the Staatsoper Hamburg, where she is a member of the International Opera Studio. She also made role debuts as Musetta (La bohème) and Anna (Nabucco), among others. Further operatic appearances include Alcina, Gianni Schicchi, Die Zauberflöte, Il Segreto di Susanna, Les Mamelles de Tirésias, Serse, and The Little Green Swallow.
This summer, she returned home to Chicago to perform as the soprano soloist in Dvorak’s Stabat Mater with the Grant Park Symphony Orchestra. She has appeared at the Barbican with both the London Symphony Orchestra and the London Schools Symphony Orchestra, with whom she sang first Four Last Songs, and at Cadogan Hall where she made her debut with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. An avid lover of song, Olivia has toured with the Oxford Lieder Festival, and has also given recitals at Wigmore Hall, St. Martin-in-the-Fields, the London Song Festival, Opera Holland Park, the Verbier Festival, and the Ravinia Festival. She was a finalist in the 2021 Guildhall Gold Medal Prize, and was awarded the 2019 London Song Festival English Song Prize, the 2018 first-place prize (Lynne Cooper Harvey Foundation Award) of the Musicians Club of Women Competition, and a 2018 grant from the Beebe Fund for Musicians.
Pianist Shannon McGinnis has been recognized for partnerships with some of the brightest stars in the classical vocal music world. Her playing has been described as “excellent” (Opera News), “strong and supportive” (Chicago Tribune), and “boldly projected, characterful, and delicately nuanced” (Chicago Classical Review). Recent highlights include appearances as official pianist for the Joyce DiDonato Master Classes at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute, broadcast on medici.tv; debuts with the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society and San Francisco Performances; a performance with soprano Nicole Heaston, recorded live at the Ravinia Festival and broadcast on WFMT; and a recital with soprano Laura Strickling, featuring a world-premiere by Eric Malmquist.
McGinnis holds the position of Associate Professor of Opera and Director of Opera programs at the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University, where she leads the opera curriculum and the College’s partnership with Chicago Opera Theater. McGinnis maintains a sought-after vocal coaching studio, from which her students on to hold positions at elite institutions and training programs across the United States and abroad. A passionate champion of art song, McGinnis is a co-founder of Collaborative Arts Institute of Chicago, where, as Director of Education, she oversees the organization’s tuition-free Vocal Chamber Music Fellowship.
She holds the DMA in Accompanying and Chamber Music from the University of Michigan and was awarded the Emerging Artist Award in Music by the School of Music, Theatre and Dance Alumni Society Board of Governors, and is a co-recipient (as a founder of Collaborative Arts Institute of Chicago), of the Christopher Kendall Award.
The concerts are generously sponsored by the Paul M. Angell Family Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Illinois Arts Council and by individual donors.
06 December 2023
13 December 2023
17 December 2023
10 January 2024