Coloratura Soprano Evelyn Griffin is honored for this opportunity to be on stage with the Salem Philharmonic Orchestra. She enjoyed meeting many of you in May 2017 when she performed as a soloist in the “Life, Love, and Loss” concert with the Paul Madore Chorale and members of the SPO. In the fall of 2016, Evelyn performed the role of Gilda in Longwood Opera's production of Rigoletto. Most recently Evelyn covered the role of Sisa in KGB Productions & Opera Brittenica's production of Noli Mi Tangere, a Pilipino opera in the Tagalog language. Over the past year she has also performed with the Nashua Choral Society, with Longwood Opera celebrating New Years Needham, and with friends at the Chaminade Music Club.
Clarinetist Monica Duncan is principal clarinetist of the Salem Philharmonic. She freelances throughout the Greater Boston area, including with the Cape Ann and Lexington Symphonies, Hillyer Festival Orchestra, Symphony by the Sea, and North Shore Music Theatre. She can be heard on several recordings: Awaiting the Sun, Fleeting Visions, Metamorphosis and Ghosts through Beauport Classical, and Basically British with Philharmonia a Vént. Duncan holds a Masters degree from Indiana University and a Bachelor's degree from Michigan State University. In addition to her role as performer, Duncan is the Executive Director for the Newburyport Chamber Music Festival and Director of Instrumental Music at River Valley Charter School. She teaches chamber music at Pingree School, clarinet and saxophone in the Hamilton-Wenham School District, and at her home studio in Newburyport.
Eighteen year old violinist Natalia Beos was born in Athens, Greece and came to Boston when she was just eight months old. Her love for the Violin and Classical Music manifested itself at the age of ten through the Lynn Public Schools Music Program. At the age of twelve, she was chosen to be part of the North Eastern Junior Districts Orchestra, proudly representing Lynn English High School and the City of Lynn for three consecutive years. Her beloved first teacher, Mr. Alan Hawryluk, introduced her to the Salem Youth Philharmonic Orchestra while in the sixth grade, where she performed for five years and was named Concertmaster in her last year with the orchestra. Natalia began attending the New England Conservatory Preparatory School in Boston as a result of her experience with the NEC Festival Youth Orchestra, and in the past three years she has gone on to perform in the Junior Repertory Orchestra at both NEC prep and Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra. She has continued studying the violin with her charismatic teacher Mieko Horie Van Haeren, who has nurtured Natalia's playing and growth as a young musician. Natalia graduates from both Lynn English High School and the New England Preparatory School in June of 2018 and is moving to Australia to further her studies.
Fred C. VanNess Jr.
Tenor Fred C. VanNess Jr., who is noted for having a “domineering, fine voice” is a native of Kinder, Louisiana. The SPO audience will know Mr. VanNess from his recent appearance with the orchestra and his appearances with numerous opera companies throughout New England. His roles have included Don Jose in Carmen with the North End Music Performing Arts Center, Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni with Longwood Opera, and Tamino in Die Zauberflöte with Opera del West. His other credits include Rodolfo in La Boheme, Dr. Cajus in Falstaff, Charlie in Das Kleine Magahonny and Fenton in Falstaff, as part of the Montefeltro Music Festival in Novafeltria, Italy. Mr. VanNess also has an active career as a concert soloist, including appearances in Handel’s Judas Maccabeus and Messiah, Bach’s Cantata 131, Scott Joplin's 100th Anniversary performance of his opera Treemonisha, an Aria Concert and Christmas concert with the Lake Charles Symphony, and was featured guest soloist with the Reagle Theatre for their Christmas Time show.
John J. Ronan is a poet, playwright, movie/TV producer, and journalist. He has received national honors for his poetry and is a former NEA Fellow, Ucross Fellow, Bread Loaf Scholar, and Poet Laureate in Gloucester, MA, where his cable program The Writer’s Block with John Ronan is in its 28th year. Poems have appeared in Three Penny Review, New England Review, Southern Poetry Review, New York Quarterly, Folio, and many other publications. Media productions have won a Telly, an Aurora Gold, a First for Education Programming from the NECTA, as well as other awards, and have been aired on PBS outlets. In 2010 his book of poetry, Marrowbone Lane, was named a Highly Recommended selection by the Boston Authors Club. A new volume, Taking the Train of Singularity South from Midtown, appeared in January 2017.
Award-winning composer Robert J. Bradsaw’s music has been heard around the world from Lincoln Center to Australia. Evidenced by his cutting edge steampunk opera Deus ex Machina which was recently awarded two gold medals and named one of the top ten albums of 2015 by the Global Music Awards, Bradshaw continues to push the boundaries of modern art music. Socially conscious and relevant to our daily lives, Bradshaw’s music is infused with modern culture, historical significance, and speaks with a vibrant and engaging musical language. Commissions include works for the James Pappoutsakis Flute Competition and the New England String Ensemble Musical Heritage Initiative. Of particular note is the Australian Trumpet Guild's commission of the opera “Gabriel”, premiered at the 35th Annual Conference of the International Trumpet Guild, courtesy of Opera Australia and Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra.