The Cast of All Is Calm, 2021
- Jeff Beruan (RA 2004, Snug in Midsummer Night's Dream, 2004)
- Ben Boskoff (RA 2019)
- Louis Burkot, Artistic Director and Founder of Opera North
- Derek Jackenheimer (RA 2018, Scalia in Scalia/Ginsburg)
- Sam Mathis (RA 2021, Rodolfo in La Boheme)
- Patrick McNally (RA 2014, Mr. Jones in Street Scene)
- Matthew O'Donnell (RA 2019, Samuel in Pirates of Penzance)
- Javier Ortiz (RA 2013, King Balthazar in Amahl and the Night Visitors)
- Hugo Vera (RA 2003, 2005, 2006; principal artist -- Don Jose in Carmen, Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Manrico in Il trovatore)
- Andrew Wannigman (RA 2009, Morales in Carmen)
- Nora Winsler (RA 2019, assistant director, Pirates, Macbeth; director All is Calm; 2021 assistant director La Boheme; director Extraordinary Women, All Is Calm)
Nora Winsler, Director
Nora is a director/choreographer of theater and opera. Nora graduated from James Madison University with a Bachelor of Music in 2019. At JMU, she choreographed Candide, HMS Pinafore, The Mikado, The Merry Widow, and Pirates of Penzance. She also assistant directed Dead Man Walking and directed Hansel und Gretel. In theater, Nora has worked as a director, movement director, and choreographer on projects such as Orpheus Descending, Equus, and Leonce und Lena. Nora was a directing/choreography intern for Charlottesville Opera in 2017, a Core Company Member at the Orchard Project in 2018. As a 2019 Resident Artist, she directed Pirates of Penzance and All Is Calm, was assistant director for Macbeth (2019) and La Boheme (2021) and directed Extraordinary Women and the remount of All Is Calm in 2021.
American Bass Jeffrey Beruan is an important artist who possesses a rich, sonorous, and striking voice that moves with elegance and agility. His singing has been described as “intensely dramatic,” “melodious,” and “powerful.” An excellent actor, the young bass has received acclaim for bringing dramatic life to the smallest roles. Recent highlights for him include Sarastro (The Magic Flute) and Zuniga (Carmen) for the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, a role debut as George Benton, the Prison Warden in Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking for Madison Opera, a reprise of Ferrando (Il Trovatore), the King (Aida) and a role debut of Don Fernando (Fidelio) for Sarasota Opera, a role and company debut singing Pluton in Charpentier’s La Descente d’Orphée aux Enfers for Gotham Chamber Opera, a return to Caramoor International Music Festival for Sparafucile (Rigoletto) and the Bass Soloist in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, a reprise of Capellio (I Capuleti ed I Montecchi) for Washington Concert Opera, a reprise of Sarastro for Opera Saratoga (formerly Lake George Opera), a reprise of the Bonze (Madama Butterfly) for Florida Grand Opera, and Il Spettro in the new world premiere of Franco Faccio’s Amleto with Opera Southwest. He appeared in All Is Calm in 2019 and La Boheme in 2021.
Georgia native and resident of Houston, Benjamin Boskoff is a graduate of The University of Michigan School of Music (MM). An active vocal artist and passionate recitalist, Mr. Boskoff has been traveling the states in productions, recitals, and concerts. Recent engagements include: Albert in Albert Herring with Opera MODO, Peter Quint in Turn of the Screw with Red River Lyric Opera, Damon in Acis and Galatea with Opera Theatre of Montclair, Tamino in Die Zaubeflöte with Lawrence Opera Theatre, Count Almaviva in The Barber of Seville with Light Opera of New Jersey, Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni with Opera MODO, and Gonsalve in L’heure Espangole with Operativo Houston. In February 2018, Mr. Boskoff was a guest artist at Lawrence University’s Conservatory’s Opera Department and performed the title role in their production of Le Comte Ory. Mr. Boskoff was most recently seen with Opera MODO in their production of La Cenerentola as Prince Ramiro.
Derek Jackenheimer, tenor, returned to Opera North in October 2018 as Justice Scalia following his work last summer as a member of the Opera North Resident Artist Program where he sang the roles of Nathanaël and Franz in Tales of Hoffmann and covered the role of Almaviva in Barber of Seville. He recently debuted with North Carolina Opera as Don Curzio in Le nozze di Figaro and covered Le Remendado in Bizet's Carmen with Greensboro Opera. He received a Masters of Performance at UNC-Greensboro, where he studied with Clara O’Brien. Derek's roles with UNCG Opera Theatre include Chevalier de la Force in Dialogues of the Carmelites, Old Galileo in Philip Glass’ Galileo Galilei, and Kaspar in Amahl and the Night Visitors. Derek’s solo orchestral appearances include Mendelssohn’s Elijah and St. Paul, Mozart's Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Bruckner's Te Deum, Charpentier's Te Deum, and multiple Bach cantatas.
Sam Mathis, tenor, is a native of Spartanburg, South Carolina. He recently received a Master’s Degree in Voice Performance from Indiana University, where he was under the instruction of Carol Vaness. While attending Indiana University, Sam performed the roles of Rodolfo in La Bohème, Rinuccio in Gianni Schicchi, and was a featured soloist in other ensembles within the Jacobs’ School of Music. Sam has also performed the roles of Don José in La Tragedie de Carmen and Carlson in Floyd’s Of Mice and Men. A 2021 Resident Artist, Sam appeared in Havana Nights, La Bohème (Rodolfo).
With a voice described as "robust" and "standout" by the Denver Post and with a "lively" stage presence reviewed by Opera News, baritone Patrick McNally has a varied operatic repertoire, from Gianni Schicchi to John in Summer and Smoke. Drawing from his extensive performance experience, Patrick is equally at home on the opera, musical theater and recital stage. Mr. McNally has performed at houses across the United States as well as internationally. Recent highlights include appearances at Des Moines Metro Opera, Central City Opera, Sarasota Opera, Opera North, Dayton Opera, Tri-Cities Opera, Opera Louisiane, Bronx Opera, Hubbard Hall Opera, Opera New Jersey, and Die Eutiner Festspiele. He has also been a winner of multiple awards including the Richard F. Gold Career Grant from the Shoshana Foundation.
Matthew O’Donnell is an American baritone who obtained his BA and MM degrees in Vocal Performance at the New England Conservatory of Music. As a Resident Artist with Opera North in 2019, he sang the role of Samuel in Pirates of Penzance. He will continue his studies at NEC this fall in their Graduate Diploma program. He most recently sang the roles of Count Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro and Gianni Schicchi in Gianni Schicchi. Last summer, Matt performed at IVAI in Montreal, singing the role of Pandolfe in Cendrillon. Hailing from Nutley, NJ, Matt earned a place in the prestigious Juilliard Pre-college program while in high school. He was a proud winner of the 2015 Boston area NATS competition. Matt currently works as a paid Choral Scholar at Boston University and as a teaching assistant in solfeggio at NEC.
Bass-Baritone Javier Ortiz has portrayed twenty-seven leading and supporting opera roles and appeared as a soloist in fifteen major orchestral works. Mr. Ortiz has been engaged as a Resident Artist at Opera North, Opera Studio Nederland, Sarasota Opera, and New Jersey Verismo Opera and regularly appears as a guest artist in both opera and concert works with many regional orchestras and opera companies in a varied repertoire. Internationally, he has performed in a concert of duets and arias at Amsterdam’s famous Concertgebouw, sung a duet from Verdi’s La Traviata for the 25th Anniversary Jubilee of The Netherlands Opera’s residence in the Muziektheater, appeared as Sarastro in a concert version of Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte with the Amsterdam Symphony Orchestra, and participated in the Rotterdam Opera Days in both solo recital and in the role of Colline in Puccini’s La Boheme. He also performed a recital in the foyer of the Muziektheater in Amsterdam for their 2012 spring concert series.
Recently, Mr. Ortiz has toured Mexico with the Chicago Arts Orchestra as the bass soloist in Al Combate by Ignacio Jerusalem in celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México’s campus being designated as a UNESCO world heritage site and appeared as Sprecher in Die Zauberflöte with Connecticut Lyric Opera. Mr. Ortiz began the 2018 season at Opera Southwest in the role of Narciso in the world premiere of Héctor Armienta’s Bless Me, Ultima, based on the famous novel by Rudolfo Anaya. He also performed the bass solo in the southwest premiere of Christopher Tin’s The Drop that Contained the Sea and portrayed both Masetto and the Commendatore in a condensed and updated off-Broadway version of Don Giovanni in New York City.
A native Texan, the tenor Hugo Vera is described as possessing a “truly heroic voice” that is both “beautiful and brilliant.” He made his debut at the Metropolitan Opera in 2011 and has performed 34 roles and 20 choral-orchestral works with distinguished companies in the US as part of his musical and artistic development of the full lyric and spinto tenor repertoire. In addition to The Metropolitan Opera, Mr. Vera has sung with Spoleto, USA, Kansas City Symphony, New York City Opera, Illinois Symphony and Chorus, Fort St. Symphony and Chorus, Opera Memphis, Aspen Music Festival, Brevard Music Center, Sarasota Opera, the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Glimmerglass Opera, Opera North, Aspen Opera Theatre, The Minnesota Opera, Chautauqua Opera, Nashville Opera, Shreveport Opera, Tanglewood Music Festival and The Metropolitan Opera. In February of 2013, Mr. Very made his Carnegie Hall solo debut performing Gregory Singer’s Funeral Processional, which was conducted by the composer. Recognized as a significantly talented young singer, Mr. Vera enjoyed the privilege of training with several noteworthy young artist programs including Opera North, the Brevard Music Center, the Tanglewood Music Festival, Aspen Music Center, Chautauqua Opera, The Lyric Opera of Kansas City, The Minnesota Opera, and Glimmerglass Opera. He received a Bachelor of Music from the University of Utah in Salt Lake City and earned a Master of Music and Doctorate of Musical Arts – both with Honors – from the University of Kansas.
A Resident Artist in 2009, he portrayed Morales in Carmen and later reprised the role for the 2013-14 season with Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre. He was also Sciarrone in Tosca with Mill City Summer Opera, and Maximilian in Candide with Skylark Opera that season. In 2014-15, he played Pirate King in Pirates of Penzance with Cimarron Opera while also performing the serious roles of Escamillo in Carmen and the Father in Ragtime at OU where he completed his doctoral studies under renowned baritone Kim Josephson. In the 2015-16 season, Mr. Wannigman performed the title role in Eugene Onegin at the University of Oklahoma, and made his Tulsa Opera debut as Alvaro in Florencia en el Amazonas and returned later that season as Gandalf in The Hobbit with Tulsa Opera’s youth opera program. His 2016-17 season credits include Jigger Craigin for Union Avenue Opera’s Carousel, a pair of bel canto roles: Dandini in Cenerentola with Opéra Louisiane and Dr. Malatesta in Don Pasquale at the University of Oklahoma and debuted with Oklahoma City’s Painted Sky Opera, as Mr. Gobineau and Pausanias in a double bill of Menotti’s The Medium and Chabrier’s An Incomplete Education. That September he made his city debut in the title role of The Barber of Seville with Amore Opera. In 2018 include his company debut with Natchez Festival of Music in the roles of Fredrik Egerman in A Little Night Music and Valentin in Faust. Concert performances include an alumni guest recital at Luther College as well as recitals in Boston, most notably at the acclaimed Jordan Hall. He has also been the soloist in masterworks such as Handel’s Messiah, Bach’s St. Matthew Passion, Beethoven’s Mass in C, and Mozart’s Requiem.