Peter Dala began his conducting career 30 years ago with the Basel Ballet. He conducted for seven years at the Hungarian State Opera and the National Ballet of Hungary. As Edmonton Opera’s chorusmaster from 1996 to present and resident conductor from 2001 to present, he prepared the chorus for roughly 50 operas, has played over 50 operas as repetiteur and has conducted over 30 operas. In 2001 he began his affiliation with Alberta Ballet and was named music director in 2005. He has conducted over 40 different productions for them.
Director Robert Herriot
Canadian stage director Robert Herriot has directed many productions for Edmonton Opera including Cinderella, HMS Pinafore, Turandot, The Magic Flute, Tosca, The Mikado, Pirates of Penzance and Daughter of the Regiment. Other productions include MadamaButterfly, Barber of Seville, La Bohème, Luciadi Lammermoor, Rigoletto, Don Pasquale, Don Giovanni, Marriage of Figaro, Così fan tutte and Tartuffe for companies across North America including Manitoba Opera, Edmonton Opera, Opera Lyra Ottawa, Utah Opera, Arizona Opera, Connecticut Opera, Livermore Valley Opera and Opera Nuova. His productions have been nominated for 2 Betty Mitchell Awards and 4 Sterling Awards. Rob is always very happy to be back with his Edmonton Opera family.
Scenery Designer Camellia Koo
For Edmonton Opera, Camellia has designed the sets for Carmen and HMS Pinafore and the sets and costumes for The Tales of Hoffmann and Mary Stuart. Other recent designs include collaborations with Minnesota Opera, Pacific Opera Victoria, Boston Lyric Opera, Against the Grain, Tapestry New Opera and the Canadian Opera Company. Recent designs for theatre and dance include collaborations with Ballet Jörgen, Cahoots Theatre Projects, Tarragon Theatre, The Second City, and the Shaw Festival. She has received six Dora Awards, a Sterling Award, a Chalmers Award Grant, and a Siminovitch Protégé Prize. Upcoming plans include The Orchard, Baroness and the Pig, and Henry V at the Shaw Festival.
Costume Designer Deanna Finnman
Deanna’s 18-year association with Edmonton Opera as head of the wardrobe department and resident costume designer has included costume design credits for Elektra, Cinderella, Carmen, The Magic Flute, Lakmé, Pirates of Penzance and Fidelio. Her designs for Edmonton Opera’s South Pacific,The Emperor of Atlantis and TheMikado have earned Sterling Awards for best costume design. Most recently she designed costumes for Edmonton Opera’s production of HMS Pinafore.
Lighting & Projection Designer Barry Steele
For two decades Barry Steele has created video and lighting designs for opera, dance, and music productions worldwide. Notable engagements include San Francisco Opera Center, Lucinda Childs Dance Company, Nantes Opera, and Carnegie Hall. New operas such as Vincent, Florencia en el Amazonas, and The Fall of the House of Usher complement his considerable list of standard opera repertory from designing many productions as Resident Lighting Designer for Sarasota Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, and New Jersey Opera. Since 1989, Mr. Steele has lit dance in all styles for a diverse range of dance groups including ODC Dance Company and Battery Dance Company.
Hansel Andrea Hill
Mezzo-soprano Andrea Hill's recent and upcoming engagements include Rosina in The Barber of Seville (Calgary Opera), Karolka in Jenufa (Pacific Opera Victoria), Dritte Magde in Elektra (Metropolitan Opera), and Flora in La Traviata (Royal Opera House).
Gretel Lida Szkwarek
Soprano Lida Szkwarek hails from Winnipeg, Manitoba and has established herself on the Canadian opera scene with recent acclaimed performances as Filumena in Filumena (Calgary Opera), Micaëla in Carmen (Edmonton Opera), and Pamina in The Magic Flute (Saskatoon Opera).
The Witch Robert Clark
Previous roles include Young Servant in Elektra (Edmonton Opera), Kronprinz in Silent Night (Calgary Opera), Arturo in Lucia di Lammermoor (Edmonton Opera), Narraboth in Salome (Edmonton Opera), The Steersman in The Flying Dutchman (Calgary Opera), Beppe in I Pagliacci (Edmonton Opera), Flask and Ahab (cover) in Moby Dick (Calgary Opera), Jaquino in Fidelio (Edmonton Opera), Tamino in Die Zauberflöte (Highlands Opera Studio), Macduff in Macbeth (Pacific Opera Victoria), and Roderigo in Otello (Calgary Opera). Robert is also a Voice Professor at Concordia University, a Personal Trainer, and is the Offical Anthem singer for the Edmonton Oilers.
Mother Marion Newman
Kwagiulth and Stó:lō First Nations, English, Irish and Scottish mezzo-soprano Marion Newman is firmly established as one of Canada’s most accomplished singers in repertoire ranging from Vivaldi to Vivier. Noted for her “ sumptuous mezzo tone and impressive vocal agility”, Marion’s operatic roles include Carmenand Rosina in The Barber of Seville. On the concert stage Marion has performed with Canada’s most prestigious orchestras and choral organizations and has starred in many world premieres of several operas/chamber works that speak to her First Nations identity, including Missing with City Opera Vancouver/Pacific Opera Victoria, I call Myself Princess with Paper Canoe Projects/Cahoots Theatre and Bramwell Tovey’s song cycle Ancestral Voices with Vancouver Symphony. This season, Marion premieres in the title role of Shanawdithit (Burry/Nolan) with Toronto’s Tapestry Opera and Opera on the Avalon in St. John’s, Newfoundland.
Sandman/Dew Fairy Aidan Ferguson
Aidan Ferguson is gaining an enviable reputation based on her effortless musicality and dramatic intensity. Praised for her performance as Mère Marie in Les Dialogues des Carmelites with Opéra de Montréal, she has appeared in Canada and for Theater Basel in Switzerland, singing such roles as Emilia in Otello, Nicklausse in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, the title role in The Rape of Lucretia, and Zweite Magd in Strauss’s Daphne. Recent and upcoming engagements for Ms. Ferguson include the Overseer in Edmonton Opera’s Elektra, Fricka in Wagner’s Das Rheingold for Opéra de Montréal and the Dew Fairy and the Sandman in Edmonton Opera’s production of Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel.
Father Peter McGillivray
Born in Saskatchewan and now based in northern Ontario, baritone Peter McGillivray has been described in the national press as “a gifted comic actor,” with a “rich, flexible and strong voice.” In recent seasons he has been seen on opera and concert stages from coast to coast, specializing in comic roles such as Dr. Bartolo in Barber of Seville, Don Magnifico in La Cenerentola, Schaunard in La Bohème, Falke in Die Fledermaus, Stubb in Moby Dick and Orff’s Carmina Burana. He also excels in interpreting more dramatic fare such as Sharpless in Madama Butterfly, and concert performances of Handel’s Messiah, Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, Haydn’s Creation and Mendelssohn’s Elijah. He has performed lead roles with the Canadian Opera Company as well as opera companies in Dallas, Victoria, Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatoon, Manitoba, Hamilton, Ottawa and Quebec City. Additionally he spent the 2010-11 season on the roster of the Metropolitan Opera in New York in productions of La Bohème and Strauss’ Capriccio.