Lead support for the 125 Commissions Project is provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Additional funding is provided by members of Carnegie Hall's Composer Club.
This concert and the Pure Voice series are sponsored by the Jean & Jula Goldwurm Memorial Foundation in memory of Jula Goldwurm.
Named 2017 Male Singer of the Year by both the International Opera Awards and Bachtrack, American-born Lawrence Brownlee is one of the most consistently sought-after artists on the international scene. Mr. Brownlee’s luminous voice and effortless technique have made him a go-to for bel canto operas by composers such as Bellini, Donizetti, and Rossini. He has made numerous acclaimed recordings, including the Grammy-nominated Virtuoso Rossini Arias and his most recent album, Allegro io son, with Delos Records.
Mr. Brownlee’s 2017–2018 season started with a run of Rossini operas, beginning with his house debut at Barcelona’s Gran Teatre del Liceu in Il viaggio a Reims, followed by Semiramide at London’s Royal Opera House, and a return to Opernhaus Zürich for Le comte Ory. His season continued with Bellini’s I puritani at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier at the Bayerische Staatsoper (including a concert performance of the opera at Carnegie Hall), and a recital tour across the US. This summer, Mr. Brownlee returns to Opéra National de Paris for Donizetti’s Don Pasquale.
Tonight, Mr. Brownlee performs Cycles of My Being, co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall, Opera Philadelphia, and Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Lyric Unlimited. The song cycle had its premiere in Philadelphia at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts on February 20, followed by a performance in Chicago on February 22 at the DuSable Museum of African American History. The cycle is centered on the black male experience in America today, and is composed by Tyshawn Sorey with text by Terrance Hayes.
Grammy-nominated pianist Myra Huang performs in recitals and chamber music concerts around the world. Highly sought-after for her interpretations of lieder and art song, she regularly performs with acclaimed opera singers at venues such as Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Celebrity Series of Boston, Cleveland Art Song Festival, Washington Performing Arts, the Library of Congress, and Spivey Hall. This season, she tours with Lawrence Brownlee in concert across the US. She also appears with singers Nicholas Phan, Susanna Phillips, Eric Owens, Quinn Kelsey, and Marjorie Owens at the Herbst Theatre, Schubert Club, Gilmore Keyboard Festival, Shriver Hall, Park Avenue Armory, George London Foundation, and more.
Ms. Huang has served on the music staffs of Washington National Opera, Houston Grand Opera, and the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia in Valencia, Spain, where she worked closely with conductors Lorin Maazel and Zubin Mehta as assistant conductor. From 2011 to 2013, she served as head of music staff at New York City Opera. She is a staff pianist for the Operalia competition, directed by Plácido Domingo, performing at opera houses around the world, such as La Scala, the Royal Opera House in London, National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing, and Teatro Real in Madrid. Last season, she joined the staff of the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, and she regularly collaborates with young artist programs to train young opera singers and pianists.
Ms. Huang is an avid recitalist and recording artist. Her recordings have received critical acclaim from The New York Times, Gramophone, BBC Music Magazine, Opera News, and The Boston Globe. Her most recent album with tenor Nicholas Phan, Gods & Monsters, was nominated for Best Classical Vocal Solo Album at the 2018 Grammy Awards. Her next album, Illuminations, with Mr. Phan, the award-winning Telegraph Quartet, and The Knights, is scheduled to be released by the Avie label this month.
Violinist Randall Goosby made his Carnegie Hall debut at age 13; his virtuosic performance of Ysaÿe’s unaccompanied Sonata No. 3 earned him a standing ovation.
Mr. Goosby has made solo appearances with several major orchestras across the US, including the New York Philharmonic, The Cleveland Orchestra, Memphis Symphony Orchestra, Grand Rapids Symphony, New World Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Nashville Symphony, Modesto Symphony Orchestra, and Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, among others. He has also made two solo appearances in Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage as part of the Sphinx Organization’s young artist development program.
Passionate about sharing his love for music, Mr. Goosby has participated in outreach programs for public schools, children’s hospitals, and music programs across the country. In addition, he recently joined the violin faculty of the Opportunity Music Project, a nonprofit organization that provides free music lessons and mentorship to children from low-income families in New York City.
Mr. Goosby currently studies with reigning violin virtuoso Itzhak Perlman and Catherine Cho at The Juilliard School, where he is pursuing an undergraduate degree in violin performance. He is a proud recipient of the prestigious Kovner Fellowship. He plays on a 1765 Giovanni Battista Guadagnini violin, on generous loan from The Juilliard School.
Cellist Khari Joyner has a following both nationally and abroad as a versatile soloist, chamber musician, and ambassador for the arts. He has performed with the Atlanta, Buffalo, New World, New Jersey, and Sphinx symphonies, and collaborated with artists such as Magnus Lindberg, Barbara Hannigan, and Hubert Laws.
Most recently, Mr. Joyner was awarded a career grant from the Leonore Annenberg Fellowship Fund for the Performing and Visual Arts, the William Schuman Prize for outstanding achievement and leadership in music (awarded at The Juilliard School’s 109th commencement ceremony), and first prize at the Juilliard Concerto Competition and 12th Annual Sphinx Competition. He has also performed in the Oval Office for President Barack Obama.
Mr. Joyner has been featured as a soloist with both the Juilliard Orchestra and New Juilliard Ensemble in Alice Tully Hall, performing Britten’s Symphony for Cello and Orchestra with the former, and the US premiere of the late Valentin Bibik’s Cello Concerto No. 2 with the latter. He gave a recent New York premiere of Kaija Saariaho’s cello concerto Notes on Light with the AXIOM ensemble, and a world premiere of Carman Moore’s MADIBA for cello and orchestra with the American Composers Orchestra.
Mr. Joyner is currently completing his candidacy as a C. V. Starr Doctoral Fellow at The Juilliard School. In addition to concertizing, he serves as teaching assistant to his former teacher Joel Krosnick. He also pursued a mathematics concentration in an exchange program with Columbia University while studying in Juilliard’s accelerated dual-degree program.
Alex Laing began playing the clarinet at age 11 in his hometown of Silver Spring, Maryland. In 2002, he joined the Phoenix Symphony as principal clarinet.
Active in his community as a performing and teaching artist, he is committed to exploring how an orchestra musician—or an orchestra—navigates the push-and-pull between a legacy art form and its unfixed future. A longtime believer in community-engaged music making, he recently started The Leading Tone, a nonprofit afterschool project that brings music instruction to kids while exploring music as a context for youth development.
A graduate of Northwestern University, he received his master’s degree in orchestral performance from the Manhattan School of Music, artist’s diploma from the Sweelinck Conservatorium van Amsterdam, and certificate in nonprofit management from Arizona State University’s Lodestar Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Innovation.
Mr. Laing is fortunate to have garnered awards and honors throughout his career. He was most recently awarded the 2018 Sphinx Medal of Excellence and named one of Musical America’s Professionals of the Year for 2017. He has been an invited speaker at the Association of British Orchestras’ annual conference and served as a faculty member at the 2017 National Take a Stand Festival. He currently serves on the boards of directors for the Gateways Music Festival and Arizona School for the Arts, and co-chairs the Institutional Readiness Task Force for the League of American Orchestras’ Diversity Forum.
American pianist and collaborator Kevin Miller is acclaimed for his dynamic and artful performances. As a collaborator, he has worked with many great artists; past engagements include a recital with tenor Joseph Calleja and soprano Nadine Sierra at the Supreme Court of the United States, and an appearance with Mr. Calleja on NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series. Mr. Miller prepared soprano Jessye Norman for performances of Laura Karpman’s Ask Your Mama, which was presented at Carnegie Hall. He collaborated with internationally acclaimed countertenor David Daniels in a recital at The Glimmerglass Festival. He can be heard on the recording Been in de Storm so Long, which features baritone Kenneth Overton with Mr. Miller at the piano.
In addition to his formal studies, Mr. Miller has participated in some of the country’s most prestigious festivals and young artist apprenticeships, including the Tanglewood Institute, Aspen Music Festival and School, Cleveland Art Song Festival, Merola Opera Program, and Washington National Opera’s Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program. Upon completing his apprenticeship at The Glimmerglass Festival, he was invited to serve as vocal coach for the festival. Mr. Miller was recently appointed head opera coach of the Moores Opera Center at the University of Houston.