Welcome to the Wagner Society of America
Chicago, Illinois, USA

 

2014 Events

Tuesday, December 16th

Courtney Howland

Lecture: A Feminist Perspective on Opera Interpretation:

The Case of Richard Wagner's "Der fliegende Holländer"

Courtney Howard
Courtney Howland
 
 
Crowne Plaza Chicago Metro Downtown, Chicago
733 W. Madison St.
Valet Parking available for $ 10.00
 
7:00 PM  Reception
7:30 PM  Program
 
Program: COURTNEY HOWLAND will discuss her recent book, A Feminist Perspective on Opera Interpretation: The Case of Richard Wagner’s  “Der fliegende Holländer.”. Courtney will augment her presentation with audio/visual selections. She has served on the law school faculties of the University of Pennsylvania and Georgetown University.  She is currently a Research Scholar at the Barnard Center for Research on Women, Barnard College, Columbia University. She is now working on  “Teaching the Gods: Gender and Power in Richard Strauss’s "Daphne.”  
 
 

Sunday, November 30th, 2014

25th Annual Holiday Luncheon

& Silent Auction

with Special Musical Guests
Andrea Silvestrelli and Kimberly Jones
Jones and Silvestrelli
Michigan Shores Club
911 Michigan Avenue
Wilmette, IL
847-251-4100
 
12:00 PM  Silent Auction
(cash or check only)
1:00 PM  Luncheon and Program
 
Dinner and Recital: $60.00
 
Program: Andrea Silvestrelli is one of the most sought-after ‘bassi profondi’ on the international opera scene. This season at Lyric, Mr. Silvestrelli is heard as Ferrando in Il Trovatore and the Commendatore in Don Giovanni. Excerpts of his "velvety black bass" singing Hunding in the Seattle Ring can be found on YouTube.
 
Ms. Jones, a Ryan alumna, premiered the Song of Magnun by Bright Sheng and portrayed Xenia with Samuel Ramey in Boris Gudunov and Olga with Mirella Freni in Fedora. She is on the Columbia College and Merit School faculties.
 
Sunday, May 18th, 2014

Wagner 201st Birthday Celebration
Dinner and Recital Program
Claire Stadtmueller, Soprano

Claire Stadmueller
Michigan Shores Club
911 Michigan Avenue
Wilmette, IL
847-251-4100
 
5:00 PM  Reception
5:30 PM  Program
(dinner to follow)
 
Program: We are pleased to have soprano CLAIRE STADTMUELLER coming from Connecticut to be our guest artist.  Soprano Claire Stadtmueller sang the role of Tosca in New York's Central Park with New York Grand Opera under Maestro Vincent La Selva. This season she returns to sing Amelia in NYGO's production of Verdi's Un Ballo in Maschera, and in the Verdi anniversary year, she sang her first Requiem. 
 
She made her Carnegie Hall debut in Beethoven's Missa Solemnis. Egon Stadelman wrote for the New Yorker Staats-Zeitung: "Of the solo quartet, soprano Claire Stadtmueller was by far the most outstanding. She enjoyed a star moment and took advantage of it to the loudly exclaimed enthusiasm of the audience." She will be accompanied by KEN SMITH, a faculty member in the School of Music at Northwestern University. Claire will be singing arias by Richard Wagner, Carl Maria von Weber, and Richard Strauss. You can catch Claire on YouTube.com.

Sunday Afternoon, February 23

VOX

Megan Cook, Catherine Huggins, Blake Bard--with James Morehead

Michigan Shores Club

911 Michigan Avenue

Wilmette, IL
847-251-4100
 
3:00 pm Reception
3:30 pm Program
 
We are pleased to have 3 fine singers from the Chicago based group VOX 3 Collective. They will present a program consisting of works from the German romantic era. Soprano Megan Cook, mezzo soprano Catherine Huggins, and tenor Blake Bard will be accompanied at the piano by Jimmy Morehead. Last month this group presented 6 performances of Carl Nielsen's comic opera Maskarade in Danish at the Vittum Theater.
 
Megan Cook  - Soprano

As a young dramatic soprano, Megan Cook is known for her lush high notes and a wide vocal flexibility. Hailing from Fort Atkinson, WI, Megan grew up as the daughter of two music teachers. Encouraged to explore all facets of the arts, she spent her school years performing in musicals and her summers touring the United States with a world class drum and bugle corps.  After earning a Bachelor's Degree in Choral Music Education, she moved to Chicago to pursue further study at Chicago College of Performing Arts. While attending CCPA, Megan performed Gentle Reader in Dominick Argento's Miss Manners on Music and the Elegant Lady/Woman in Poulenc's Les Mamelles de Tirésias. In addition, she performed several roles in scene work, including Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi, Mrs. Grose in Turn of the Screw, Countess Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, and Magda in La Rondine. Recent concert work includes the Duruflé, Fauré and Rutter Requiems, Vivaldi's Gloria, and Handel's Messiah.  Megan is currently an Associate Member of  VOX 3 Collective making her company debut at the end of the 2011-2012 season, singing Fauré's Chanson d'Eve. Since then, she has sung on several concerts with the company, including pieces from Wagner's Tannhäuser as Elisabeth, Argento's Postcard from Morocco as the Lady with a Cake Box, and the Chicago premier of Carl Neilsen's Maskarade as Dorthe.
 
Catherine Huggins - Mezzo Soprano
 
Mezzo-soprano Catie Huggins is known for her warm and burnished sound, as well as for her thrilling high notes.  A winner of the 2009 Farwell Award from the Musicians Club of Women, she performed that summer at the Chicago Cultural Center's Preston Bradley Hall in a solo recital accompanied by VOX 3 music director James Morehead. She continues as a member of the Musician's Club of Women.  She has performed roles such as the Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors, the Mezzo in Dominick Argento's challenging opera Postcard from Morocco, and Mama Bear in the Chicago premiere of a new opera –Goldilocks and the Three Bears. As a company member of VOX 3, she has been a part of diverse productions – from cabaret to oratorio to recital, including the world premiere jukebox opera night/music, in which she played the Moon. She has also sung the role of Mary in Respighi's Lauda per la natività del Signore.  She has appeared with Grande Prairie Choral Arts as a soloist in her third performance of the Vivaldi Gloria.  As the VOX 3 Education Co-Chair, she helps to generate and solicit content for VOX 3's online journal Collective Voice (http://vox3collective.wordpress.com/)- Check it out!

Blake Bard  - Tenor

Tenor Blake Bard, from Ulman, MO, is currently singing with Michigan Opera Theatre Chorus including performances of Der fliegende Holländer, La Traviata, A View from the Bridge, and Turandot. Recent roles include Parpignol in La Bohème with Toledo Opera, Danilo in The Merry Widow with Bowling Green State University, Prunier in La Rondine and covering Franz in Les Contes d'Hoffmann with Chicago College of Performing Arts, Pluto in Orpheus in the Underworld and Le Chevalier in Dialogues des Carmélites with BGSU. Blake has performed in three Cavalli operas: Pane in Gli Amre de Apollo e di Daphne with BGSU, Mercurio in La virtù de'strali d'Amore (North American Premier in conjunction with Eastman School of Music), and a cover for Egeo and Sole in Giasone with Chicago Opera Theatre. Additionally, with the Comic Opera Guild of Ann Arbor, MI, he has performed several Victor Herbert operettas. In his spare time, he enjoys returning home to the farm to tend to miniature Herefords, goats, dogs, and cats. Blake Bard will graduate in May with a M.M. from Bowling Green State University. He currently holds a B.M. from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, OH.
 
James Morehead - Piano

James Morehead is music director for VOX3, www.vox3.org, choir master/organist at St. Helena's Episcopal Church in Burr Ridge, IL, Assistant Conductor for the Chicago Gay Men's Chorus and primarily works as a coach, accompanist and music director for the Theater Conservatory of Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University, where he has also served as Adjunct Professor of Music Theory/History and German Diction. James received his MM in Piano Performance and Music Theory from Roosevelt University and his BM from Duquesne University. As a Music Director, James has worked on Jerry Springer- the Opera, bare(Jeff Nominated: Music Direction), Passing Strange (Jeff Nominated: Music Direction), See What I Wanna See with Steppenwolf's Garage Series 2013, AIDA, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, Trouble in Tahiti, The Rainbow Connection, the Mikado, The Impresario, Barber of Seville, The Old Maid and the Thief, Two Gentlemen of Verona, Sondheim in the Park, The Wandering Scholar, The Bear, Reagan's Children, Something Schwartz, The Way We War, Copacabana, Cupid and Psyche, Promises, Promises , Screwed Up People, Flaherty and Ahrens On and Off and The Tony Goes To, The Tony Goes II, and Once, Twice, Three Times a Tony among many others. Classically, James has performed at the Auditorium Theater, Harris Theater, Chicago Cultural Center, Navy Pier, Shedd Aquarium, Rockefeller Chapel, Chicago's Gospel Fest 2012, and Harold Washington Theater among many others. He has collaborated and performed with the Juliani Ensemble, the Grande Prairie Choral Arts Singers, Anaphora, Lyric Opera Kids, After School Matters, ChiARTS, Chicago's first public arts high school as well as multiple times on WFMT 98.7 FM. He has also appeared as a featured pianist at the Green Mill, Mary's Attic, the Tavern, Gentry on Halsted, Spin Nightclub, Davenport's, the 410 Club, the Spot and the Casino.
 

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Matthew Polanzani

Matthew Polenzani   
(Photo Credit: Dario Acosta)

Hotel Allegro
171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

7:00 pm Reception
7:30 pm Program  

Program: We are pleased to have tenor MATTHEW POLENZANI join us to speak about  his career including several Wagner roles early on: (The Steurermann in  Dutchman, David and Vogelgesang in Meistersinger, and a nobleman in  Lohengrin). A good portion of the session will be devoted to Q & A.  One of the leading lyric tenors of our day, he is here for the title role  in Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito at Lyric Opera of Chicago. Past awards  include the 2004 Richard Tucker Award and the Metropolitan Opera’s 2008  Beverly Sills Artist Award. Matthew is a native of Wilmette.
 
Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Roger Pines
The Recorded Legacy of Wagner Singing

(Photo Credit: Larry Lapidus)

Hotel Allegro
171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

7:00 pm Reception
7:30 pm Program

Program: Roger Pines is dramaturg and broadcast commentator at Lyric Opera of Chicago, where he joined the staff in 1995.  He also serves as lecturer and consultant for the Ryan Opera Center, the company’s young-artist program. Pines has previously held positions at San Diego Opera, The Dallas Opera, and Glimmerglass Opera.  He has been a judge for the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions since 1991, and has also judged for several other prestigious competitions nationwide. He frequently undertakes repertoire research projects for internationally celebrated artists. Pines has recently led master classes at DePaul University, Baldwin-Wallace College Conservatory, and the Opera Training Institute of Chicago. His writing includes numerous articles and reviews for important American and European publications, including The Times (London), Opera NewsOpera, and International Record Review, as well as programs of leading opera companiesHe has contributed program notes for CDs on seven major labels (including recent releases by Renée Fleming, Anna Netrebko, and Joyce DiDonato for the Decca, Virgin Classics, and Deutsche Grammophon labels, respectively). Pines has lectured for major arts organizations in Chicago, Cleveland, and San Diego as well as for the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria. 2012-13 was the seventh consecutive season during which Pines was heard as a panelist on the Metropolitan Opera broadcasts’ “Opera Quiz.”           

 

Previous 2013 and 2012 Events

   

Saturday afternoon, November 23

Professors Katherine Syer and William Kinderman

Katherine Syer SyerKindermanBook SyerKindermanBook  

Wagner's Parsifal

Hotel Allegro
171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

1:30 pm  CST Reception 
2:00 pm CST Program 
 
Program: We are pleased to have the husband and wife combination of Professors  William Kinderman and Katherine Syer, both of the Department of Music  at the University of Illinois. His presentation is "Wagner's Parsifal as Art  & Ideology, 1882-1933." Her presentation is "Women on Stage in Parsifal." 
TuesdayOctober 29, 2013

Sir Andrew Davis
Sir Andrew
Photo credit: Dario Acosta Photography

Hotel Allegro
171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

Reception: 7:00 p.m.
Program: - 7:30 p.m.

WednesdaySeptember 18, 2013

Hilan Warshaw

Filmmaker, Author, Lecturer
Lecture and Screening
of his documentary film

WarshawFilm   

Wagner's Jews

Documentary, 55 minutes, 2013

Produced, directed, and written by Hilan Warshaw
Includes a Q A with the filmmaker

Richard Wagner was notoriously anti-Semitic, and his writings on the Jews were later embraced by Hitler and the Nazis. But there is another, lesser-known side to this story. For years, many of Wagner's closest associates were Jews'young musicians who became personally devoted to him, and provided crucial help to his work and career. Who were they? What brought them to Wagner, and what brought him to them? These questions are at the heart of Hilan Warshaw's new documentary Wagner's Jews, co-produced with WDR and ARTE and broadcast in Europe in 2013 to mark Wagner's bicentenary. Filmed on location in Germany, Switzerland, and Italy, Wagner's Jews tells these remarkable stories through archival sources, visual re-enactments, interviews, and musical performances. Parallel to this historical narrative, the film explores the ongoing controversy over performing Wagner's music in Israel.

Hilan Warshaw

HILAN WARSHAW is a filmmaker and writer based in New York City. Through his production company, Overtone Films (www.overtonefilms.com), he produces and directs independent projects as well as videos for organizations including Carnegie Hall and the League of American Orchestras. His writings on Wagner have been published by McFarland Press, The Wagner Journal, Wagner Spectrum, and in the new Cambridge Wagner Encyclopedia. He recently taught a course on Romanticism and Film at Barnard College, Columbia University, and he has lectured at venues including New York University, Hofstra University, Wagner Society of America, Wagner Society of New York, and Boston Wagner Society.  He has a B.F.A. with honors (Film & TV) and M.F.A. (Musical Theatre Writing) from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, and he studied orchestral conducting at Mannes College of Music and the Aspen Music School. www.hilanwarshaw.com

Hotel Allegro
171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

 

Sunday, May 19th
Christine Brewer
Christine Brewer

Soprano Christine Brewer returns this time to sing accompanied by Craig Terry.

This is our 200th birthday event and we will be joined by the Barrington, Evanston,
and Near North chapters of Lyric Opera

Click to Download Invitation

The University Club
76 E. Monroe Street
Chicago, Illinois 60603

Lunch - 1:00 p.m.
Recital - 3:00 p.m.

Wednesday, April 24th

Jeannie Williams
Celebrating Jon Vickers
CelebratingVickers
Jeannie Williams returns for a program on Jon Vickers

Hotel Allegro
171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

7:00 p.m. - Reception
7:30 p.m. - Program

Monday, March 25th

William Berger
Wagner Productions: Getting Beyond the
"Traditional vs. Avant-Garde" Paradigm

WmBerger

After Wieland Wagner's stage innovations in the 1950's, commentators began to speak frequently about the duality of "traditional" productions and "avant-garde" productions of Richard Wagner's works. People still talk in these terms, but these two choices no longer cover the range of possible interpretations. Other influences, such as nationalism, environmentalism, specific political readings, psychoanalytic allegories, and many others, have created a more complex and nuanced paradigm. So where are we now? How can we judiciously interpret what we see on the stage today without relying on the terms of a half a century ago? How can we best judge if a Wagner production has succeeded or failed?

Hotel Allegro

171 W. Randolph Street

Chicago

7:00 p.m. - Reception
7:30 p.m. - Program

Wednesday, March 13th

PROFESSOR JESSE ROSENBERG
with
REBECCA WASCOE (Soprano)
 and JEFFREY PETERSON (Piano)

JesseRosenberg RebeccaWascoe JeffreyPeterson

DANK HAUS
4740 N. Western Avenue
Chicago

7:00 pm  Reception with refreshments ' FREE
7:30 pm  Program

Northwestern Professor Jesse Rosenberg will give a talk on Wagner's Wesendonck Lieder as sung by soprano Rebecca Wascoe and accompanied by Jeffrey Peterson. Included will be Professor Rosenberg's description of the connection to Tristan und Isolde and a vocal selection from it ("Mild und Leise").

Native Texan Rebecca Wascoe, known for her commanding stage presence and critically acclaimed as "vocally resplendent," she brings a dramatic intensity to each role she takes on. Some roles performed include Agathe in Der Freischütz, Fiordiligi in Cosí fan tutte, First Lady in The Magic Flute, Nedda in I Pagliacci, Santuzza in Cavalleria Rusticana, Ann Putnam in The Crucible, Madame Lidoine in ter. Her solo repertoire includes major works by Beethoven, Mozart, Schubert, Mahler, Verdi and Brahms, amongst others. Ms. Wascoe has been a winner of the Gerda Lissner Foundation Awards, and has placed in the Sigma Alpha Iota Graduate Performance Awards. Jeffrey is on the faculty at Baylor University.

7:00 p.m. - Reception with Refreshments (free)
7:30 p.m. - Program

Directions and Dinner Suggestion
The Dank Haus is located just south of Lawrence Avenue.
Lincoln Avenue crosses Lawrence about 50 feet east of Western.
Free parking in the MB Financial Bank lot one half block west on Lawrence. 
A dinner suggestion is the Brauhaus
at 4732 N. Lincoln Avenue (about 1 ½ blocks away). 
773-784-4444

Wednesday, December 5th
THE WAGNER SOCIETY ANNUAL HOLIDAY PARTY

MARLIS PETERSEN (Soprano)
marlis petersen  
(Photo: Larry Lapidus)

Universtiy Club of Chicago
76 E. Monroe Street
Chicago

We are pleased to have Marlis join us as she did when she was at Lyric Opera of Chicago in the title role of Lulu. This time she is doing quite a different kind of role in Don Pasquale. In between these performances she was a huge hit at the Metropolitan Opera in Hamlet (on very short notice) and in Lulu. She will certainly have something to say about that and will take questions from the audience.

5:15 p.m. - Reception
6:00 p.m. - Dinner
7:15 p.m. - Program

Wednesday, November 7th

ANTHONY FREUD
General Director, Lyric Opera of Chicago

Anthony Freud

Enjoy a unique opportunity to meet Lyric Opera of Chicago's General Manager, Anthony Freud.
Wagner News Editor Bill Shackelford will moderate.

Hotel Allegro

171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

7:00 p.m. - Reception
7:30 p.m. - Program

Monday, October 8th

CHRISTINE GOERKE, EMILY MAGEE, JILL GROVE, and ALAN HELD
Stars of Lyric Opera of Chicago's
Production of Richard Strauss's Elektra

Goerke Magee Grove Held

You will have the opportunity to meet, hear from, and ask questions of these artists who have all sung many Wagner opera performances. Christine Goerke makes her Lyric Opera debut in the title role of Elektra, Jill sang a role in all 4 Ring Cycle operas in Chicago. Emily has been our guest on a previous occasion when she was in Peter Grimes at Lyric Opera. Most recently she sang the role Elsa in Lohengrin also at Lyric Opera. Alan is one of Bill Smith's "all-born-in-Illinois fantasy dream cast) for Die Walküre as Wotan. (You just might be asked to name the other 5 singers in the principal roles. This question was aired on a Sirius XM radio broadcast from the Metropolitan Opera. No one got the answer and no one could come up with a better cast from another state or even from another country. The singers had to have actually sung the role. Unfortunately there were no prizes for the submitter of the question but the 11 minutes spent on the question may have set a record. But YOU will have a chance to win a prize!!!)

Hotel Allegro
Press Room

171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

7:00 p.m. - Reception
7:30 p.m. - Program

Friday, September 28th

JENNIFER TIPTON
Lighting Designer

Jennnifer Tipton

JENNIFER TIPTON, lighting designer. A graduate of Cornell University, she has won two Tony Awards, a MacArthur Grant, and The Dorothy and Lillian Gish Award among others. She has served as an adjunct Professor at the Yale School of Drama for 20 years. She did the lighting design for Peter Sellars' Tannhäuser in 1988 and is here now for Elektra. She and her husband live in New York City. We are delighted to present this talented artist.

Hotel Allegro
171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

7:00 p.m. - Reception
7:30 p.m. - Program

Sunday, April 22, 2012
Joint Event with the Near North Chapter of Lyric Opera

Luncheon and Recital
featuring
AMBER WAGNER

Soprano

Amber  
Photo Credit: Larry Lapidus

The University Club
76 E. Monroe Street
(Elevator access to private dining room)
Chicago, Illinois 60603

1:00 PM - Cash Bar
1:30 PM - Luncheon
3:00 PM - Program

Sunday, March 18th, 2012

Hilan Warshaw


Filmmaker, Author, Lecturer
Motifs and Montage:
Sergei Eisenstein and the Cinematic Gesamtkunstwerk


Hilan Warshaw  

 

This lecture explores Wagner's influence on the work of Sergei Eisenstein, the pioneering Soviet filmmaker and theorist. The talk will include clips from Eisenstein's films and Wagner's operas, as well as a discussion of photographs and designs from Eisenstein's historic 1940 production of Die Walküre for the Bolshoi Theater.

HILAN WARSHAW is a filmmaker, writer, and educator based in New York City. He has produced and directed videos for organizations including Carnegie Hall, the League of American Orchestras, Dicapo Opera Theatre, and Quill Classics. In addition to his directing work, his writing and editing credits include PBS documentaries about music and the arts. His writings about Wagner and film have been published by McFarland Press, The Wagner Journal, and Wagner Notes, and he recently wrote film-related entries and appendices for the new Cambridge Wagner Encyclopedia (forthcoming in 2013). In autumn 2011, he was a Visiting Scholar at Barnard College, where he taught a course in Romanticism and Film. He has lectured at venues including NYU's Deutsches Haus, Hofstra University, the Wagner Society of NY, Wagner Society of America, and Boston Wagner Society.  He has a B.F.A. with honors (Film & TV) and M.F.A. (Musical Theatre Writing) from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, and he studied orchestral conducting at Mannes College of Music and the Aspen Music School. www.hilanwarshaw.com

Affinia Chicago Hotel
166 E. Superior St.
Chicago

2:00 p.m. - Reception
2:30 p.m. - Program

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

Eric Weimer
Opera Coach, Conductor, Pianist and Lyric Opera Staff
Backstage at The Ring

Weimer

Eric Weimer has established himself as one of the pre-eminent coach/Assistant Conductors in the international opera world. Through his work at some of the world's leading companies'in particular, Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Metropolitan Opera, and the Bayreuth Festival, but also the San Francisco Opera, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and Cleveland Orchestra'he has prepared some 150 productions, collaborating with most of the world's greatest opera maestri: James Levine, Sir Andrew Davis, Bruno Bartoletti, Donald Runnicles, Zubin Mehta, Daniel Barenboim, Franz Welser-Moest, Antonio Pappano, James Conlon, Christoph Eschenbach, Christian Thielemann, and Georg Solti. In this work, he has coached and worked closely with virtually all the major singers active on the international opera stage. While famous as a German specialist'he has prepared no less than twelve complete cycles of Wagners's Der Ring des Nibelungen'he is known also for the breadth of his experience with other repertoires, particularly the Baroque and the Italian. A fluent speaker of German and Italian, he has prepared most of the German and Italian repertoire that Lyric Opera of Chicago has presented in the past 24 years. A former musicologist'Dr. Weimer holds a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago and is the author of Opera seria and the Evolution of Classical Style'he is also in great demand as a coach of young singers. He joined the music staff of the Ryan Opera Center (training wing of Lyric Opera of Chicago) in 1992.

(Marriott) Courtyard Chicago
165 East Ontario

7:00 p.m. - Reception
7:30 p.m. - Program

Tuesday, January 17th, 2012

Philip Gossett
Robert W. Reneker Distinguished Service Professor,
University of Chicago
Wagner and Verdi
gossett

Preliminary thoughts about the two bicentenaries of 2013: Wagner and Verdi were both born in 1813. Professor Gossett recently reviewed Peter Conrad's new Verdi/Wagner, for the Times Literary Supplement and will discuss some of the differences and similarities between these two composers, who represent two very different countries. Much separates them, but much also joins them together, and that is worth discussing!

Affinia Chicago Hotel
166 E. Superior St.
Chicago
1 block south of Chicago Avenue and 1 block east of Michigan Avenue

7:00 p.m. - Refreshments
7:30 p.m. - Program

 

2011 Events

 

Sunday, December 11th, 2011
THE WAGNER SOCIETY ANNUAL HOLIDAY PARTY

Featuring:

Philip Kennicott
Cultural Critic for The Washington Post

Mark Twain and Wagner

Kennicott  
(Photo courtesy of The Washington Post)

On the record, Samuel Clemens professed bemused confusion about the work of Richard Wagner, an extension of what is often assumed to be his feelings about opera in general. Did Mark Twain in fact say that Wagner's music is better than it sounds? And if he did, what did he mean? This talk looks into the deeper record of Twain's musical knowledge, his appreciation of opera and his complicated relationship to Richard Wagner. Twain's encounter with Wagner's music sets the stage for later American encounters with modernism and high art, and it displays in miniature cultural anxieties that plague Americans to this day.

Philip Kennicott is chief art critic of The Washington Post, where he has also served as classical music critic and culture critic. He is a long time columnist for Gramophone, a frequent contributor to Opera News and former editor of Musical AmericaChamber Music and Ovation magazines.

Union League Club
65 W. Jackson Blvd.

Chicago, IL

12:30 PM - Social Hour
1:00 PM - Luncheon
2:15 PM - Program

Wednesday, November 16th

MARTHA NUSSBAUM
Department of Philosophy and Professor of Law,
University of Chicago

Nietzsche and Dionysus:
Schopenhauer and Wagner
in "The Birth of Tragedy"

Martha Nussbaum

We are proud to have Martha Nussbaum for our November program. Professor Nussbaum is the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics, appointed in the Philosophy Department, Law School, and Divinity School at the University of Chicago. She is an Associate in the Classics Department and the Political Science Department, a Member of the Committee on Southern Asian Studies, and a Board Member of the Human Rights Program. She is the founder and Coordinator of the Center for Comparative Constitutionalism. She has received over 40 honorary degrees from colleges and universities around the world. She has authored over 20 books and edited 14 others. Last year, she appeared in a 3-hour interview/call-in program on C-SPAN's BookTV's "In Depth" (Complete program is available for viewing at: http://www.booktv.org/Watch/11557/In Depth Martha Nussbaum.aspx ) She is also a long-time member of the Wagner Society of America.

(Marriott) Courtyard Chicago
165 East Ontario
(1/2 block east of Michigan Ave)
Chicago

7:00 p.m. - Reception
7:30 p.m. - Program

Wednesday, October 19th

MARK THOMAS KETTERSON
Chicago Correspondent for Opera News

Mark Thomas Ketterson

Local writer Mark Thomas Ketterson, the Chicago correspondent for Opera News magazine, will discuss his own personal history as an arts writer, and share his thoughts about the current state of the art form as well as the process of assembling a critical review of an operatic performance, using Lyric Opera's 2010-2011 production of Wagner's Lohengrin for illustrative purposes.

Hotel Allegro
Screening Room II (Third Floor)
171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

7:00 p.m. - Reception
7:30 p.m. - Program.

Sunday, May 22nd
Wagner's 198th Birthday Dinner

CARTER SCOTT
Soprano

Carter Scott

Michigan Shores Club
911 Michigan Ave
(1 block east of Sheridan Road at Lake Avenue)
(1st stoplight north of the Bahai Temple)
East Porch
Wilmette IL

CARTER SCOTT, soprano, who appeared at Lyric Opera of Chicago last season in Verdi's Macbeth, will give a program consisting of the Wesendonck Lieder, along wtih other works of Wagner, Bellini, Strauss (both Richard and Johann II), and Puccini! . Carter gave a wonderfully well received program for the Near North Chapter of Lyric two seasons ago. Fred Ockwell will accompany her.


5:15 PM Social Hour Cash Bar
6:00 PM Program
6:45 PM Dinner

 

Wednesday, April 27th

NICHOLAS VAZSONYI
German Faculty, University of South Carolina

Vazsonyi

Professor Vazsonyi will speak on his recent book, Richard Wagner: Self-Promotion and the Making of a Brand. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010.

Affinia Chicago Hotel
166 E. Superior St.
Chicago
1 block south of Chicago Avenue and 1 block east of Michigan Avenue

7:00 p.m. - Refreshments
7:30 p.m. - Program

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

AMBER WAGNER
Soprano

Amber
Photo Credit: Larry Lapidus

When we asked Stephanie Blythe about young singers that we should keep an eye out for, she responded, 'There's Amber Wagner." Amber sang for our joint holiday event in December, 2009 with several Lyric Opera chapters. Amber is here in Chicago to sing two performances as Elsa in Lohengrin at Lyric Opera of Chicago on March 5th and 8th.

For our evening with Amber, as usual for events with performing artists, she will give a brief autobiographical statement and then field questions from the audience. If you haven't seen the DVD of 'The Audition' do it !

Affinia Chicago Hotel
166 E. Superior St.
Chicago
1 block south of Chicago Avenue and 1 block east of Michigan Avenue

7:00 p.m. - Refreshments
7:30 p.m. - Program

 

Tuesday, January 18th, 2011
STEPHANIE BLYTHE
Mezzo-Soprano
Blythe

One of the leading mezzos of our day, Stephanie has been in Chicago for Un Ballo in Maschera and for The Mikado. From all reports she has stolen the show in her first ever Katisha. We know her best in roles such as Fricka in Die Walküre or Orpheus in Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice, but her diverse repertoire includes her personal tribute We'll Meet Again'The Songs of Kate Smith, which she'll be presenting in New York on February 16th at Lincoln Center as part of the American Songbook series.

As usual with our get-togethers with performers a large part of the program was devoted to the Question and Answer portion.

Hotel Allegro
Cinema Room (Third Floor)
171 W. Randolph Street
Chicago

Sunday, January 2nd, 2011

THE WAGNER SOCIETY ANNUAL HOLIDAY PARTY!!!
Featuring:

Soprano CHRISTINE STEYER

A Lavish Buffet

"The Quiz" LOTS of Prizes


 
Click Image to View Christine's Website

Program will include excerpts from Der Rosenkavalier, works of Brahms, Wolf, Mahler, and more!

5:15 PM Social Hour - Cash Bar

6:00 PM Program - Christine Steyer, soprano

6:45 PM - Buffet Dinner
with "THE QUIZ" Lots of (Consolation) Prizes

Michigan Shores Club
930 Michigan Avenue
Wilmette, IL

 

Sunday, December 3rd, 2006
2006 HOLIDAY PARTY
Chicago Athletic Association - The Crystal Room
12 S. Michigan Avenue

TIMES: 5:00 PM Social Hour - Appetizers Cash Bar

5:45 PM Buffet Dinner THE QUIZ All sorts of prizes
7:15 PM Program - MARK DELAVAN

Thursday, November 2nd, 2006
DONALD ARTHUR
"HAVE PROTOPLASM/WILL TRAVEL"

AstridAndDonald
[Donald Arthur with Astrid Varnay]

Union League Club,
65 W. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago Room 710

Times: 7:00 pm - Reception
7:30 pm - Program

Cost: Free - Reservations not required


Program: DONALD ARTHUR will discuss 'Hans Hotter, Memoirs' which he translated,
expanded (working with Hotter),and edited. He also worked with Astrid Varnay
and James King on their autobiographies. Donald, a most entertaining speaker, has
had an extensive career in opera and in the broadcast media.

 
Wednesday, February 8, 2006
DR. WENDY DONIGER
"TIME AND THE MARSCHALLIN: OPERA AND THE AGING WOMAN"
7:00pm – Reception (light refreshments)
7:30pm – Program


Distinguished Service Professor of the History of Religions in the Divinity School of the University of Chicago, will present a program related to the upcoming Lyric Opera production of Der Rosenkavalier. A number of us had the good fortune of hearing her lecture during last year’s Ring Cycle. I am sure you will enjoy her and her lecture.

 

Chicago Athletic Association
12 S. Michigan Avenue
Michigan Room, 3rd floor
Chicago, IL

 
 

Sunday, December 4, 2005
Chicago Athletic Association – 2nd Floor
12 S. Michigan Avenue
Chicago


Program
Soprano MELANIE TOMASZ
Melanie

Our own MELANIE TOMASZ, soprano, will sing with and be accompanied by Professor FREDERICK OCKWELL of the Northwestern University School of Music. They have designed an interesting and delightful program of Wagnerian works. Melanie’s most recent stage appearance was as Maria Callas in Terrance McNally’s MASTERCLASS.

Pianist FREDERICK OCKWELL
Fred
Fred accompanied our holiday program in 2004 as well.

 

Saturday, March 26, 2005
DR. STEVEN MARC WEISS
Associate Professor of Theatre Arts, Coe Colleg
e
"More Acting Please! : Putting Drama Back into Music Drama"

Wednesday Ring Dinners
Last spring, the Wagner Society of America hosted a dinner and program event
each Wednesday evening of the Ring Cycles at Lyric Opera of Chicago:

Wednesday, March 30th
DR. BERNARD J. DOBROSKI
John Evans Professor of Music, Northwestern University
How to Conduct Die Walküre

Wednesday, April 6th
P. CRAIG RUSSELL
Cartoonist
Visual Solutions for Purely Musical Moments in the Ring
An audio-visual presentation on 'Visual Solutions for Purely Musical Moments in the Ring.'

Wednesday, April 13th
MARILYN SHIELDS-WILTSIE, Steinway Artist
Recital of Works and Wagner Transcriptions by Franz Liszt

Thursday, October 27th, 2005
DONALD CULLOP, Presenter
Documentary on the Life and Career of Astrid Varnay
Donald Collup's acclaimed documentary on the life and career of Astrid Varnay

Thursday, November 3, 2005
PAUL FRYER - Presenter
The Life of Richard Wagner