Bravo! From Opera to Broadway

World-class voices bring beloved songs from Opera to musical theater to the American Songbook to life in our boutique “club” setting in the SCA lobby. Four talented young musicians make this a memorable evening of rousing emotion, laughter, and the joy of musical performance. All proceeds from the event support the SCA’s cost-free, literacy programming for K-12th graders.

November 11 + 12 | 7:00 pm

All proceeds from the event support the SCA’s cost-free, literacy programming for K-12th graders.

Overview

World-class voices bring beloved songs from Opera to musical theater to the American Songbook to life in our boutique “club” setting in the SCA lobby.  

Back by popular demand, Gillian & John Riesen, along with Neill Campbell and Jonathan Estabrooks, come to town for two very special evenings. The foursome has performed on major stages across the world including Carnegie Hall and the Lincoln Center – and even on America’s Got Talent!

From Les Miserables and Phantom of the Opera to Madame Butterfly and The Barber of Seville, these talented young musicians make this a memorable evening of rousing emotion, laughter, and the joy of musical performance!

All proceeds from the event support the SCA’s cost-free, literacy programming for K-12th graders.

The Artists

John Riesen

Having just performed on America’s Got Talent, award-winning American tenor John Riesen is consistently impressing audiences with his “impassioned…and vibrant” voice (Opera Today). Riesen’s growing career boasts a variety of roles in which he excels and includes significant work in opera, musical theatre, studio recording and concert. He has released two studio recording albums: What You’d Call a Dream (2019) and Christmas at Home (2020), and several singles that have reached over 1.5 million streams on Spotify and Apple Music. John is also the head of Spotify promotion and PR for Emitha LLC, building an ecosystem for classical and crossover singers around the world to be heard on streaming services. 

In the 2022/2023 season, John returns to signature roles including Younger Thompson in Glory Denied with Knoxville Opera, Daniel Pilgrim in Evan L. Snyder’s new opera A Capacity for Evil with Opera Las Vegas, Camille in Lehar’s Merry Widow with Knoxville Opera, as well as his debut as The Duke of Mantua in Verdi’s classic, Rigoletto. He will also be seen in concerts around the U.S. including on America’s Got Talent, for the Knoxville Patriot Awards Gala, also in Columbus, OH, Saugatuck, MI, amongst others. 

To follow John’s career, check him out on instagram: @johnriesen or follow his Spotify or Apple Music: John Riesen

Gillian Riesen

Gillian Riesen is currently the CEO and President of Emitha LLC

Hailed as “impeccable” by Broadway World, award-winning American mezzo-soprano Gillian Lynn Cotter is quickly impressing audiences with her strong voice and dynamic presence. Recent roles include Hansel in Hansel and Gretel with Opera Louisiane, Suzuki in Madama Butterfly with Pensacola Opera, Sister Helen Prejean in Dead Man Walking with Shreveport Opera, the title role in Rinaldo with Fresco Opera and Angelica in the world premiere of A Capacity for Evil with Opera MODO. Current projects include role and house debuts as Joan in Tchaikovsky’s Maid of Orleans with Opera Company of Middlebury and Vera Lynn in Another Brick in the Wall with Michigan Opera Theater.

Ms. Cotter recently completed her second year as an Apprentice Artist at the Santa Fe Opera. Her assignments there included covering Karolka in Jenůfa, La Madre in Madama Butterfly, and she was featured in Act 2 of Hänsel und Gretel as Hänsel in the Apprentice Scenes Showcase.  

Other recent engagements have seen Ms. Cotter as Edith in The Pirates of Penzance with Opera Ithaca, her PORTopera debut as Mrs. Nolan in Gian Carlo Menotti’s The Medium, and Older Alyce in Glory Denied and Jade Boucher in Heggie’s Dead Man Walking with Pensacola Opera. 

Gillian also has a Production company, and runs two record labels: Crossover Records and Lexicon Classics. This passion allows her to use her artistic eye from the stage to help other artists pursue their dreams. Lexicon Classics has placed number 2 in the world on the Billboard Charts in Traditional Classical twice since January 2022!

Jonathan Estabrooks

Hailed by the New York Times as ‘a robust baritone’, award-winning performer and Juilliard alum Jonathan Estabrooks continues to leave his mark on the opera, musical theatre and crossover genres. Appearing in his native Canada, the United States and abroad, his is impressive vocal performances have led to debuts at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center and performances with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Israeli Chamber Orchestra and alongside Broadway stars Ashley Brown, Aaron Lazar and Kelli O’Hara.

With over half a million views on YouTube, he has been featured in major National and international media including on the front page Billboard.com and twice in the New York Times, CBC Television, CNN and NBC. He has performances for the Governor General, The Prime Minister of Canada, US Ambassador to Canada, The Italian Ambassador to Canada and President Bill Clinton. In 2014, Estabrooks released his debut album, These Miles with the Macedonia Radio Orchestra (available everywhere) and fusing elements of classical, pop and classic musical theatre, produced by 4-time Grammy winning producer Dave Reitzas (Groban, Streisand). Other recorded works include the cast album of Anna Christie with 14-Time Grammy-Winning Producer Tom Z. Shepard for Naxos, Songs By Me for composer Thomas Savoy and collaborations with YouTube stars, Peter Hollens, The Piano Gal and more.

He has collaborated with Grammy-winning producer Michael J. Moritz Jr. and was Executive Producer and performer with Artists for the Arts, a charity single for Broadway Records. Jonathan is currently Vice President of Production for Emitha LLC, a full service digital media company for artists. His has produced and mixed countless recordings, many of which charting at the top of the Billboard Classical and Crossover charts.

Neill Campbell

Pianist Neill Campbell has been a pianist/coach at the Seagle Music Colony, Janiec Opera Company at Brevard Music Center, Gulfshore Opera, Pensacola Opera, and Shreveport Opera. At Shreveport, Neill was a Resident Artist, where he served for two years as chorus master, rehearsal pianist, and pianist for the Shreveport Opera Xpress outreach and touring program. Neill has performed across the United States, and internationally in Italy and in Havana, Cuba. He is a graduate of Michigan State University, where he received both his MM in Collaborative Piano, and his BM in Piano Performance.

Hosted By

Shirley Sutton + Dick Shaw

Pat Sharp

Kim Redlin + Phillip Crump

Mary Terzino + Gregg Potter

Susan + Tony Pastor

Laura Baird + George Zulakis

Leslie + Stelios Dokianakis

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