Most people have heard about the popular TV show American Idol but what about American Opera Idol? Eight years ago, Opera Connecticut created the singing competition to celebrate the beauty of opera and expose more people to the art form, says Doris Lang Kosloff, artistic director of the Connecticut Concert Opera, who is also the director of the Vocal Division at the University of Hartford’s The Hartt School.
Nearly 60 singers from across the United States entered the competition but only 10 contestants will compete in the final on Thursday, July 14, at 7 p.m. at Elizabeth Park in West Hartford, Conn. Two alumnae from The Hartt School, Nadia Aguilar Regaledo ’15 and Kaarin Cecilia Phelps ’15, will compete to become America’s next opera idol. The winner will receive $1,500.
“I am thrilled to have been accepted as a finalist in the competition. It will be loads of fun,” says Kaarin, a native of Ashburnham, Mass., who studied vocal performance at The Hartt School. Kaarin entered the competition to advance her opera skills. “It is quite different than a full opera production. It is just you, your voice, and the piano,” she adds. Learning to create a scene for herself without costumes or an orchestra, she is confident that she will be capable of doing anything in the opera business. Kaarin plans to apply to graduate school in the fall of 2017, which will be one step closer of reaching her dream of becoming a professional opera singer.
Kaarin discovered her passion for opera while she was a student at the University. “My three years at Hartt hooked me on opera, and ever since I have not wanted to let it go,” she says. Unlike many other undergraduate students, Kaarin had the fortune of singing three full roles and many scenes at The Hartt School.
“I learned so much on stage at Hartt. It was a one of a kind experience and will benefit me a great deal in the American Opera Idol competition and in my career,” she adds.
Tickets for the competition must be purchased in advance. You can buy them at www.showclix.com or 888.718.4253. Tickets are 30 dollars per seat and 49 for seats with a box supper.