(March 13, 2015 – Denver, CO) Mezzo soprano, Erica Papillion-Posey and soprano, Stephanie Ann Ball are collaborating with pianist, Mila Startsev to present The Heritage Anthology; a deeply moving nationalist concert program celebrating the African American musical heritage and the German cultural heritage of The Denver Turnverein.
“We have put together a unique program that is full of absolutely stunning music. The first half highlights some of the incredible art songs in the German language, and features celebrated composers Robert Schumann, Richard Strauss, and many others.” Ms. Ball commented while discussing the repertoire selected for the concert. “In the second half, we’ve programmed African-American Spiritual arrangements, some by Grant-Still and Uzee Brown Jr. that we hold dearly to our hearts. It has been so interesting for me to find the unique ways that these composers were connected to one another, and see how some of them were even influenced by the Spiritual.”
The Denver Turnverein will host the performance on Saturday, March 28, 2015 at 7:00pm at 1570 Clarkson Street, Denver, Colorado 80218. Christie Connolley, President & CEO of Candescent Media will service as Mistress of Ceremonies during the concert. Tickets are available for purchase at the door for$25.00, and discounted tickets are available to students for $18.00.
Advance excerpts from The Heritage Anthology may be heard on Wednesday, March 25 2015 at 11:30am by tuning into Colorado Public Radio as Ms. Papillion-Posey and Ms. Ball will make a guest appearance with host Charley Sampson.
“It’s always an honor and pleasure to sing for Denver audiences.” Long-time resident, Ms. Papillion-Posey expressed. “There’s a comfort, a familiarity and warmth when presenting programs in a city where you’ve developed your craft with people that have, from the beginning, supported you and your talent.”
About Erica Papillion-Posey
In 2013, mezzo-soprano Erica Papillion-Posey made her professional North American debut in what has become her signature role of Carmen, where she, “…. captured Carmen’s slinky sexiness, radiating allure and trouble… She had the vocal power to sing a soft, seductive “Habanera” in a hall-filling, rounded voice, lingering over the phrases as the men in the square watched. She snapped off the Spanish-style ornaments of the “Seguidilla”, and was especially compelling in the lower register, where Carmen’s sultriness comes through…” [South Florida Classical Review]. After being hailed as, “… the best Carmen this city has seen in decades” [El Nuovo Herald], companies nationwide have taken notice and she is scheduled for a performance of Carmen in Boulder, Colorado in May 2015.
With roots in jazz music, Ms. Papillion-Posey is regularly engaged to return to her first musical love. Most recently, she dazzled in the bayou of Louisiana as the featured guest artist at the Jazz in the Arts Black Tie Dinner, an engagement she is slated to repeat in 2015. Embracing the blurred lines between the classical and jazz genres, she has developed a groundbreaking new crossover concert series. The first of which, The Salon, Reimagined Tour, will debut in 2015 and be performed throughout Europe and the United States.
In 2010, Ms. Papillion-Posey made her international operatic debut as Zia Principessa in Suor Angelica at the Tuscia Opera Festival, under the baton of maestro Stefano Vignati. The demand for her “wonderful voice… full of grace and sensuality” [El Nuevo Herald] and her fierce commitment to character keeps European audiences coming back for more. Memorable European performances include the title role of Carmen, the Third Lady in Die Zauberflöte both with the Tuscia Opera Festival, Annina in La Traviata with Teatro Kizmet Opera, and Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro with Siena Opera.
Stateside, Ms. Papillion-Posey’s notable roles include her portrayal of Princess Akara in the world premiere of The Lady or the Tiger, an adaptation of Frank Stockton’s beloved short story by composers Cherise Leiter and Leanna Kirchoff. Ms. Papillion-Posey’s “purely exciting and rich voice” [Arte & Musica Magazine] was also featured as Baba in The Medium, Dorabella in Cosi fan Tutte, and in the title role in The Rape of Lucretia.
A prolific concert artist and recitalist, Ms. Papillion-Posey’s repertoire includes performances of Handel’s Messiah, Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater under the direction of Timothy Léon in Tarquinia, Civita di Bagnoregio, Castilione, Capranica and Ronciglione in addition to several solo recitals.
Most recently, Ms. Papillion-Posey was named a semi-finalist in the Paris Opera Awards. In 2013, Ms. Papillion-Posey was named a Continuo Arts, Milton Cross Young Artists Winner after being named the organization’s Rising Star Young Artists Winner in 2012. Other accolades and awards include first and second place winner of the Vocal Arts Competition of Colorado, respectively in 2005 and 2006, International Lyric Academy of Rome e Viterbo Award, AMICI of Denver Scholarship, Dante Alighieri Music Scholarship Competition, Jeff Bradley Music Scholarship Fund, E. Stoddard Young Endowment Scholarship, Stratton Faulhaber Scholarship, Coulter Norbloom Scholarship Grant and Joseph Docksey Career Development Fund Award.
Ms. Papillion-Posey earned a Master of Music degree and Advanced Certificate in Vocal Performance (both with honors and distinction) from the University of Denver, Lamont School of Music. She also holds a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Metropolitan University of Denver. She currently studies with renowned mezzo- soprano Grace Bumbry.
Learn more about Erica at www.ericapapillion-posey.com.
About Stephanie Ann Ball
Stephanie Ann Ball, lyric coloratura soprano is swiftly taking her place in the world of classical music with her warm, strong, lyric voice. A performer from the get-go, her musical parents introduced her to everything from funk to gospel to classical music at an early age. When she began studying voice in high school, Ms. Ball found her musical niche.
A favorite of Midwestern audiences, she has appeared in many operas and oratorios including a soloist in Mozart’s Requiem with the Bach Society of St. Louis, and the thrilling role of Nedda in Mid-Ohio Opera’s production of Il Pagliacci. Equally comfortable on the recital stage, Ms. Ball frequently performs African American spirituals with great passion and sensitivity. The district winner of the Metropolitan National Council Auditions has been described as, “… able to express its meaning to an audience through both the agility of her voice and dramatic movement that can encompass her entire body…” [Matt Daniels of St. Louis’ Tavern of Fine Arts]. Ms. Ball is excited to return to Mid-Ohio Opera in July 2015 to perform the role of Adina.
Offstage, Ms. Ball, a tireless advocate for the arts, works to introduce opera to her community and leads educational outreach programs with several companies. Now residing in Denver, Colorado, Ms. Ball is rapidly becoming a valued member of the local musical community. In April 2015, she will appear as the soprano soloist for the Mass in G by Carl Maria von Weber at St. Augustine Orthodox Church in Denver.
If you would like to know more about Ms. Ball’s career and what she has coming up next, please visit her website, www.stephanieannball.com, and join her online community at https://www.facebook.com/StephanieAnnBallSoprano.
Press release available in .pdf: Erica Papillion-Posey and Stephanie Ball to perform The Heritage Anthology