Soprano Amy Shoremount-Obra of Mansfield Township, New Jersey, received the Ursula Springer Memorial Endowment Fund Award of $3,000. Shoremount-Obra made her Metropolitan Opera debut in 2014 as First Lady in Die Zauberflöte. She was featured in SoundBite in the May 2016 issue of Opera News. She was a national semi-finalist and NY regional winner in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and has degrees from Manhattan School of Music and The Juilliard School. Click here to learn more.
The following three singers also received grants:
Soprano Helena Brown of Brooklyn, N.Y., received a $2,000 Encouragement Grant. She holds a Master’s degree from Manhattan School of Music and a Bachelor’s degree in Music from Hollins University. She is an encouragement grant awardee for the Metropolitan Opera National Council’s Philadelphia District, alternate winner in Manhattan School of Music’s Eisenberg Fried Concerto Competition for Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, a semifinalist in the 2016 Dallas Opera Guild Competition, and a finalist in Opera Ebony’s 2014 Benjamin Matthews Competition. Click here to learn more.
Soprano Ashley Curling of Roswell, Georgia, a second-time recipient, received a $1,000 encouragement grant. She was a Metropolitan Opera regional finalist for the New Orleans District. Miss Curling was most recently seen as a semi-finalist in the Shreveport Opera Singer of the Year competition, and in Loft Opera’s Macbeth where she performed the role of Dama di Lady. Opera Today claims she “fills out a small role with committed performance and gorgeously blossoming high notes”.
Soprano Alicia Jayourba of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a second-time recipient, received a $1,000 study grant. Jayourba recently performed the role of Miss Jessel in The Turn of the Screw with the Miami Music Festival, Magda Sorel in The Consul with Harrower Opera, and The Mother in Hänsel und Gretel with CoOPERAtive. Other credits include Anna Maurrant in Street Scene, the title role in La Navarraise, Love Simpson in Cold Sassy Tree (under composer Carlisle Floyd’s direction) in mainstage productions with the Florida State University Opera. She was a soloist in Dvorák’s Stabat Mater at the Musikverein in Vienna and Dvorák Hall in Prague. Click here to learn more.
Adjudicating judges were conductor Eve Queler; Cori Ellison, Glyndebourne Festival dramaturg and Juilliard School faculty member; Ken Benson, voice consultant and manager; and Scott Carlton, New York City-based voice teacher and coach and member of the Bayreuth Festival Chorus from 2003-2013.