Cynthia Hoffmann is a member of the voice faculties of Manhattan School of Music, where she also teaches a class in Vocal Performance, and of the Juilliard School, where she served as Chair from 1995 to 2006. She has been an adjunct voice faculty member of the Curtis Institute of Music and from 1984 to 1992 directed the Judith Raskin Opera Class at the 92nd Street Y School of Music. Ms. Hoffmann has been a voice faculty member of summer programs including the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria; the International Institute of Vocal Arts in Chiari, Italy; the Yong Pyong Music Festival in Korea; the Centro Studi Italiani program in Urbania, Italy; the University of Miami School of Music program in Salzburg, Austria; the Amalfi Coast Music Festival; the Franz Schubert Institute in Baden bei Wien, Austria; and the Opera on the Avalon in Newfoundland, Canada.
A frequent master teacher and panelist for the Voice Foundation’s Symposia on the Care of the Professional Voice, Ms. Hoffmann has presented master classes at colleges and universities throughout the United States and Europe, as well as judging vocal competitions. She is currently teaching in the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program.
Ms. Hoffmann’s students have appeared with major opera houses throughout the world, including the Metropolitan and New York City Operas, and have been winners of Metropolitan National Council auditions and awards; Richard Tucker Foundation study grants; George London and Puccini Foundation grants; Sullivan and Opera Index awards; “The Joy in Singing” award recital; the Marilyn Horne Foundation recital awards; the McAllister Competition; the Placido Domingo “Operalia” Competition; the Adler Fellowship at San Francisco Opera; the Liederkranz Foundation’s General Opera Competition; and the Metropolitan Opera’s Beverly Sills award.
Ms. Hoffmann received her academic degrees from the University of Redlands and Columbia University, with professional study at the University of Southern California. Her coaches have included Hugues Cuenod, Judith Raskin, Gerard Souzay, Ralf Gothoni, Robert Evans, Martin Katz, and Margaret Singer. She studied voice with Larra Browning, Daniel Ferro, Oren Brown, Margaret Harshaw, Vera Rozsa, Beverley Peck Johnson, and Margaret Schaper and participated in the professional acting classes of Sanford Meisner and Wynn Handman. Currently in the Alexander Teacher Training program of Joan and Alex Murray, Ms. Hoffmann has studied the Alexander Technique for more than 15 years and considers it of great importance in her work.
CHARLES KELLIS is a vocal consultant, voice teacher and writer of reviews and articles on the romance of the voice. He has been a Professor of Music at the University of Iowa, Southern Illinois University, and for 16 years the voice faculty of the Juilliard School.
He has served as an adjudicator for the Metropolitan Opera Regional Auditions and as a teacher for the Metropolitan Lindemann Young Artists Program. His students have appeared in leading roles in most major opera houses of the world including: the Metropolitan Opera, La Scala, Berlin, Covent Garden, Paris, Moscow, Hamburg, Barcelona, Zurich, Bayreuth Festival, Frankfurt, Glyndeborne, Zurich, Viennna, Aix en Provence Festival, Orange Festival, New York City Opera, Los Angeles, and Chicago Lyric. He is a graduate of the Juilliard School in New York, and Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome, Italy, with further studies as a Fullbright Scholar at L’Accademia Chigiana in Siena and LAccademia Benedetto Marcello in Venice, Italy. His teachers include: Mariano Stabile, Sergio Nazor and Luigi Ricci and he participated in classes with Giovanni Martinelli and Tito Schipa. Performed in Opera, Concert and Oratorio in Rome, Vienna, Athens, and Salzburg and on RAI Radio Televisione Italiana, Oestereichishe Rundfunk in Vienna and the National Radio of Athens, Greece.
His students have also been winners in many prestigious international competitions including: Tchaikovsky in Moscow, Cardiff Singer of the World, Metropolitan Opera, Caruso, Maria Callas, Marion Anderson, Puccini Foundation, Sullivan Award, Joyce Dutka, Arleen Auger, Bel Canto Vocal, the Munich International, Opera Index, Moniuszko International in Warsaw and the Pavarotti Mozart Prize. As former director of the Candlewood Choral Society in Connecticut, he conducted the Hartford Symphony and the Hudson Valley Philharmonic; Master classes and seminars in Europe and USA, including at the San Juan, Puerto Ricco, Pablo Casals Festival with Krzysztof Penderecki; former music critic Waterbury, Ct.; Panelist-speaker at Paul Robeson’s 100th birthday celebration at Rutgers University in New Jersey. He has been a judge for the Moniuszko International Vocal Competition in Warsaw and has conducted master classes in Radom and at the Krakow Academy of Music in Poland. He was also, most recently, chairman of the jury for the Marcella Sembrich International Vocal Competition at the Kosciuszko Foundation in New York City and a reviewer at the Metropolitan Opera for the periodical “Twoja Muza”. September, 2015 brought him to China as Chairman of the Lanzhou University and the Northernwest University International Vocal Competition including a series of Master Classes, with a return engagement scheduled in 2016. His book “A vocal Journey” will be forthcoming..
Polish American MALGORZATA KELLIS received her MA from the Music Academy in Krakow and her DMA from the Academy of Music in Gdansk. She has been heard performing in concert, opera and oratorio throughout Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria, Poland and Italy.
She toured throughout Germany, Austria and France with the Ricercar Orchestra and also performed with the Silesian Orchestra, Mazowiecki Theatre Orchestra, Camerata Polonia, Nowa Ensemble, Munchen Philharmonic, the Warsaw Philharmonic and the Slavic Arts Ensemble. She has been featured at the Warsaw Royal Castle and the Lancut Castle, Teatr Stu, Teatr Polonia in Warsaw, the Krakow Opera, Silesia Opera, Mazowiecki Music Theatre, Riverside Opera, Brooklyn Opera, Queens Opera and the Polish Theatre Institute. She toured Germany with the “Chantal” ensemble with whom she also recorded a CD. Last summer she was heard as the first Polish singer in recital dedicated to the memory of the famous Polish soprano Marcella Sembrich at the Sembrich Museum in Bolton Landing, Lake George.
A frequent guest at International Music Festivals, she was a performing artist at the K.Jamroz International Music Festival at Busko- Zdroj and most recently was honored at the opening the XXIII International Organ and Chamber Music Festival in Lezajsk with the legendary Metropolitan Opera tenor, Wieslaw Ochman. She has also performed with the legendary Simon Estes, the famous baritone Mariusz Kwiecien and Jennifer Rowely. She has been a frequent guest at regional television and radio stations. This past summer and in the fall of 2015, she was heard in Washington, DC; Portland, OR; Wroclaw, Poland; and in Lanzhou, China.
She was an adjudicator at the Inernational Vocal Competition in Lanzhou, China, and a master teacher in Lanzhou University. the Artistic Director of the Kosciuszko Foundation “Marcella Sembrich International Vocal Competition” in New York.
The son of two opera singers, German-American Tenor RAYMON GEIS has been surrounded by the world of singing from a young age and is an active performer throughout the United States and Canada.
In 2016-2017 season Raymon will be covering the role of Max in Virginia Opera’s 2017 production of Der Freischutz. Following that he will be seen performing the role of Father Grenville in Opera on the Avalon’s production of Dead Man Walking. In the 2015-2016 season Raymon made his debut with Sarasota opera as Parpignol in their production of La bohème and covered the role of Florestan in their production of Beethoven’s Fidelio. He performed the role of Beadle Bamford in Opera on the Avalon’s 2016 production of Sweeney Todd in St. John’s, Newfoundland.
An active concert soloist, Raymon has been involved in numerous performances including J.S. Bach’s Magnificat, St. John and St Matthew Passions, Handel’s Messiah, Mozart’s Coronation Mass, and A. Ramirez’s folk-mass Missa Criolla, as well as a frequent soloist with New York City’s One World Symphony. Raymon has been a Young Artist at many prestigious programs including Virginia Opera, Sarasota Opera, Opera on the Avalon, Caramoor, and CoOPERAtive. Other recent appearances include roles such as Rodolfo and Rinuccio in Puccini’s La bohème and Gianni Schicchi, the title role in Mozart’s Idomeneo, Sam in Carlisle Floyd’s Susannah, and Quint from Britten’s Turn of the Screw. In addition to performing, Raymon has maintained an active private voice studio and has numerous students that have performed at Carnegie Hall, Madison Square Garden, Broadway, off-broadway, at The Paper Mill Playhouse and many other regional theaters and concert venues. He has also produced and directed numerous musicals and concert performances geared towards developing and showcasing promising young singers and actors. Show highlights include The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Toy Camp, A Classy Musical Revue, and You’re a Good man Charlie Brown.
MICHAEL ERNST GOLDSTROM has taught acting in the Domingo-Thornton Young Artists Program at the Los Angeles Opera, the Wolf Trap Foundation, and directed La Clemenza di Tito for the Bob Cole Conservatory at California State University at Long Beach.
Michael is a graduate of the Juilliard School Drama Division, The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, and holds a B.A. in Art History from Columbia University. He also trained extensively at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and in Dalcroze Eurhythmics with the late master teacher Dr. Robert Abramson.
At Juilliard, Michael directed one of the first interdisciplinary events between the divisions of music, drama and dance, and developed a creative partnership with the violinist Maria Millar. He has performed at Carnegie Hall with Ensemble ACJW narrating A Soldier’s Tale, Walt Disney Concert Hall with the Los Angeles Philharmonic in Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf produced by Giants are Small, in Alice Tully Hall in Stravinsky’s A Soldier’s Tale, in Avery Fisher Hall with the New York Philharmonic, at the Kimmel Center with The Philadelphia Orchestra and regularly with the Ensemble for the Romantic Century, headed by his piano teacher, Max Barros.
Selected TV and film appearances include Sigmund Freud in Freud’s Magic Powder; Comedy Central’s first film Porn ‘n Chicken, The Lost Battalion (A & E), Heights (Merchant Ivory), The Sopranos (HBO), Law & Order: SVU (NBC), Approaching Union Square, Reelz Channel Movie Takes, and the shorts Equal Opportunity,The Dance of Genghis Cohn. Selected Off-Broadway and regional productions include The Metromaniacs (world and west coast premiere), The Merchant of Venice, TheComplete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged), Kitty Kitty Kitty, Can-Can with Patti Lupone, Modern Orthodox (world and west coast premiere, LA Weekly Nomination), Old Wicked Songs, All in the Timing, and the Broadway-bound Mambo Kings. As a writer his film, Press or Say “2” , in Mandarin, appeared in over thirty international film festivals.
ANNA GRIFFIN, a native Oregonian, has over 15 years of dance teaching experience. While in Oregon she studied Ballet with Ed Staver, Pilates with Lara London, and was a member of the Staver Ballroom/Latin Performance and Competition team. She furthered her studies at the University of Oregon, moving to New York City to pursue her professional dance career.
In New York, Anna has continued her dance training under the watchful eyes of Dawn Hillen, Antoinette Peloso, Luigi, and other legends in dance. She is trained in Hustle and Theatre Arts, Ballroom, and Latin. She has coached Ballroom competitors for Vild Mes Danse, the Danish version of Dancing with the Stars, young students for Broadway shows, students auditioning for the Professional Youth training programs, Opera singers needing help with body awareness and alignment, students rehabilitating from major surgeries, and other nondancers.
Anna has also choreographed a photo shoot for “CR Fashion Book” Dance Issue, as well as being a Movement Specialist for Chanel’s Fall 2013 Campaign.
Anna has performed in and around New York City, performing in La Bayadere (Second Shade), The Fire Dance, The Friends’ in Coppelia, The Stone Circlean original work by Dawn Hillen, The Golden Jubilee Viennese Opera Ball, The Kat Wildish Performing in New York Experience, The Kennedy Dancers Co., as well as local dance studios and clubs. Anna is a Certified Zena Rommett Floor Barre® Teacher, and an LMT.
DAN FRANKLIN SMITH is a resident of New York City and peforms at concert venues throughout the US. He made his European recital debut in 1997 in Sweden. The following year he made his European orchestral debut in Stockholm at Sofia Kyrkan and was later featured on Swedish TV. A debut recording with the Gävle Symfoniorkester (Kurt Atterberg’s Piano Concerto) soon followed a recording with the Stuttgart Philharmonic (two of Hans Huber’s Piano Concerti). These premiere recordings received outstanding reviews and are broadcast on dozens of classical stations throughout the US.
As Music Director and recital soloist with the international festival, Elysium: Between Two Continents from 2005-2013, he has been showcased in performances of the music of Viktor Ullmann here and in Europe, recently in Wroclaw, Bratislava, Lisbon and Berlin and Vancouver. Major German newspapers praise his work for “stirring emotionalism, precision with keen intensity…”
As collaborative pianist and vocal accompanist and coach he has been in demand for his expertise for over 30 years, performing at venues such as The National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., the Cleveland Museum’s Distinguished Artist Series, and Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center in New York City.
He is a member of the American Matthay Association for Piano, and frequently performs at their yearly conferences.