News

The Finger Lakes Opera board of directors is pleased to announce that it has reached a five-year contract extension with Artistic Director Gerard Floriano, demonstrating the organization’s confidence in Floriano’s artistic direction and creative vision.

Rose-Marie Klipstein, Finger Lakes Opera board president, said, "The Finger Lakes Opera board of directors was pleased to extend the contract of its fabulous artistic director, Gerard Floriano, who has proven over the past seven years that he is well qualified to direct the productions of a world-class opera company. The board has appreciated his vision, leadership, and commitment and is confident that he will ensure a bright future for Finger Lakes Opera."

When asked what he believed to be Finger Lakes Opera's greatest strength, Floriano stated, "It is the exceedingly high quality of our productions and our knack for bringing the industry’s most exciting singers to the Finger Lake Opera stage. Everything about our productions is of the highest caliber. Our challenge is to make more people aware of our presence in the region, and what a cultural treasure they have right here in their own back yard."

Giacomo Puccini’s La Bohème highlights Finger Lake Opera’s 2019 season on August 9th and 11th at Canandaigua Academy. A children’s opera, Jack and the Beanstalk, and Opera HITS!, a performance of opera and Broadway highlights, will round out Finger Lake Opera’s 2019 season.

"When I first met Gerry, it was evident the passion and enthusiasm he exudes for Finger Lakes Opera. His attention to artistic excellence and desire to educate emerging young artists and audiences are inspiring," said Elizabeth G. Long, Finger Lake Opera’s executive director. "I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to work with him to bring great opera to the Finger Lakes area."

Floriano and his wife, Joan, also a musician, live in Penfield and have raised three children. Their elder daughter is a professional violinist in the Midwest, their son is pursuing an operatic singing career of his own and will be performing at Opera Saratoga this summer, and their younger daughter is currently applying to graduate programs. Floriano is an avid runner, bicyclist, and reader, and highly recommends his most recent read, The Great Bridge: The Epic Story of the Building of the Brooklyn Bridge by David McCullough.

Singers Welcomed for Community Sing of Beethoven's 9th
 
Please join me for a SUNY Geneseo first — a “unity-community sing” of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. Scheduled for 3 p.m. on Sunday, May 5, in Wadsworth Auditorium, this work will require the combined forces of the Geneseo Symphony Orchestra, the Festival Singers, Geneseo’s town/gown choir, professional soloists, and the vocal talents of volunteers who would like to be part of this one-of-a-kind event.
 
The piece was written in 1824 amid a backdrop of societal injustice, discrimination and suffering but continues to deliver a message of universal kinship, unity, and joy that is just as important today as it was in Beethoven’s time. It’s in the spirit of kinship and unity that I invite students, staff, faculty, and administrators as well as friends and supporters in the community to join us in singing this towering work
 
To prepare for the performance, singers are asked to attend six Tuesday rehearsals with the College’s Festival Singers, beginning March 26, 7–9 p.m. A dress rehearsal will be held on Saturday, May 4, 1–4:30 p.m. 
 
Read more about this Geneseo 'first' on the news website. 
 

Elena O'Connor, whose career took off last summer, has been cast as Rosalinde in Finger Lakes Opera's 2018 performance of Die Fledermaus.  Read entire article here: http://www.thelcn.com/lcn01/watch-penfield-native-to-star-in-next-finger...

 

In April of 2018, Maestro Floriano will lead the combined orchestral and choral forces at the State University of New York at Geneseo in a performance of Brahms' A German Requiem.  Maestro Floriano remarked, "I am thrilled to have the opportunity to conduct this important and monumental work utilizing the talented student forces at Geneseo.  Brahms' music is so rich and intense, I always marvel at the discovery of new aspects and musical insights when I return to this momentous work."  The performance will take place on Sunday, April 29 at 3:00 p.m. on the campus of SUNY Geneseo.  

In the summer of 2018 Finger Lakes Opera will present an expanded slate of operatic offerings.  From our new home at Canandaigua Academy in picturesque Canandaigua, NY, comedy and variety will be the theme.  From our mainstage production of Johann Strauss, Jr.'s masterpiece Die Fledermaus, to an evening of Opera Pops featuring the Finger Lakes Opera Orchestra and members of the FLO Young Artist Program, and a special operatic presentation for children, the 2018 season, led by Maestro Gerard Floriano, promises to have something for everyone.  

"To anyone who thinks opera is a tough sell, Finger Lakes Opera is a eager to prove you wrong.  When we started this, people were saying 'What are you crazy?  Opera?' says founder and artistic director Gerard Floriano.  But it's been really popular, and tickets have sold exceedingly well every season."  Read the full article here:  http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/lifestyle/2016/08/05/finger-la...

Rochester City Newspaper music critic David Raymond had glowing comments about the opening concert of RCO's 16-17 season.  Read full article here: http://www.rochestercitynewspaper.com/rochester/rochester-chamber-orches...

 

Eric Townell interviews Maestro Floriano on plans for Finger Lakes Opera - 2016 and beyond.  

Read David Raymond's article on inaugural production of Finger Lakes Opera

http://www.rochestercitynewspaper.com/rochester/carmen/Content?oid=2416950

FLO to Stage Comedy and Revue - Rochester Democrat and Chronicle 

http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/lifestyle/music/2015/07/31/fin...

Following a successful performance of Carl Orff's work with the talented students of Canandaigua Academy, last season marked another opportunity for Maestro Floriano to conduct the 20th century masterwork. In April, the Greater Buffalo Youth Orchestra, Geneseo Chamber Singers and an all-star high school choral ensemble of some 60 students joined forces to present Orff's visceral, heart-pounding work. Featured soloists were soprano Sharla Nafziger, tenor Aaron McAllister and baritone Daniel Cilli.

Add published author to Gerard's impressive resumé. Recently the Encyclopedia of Theater and American Culture went to print with Dr. Floriano's article on Show Boat composer, Jerome Kern. Here is an excerpt from the article and link to the publisher's website:

Between 1918 and 1927 Kern established himself as the most popular and sought after composer on Broadway. 1918 alone saw six new productions which bore his name. In 1927, together with lyricist Oscar Hammerstein, II, Kern wrote what was to be his most significant work, Show Boat. Produced by Florenz Siegfeld, Show Boat - based on the novel by Edna Ferber - opened on Broadway on December 27, 1927 and represented a significant shift in American Musical Theatre. The realistic plot dealt with a troupe of actors plying their trade on a showboat and confronting deep seeded racial and social issues of American society in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Kern’s score closely mirrored the characters’ dramatic conflicts and gave voice to their emotions.

View the Publisher's website.

 

Recently, a large and enthusiastic audience of 2nd through 6th graders from the Ken-Ton School District, near Buffalo, NY, was treated to a unique concert-going experience: Professor Poof's Magical Musical Ride, an original children’s concert conceived for the stage by Dr. Gerard Floriano. Featuring lively characters, vibrant costumes, dancers, magical stage-craft and theatrical surprises, this original work was brought to musical life by the Greater Buffalo Youth Orchestra to great cheers and applause. Click on the dynamic audio/video montage of program highlights for a sneak peak behind the scenes of this unique and exciting children's concert experience!

The Geneseo Chamber Singers, under the leadership of Maestro Gerard Floriano recently returned from their 12th international concert tour and fourth under Dr. Floriano.  Maestro Floriano led the renowned touring choral ensemble in concerts in Lisbon and Porto, Portugal, as well as in Santiago de Compostela, Leon and Madrid, Spain.  The varied concert program featured works by Rachmaninoff, Eric Whitacre, Randall Thompson, Pablo Casals, Javier Busto, and Monteverdi, as well as several American folk songs and spirituals.  The choir was inspired by historic concert venues and passionate audiences.  And in turn the international audiences clearly appreciated the stirring, nuanced interpretations of the Chamber Singers, who were celebrating their fifty-fith anniversary year.

Finger Lakes Opera Gala Concert - The opening gala celebration marked the debut of western New York's new professional summer opera company.  The concert, attended by a large and enthusiastic audience at SUNY Geneseo's Wadsworth Auditorium, featured performances by  Metropolitan Opera soprano, Danielle Pastin and American tenor, Rolando Sanz, mezzo soprano Jessica Best and baritone Evan Jones, accompanied by the Finger Lakes Opera Orchestra, led by Maestro Floriano.