Stratford Summer Music


The 2018 Vocal Academy

"Witnessing  the journey of young vocalists as they strive to reach new heights in their careers is a precious experience.  The shared artistic generosity and sensitivity in these classes touches the heart of a dynamic and personal journey, by vocal performers."  - Eleanor Kane, Stratford Summer Music Patron

The Vocal Academy at Stratford Summer Music will offer intensive training in professional preparation (opera, oratorio, art song) and in performance skills for graduate, post-graduate, and early professional-level singers and for two pianists pursuing a career in vocal accompaniment.  Participants will receive daily individual sessions with the internationally renowned faculty and will take part in Master Classes which will be open to the public.  The program will culminate in a opera gala with the participants. 

For full details on the Vocal Academy, please click HERE. (pdf)

To submit your application please click HERE


Phillip Addis, voice instructor; 

Baritone Phillip Addis has established himself as a leading performer in opera, concert and recital with his daring, yet sensitive interpretations throughout Canada, the United States, Europe and the Far East.  In 2017, he starred as Papageno in Die Zauberflöte at the Canadian Opera Company, as Il Conte Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Vancouver Opera, and in Carmina Burana with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra;  this spring he sings the leading roles in Calgary Opera’s Eugene Onegin and in Don Giovanni for Edmonton Opera. Known as one of the world's few interpreters of Debussy's Pelléas, Phillip has performed the role at the Opéra Comique, and with the Semperoper Dresden, the Hamburg Staatsoper and the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall.  He is also equally at home in such standard roles as Don Giovanni, Figaro in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Marcello in La Bohème, as well as in newer works ranging from the title role in Billy Budd to Jaufré Rudel in L'Amour de loin, to Lieutenant Audebert in Silent Night.   In recital with pianist Emily Hamper, Phillip has performed many of the great works of the art song tradition to audiences worldwide.

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Emily Hamper, vocal coach.


Pianist Emily Hamper has earned an excellent reputation for her exceptional skills as a vocal coach and accompanist. Her international career includes opera productions and voice recitals across Canada, in Europe, Australia, and the US. Singers from her coaching studio perform with major opera companies and symphony orchestras around the world. Her 2016-17 season featured a recital for the Canadian Opera Company and performances with INNERchamber right here in Stratford. Highlights from her 2015-16 season include a live broadcast for Zoomer TV (Toronto), and recitals with Phillip Addis, Michael Schade, Krisztina Szabo, and James Westman. Other performances have been broadcast on CBC Radio, Radio-Canada, Classical 96.3 FM and Vermont Public Radio. In 2011 Emily was awarded the Best Collaborative Pianist Prize at the Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition (Voice) and accompanied the 13-city national winner’s tour. She maintains a passion for mentoring young singers and pianists, having served on the faculties of University of Toronto, Wilfrid Laurier University, Université de Montréal, Vancouver International Song Institute, and the Banff Centre. By invitation of renowned mezzo-soprano Dolora Zajick, Emily joined the faculty of the Institute for Young Dramatic Voices in 2014. Emily is a founding faculty member and co-artistic director of the Stratford Vocal Academy, which runs for its fourth season in August 2018. 

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Johannes Debus, Music Director, Canadian Opera Company

Johannes Debus has been Music Director of the Canadian Opera Company (COC) since 2009, having been appointed immediately following his debut.  

The 2017/18 season includes debuts with the Seattle, Oregon, and Kansas City Symphonies, and the Bilbao Orkestra Sinfonikoa. Debus returns to the Metropolitan Opera conducting The Tales of Hoffmann, the Bregenz Festival conducting the Austrian premiere of Goldschmidt's Beatrice Cenci, and the San Diego Symphony. As Music Director of the COC, he conducts Die Entführung aus dem Serail and Stravinsky's The Nightingale and Other Short Fables. Highlights of the 16-17 season included debuts with the Metropolitan Opera conducting Salome, theBaltimore Symphony Orchestra, and his Australian debut with the Tasmanian and West Australian Symphonies. 

He conducts regularly at the Bayerische Staatsoper Munich, Staatsoper unter den Linden Berlin, and Frankfurt Opera and has appeared in new productions at English National Opera and Opéra National de Lyon. He made his debut at the BBC Proms with Britten's Sinfonia in 2014, and conducted a new production of The Tales of Hoffmannat the 2015 Bregenz Festival. 

As guest conductor, he has appeared at several international festivals such as the Biennale di Venezia, Bregenz, and Schwetzingen Festivals, Festival d'Automne in Paris, Lincoln Center Festival, Ruhrtriennale, Suntory Summer Festival, and Spoleto Festival. Debus enjoys an ongoing relationship with the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto.

Debus graduated from the Hamburg Conservatoire before being engaged as répétiteur and, subsequently, Kapellmeister by Frankfurt Opera where he acquired an extensive repertoire from Mozart to Thomas Adès. At home in both contemporary music and the core repertoire, he has conducted a wide range of world premieres and works of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, notably Salvatore Sciarrino's Macbeth and Luciano Berio's Un re in ascolto. He has collaborated with internationally-acclaimed ensembles such as Ensemble Intercontemporain, Ensemble Modern, Klangforum Wien, and Musikfabrik. 

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Nathalie Paulin, soprano, has established herself in the United States, Canada, Europe and the Far East as an interpretive artist of the very first rank.  Winner of a Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding Opera Performance, she has collaborated with internationally renowned conductors including Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Sir Roger Norrington, Andrew Parrott, Jonathan Darlington, Hervé Niquet, Bernard Labadie, Robert Spano, Kent Nagano, Mario Bernardi, and Andrew Litton, on both the concert platform and in opera.   Her Canadian and international operatic roles have included such famous characters as Mélisande (Debussy), Norina (Donizetti), Semele (Handel), Pamina (Mozart), Manon (Massenet), Calisto (Cavalli), Susanna (Mozart), Antonia (Offenbach) and Micaela (Bizet). Ms.  Paulin has appeared with the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra (Holland), at the Wexford Festival Opera (Ireland), with Bard Summerscape (New York), with Tafelmusik, at Boston’s Handel and Haydn Society, and with many other orchestras and festivals world-wide.   Since 2008 Nathalie has been teaching voice as well as French Mélodie for undergraduate students and Advanced French Lyric Diction for graduate students at the Faculty of Music at the University of Toronto;  she has also been on faculty at VISI (Vancouver International Song Institute), Orford Music Festival, and at the Stratford Summer Music Vocal Academy. Among her significant 2017 appearances, Nathalie performed with the National Arts Centre Orchestra in the new work, Dear Life, by composer Zosha di Castri, based on an adaptation of a short story by Alice Munro.

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Krisztina Szabo, mezzo. In the 2015-16 season Krisztina Szabó sang Judith in Bluebeard’s Castle (Colorado Music Festival), Thisbe in Pyramus and Thisbe (Canadian Opera Company), Ljubica in Svadba with San Francisco Opera.  She has appeared as soloist in Handel’s Messiah (Symphony Nova Scotia, Calgary Philharmonic), in concert with Bravissimo! at Roy Thomson Hall, with Soundstreams, with the Toronto Children’s Chorus, and with Talisker Players. Last season, she was nominated for 2 Dora Awards for her performances as The Woman in Erwartung with the COC and in Booster Shots with Tapestry Opera.  Career highlights include The Woman in Death and Desire (Against the Grain Theatre), Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, and Sesto in La clemenza di Tito (Vancouver Opera); Le Pèlerin in L’Amour de loin and Idamante in Idomeneo (COC); Komponist in Ariadne auf Naxos (Stadttheater Klagenfurt); Rosalind in The Mines of Sulphur (Wexford Festival Opera); Cherubino (Le nozze di Figaro) and Meg (Little Women)(Calgary Opera); Dorabella (Mostly Mozart Festival, NY); St. Matthew Passion (Brooklyn Academy of Music); Nerone in Agrippina (L’Opéra de Montréal); and Ruggiero in Alcina and Haydn’s Arianna a Naxos (Les Violons du Roy). Krisztina is a member of the Voice Faculty at the University of Toronto. Prior to her returning to the faculty of the Stratford Summer Music Vocal Academy in 2018, Ms. Szabo will have appeared with Opera Philadelphia (February) and in the premiere performances of Lessons of Love and Violence, by George Benjamin, first at the Royal Opera House, London (May) and then at the Dutch National Opera in Amsterdam (June).

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Howard Dyck is the conductor of Nota Bene Baroque Players & Singers as well as Artistic Director Emeritus of the Grand Philharmonic Choir and Conductor Emeritus of the Bach Elgar Choir (Hamilton). His international conducting career has taken him to twenty countries on three continents. He is known to music lovers across Canada as the former programme host of Choral Concert and Saturday Afternoon at the Opera on CBC Radio.

Howard has received numerous honours for his contributions to musical culture, both nationally and internationally. He holds honorary Doctor of Laws degrees from the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University, and is an Honorary Professor of Music at the Yunnan Arts University (Kunming, China). Howard is a Member of the Order of Canada, and a recipient of the Queen’s Golden and Diamond Jubilee Medals.

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Roger Honeywell, acting coach. 

Canadian – in fact, Stratford – tenor Roger Honeywell has a stellar record of dramatic roles on international and national stages, first as an actor with five seasons at the Shaw Festival and five seasons at the Stratford Festival.  Then, after completing the Canadian Opera Company’s young artist program, he began his operatic career leading to roles from modern operas such as Moby Dick (Ahab) and Billy Budd (Capt. Vere) to traditional classics such as Die Fledermaus (Eisenstein) and The Merry Widow (Danillo).  With this combination of theatre and operatic experiences, Roger is the perfect mentor to participate in this year’s Vocal Academy as coach/adviser for acting/singing instruction.

Vocal Academy Patrons:

Connie & Jim MacDougall

Assisted with a gift from: 




August 12 - August 21

The Avondale

By Registration

Master Class - Krisztina Szabo

Wednesday August 15 | 10 am

The Music Salon at the Avondale

Pay What You Can

Master Class - Phillip Addis

Thursday August 16 | 2 pm

The Music Salon at the Avondale

Pay What You Can

Master Class - Howard Dyck

Friday August 17 | 10 am | 1 pm

The Music Salon at the Avondale

Pay What You Can

Master Class - Johannes Debus

Saturday August 18 | 10 am

The Music Salon at the Avondale

Pay What You Can

Master Class - Nathalie Paulin

Monday August 20 | 10 am

The Music Salon at the Avondale

Pay What You Can

Vocal Academy Finale

Tuesday August 21 | 7 pm

The Avondale

$35 + HST (+$5 at the door)