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IU Jacobs School of Music students sweep Indiana District Met National Council Auditions

Oct. 29, 2012

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Five students from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music took home prizes from the Indiana District competition of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions that took place Oct. 27 at IU's Musical Arts Center.

District winners Michael Brandenburg and Kelly Glyptis.

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Soprano Kelly Glyptis, a student of Andreas Poulimenos, and tenor Michael Brandenburg, a student of Timothy Noble, were named the winners from a field of 26 competitors.

"Today's experience was nothing short of incredible," said Glyptis. "The opportunity to help represent IU at the Regional Audition is such an honor, one I could not have achieved without the overwhelming support of my professors and colleagues."

"I am deeply honored to be a District winner," said Brandenburg. "It is gratifying to have all of my hard work and preparation rewarded, especially among so many talented, accomplished candidates."

The two winners will advance to the Central Regional Auditions Nov. 4 at the Music Institute of Chicago in Evanston, Ill. The winners of that round will compete in the National Semi-Finals March 3 at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. The Grand Finals Concert will take place at the Met on March 10.

Encouragement awards went to soprano Riley Svatos, a student of Costanza Cuccaro; tenor Derrek Stark, a student of Carlos Montané; and baritone Joshua Conyers, a student of Noble.

Judges for this year's competition were Dennis Hanthorn, arts administrator and former general director of Florentine Opera and The Atlanta Opera; Susan Ashbaker, vocal coach and artistic consultant; and Ken Benson, artists manager and consultant.

IU First Lady Laurie Burns McRobbie served as honorary chairperson and emcee for the Bloomington event. Mezzo-soprano Mary Ann Hart, chair of the Jacobs Department of Voice, was faculty chair. Maria Levy, auditions and casting coordinator for IU Opera Theater, coordinated the event.

About the Winners

Kelly Glyptis, soprano, is a second-year M.M. student at the Jacobs School of Music and has performed as Elvira ("Don Giovanni"), Beatrice ("A View from the Bridge"), Prince Orlofsky ("Die Fledermaus"), Third Lady ("Die Zauberflöte"), Lolette ("La Rondine"), Signora Nacarelli ("The Light in the Piazza"), Cleo ("The Most Happy Fella"), and Mrs. Nordstrom ("A Little Night Music") with IU Opera Theater. She has also performed roles and scenes with the Washington National Opera Institute, Operafestival di Roma, Canadian Operatic Arts Academy, Charley Creek Workshop and IU Opera Workshops. Professionally, she has performed with Gray Ghost Theater, Pied Piper Theatre and Dominion Stage, receiving leading roles with each company.

Glyptis has been nominated and won several outstanding actress awards throughout the Washington, D.C., area and recently received acclaim in Opera News for her performance as Orlofsky. Last year, she was the recipient of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions North Carolina District encouragement award and winner of the Hellenic American Women's Council award. She is also a recipient of the IU Music Merit Award, Jacobs Access Grant, Friday Musicale Scholarship and the Christ-Marchant Friends of Music Award. She is also recognized as an actor combatant by the Society of American Fight Directors. Previously under the tutelage of Dale Moore and Graham Clark, she currently studies with Andreas Poulimenos.

Tenor Michael Brandenburg, a native of Austin, Ind., studied voice with Joseph Levitt while pursuing an M.S. in Aquatic Biology at Ball State University. He has studied the roles of Don Jose in "Carmen" and Alfred in "Die Fledermaus." He was a 2010 semi-finalist in the Bel Canto Foundation Competition in Chicago and an Indiana District winner in the 2010 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. He is currently pursuing a Performer Diploma at the Jacobs School of Music and is a fellow of the school. Brandenburg is a student of Timothy Noble.