Donna Balson - Opera Coach

DONNA BALSON 

COACH

Donna Balson is one of Australia’s most experienced opera coaches. She returned to her native Sydney in 2018, after more than 25 years living in Germany and the US, to take up the position as Manager of Opera Australia’s Young Artist Program.

As a coach, she has prepared singers for performances at Opera Australia, Oper Frankfurt, Deutsche Oper am Rhein, La Scala, the Wiener Staatsoper and the Metropolitan Opera, and for successful auditions for the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia and the Lindemann Young Artist Program at the Metropolitan Opera. She was senior adjunct professor of voice and diction at Hofstra University in New York from 2005-2018.

As a singer, Donna’s operatic engagements have included work with companies in Frankfurt, Düsseldorf and Stuttgart, and with Opera Australia, Opera Queensland and Canterbury Opera. In concert, she has performed at Carnegie Hall and Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Centre, and with orchestras and ensembles including the Prague Symphony, China National Symphony, Residentie Orchestra Den Haag, Junge Deutsche Philharmonie, Symphony of the Americas, Ensemble Moderne and the Seymour Group. Her concert repertoire ranges from Bach and Mozart to Nono, and includes multiple performances of the Verdi Requiem. Highlights of her operatic repertoire include the roles of Leonora in La Forza del Destino, Margherita in Boito’s Mefistofele, Violetta in La Traviata and the title role in Tosca. She was a core member of the American Chamber Ensemble in New York and has performed both as a singer and collaborative pianist in recitals across the United States.

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State Opera is saddened to learn of the passing of John Haddock overnight. A wonderful musician and composer, John’s powerhouse opera Madeline Lee was part of our inaugural Lost Operas of Oz season in 2019. A consummate artist, John performed the two-piano version of his score for the Adelaide season with Michael Ierace, under the baton of Warwick Stengårds. State Opera staff and artists honour the passing of an enormously talented man.

📷 John Haddock (centre), rehearsing with Warwick Fyfe and Robert Macfarlane. ©Soda Street Productions

📷The flight crew of Madeline Lee – State Opera South Australia season, 2019 (Robert Macfarlane, Pelham Andrews, Nicholas Cannon, Eddie Muliaumaseali’i) ©Soda Street Productions
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State Opera is saddened to learn of the passing of John Haddock overnight. A wonderful musician and composer, John’s powerhouse opera Madeline Lee was part of our inaugural Lost Operas of Oz season in 2019. A consummate artist, John performed the two-piano version of his score for the Adelaide season with Michael Ierace, under the baton of Warwick Stengårds. State Opera staff and artists honour the passing of an enormously talented man. 

📷 John Haddock (centre), rehearsing with Warwick Fyfe and Robert Macfarlane. ©Soda Street Productions

📷The flight crew of Madeline Lee – State Opera South Australia season, 2019 (Robert Macfarlane, Pelham Andrews, Nicholas Cannon, Eddie Muliaumaseali’i) ©Soda Street ProductionsImage attachment

Comment on Facebook 103997454921_10160813190119922

Such a very sad loss. His Madeline Lees was unforgettable.

Valé 🙏

A very sad news, vale.

When someone in the office is sharing photos of their new fur baby.
Are you a proud pet parent? Let us know; pictures welcome and encouraged!

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When someone in the office is sharing photos of their new fur baby.
Are you a proud pet parent? Let us know; pictures welcome and encouraged!

📷 Merry Widow

Comment on Facebook When someone in the ...

Why not SOSA cast photo?

These are my three gorgeous ones. Hugh and Viktor at the front. Missy, the Princess, at the back.

You asked! This is Luna. She’s a lagotto. She’s waiting for her call up for a theatre role.

Meet Magnificat the Covid kitten that Peter Deane and I adopted when they shut the borders last year. He's a bit bigger than this now, of course 🙂

Morris and Minnie 🐶🐶

Tirion and Toby

Maverick the Magnificent #nofilter

This is Charlie......our very cheeky fur baby with a big attitude 🥰🐶😂

Mozart ♥️

My Beatrix

My Karma

My Jack

Phil Melville *us*

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Who needs love when you can have revenge instead? To all you jilted lovers out there, treat yourselves this Valentine’s Day. stateopera.com.au/sweeney-todd-2021 ... See MoreSee Less

Who needs love when you can have revenge instead? To all you jilted lovers out there, treat yourselves this Valentine’s Day. stateopera.com.au/sweeney-todd-2021

If you don’t laugh, you’ll cry. To our Victorian counterparts, to everyone affected by the lockdown, we are thinking of you over the next five days.

For the students in Melbourne who are part of our Summer Opera Academy, it wouldn’t be the same without you, so we are postponing until we can have you all here with us. For those that have purchased tickets to any of the events, your tickets will be automatically refunded in the next 7 days.

Image: Dominic J Walsh & Amelia Berry - The Mikado - State Opera South Australia © Soda Street Productions
... See MoreSee Less

If you don’t laugh, you’ll cry. To our Victorian counterparts, to everyone affected by the lockdown, we are thinking of you over the next five days. 

For the students in Melbourne who are part of our Summer Opera Academy, it wouldn’t be the same without you, so we are postponing until we can have you all here with us. For those that have purchased tickets to any of the events, your tickets will be automatically refunded in the next 7 days.

Image: Dominic J Walsh & Amelia Berry - The Mikado - State Opera South Australia © Soda Street Productions

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Dominic J Walsh - capturing the spirit of an age.

Is there meaning in the fact that the woman representing the rest of Australia is a New Zealander?

We are delighted to welcome our very first cohort to the State Opera Summer Opera Academy, commencing on February 15. We are committed to nurturing and championing emerging Australian operatic talent and are thrilled at the calibre of participants. Presenting the class of 2021. stateopera.com.au/opera-academy/

Cameron Sibly - Tenor (VIC)
Gabrielle Penney - Soprano (NSW)
Kim Worley - Tenor (SA)
Stella Hannock - Mezzo (NSW)
Kiran Rajasingam - Baritone (VIC)
Esther Counsel - Soprano (VIC)
Kristin Astouroghlian - Mezzo (VIC)
Zachary McCulloch - Tenor (VIC)
Sara Donnelly - Soprano (QLD)
... See MoreSee Less

We are delighted to welcome our very first cohort to the State Opera Summer Opera Academy, commencing on February 15. We are committed to nurturing and championing emerging Australian operatic talent and are thrilled at the calibre of participants. Presenting the class of 2021. stateopera.com.au/opera-academy/

Cameron Sibly - Tenor (VIC)
Gabrielle Penney - Soprano (NSW)
Kim Worley - Tenor (SA)
Stella Hannock - Mezzo (NSW)
Kiran Rajasingam - Baritone (VIC)
Esther Counsel - Soprano (VIC)
Kristin Astouroghlian - Mezzo (VIC)
Zachary McCulloch - Tenor (VIC)
Sara Donnelly - Soprano (QLD)

Comment on Facebook We are delighted to ...

Excellent. Well done. Will there be a "graduation" concert?

Yay for Sara and Cameron! 👏👏

Oh dear - another border closure - I hope this does not affect the academy?

Congrats everyone!!

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