Richard Zielinski, is known for his innovative programming and versatility as both an orchestral and choral conductor. A passionate and compelling communicator, with an extensive knowledge of classical and contemporary repertoire, he conducted the opening concert for the 2014 international Haydntage with a world premiere of Haydn’s Die Jahreszeiten choreographed for ballet. He has also premiered performances of Die Schöpfung and Carmina Burana choreographed for ballet as well as numerous stage productions for music theater. In his eighth year as artistic director of the Classical Music Festival, Zielinski also serves as conductor for the Norman Philharmonic in Oklahoma and is on the music faculty at the University of Oklahoma.
Zielinski has conducted extensively both in the United States and abroad including The Florida Orchestra, Tampa Bay Symphony Orchestra, Naples Philharmonic, Elgin Symphony, Danville Symphony Orchestra, and Poland’s Szczecin Philaharmonic Orchestra. He has also held several positions abroad including artistic director and conductor for Chor Akademicki Politechniki Szczecinskiej, In Terra Pax, and the International Festival of Choral Song in Poland. Recently, Zielinski was awarded the Gold Medal of Achievement for his artistic achievements and musical contributions in Eisenstadt as principal conductor and artistic director of the Classical Music Festival.
A champion of new music, Richard Zielinski has worked with numerous composers and regularly leads the Norman Philharmonic in performances of contemporary works from composers like Libby Larsen, John Mackey, and Michael Daugherty. His professional vocal ensemble, the Richard Zielinski Singers, has also recorded works by Norman Dello Joio, Libby Larsen, Stephen Paulus, Eleanor Daley, David Del Tredici, Alice Parker, and Eric Whitacre among others.
Throughout his career, Richard Zielinski has devoted time to working with students and young artists. In addition to creating and leading outreach programs with the Norman Philharmonic, he also has worked with students at numerous music festivals in the United States and abroad.
Don V. Moses
Don V. Moses, Founding Director and Conductor Emeritus, received his degrees from Kansas State University, Fort Hays, and Indiana University. A former Director of the School of Music at the University of Illinois, Dr. Moses has held conducting faculty appointments at the Universities of Illinois, Iowa, and Indiana. Among his many frequent guest conducting appearances with choruses and orchestras in the U.S. and internationally, he has conducted the Györ, Hungary, Philharmonic, and the Taipai Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus of Taiwan. With his love of Haydn and vision for musical performances, he founded the Classical Music Festival in 1975 and provided the leadership for 25 years of successful concerts, lectures, and seminars in Eisenstadt, Burgenland, and Vienna. His latest book, “The Masses of Joseph Haydn” is available at www.Haydnmasses.com.
Dr. David Howard, Chorusmaster
Dr. David Howard is Associate Director of Choral Activities at the University of Oklahoma where he conducts the OU Men's Glee Club, OU Women's Chorus, and Opera Chorus. He teaches graduate and undergraduate choral conducting and also coordinates the annual Young Men's Vocal Workshop and the Women's Choral Leadership Invitational. His collegiate choirs, civic choruses, opera choruses, church choirs, and secondary school choirs in Texas, Oklahoma, and Michigan have been hailed for their beauty of tone, musicality, and clarity of diction. He regularly serves as a clinician, consultant, and adjudicator. Prior to his appointment at OU, he served as Associate DCA at Stephen F. Austin State University, chorus-master of Opera East Texas, director of music at First Methodist Church in Nacogdoches, Texas.
Equally at home as a baritone soloist, Howard maintains a performance schedule in oratorio and cantata presentations, and as a recitalist. His repertoire ranges from the music of J.S. Bach to Orff's Carmina Burana. Most recently, Howard gave recitals of Schubert's Winterreise and Schumann's Dichterliebe and Liederkreis in collaboration with pianist Andrew Parr, and performed the Berlioz's Grand Messe des morts with the Carnegie Hall Festival Chorus under the baton of Robert Spano.
His scholarly articles have appeared in the British academic music journal, Musical Times, and in The Choral Journal. Moreover, his performing editions and choral arrangements are published by Alliance Music Publications.
He holds the Bachelor of Music Education degree and Master of Music degree in vocal performance (cum laude) from the University of Central Oklahoma and the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in choral conducting from Michigan State University.
Dr. Brian T. Kilp, Orchestra Manager
Dr. Brian T. Kilp joined the faculty of Indiana State University School of Music in 1998 where he is currently Professor of Music/Horn. He is Visiting Guest Professor at the Shenyang Conservatory in China and at Rajabhat Maha Sarakham University in Thailand. Brian has presented master classes, lectures, and performances at Conservatories and schools in China, Taiwan, Japan, Singapore, Thailand, Australia, and Austria. In April of 2012 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate at Rajabhat Maha Sarakham University, and in 2010, an Honorary Doctorate at Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University, both in Thailand. Brian is a member of Keith Brion’s New Sousa Band, and founding member of The Ambassador Brass, which has performed and offered clinics in numerous venues in China and Thailand. He has been Principal Horn of the Classical Music Festival Orchestra in Eisenstadt, Austria, from 2000-2006 and 2008-present. He is currently Principal Horn with Sinfonia da Camera, in Champaign, IL, the Terre Haute Symphony, and the Danville (IL) Symphony. He holds degrees from CCM (B.M.), New Mexico State University (M. M.), and The University of Arizona (DMA).
Susan Lamb Cook, Principal Cellist and Chamber Music Coordinator
Susan Lamb Cook is an active performer and educator both nationally and internationally, and is sought after as soloist and chamber musician throughout Europe, the Far East, and the United States. She is on the artistic staff for the Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria, is Lecturer in cello and chamber music at the University of California, Davis, and has served as artist in residence at the Vianden Festival, Luxembourg, and the Saarburg Festival, Germany. Her recent tours of China have included performances and master classes at the prestigious Shanghai Conservatory and in the cities of Jinan, Liaosheng, Dezhou, Qilu, Hangzhou and Xiamen. She has performed and given master classes at UCLA, San Francisco State University, Scripps College, St. Mary’s College and Harvey Mudd College. MORE…
Dr. Ricky Duhaime
Dr. Ricky Duhaime, Mosher Professor of Music at Austin College in Sherman, Texas, serves as Principal Clarinetist and Coordinator of Woodwind Chamber Music for the festival. He holds B.A. and B.S. degrees from the University of New Hampshire, M.M. from the University of Illinois, and the first D.M.A. in Multiple Woodwind Performance granted by the University of North Texas. He appears regularly as soloist, clinician, and ensemble performer, including tours with the New Millenium, Galliard, and Walden String Quartets, the American Chamber Winds in Europe, and the Grand Avenue Quartet, specializing in 18th Century music on period instruments, as well as holding guest artist and visiting professorship appointments at the Haydn Konservatorium in Eisenstadt. Recent publications include modern editions of the Missa brevis in D Major, KV 194, by W.A. Mozart, and the American Jazz Mass by Frank Tirro, both premiered on the Austin College campus.
Brice Gerlach, Choral Rehearsal Accompanist
Brice Gerlach received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in organ performance from Eastman School of Music and Indiana University, respectively. His organ teachers include L. Robert Slusser, Russell Saunders and Larry Smith. While at Eastman, he was awarded the prestigious Performer’s Certificate in Organ. In 2008 he completed his doctorate in choral conducting from Indiana University. Gerlach’s conducting teachers include Thomas Dunn, Jan Harrington and Robert Porco.
In Naples, Florida, Gerlach is director of music at First Presbyterian Church and the assistant director and accompanist of the Philharmonic Center Chorales.
Cathy Griffin, Festival Coordinator, is a self-employed marketing consultant specializing in work with arts organizations and financial institutions. She has held marketing management positions with several major financial institutions before starting her own business. In addition to receiving a masters degree from the University of Tulsa, she has performed with opera companies in Seattle, Phoenix, and Indianapolis.
Piotr Szulc, serves as the Production & Operations Manager with responsibility for coordinating facility and transportation arrangements for the Festival. Piotr is highly experienced with producing festivals as the owner of a company in Poland which produces concerts throughout Europe. His work has also included producing and serving as emcee for a variety of events including international tennis tournaments, jazz festivals, artistic tours, as well as a wide range of special events for businesses. He also serves as Director of the International Festival of Choral Song in Miedzyzdroje, Poland and is a member of the Board of the Pomeranian Medical Academy Choir in Szczecin, Poland. Prior to this, Piotr was part-owner of a public relations and advertising agency for 20 years.
Susan Urbach serves as MIS Coordinator with the Classical Music Festival. She holds the Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Vocal Performance from Oklahoma City University. Urbach spent 16 years as a church musician, conducting the Tinker Air Force Base Chapel choirs for eight years, and also conducting in several other Oklahoma church music programs. In addition, she has released a CD There Was a Time, Music of Stephen Foster. She worked with MIDI for Kids in their early-stage business development.
Urbach currently serves as Regional Director for the Oklahoma Small Business Development Center at the University of Central Oklahoma, a position she has held for the past 26 years. Being involved with the Classical Music Festival unites both her music and business passions and interests.
Born and raised in Eisenstadt, Martin, Staff Assistant, handles arrangements for festival transportation and tours, along with many other administrative needs that occur throughout the year. Martin started to work for the festival in 2012 and is currently studying International Business Relations (BA-degree) at the University of applied Science in Eisenstadt and working part time in hotel management. He works tirelessly for the festival through the year, and especially during the time we are in Eisenstadt. He'll be one of the team members at the airport on August 3rd to greet you.
Anne Swedish Moses
Anne Swedish Moses has served as Administrative Director for the Classical Music Festival as well as soprano soloist for many years. After a successful career as a highly sought after soloist in recital, oratorio, and opera, she turned to public relations and management, bringing this expertise to the organizational work of the festival. Anne now serves as a member of the festival's board of directors.
Michele Byrd, Soprano
Soprano, Michele Byrd, is best known for her work in oratorio and as a recitalist. A frequent performer of Early music, she is often featured singing works by Bach, Handel, Schütz, Purcell and Pergolesi. Other notable performances include Mozart’s Requiem, Galuppi’s Nisi Dominus, and Vivaldi’s Dixit Dominus; as well as many of Haydn’s and Schubert’s masses; also works by Britten, Mendelssohn and Beethoven. She has been the soprano soloist at the Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt and Vienna, Austria for the past eight years. She also toured Poland with the Zielinski Singers in 2015. Upcoming performances include Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater, Haydn’s Heiligmesse and Vivaldi’s Gloria.
Known for her clarity of tone, Byrd has been sought out by many living composers to perform current works including Sonnengang by Stefan Kocsis, Voices of Light by Richard Einhorn, Bõ, by Jacob Druckman and many works by James Stephenson III. Byrd has performed under the direction of Sir David Willcocks, Christopher Seaman, Paul Leddington-Wright, Richard Zielinski, Erich Kunzel, James Cochran, Keith Lockhart, Paul Flight and Stuart Chafetz. Byrd is a graduate of Indiana University where she studied with Walter Cassell, Roger Havranek and Paul Elliott.
Rebekah Ambrosini, contralto
Contralto Rebekah Kirtley Ambrosini has distinguished herself as one of North America’s leading concert artists. The contralto frequents many of the nation’s most important concert venues and appears regularly with major American symphony orchestras. Career highlights for Ms. Ambrosini include performances of Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir under the baton of renowned conductor Keith Lockhart, a Carnegie Hall debut in in Mozart’s Requiem with Musica Sacra, Bernstein’s Jeremiah Symphony with the Springfield Symphony Orchestra, Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 under the baton of Gilbert Kaplan, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Monterey Symphony Orchestra, Hänsel in Hänsel und Gretel with the National Symphony Orchestra of Taiwan conducted by Maestro Jahja Ling and performances of Handel's Messiah, Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 and Bach Passions with numerous symphonies.On the operatic and music theatre stage, Ms. Ambrosini has performed principal roles with Cincinnati Opera, Tulsa Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Sarasota Opera, Music Theatre of Wichita, Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma, and the Festival de Lille in France, among others. Ms. Ambrosini was a Regional Winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.
Rebekah, a native of Enid, Oklahoma, is currently Associate Professor of Voice at Southern Nazarene University.
Jos Milton, tenor
Jos Milton enjoys an active career in music as a professional singer and an educator. His vibrant and eclectic schedule includes numerous engagements, spanning a vast array of repertoire and performance mediums. Recent credits include a multimedia recital of Schubert's Winterreise at the University of Georgia, tenor soloist in Mendelssohn's Elijah with the Germantown Symphony Orchestra, the Chaplain in Poulenc's Dialogues of the Carmelites with Louisiana Opera, and a concert of music from Shakespeare's Theatre with the Mockingbird Early Music Ensemble. His experience as a professional chorister includes many performances with prestigious ensembles, including the Carmel Bach Festival Chorale and the Grammy® award-winning Conspirare Company of Voices.
Todd Donovan, bass-baritone
American Bass-Baritone, Todd William Donovan, has been described by critics as a singer full of confidence, dominating the stage. He is known for his powerful and resonant voice and expressive acting. Mr. Donovan is comfortable both on the Opera and Musical Theater stage where he has performed throughout the United States. St. Petersburg Times Critic, John Fleming has described Mr. Donovan’s performances as rich, passionate and powerful; A solid performer with splendid acting throughout, bringing down the house.
Mr. Donovan’s most recent operatic roles include: Dr. Grenvil in La Traviata, 2016, Don Basilio in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, 2016, and Figaro in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro, 2014. Critics said, “Donovan proves adept at comedy with stentorian vocal projection, a very fine Figaro- Strong and flexible, showcasing his own formidable chords.” Olin Blitch in Floyd’s Susannah, 2014, where he was described as “a swaggering rooster,” and “Blitch could be a cardboard villain but Donovan’s performance makes him something more, giving fuller dimension to the character…” Scarpia in Puccini’s Tosca in 2013, “giving a deliciously evil interpretation,” Mefistofele in Boito’s Mefistofele, Dr. Falke in Die Fledermaus; Colline in La Boheme; Leporello in Don Giovanni; Baron Zeta in The Merry Widow; and Marchese D'Obigny in La Traviata. Todd has also appeared as Wotan with New Century Opera's Ring Cycle in Wagner’s Das Rheingold, Die Walkure and Siegfried. In the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas, he has sung the roles of The Modern Major General in The Pirates of Penzance, Captain Corcoran in H.M.S. Pinafore, and the Mikado in The Mikado.
Mr. Donovan’s most recent role on the musical theater stage was Emile De Becque, 2016. Critics raved: The South Pacific you knew and loved officially gets into gear in de Becque's Some Enchanted Evening. “Donovan's rich bass-baritone voice thrills with a control and a discipline that goes well beyond most Broadway shows passing through the Tampa Bay area.” And, “In this production, in the role of de Becque, Todd William Donovan hits just the right notes, literally. He's likable as an actor, with a good connection with his love, Nellie, but it's his songs that are out of this world. The iconic "Some Enchanted Evening" never sounded better. But that just seemed to be a prelude to his "This Nearly Was Mine" in Act 2. This was a bona fide make-you-cry powerhouse of a performance; the audience's ovation after the number lasted longer than many curtain calls I've seen.” Alfred P. Doolittle in My Fair Lady, the Baker in Sondheim’s Into the Woods, and Count Carl Magnus in, A Little Night Music.
Mr. Donovan has won numerous competitions including 1st place Oxnard $12,000 Gold Medal Award and the Johnny Mercer Award in the American Traditions Competition at the 2009 Savannah Music Festival, singing in multiple music genres including songs from the American Songbook, jazz, musical theater, pop and opera.
Alan Chow, piano
Alan Chow, acclaimed for his "elegant poetry and virtuosic fire," has won major competitions including First Prize at the Concert Artists Guild International Competition and the Palm Beach International Piano Competition. Winner of the Silver Medal and Audience Favorite Prize at the Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition, he was also a prizewinner in the William Kapell International Piano Competition. A Steinway artist, he has performed in recital and in concert with orchestras from coast to coast in major music centers in over forty states. He regularly tours Asia with performances in China, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, and Singapore. Mr. Chow studied with Nelita True at the Univeristy of Maryland, with Sascha Gordonitsky at the Juilliard, and with Menahem Pressler at Indiana University. Chow is currently on the piano faculty at Northwestern University in Evanston Illinois. MORE…