Shreveport Opera Xpress

SOX Artists

The Shreveport Opera Resident Artist Program allows emerging professional singers and pianists the opportunity to receive training within a professional opera company. Each season, the Resident Artists (consisting of four singers and one pianist) perform and/or cover leading, supporting, comprimario and ensemble roles in the three mainstage productions. They receive coachings and workshops with visiting artists, opportunities to sing with area orchestras as featured soloists and weekly cantor positions at Shreveport churches. Perhaps the most important part of the Resident Artists’ position in Shreveport is their participation in the SOX Program (Shreveport Opera Xpress). This program allows the Resident Artists to go out into the communities of Louisiana, Texas and Arkansas to bring opera into their lives. The SOX program features two children’s operas that not only expose children to the art form but also discuss important topics such as diversity, acceptance and bullying, and they are performed in over 100 different schools . The SOX program also includes “Operatizers” (a concert of Opera Arias and Musical Theatre Pieces) at senior centers, community centers and private functions. Along with a weekly stipend, the Resident Artists receive housing, transportation to all company events and a travel stipend. Auditions for the program are held each December in New York City. 

For information on how to apply to the Shreveport Opera Resident Artists program, please see the listing on YAPtracker here

RESIDENT ARTISTS

2024-25 

The Shreveport Opera Xpress Residency Program is Proud to be celebrating 25 years of serving the Shreveport/Bossier community, as well as the entire Ark-La-Tex region.

Gwenyth Sell

Gwenyth Sell, Soprano, is thrilled to be joining Shreveport Opera as the soprano Resident Artist for the 2024-2025 season. She recently graduated with her Performer Diploma and Master of Music from Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, where she studied under the tutelage of Jane Dutton and was awarded two Performer’s Certificates. During her time at Jacobs, Gwenyth performed the roles of Arminda (La Finta Giardiniera), Lauretta and Nella (Gianni Schicchi), Le Prince (Cendrillon by Pauline Viardot), and Georgette (La Rondine). Most recently, Gwenyth was a Young Artist at Cedar Rapids Opera where she performed the role of the Sandman (Too Many Sopranos) and in the chorus of Tosca. Other recent roles include Nannetta (Falstaff) and Laetita (The Old Maid and the Thief).

Cambria Metzinger

Cambria Metzinger, Mezzo-Soprano, is originally from Santa Barbara, California. Hailed for her charming stage presence and wide stylistic range, Cambria is a versatile performer who draws from an extensive background in a variety of musical genres including jazz, musical theater, and opera. A recent graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music with a Master of Music in Vocal Performance under the tutelage of Cathy Cook, Ms. Metzinger was featured in numerous roles at SFCM, including “Véronique” in Bizet’s Le Docteur Miracle, “Teodata” in Handel’s Flavio, “Le tasse chinoise/La libellule” in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, “Taller Daughter” in Mazzoli’s Proving Up and “Amastre” in Serse by Handel. Cambria is delighted to join Shreveport Opera as a Resident Artist for the 24/25 season, where she will perform the role of “Mercedes” in Bizet’s Carmen.

 

 

Conner McWhirter

Conner McWhirter, Tenor, is starting his 2024-2025 season as a resident Artist with Shreveport Opera. He was most recently an apprentice artist with Sarasota Opera, where he covered Arturo in Lucia di Lammermoor. He received a performance diploma from Indiana University, where he performed both Tybalt, and Romeo, in Gounod’s Romeo et Juliette, and the Torero in Ainadamar. Additional roles include the Prince in Russalka, the Duke in Rigoletto, Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, and Rinuccio in Gianni Schicchi. He received his MM from SMU and BM from Eastman. He is thrilled to be performing Remendado in Carmen (covering Don Jose) as well as and Spoletta in Tosca during his residency with Shreveport Opera.

Justin Ramm-Damron

Justin Ramm-Damron, Bass-Baritone, is excited to be joining Shreveport Opera for their 2024-2025 season as a resident artist. Justin has performed roles with several notable opera companies across the United States such as Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Sarasota Opera, Central City Opera, Bronx Opera, Opera Magnifico, New Jersey Lyric Opera, Shakespeare Opera Theatre, and St. Petersburg Opera.  Most recently, he expanded his repertoire covering the role of Hagen in Wagner’s Götterdämmerung, and Fafner in Wagner’s Das Rheingold with TUNDI Productions in Vermont.

Ah Young Kim

Pianist Ah Young Kim, a native of South Korea, maintains a diverse range of musical experiences. As a collaborative pianist, she played for studios, including that of cellist János Starker, at Indiana University, where she received a master’s degree. Ms. Kim has also played for singers at masterclasses led by Alan L. Smith, Donna Racik, Dwayne Croft, Twyla Robinson, and the late Nico Castel. As an operatic pianist and coach, her previous credits include Aspen Music Festival Opera Coach Fellow (CO), Charlottesville Opera (Ash Lawn Opera, VA), Fort Worth Opera (TX), Musiktheater Bavaria (Germany), Opera North (Lebanon, NH), and UNT Opera (Denton, TX). Ms. Kim began her musical training in South Korea and received her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of North Texas. Her teachers include Pamela Mia Paul, Shigeo Neriki, Stephen Dubberly, and Elvia Puccinelli. She made a presentation at the MTNA National Conference (Baltimore, MD) and Louisiana Tech University (Ruston, LA). She also participated in the Mozarteum Summer Academy (Salzburg, Austria) and the International Keyboard Institute & Festival (IKIF, New York, NY).

Shreveport Opera Xpress

Outreach Productions

Shreveport Opera offers educational performances at your school for preK-12 students.

​The aim of the SOX Program is to present opera to the community in a fun and educational way! This season, our resident artists will be offering three different shows from which to choose. These shows will expose students to the art form of opera and also teach valuable moral lessons! After each show, the resident artists will conduct a Q&A session with the audience to discuss what was seen, heard, learned and observed!

THE UGLY DUCKLING

This opera  is for students grades preK-3.  It combines the stories of The Three Little Pigs & the Ugly Duckling.   It promotes reading, acceptance, kindness & friendship.    

STOP! THINK TWICE, BE NICE 

This 30-minute opera is for grades 2-5.  Students will learn about choosing kindness over bullying, respect for others, and the positive result of simply being nice.

OPERATIZERS

A 30-45-minute concert of opera arias and Broadway show tunes designed to expose upper-elementary, middle and high school students to opera and musical theater.   

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Shreveport Opera Xpress

Schedule
a SOX performance

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