International opera star and Cal State Fullerton alumnus Rod Gilfry ’81 (B.A. music-music education) returns to his alma mater Saturday, May 5, for a performance of Mendelssohn’s “Elijah.”
Gilfry, along with mezzo-soprano I-Chin “Betty” Lee ’06 (B.M. music-voice), tenor Jason Francisco ’02 (B.M. music-instrumental) and CSUF vocal performance major Katie Martini, will join the University Symphony Orchestra and Symphonic Chorus for the 4 p.m. performance in Meng Concert Hall.
Conducting the oratorio on the life of the biblical prophet Elijah will be John Alexander, CSUF professor emeritus of music and Pacific Chorale artistic director emeritus.
Gilfry is a two-time Grammy nominee, singer and actor who has performed around the world, including at the London Royal Opera Covent Garden, the Zurich and Metropolitan operas, and in performances with the Los Angeles Master Chorale and Philharmonic. He is an associate professor of vocal arts at USC.
Lee currently sings with the Pacific Chorale, the John Alexander Singers and is the cantor at St. Paul’s Cathedral Center in Echo Park. Francisco sings with the Los Angeles and San Diego operas and has soloed with the Pacific Chorale, the John Alexander Singers, Pacific Symphony Orchestra and the Corona Del Mar Baroque Orchestra. He is featured as the vocal soloist in Roger Bellon’s soundtrack of the film “186 Dollars to Freedom.”
Martini is a senior majoring in music-vocal performance at Cal State Fullerton. A member of the University Singers, she is a featured soloist on the group’s recording “Nostos: The Homecoming of Music” and performed in a number of campus productions, including “Cosi fan Tutte” earlier this month.
Alexander served as director of choral studies at Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Northridge, as well as artistic director and conductor with the Pacific Chorale for more than 40 years. He has been recognized with numerous honors including American Choral Directors Association, Western Division Lifetime Achievement Award; the Michael Korn Founders Award from Chorus America; and Outstanding Individual Artist Award from Arts Orange County.
To order tickets and for more information, see the special event website.