The Role(s) of a Music Director

It’s an exciting time for the MYOpera family! Opening Night of The Rape of Lucretia is just two weeks away, and it’s thrilling to watch the show take shape as cast members delve deep into the music, their characters, and relationships on stage. It’s an exhilarating time for me – a time when I am consistently reminded of how fortunate I am to not only play the role of the music director as we mount a stunning opera, but also to be part of such a wonderful cast and artistic team, learning and exploring together as emerging artists and colleagues to bring an incredible work off the page and into the hearts of our audiences.


Vocal Score of The Rape of Lucretia by Benjamin Britten Photo: Dahlia Katz

The Role(s) of a Music Director

Preparing, rehearsing, and performing an opera is no small task. With a small, young company such as MYOpera, each member of the artistic team takes on many responsibilities that would typically be covered by several people in a larger company. The major music-related positions are the repetiteur, the conductor, and the vocal coach: Read more »

Borg on Britten: Society v. Lucretia

Hello Opera Fans!

My name is Nicholas Borg, and I am super excited to be playing the role of Tarquinius in MYOpera’s The Rape of Lucretia.

All of Benjamin Britten’s operas, and particularly Lucretia have always been fascinating to me, and last year I ended up writing a paper entitled “Benjamin Britten’s Depictions of Society Against the Innocence of the Individual”.  This paper heavily featured our show, describing how many of Britten’s operas include a society putting pressure on an individual until they have lost their innocence, and how Britten represents this musically. Hopefully my musical explanations aren’t too nerdy! Read more »

Alumni Spotlight – Alexandra Beley

Mezzo-Soprano Alexandra Beley was Dorabella in the company’s first production, Cosí fan tutte in 2011. Alexandra has since gone on to join Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist Development Program and is currently with the Atelier Lyrique, Opéra de Montréal. Alexandra is very prolific on Twitter and you can follow what she’s up to @alexandrabeley.

Above: Co-Conspiritors Alexandra Beley as Dorabella (left), Rosanna Murphy as Fiordiligi (middle) and Kate Applin as Despina (right) in Cosí fan tutte (2011). Photo: Gene Wu

1. Where are you from?
I was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario (To be fair, I grew up in Etobicoke… Some people have issues with the Toronto borders).

2. Where do you currently live?
I am currently living in Montreal, Quebec!

3. What’s your favourite MYOpera memory?
I was a part of the inaugural performance with MYOpera, so it’s a bit of a blur! The whole performance feels like it maybe happened in a dream!

4. What role did MYOpera play in your career/life?
MYOpera was really the first time in Toronto where I had the chance to perform a full role as a professional. I learned what it was like to be a lead in a production and what the physical demands are of an opera singer!

5. What have you been doing since MYOpera?
I’ve been very busy since MYOpera! I finished my masters (at Opera School), had my first year out of school where I auditioned for YAPS, I completed a year in the Calgary Opera Emerging Artists program, and now I’m in Montreal, in my second year with L’Atelier Lyrique! This sounds kind of glamorous, but it definitely comes with moments of homesickness!

6. What’s your favourite opera (to watch/listen to)?
Questions like these always frustrate me. I love music, so because of that I have many favourites. A suppose a current favourite would be Madama Butterfly. But, I’m also totally in love with Le Nozze di Figaro, Cosi fan tutte…. This question isn’t fair, there are too many. 

7. What’s your guilty pleasure song (any genre)?
I’m partial to “Call me maybe”, although, I don’t really feel guilty about it. Also, I definitely loved “A Party in the USA”.

8. Traveling is always an adventure! What’s your favourite/most memorable travel experience?
My favourite travel memories come from a trip I took to Europe with two close friends. I’ll never forget how I first saw the Eiffel Tower, how I got lost in the Latin Quarter, or my first taste of a macaroon from Ladurée!

9. Do you have a signature dish/meal that you make? Tell us about it!
I love to cook! It’s how I like to decompress after a long day. I’ve been told my chilli and my red velvet cupcakes are my signature dishes (but, I love cooking/baking everything!).

10. Singers/Artists are busy people! What’s your favourite snack when you’re on the go?
I’m pretty bad with remembering to snack when I’m super busy, but what you can normally see me noshing on while I’m on break at work is normally bananas, apples, and trail mix. That being said, my all time favourite snack is a bag of Dutch Crunch Creamy Dill Chips. Apparently, you can go to the factory in New Brunswick and put the seasoning on the freshly deep fried chips #vacationgoal